Toyota application process begins

By Dennis Seid/NEMS Daily Journal

BELDEN – In about 14 months, the first Toyota Corolla will be rolling off the production line at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi.
To make that happen, the Japanese automaker will need about 1,350 hourly production and maintenance workers, and it needs to hire as many of them as quickly as possible.
In a long-awaited move, Toyota announced Monday that it had begun accepting applications online for the hourly jobs at the Mississippi Department of Employment Security’s website at www.mdes.ms.gov.
“The reputation of the work force in Northeast Mississippi played a significant role for Toyota to choose Blue Springs for our newest location,” said David Copenhaver, vice president of administration for Toyota Mississippi. “Today marks a big milestone for Toyota Mississippi as we begin building our team.”
MDES Executive Director Les Range said the agency’s website was activated at 9 a.m. Monday and had was receiving applications.
In June, Toyota announced that it was resuming operations at its plant in Blue Springs. In December 2008, citing the economic downturn and slide in sales, the automaker idled the plant until conditions improved.
After the June announcement, Toyota said it would need 2,000 workers by the time the plant was fully operational in the spring of 2012.
Officials anticipate 100,000 to 400,000 people to apply for the hourly jobs, which start at about $15 an hour and go up to as much as $25, based on the job and applicants’ experience.
Last month, about 5,000 people applied for 57 salaried jobs.
Salaried job information is available online at www.toyota.com/jobs.
“We’re facing a very aggressive schedule to have Corolla production by next fall,” Copenhaver said.
Applicants for the hourly jobs can go to any WIN Job Center, where they can get help in filling out the online application. Applicants also can access the website from any computer with online access, including home computers. Public libraries also have computers available.
The hourly jobs will include stamping, body weld, paint, assembly, quality control and facilities.
Copenhaver said hourly production jobs will start at $15 an hour with the top rate at $21 an hour. Hourly maintenance jobs will start at $18 an hour and top out at $25 an hour.
The average manufacturing wage in Northeast Mississippi is about $13 an hour.
“We’ll have competitive benefits packages beginning Day One,” he added.
While TMMMS will employ 1,350 hourly workers at full production, the remaining 650 or so jobs will include managers, human resources, engineers and other support staff.
Toyota has not said when the remaining salaried positions will be posted on its website, but Copenhaver said in an earlier interview that it probably would be several more weeks.
Meantime, the hourly positions will be filled as quickly as possible. The link on website where applications can be made – at www.mdes.ms.gov – will be available at least a month.
Copenhaver said maintenance employees would be brought on board first since they’ll need to learn about the equipment.
“Later in the year – the end of September, first of October – they’ll be brought in when equipment is installed to see how it works,” he said.
The production workers will get started in late winter or early spring.
“This is going to be a tremendous facility for our state that I believe literally will change the face of Northeast Mississippi,” said Gov. Haley Barbour.
“If you go to Georgetown, Ky., where Toyota went 20 years ago and see what has happened there or go to Princetown, Ind., and see what has happened there, those were small towns that are alive with economic development. Those communities are so different from when Toyota came and for the better. Candidly, I think there will be opportunities for you, your children and your grandchildren with Toyota.”

Contact Dennis Seid at (662) 678-1578 or dennis.seid@djournal.com.

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Press Release from Gov. Barbour’s office

BELDEN – Governor Haley Barbour and officials from Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi, Inc. (TMMMS) announced today that the company is resuming hiring at its Blue Springs, Miss., plant.

“We have looked forward with great anticipation to the day when Toyota was ready to fully staff its Blue Springs facility, and that day has come,” Governor Haley Barbour said. “I am so pleased that Toyota is moving forward with its hiring process and is creating so many high-quality jobs for the residents of Mississippi. Today is a great day for not only north Mississippi but the state as a whole.”

When Toyota Motor Corporation announced in February 2007 that it was locating an automotive assembly plant in north Mississippi, it committed to creating 2,000 direct jobs.

While in 2008 the company announced a delay in its plans to start producing vehicles in Blue Springs due to market conditions and a weak economy, Toyota completed construction at the north Mississippi facility and retained its existing workforce there. Recently, the company announced its plans to resume preparations for production at the plant, where it will begin producing the best-selling Corolla model in the fall of 2011.

“The reputation of the outstanding workforce in northeast Mississippi was a major factor for Toyota when we chose Blue Springs for our newest U.S. plant,” said David Copenhaver, vice president of administration at TMMMS. “Today marks a big milestone for Toyota Mississippi as we begin building our team.”

TMMMS is coordinating all hiring for its hourly production and skilled maintenance positions through the Mississippi Department of Employment Security (MDES) and the Workforce Investment Network (WIN) Job Centers.

Individuals interested in employment opportunities at Toyota’s Blue Springs plant may apply online at www.mdes.ms.gov. Persons needing assistance with the application process or access to an internet accessible computer may visit any WIN Job Center in Mississippi. For a complete list of the WIN Job Centers in the state, please visit:
http://mdes.ms.go/Home/findWinJobClaimCenter.html

TO APPLY FOR PRODUCTION AND SKILLED MAINTENANCE JOBS AT TOYOTA:

– Visit www.mdes.ms.gov, and click the “Toyota” link underneath the “Access Mississippi Online Services” section.
– For applicants with an existing account, log into the system with a username and password. For applicants without an account, follow the easy steps to create an account.
– Once logged in, select the “Search for Jobs” link.
– Enter keyword “Toyota” to view a complete list of available jobs
at the Toyota plant.
– Follow the prompts to apply for a position of interest.

“We are pleased to be working with Toyota to help the company staff its facility,” said MDES Executive Director Les Range. “Thanks to an investment by Toyota and the Mississippi Development Authority, we have been able to expand our online system to help Toyota take job applications for its Blue Springs facility.”

“Residents may apply for Toyota jobs at any computer with Internet access: at home, at libraries, at a friend’s home or anywhere else, and help is always available at one of the 53 WIN Job Centers across the state,” Range said.

Individuals interested in salaried positions at the facility are encouraged to visit www.toyota.com/jobs for more information and to apply online.

TO APPLY FOR SALARIED POSITIONS AT TOYOTA:

1. Visit www.toyota.com/jobs.
2. Click on the “Search Jobs” link in the middle of the page.
3. Another dialogue box will open with the list of available job openings.
4. Review the open positions and click “Apply” underneath the open position of interest.
5. If you have applied for positions with Toyota in the past, enter
your username and password.
6. If you have not applied for positions with Toyota in the past,
select the “New User” button.
7. Create a unique username (utilizing letters and numbers) and a
password.
8. There are several pages of the application process. Please complete
all in order to be considered.
(a) Select how you heard about the position.
(b) Complete your contact information. Required fields will be marked
with an asterisk (*).
(c) the easiest way to tell us about your work experience is to attach a resume. To do so, click on the “Browse” button. Select the file
you want to attach. Select “Open”. Then select the “Attach” button. If you do not have a resume to attach, scroll down to the
bottom of the page and type in your information; OR
(d) You may enter your Work Experience & Education in the next section.
Select your places of employment and the timeframe when you worked there. Then you can select your school, major and degree.
(e) The next page asks whether or not you require sponsorship to work in the U.S. If you are a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident, select “No”.
(f) The next page is around qualifications and skills. Please answer to the best of your knowledge.
(g) The next page is Diversity information. This information is not viewable by the recruiting staff. If you are not comfortable providing this information, then there is an option for “I do not wish to provide this information”
(h) There is a summary page. Please review the information and edit any that needs to be changed. When everything is correct, click on the “Submit” button.
(i) You will then receive a Thank You page.

“We were delighted when Toyota announced in early 2007 it was locating an automotive assembly plant in north Mississippi and would create 2,000 jobs in the area,” said Gray Swoope, executive director of the Mississippi Development Authority. “Today, I am pleased Toyota is ready to start filling those positions and putting Mississippians to
work.”