Add it all up and it comes to 1,840 in less than 24 months. That’s the number of new jobs the Cherokee Office of Economic Development (COED) has helped generate by attracting new and expanding industries throughout the county. But that’s only part of the equation. As COED held various forums across the community this year, corporate leaders and residents expressed the need for a central clearinghouse highlighting job opportunities in Cherokee County.
COED went to work researching practices in some of the nation’s most successful communities and then honed in on how North Carolina’s Research Triangle connects its workforce and industry. The end result is now on COED’s website, which features a career center that lists jobs available only in Cherokee.
“Nearly 75 percent of our job growth is generated from existing businesses,” said Misti Martin, COED president. “Creating an environment in which existing companies can thrive is crucial to our success. In addition, our corporate parks continue to attract global industries to Cherokee. That has also created hundreds of new jobs.”
Steve Holcomb, vice chair of COED said, “Cherokee is known for its skilled, educated workforce. We now have a tool to connect people with local job opportunities. We plan to incorporate internships for students into this format as well.”
Every time an employer lists an opportunity in Cherokee County on Indeed.com, that same listing posts to the COED Career Center in real time. COED selected Indeed.com based on its popularity and the fact that there is no charge for its service, allowing any business in Cherokee County to post a job for free.
Current job listings include healthcare professionals, engineering, marketing, project management, finance, forklift operators, production operators, quoting technicians, quality assurance and retail.
Northside Hospital-Cherokee, Inalfa Roof Systems, adidas, Piolax, Thyssenkrupp Materials N.A., MSK CoverTech, Jaipur Living, L.A.T. Apparel, and Papa John’s are some of Cherokee’s most recent additions. As these companies build and expand their regional and global headquarters, service hubs, manufacturing plants and healthcare facilities, they will continue to generate millions of dollars for the local tax base while creating job opportunities.
More and more, it appears the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) was spot-on in 2009, when it released a Regional Snapshot indicating Cherokee County would lead the Atlanta region in job growth until 2040, thus predicting a 166.3 percent increase in jobs in Cherokee alone.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, Georgia drivers face the ninth longest commute in the country, with Cherokee residents traveling on average 31.9 minutes to work one way. Currently, 78.7 percent of county residents travel outside of Cherokee for work. COED believes that those precious minutes spent commuting could be redeemed for time with family or friends. Why not reduce your time in the car and pursue a career in your home community?
Submitted By Cherokee Office of Economic Development
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