Serco is actively interviewing and hiring some 900 additional workers this week for its new Rogers data processing center, according to Candy Curtin, vice president of HR for the global service company.
Curtin told The City Wire on Monday (Oct. 21) that jobs were being offered the same day, following online screening and the personal interview process which is being conducted at the Center for Non-Profits in Rogers through Friday.
Erik Scroggs, 23, of Rogers, was excited with the offer he received following on his personal interview on Monday. He was part of a steady stream of hopeful applicants going into the center for their personal interview today.
“I applied for a job online and was told I qualified for a higher paying position which Serco offered me today. I am excited to get started,” Scroggs said.
Scroggs said he recently completed his study at Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, Mo.
“We use the online application as a screening device, which applicants can complete here at the Center for NonProfits, if they don’t have other internet access. If they are granted an interview there’s a a strong chance they will receive a job offer, pending a background check,” Curtin said.
The jobs primarily are for the second shift which is from 4 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., but Curtin said there are also a few positions open in the first shift after some 600 workers were hired last month. She said that cohort just finished their training and began their data processing work last week. The Rogers facility is set up to handle the paper applications of consumers signing up for the Affordable Care Act insurance options. With the major electronic (website) problems that have persisted since the program went live, paper applications have been about the only way consumers can register.
Curtin said the paper applications are scanned into their system at Serco’s London, Ky., facility and then accessed by workers in Rogers, where the data is checked and transferred via OCR software into the working database.
The local jobs pay between $10 and $20 per hour depending on grade and supervisory experience. She said there is opportunity for advancement and a complete benefit package that includes paid vacation, tuition reimbursement and $3.81-per-hour worked to purchase insurance coverage and retirement shares.
“That benefit stipend for most individuals is enough to purchase health and dental insurance for the worker and still have enough to participate in the company’s 401(k),” Curtin said.
Aside from processing paper applications for the Affordable Health Care insurance program, Curtain said the firm also handles Visa processing for immigration and administration work for the U.S. Department of Defense and its family programs.
Curtin said Rogers is one four data processing centers Serco operates in the U.S. outside of its North American headquarters in Rustin, Va.
“This community has given us a warm welcome and we are delighted with the quality of talent we have already hired,” Curtin said.
She said the Rogers location is the largest of its processing centers and should remain as such. The firm also has smaller centers near St. Louis and in Lawton, Okla. with 700 and 400 jobs, respectively.
Curtin said the firm is working now with adult education advocates to help those applicants who lack the basic GED, high school diploma or necessary computer skills for employment at this time.
“We hope to be able to shepherd some of those woman who have been displaced or out of the workforce back into a job. This program is in infancy, but we hope to take those applicants who don’t have the necessary skills and connect them with the programs that can get them up to speed. It’s our desire to hire them as soon as they can meet the minimum requirements,” Curtin said.
Rogers Mayor Greg Hines said Serco is quickly becoming one of the city’s largest employers and providing good job alternatives for a wide range of workers from college degreed to GED candidates.
“The steps Serco is taking to help some women applicants who lack job skills, goes beyond what we typically see from employers who locate here. I am eager to hear more about that program as it gets up and running,” Hines said recently.