Carolyn Harris of Augusta is hoping to return to the job market at Sitel.
The 55-year-old joined hundreds seeking one of 300 new positions at the customer service facility's job fair Tuesday. They formed a line around the building at 2115 Windsor Spring Road.
Ms. Harris has been unemployed since April after her contract employer, WFF Facility Services, went out of business in Augusta. Previously, she worked as a secretary.
"I pray I get a job," she said.
The new positions are the result of the expansion of one of Sitel's largest clients, a wireless telecommunications provider, said Gloria Thomas, a recruiting specialist at Sitel. She said she could not name the client.
"They're expanding into this market a little more," she said.
"In light of the way the economy is heading, it's something that's very fulfilling for me to ... offer people employment," she said. "It's very exciting. You can see it on the floor with the current employees. We're all enthusiastic." The full-time positions start at $8 an hour. Employees also receive benefits, including medical, dental, vision, life insurance and short- and long-term disability insurance after 90 days of employment, she said.
"We're really pushing and trying to get as many people in that are looking for employment that might be interested in working at Sitel," Ms. Thomas said.
Sitel started hiring in August and will continue at least through the end of the year. Though hiring started last month, the company is still looking for 300 workers to cover attrition, Ms. Thomas said.
Sitel is also hiring 10 team leaders and two operations managers, she said.
All workers will work on-site in Sitel's large facility, a former Wal-Mart store.
The company has more than 400 employees and will reach more than 700 when hiring is complete, she said.
Landing the extra 300 positions is "a testament to our current employees and what a good job that they're doing," she said.
For job-seekers, customer-service experience is a plus, as are basic computer skills. All workers must be at least 18 and have a high school diploma or GED.
Nyghee Pollard, 18, a recent graduate of Lucy C. Laney High School, was also among the job-seekers.
This would be his first real job, he said.
"I need this really bad. It seems like a great place to work," he said.
Reach LaTina Emerson at (706) 823-3227 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
WANT A JOB?
Sitel representatives will be available at the following job fairs:
SEPT. 17: Georgia Department of Labor
SEPT. 22: Sitel (second job fair on-site)
SEPT. 24: Fort Gordon
Find more opportunities on Working Knowledge: The Chronicle's job blog.