WCR Incorporated, located at 809 Delaware St., has been manufacturing in Washington C.H. for nearly 20 years and is encouraging others to join their team.
Chief operating officer, Mattias Olsson, participated in an interview and gave a brief tour of their facility on Delaware Street Tuesday afternoon. Olsson, who was born in Sweden, came to America to open the facility in 1998. He now resides in Fayette County with his wife Kami and daughter Cassidy. As the only manufacturing company for WCR, an international organization, the facility in the county produces many parts for more than just American companies.
“There are facilities in the United States that rely on the plate heat exchangers and gaskets we produce to service other companies around the world,” Olsson said. “The closest one we have is the headquarters operation in Fairborn, Ohio. We also have other facilities around the states, including California, Arizona, Texas and Georgia. WCR stands for West Coast Regasketing, so it actually began in California. We also ship plate heat exchangers to Germany, Sweden, China and others for anything as large as a ship or much smaller.”
When Olsson came here in 1998, the building was empty and he was tasked with starting a facility that would produce the gaskets needed by the company who had sent him here. In 2009, the business that Olsson had been running for about a decade was acquired by WCR.
“I like the community here, with just one real issue, it’s hard to find employees that really want to work,” Olsson said. “It is a lot tougher than you think to get people like that. Someone might reply with ‘It’s a manufacturing job, nobody likes that,’ but at the same time a job here is an opportunity. As an employee there is health insurance, there are vacations and sick days….you would be part of a company that supplies good benefits.”
Olsson said that they work through temp agencies to find workers and anyone interested in joining the team can contact them at (740) 333-3448 and they will connect that person to a temp agency. After working through the agency, achieving certain milestones along the way, an indidual will be eligible to become a full-time employee. Olsson also said they are not the type of company to send someone home or tell them they do not need them to come in, because the company has continued to grow and the demand is higher than ever.
“We have had great support from the community and emergency services in the county, with them walking through to check out electric, waste water and more,” Olsson said. “When I lived out on Wildwood Road about 10 years ago I received a call in the middle of the night from the police department telling me that the some of the plant’s doors were open, that they didn’t see anyone go in, but it looked suspicious. After meeting them there, the officers took a walk around just to be sure that no one was there. They could have just drove on, but they were kind enough to watch out for me. All of the services in town have been wonderful.”
He also said that the company recently rejoined the Fayette County Chamber of Commerce and everyone has been very supportive and helpful. With such resources as Godwin Apaliyah, Economic Development Director and Community Development Educator for Fayette County, the business has grown exponentially. He said he wants to build on the relationship with the community and make WCR a place people can relate to and overall, just make it good.
“I really couldn’t ask for a better job or group of people to work with,” supervisor Kevin Penrod said. “Everyone gets along, works good together and it is perfect for me. I would say to the community that this place is one to give a shot. It is a great opportunity with a group of helpful co-workers. If you don’t know what to do or need help making sure you understand the job correctly, everyone is more than willing to come and assist. They do not leave you to the wolves here and people are always smiling. It has helped me better myself and has left an amazing positive impact on my life.”
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy