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Perrysburg FedEx hub to add 400 workers

Online shopping fuels need for package handlers

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    Package handlers Jared Schmidlin, left, and Jody Hug, right, unload a trailer at the FedEx Ground Toledo Hub in Perrysburg in 2009.

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    A package handler properly positions a package on a conveyor before it passes through the scan tunnel at the FedEx Ground Toledo Hub in Perrysburg. The facility will be adding 400 workers to meet growing demand.

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    FedEx Ground Toledo Hub in Perrysburg.

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    A FedEx Ground delivery truck leaves the FedEx hub in Perrysburg in 2009. The facility will be adding 400 workers to meet growing demand.

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    Packages that were just unloaded from a trailer move up a conveyor at the FedEx Ground Toledo Hub.

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    FedEx Ground Toledo Hub in Perrysburg.

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Delivery giant FedEx Ground, which already employs 1,200 full and part-time workers at its operations in Perrysburg, said Thursday that it is looking to hire immediately an additional 400 package handlers at the Wood County facility to meet growing demand for its services in northwest Ohio.

“We’re starting now and it will be ongoing,” said David Westrick, a spokesman for FedEx Ground, a subsidiary of Memphis-based FedEx Corp.

BIZ-fedex29p-09

Package handlers Jared Schmidlin, left, and Jody Hug, right, unload a trailer at the FedEx Ground Toledo Hub in Perrysburg in 2009.

The Blade
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The company is not planning any physical expansion of its 700,000-square-foot facility at 100 J St. in Perrysburg. But Mr. Westrick said there will be new equipment added at the hub, which opened in 2009, so that it can expand its package handling operations.

FedEx Ground specializes in small package shipping and offers business-to-business delivery as well as residential service. The company moves millions of packages daily, and its package handlers are the key, loading and unloading sorted packages from FedEx Ground delivery trucks and trailers.

“As online shopping and e-commerce continue to grow, so does the number of packages moving through our network, including through the Perrysburg hub,” Mr. Westrick said via email. “To efficiently handle the growing volume of packages, we are expanding sortation capabilities within this facility,” he said.

“Additionally, we have seen a surge in demand for shipping oversized and heavy items as a growing array of items are now being sold online. Items such as furniture, large auto parts, mattresses, sports and exercise equipment are on the rise and now account for more than 10 percent of all package volume handled by FedEx Ground,” he said.

U.S. Department of Commerce figures speak to the recent explosive growth of online sales. In the first quarter of 2008, e-commerce accounted for about 3.5 percent of all retail sales. In the first quarter this year, that figure climbed to about 9.5 percent. 

Online sales in the first quarter of 2018 totaled $123.7 billion, a 3.9 percent increase from fourth quarter, 2017.

Typically, FedEx and rival United Parcel Service put out calls in the fall for seasonal help to handle a rise in the number of shipped packages stemming from holiday online sales and holiday gift-giving.

Last fall, for example, FedEx added 750 seasonal workers starting in October, while UPS added 800 workers starting in September.

But Mr. Westrick said the new FedEx hires are not seasonal, and the company is trying to make it known that these permanent full-time and part-time jobs could lead to careers at FedEx

“We need to hire folks. When it’s a number that large, we’ll make it known in various ways,” the spokesman said.

“We don’t know how long this will go on. But this is all about getting the word out, that we’re recruiting and letting people know that working at FedEx is a good deal,” Mr. Westrick added.

The company said package handler wages start at $11.85 to $12.85 an hour, depending on work shift. Additionally, package handlers, which must be at least 18 years old, are eligible for medical, dental, and vision benefits as well as vacation and holiday pay after they complete an eligibility period.

FedEx is taking applications for the Perrysburg jobs at GroundWarehouseJobs.fedex.com.

Contact Blade Business Writer Jon Chavez at jchavez@theblade.com or 419-724-6128.

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