Companies discuss workforce gap with Macon-Bibb leaders

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Macon-Bibb Mayor Lester Miller and commissioners took a trip to Yancey Brothers and John Deere in Macon Tuesday to take a closer look how both companies operate.

The group toured each facility and learned about their customers, products and how much money they bring to the county each year.

The companies spoke about their workforce needs. Brian Houston, the Area Service Manager for Yancey, says finding manpower has become increasingly difficult.

“We need Bibb County people,” Houston said. “I think we’ve got a little over 400 openings company wide. We just have a people shortage.”

Both Yancey and John Deere are seeking out younger people interested in working blue-color jobs.

“What we have is a culture that has been pushed away from dirty hands,” Houston explained. “I know when I was in high school, whenever I told them I was heading toward trade-type opportunities, you would’ve thought I told them I had stage 3 cancer.”

These industries are calling on the mayor and commissioners to help them change the conversation. Mayor Miller says the county hopes to create more programs in high schools to help teens become successful tradesmen.

“These are good paying jobs,” he said. “They’re not the dirty jobs they used to be in people’s minds. This is an opportunity to connect with our local school system through the College and Career Academy so students can be in school one year and in the workforce the next, helping the community thrive.”

Yancey is currently looking to hire at least 20 more people at its Macon branch. The jobs range from mechanics to sales people. Applications can be found here.

John Deere is looking for 12 people for its Macon and Milledgeville locations. Applications for those jobs can be found by clicking here

Categories: Bibb County, Featured, Lifestyle, Local News, Money

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