CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - In this bleak job market, a Chesterfield company is breathing new life into an old call center. It's looking to fill several hundred positions by the end of the year.
Cuore, a telemarketing firm, set up shop in what used to be the old J.C. Penney Catalog Center on Alverser Drive. It has its eye out for local talent.
From magazine to travel packages, telemarketing sales is just part of what Cuore does.
"They have authorized us to a free two night Bahamas cruise," said one worker on the phone with a customer.
The company opened its doors last October in the same building where ten months earlier J.C. Penney Catalog Center shut down operations.
"It came with all this infrastructure in place," said Cuore Chief Operating Officer, Michael Puccinelli.
The company started with forty people, but expansion plans call for 400 to 500 new positions by year's end. Workers drive sales travel and insurance industries, but the goal is to move into credit card acquisitions.
On the sales end, the company brings in 50,000 customers a month for clients.
"We can generate enough demand in the next three years to accommodate 2,000 seats," said Puccinelli.
Puccinelli said the hardest part right now is finding employees who care about their jobs and aren't here just for a paycheck.
"Some of the best recruits we've had that come in here, have come from reductions in work forces in call centers here in Richmond," said Puccinelli.
Cuore getting help from Chesterfield county, the Greater Richmond Partnership and Community College Workforce Alliance which serves John Tyler and J. Sargeant Reynolds.
Puccinelli tells me screenings will be held here at the Community College Workforce for potential employees.
Starting pay at Cuore is $10 an hour. The average employee makes $15 an hour and some over $20. Puccinelli said outsourcing, which is common in telemarketing, is not an option.
"We're a firm believer in doing that here in America because we think we have the best people," said Puccinelli.
If you'd like more information about a job at Cuore call 419-9339 extension 5012. You can also log on to www.cuoregroup.com/jobs for an online application. Staff will get back with you about auditions.
Cuore hopes to expand operations over the next three years to include another call center in the Richmond area as well as two more sites on the west coast.