CEDAR FALLS — Psst. Target is hiring.

It may be the best kept open secret in the Cedar Valley.

But walk inside the reception area at the Target Distribution Center off West Viking Road and all will be revealed.

The area sees a steady stream of applicants flowing in and potential hirees touring the mammoth 1.5 million-square-foot warehouse.

Target is always hiring, manager Jordan Kettner said, in waves that ebb and flow seasonally over the course of a year. However, the company is looking to significantly increase its workforce in 2018.

He can’t disclose specific numbers. Nor can he talk about the size of the current workforce. However, according to figures from the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance and Chamber, the dry goods distribution center and refrigerated grocery warehouse employs more than 900 people. It has now become Cedar Falls’ largest private-sector employer, a distinction previously held for decades by Viking Pump.

“Right now, we’re doing mass hires and daily interviews between the two buildings,” Kettner said. “The volume between our two buildings continues to grow, as Target continues to be successful.

“It’s a good problem to have: We need great people,” Kettner said. He said the hiring will be in the “hundreds” for the year.

“We’re looking for full-time positions, seasonal positions, some part-time positions. That will fluctuate. Employment will be increasing this year over the past year, yes. It’s what our trend throughout the last couple of years has been. I’d say the majority’s coming from new” hires.

“It’s a large facility,” he said. “This is what 1.5 million square feet looks like.” The warehouse serves the company’s retail stores.

The labor pool as well as the location near major highways makes the Cedar Valley a good location for the warehouse, Kettner said. “From a work ethic standpoint, the labor force, it’s a great area for us to draw top talent.”

Some merchandise which comes from vendors goes directly to stores or is stored when it’s needed. Some things are in hotter demand than others depending on different times of the year. For example, in January people might be buying new televisions in preparation for the Super Bowl, so those items may be moving faster.

The distribution warehouse serves Iowa, the southern portion of the Twin Cities and into South Dakota. “Our food building serves a much larger area. They’ll go Des Moines, Kansas City, Minneapolis, Wisconsin.”

“It doesn’t seem like a lot of people in here, but when you have a building so big ... you don’t have a (production) line and everybody on it. It’s all spread out,” he said.

“What’s been great about my 15 years at Target is the growth that we’ve been able to see, always hiring,” Kettner said. “It’s great for our company to continue to give to the area, provide jobs, benefits.”

Interested individuals area encouraged to apply at target.com/careers.

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News Editor at the Courier

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