Supervisors, managers being sought
Lisha Lowe was online looking for jobs when she discovered Lidl, a European grocery store chain that is reaching across the Atlantic Ocean to open stores in the United States.
She spent part of her Tuesday at a company hiring event at the Havelock Tourist and Event Center seeking a job as a supervisor or manager.
“I’m very excited. I hear they are a good company coming into the area,” she said. “Hopefully they’ll open a lot of jobs that are needed.”
Lowe said she was recently laid off and likes the idea of helping the company get a start in the United States.
“This is one of the first stores to open in the U.S.,” she said of the Havelock location that is under construction. “It’s exciting.”
In just the first couple of hours of the hiring event, Lidl welcomed 30 people at the tourist center. The hiring event includes an application process as well as a 20- to 30-minute presentation on the company. The process could take an hour to an hour and a half, depending on the number of people at the time.
It continues from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Havelock Tourist and Event Center. Appointments are not required.
The starting salary for store management positions will be up to $60,000 per year plus benefits, which can include health, dental and vision plans, and a 401(k) retirement plan with company match. Starting salaries for store supervisors will be up to $17.50 per hour, plus benefits.
Lidl is opening a store in Havelock off U.S. 70 across from Wal-Mart. The store is still under construction and no firm opening date has been set. The contractor on the building expects it to be completed in April.
Ashley Hughes, a Lidl district manager, said that the company was looking for a pool of talent from which to choose for its stores that are being built in the area.
“We’re looking to build a local pipeline,” she said. “We’re not looking for any set number. We’re looking for all the talented people we can find because we have a number of locations planned and we have a wide area that we are covering, so we’re looking for the best that are out there.”
Those going through the process at the tourist center could be hired before the end of the month. From there, they will be taken to training centers where they will learn company policies and procedures.
“It’s a simulated store environment where we can teach practical and hands-on training,” Hughes said.
The top managers will receive training in Europe, she said.
Hughes said those unable to make the hiring event can get more information and apply online at careers.lidl.com. Hiring for non-supervisory positions in the Havelock store will be at a later date.
Lidl, pronounced similar to beetle, started in 1973 in Germany and is in 27 countries in Europe.
“Our concept is really simple: really, good quality food at really great prices at really convenient locations,” Hughes said. “We’re really looking forward to bringing that to the U.S.
“Obviously, Europe is our entire background, and we’re so proud of that background, but we’re so excited to be coming to the U.S. We’re going to do things a little differently, while keeping the things that people know and love over there. We’re going to be a little bit bigger than our European stores, but with the same focus on quality and the same focus on price.”
She said a market like Havelock is appealing for a number of reasons, including nearby Cherry Point, where some Marine families may have run across Lidl during their travels and deployments overseas.
“We’re excited to be someplace that people recognize us with this military presence here,” Hughes said. “We hope the people of Havelock will be as excited for us as we are about being here.”