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Cookstown company Karro Food ‘thinking outside the box’ with its first drive-in jobs fair

A Cookstown-based firm has come up with a novel idea for recruiting new staff while still abiding by Covid regulations.

Karro Food Group, probably best-known for the Cookstown sausages brand, is holding a recruitment drive-in tomorrow (Thursday)  from 5.30-7.30pm at its site on the Molesworth Road.

The company’s car park has been converted into a huge jobs fair with different ‘stations’ where members of the public can pull up, have a chat and find out about the range of jobs available at departments across the plant.

The Karro group is the biggest pork production company in the UK and Ireland and supplies a range of  products to customers including Tesco, Asda, Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury’s and Dunnes as well as Northern Ireland businesses.

The ‘stations’ include butchery, engineering and general operatives (such as quality control, hygiene, retail and packaging), all of which have jobs on offer.

At the video station, a large screen will relay the stories of some of the different staff, what their jobs entail and the benefits and opportunities of working with Karro.

There is even a pizza stand where would-be applicants can refuel for free before heading to the final human resources (HR) stand where interviews can be held on the spot.

A spokesperson for the company said: “When people come onto the site, they are given flyers about the different jobs available as well as a map and they just follow that around a one-way system.

“We will have staff at all the stations who will also be able to help with filling out applications forms. These are then forwarded to the onsite HR department straight away which means people can have an interview before they leave.”

She said that Karro, like many other companies, have had to “think outside the box” in terms of recruitment and filling vacancies.

“With Brexit, a lot of workers have returned home so there isn’t the same number of people available for work,” she said.

“There are also people still on furlough who are not out there looking for jobs, so it means that the whole pool of people has shrunk.

“We will have plenty of marshals to direct people around the different areas and lots of staff available on the day with help and advice. People don’t even have to get out of their cars if they don’t want to.

“Previous experience isn’t needed for the posts as one-to-one training is provided. There is also a choice of day and evening shifts available, to suit people who need to work around family or other commitments.

“We would encourage people to come along, speak to members of the team and find out what’s on offer.

“There is no need to book – just turn up on the evening and we look forward to meeting everyone and if you don’t have a car, you can even come on foot”

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