“I’ve always heard it was a fun, exciting place (to work),” Bryan Jent, of Owensville, said about the company. “I was excited as a customer.”
Jent said he goes to the Fairfield market, and when he heard that there was an opportunity to work at Jungle Jim’s in Eastgate he wanted to see if he could be part of the atmosphere as an employee.
Jent said he expected there to be a crowd of people at the job fair, but what he did not expect was for the line to stretch outside the civic center and all the way to the end of the parking lot.
Jason Napier, of Felicity, was also surprised at the turnout.
“I expected a large crowd but this is unfathomable,” Napier said.
Residents from Clermont County and beyond arrived to civic center as early as 6:30 a.m. according to Jungle Jim’s representatives. Police directed traffic outside the civic center and many people had to park across the street in front of Receptions and Hobby Lobby.
“It’s a great opportunity,” Brittney Combs, of Batavia, said about coming to the job fair.
Once inside the civic center, applicants were herded into the gym where they waited to be screened and then have a short interview at one of many stations set up around the gym.
“We have it set up just like a regular job fair,” Kathy Dick, the store manager at Fairfield and hiring manager, said. “Except each table, instead of a different company, is a different department.”
Dick organized the job fair and said the company is planning to hire a wide variety of employees for the new Eastgate location.
“Everything from the person that bags groceries to the guy that cuts steak, to the guy that receives it at the back door and everything in between,” Dick said.
When applicants entered the gym they spoke with someone who helped determine what department or job would be the best fit for them.
Applicants then sat down with a manager of that department for a quick interview.
Dick said the managers have the hardest job because they are literally choosing employees who would be a good fit for their department or would be capable of managing a department at the Eastgate market.
“They are picking and grooming their own crew,” Dick said. “I think it works out well.”
Dick said people warned her that the job fair was going to be crazy.
“I was half-prepared, but didn’t believe them,” she said.
The turnout for the job fair seemed to surprise everyone and the excitement was obvious, even at the back of the line.
“There is a lot of competition,” Lana Masaden, of Anderson, said after she saw the long line of applicants in front of her. “I am scared, but hopeful.”
Masaden said she planned to stick it out and wait in the line because she thinks Jungle Jim’s is a great company and she needs a job.
“It’s a great company, they offer a lot of benefits and I need a job,” Masaden said.
Masaden said she also likes Jungle Jim’s because the company is diverse and offers many international products.
“There is always room to grow in there,” she said.
The “hiring frenzy” for Jungle Jim’s International Market in Eastgate was held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. July 31 and Aug. 1 at the Union Township Civic Center. For more information about Jungle Jim’s International Market visit www.junglejims.com.