Whirlpool in Middle Amana plans to hire 500 new employees

Published: Aug. 1, 2017 at 9:40 PM CDT
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A small eastern Iowa town is about to get a lot busier.

Whirlpool in Amana says it wants to hire at least 500 workers over the next three weeks. The company says this will help it keep up with demand for its refrigerator products.

While Whirlpool is excited to expand its productivity, some in town say the company needs to figure out some growing pains.

"The fist year I was here it was a beautiful quiet village. It's essentially why I bought this place," Monys Hagen said.

Hagen bought Rose's Bed and Breakfast two years ago. In that time she says she's noticed more traffic and litter on the streets.

Hagen claims a bulk of the issue comes from smokers, as Whirlpool is a smoke free campus. So she's not welcoming the thought of adding 500 workers to the Whirlpool plant.

"It's probably adding another 200 people through Middle Amana and throwing out cigarette butts," she said.

Whirlpool says it works with the colonies to discuss changes at this plant.

"Educate our employees, spend money and trying not to disturb the neighbors, etc," Whirlpool H.R. Director Christopher Rice said.

Already, Whirlpool says it's working with the state to solve any traffic issues.

Workers at Whirlpool say they take pride in being the largest employer in Iowa County, and want to continue to hire even more people. But some in town, like Hagen, say other changes need to happen first.

"This is not set up for that kind of traffic and it's not appropriate," she said.

Whirlpool would like to hire these 500 new employees by the end of August. The company is hosting what it calls a "recruiting blitz" and is doing in-person interviews and hirings at the Amana plant each Monday through Friday.