Published March 1, 2013
The Boeing Co. is reducing the number of contract employees working at the company’s 787 final assembly plant in North Charleston, a company spokeswoman said today.
“Boeing South Carolina is not laying off any direct Boeing Commercial Airplane employees at this time. We are reducing our reliance on contract labor, as has been our plan,” Boeing S.C. communications manager Candy Eslinger said in a statement.
Eslinger did not have the number of employees who will be affected in South Carolina.
In 2013, Boeing expects to hire between 8,000 and 10,000 people companywide, Eslinger said, adding that the company also anticipates employment levels will be flat or slightly down at the end of the year.
Like many other manufacturers, Boeing regularly uses contract labor to supplement its permanent workforce. Eslinger said that’s typical for the aerospace industry during surge activities and on development programs that require a production ramp-up.
“As we progress in improving efficiencies in our processes, training our entry-level employees and growing the experience of our team in South Carolina, we expect to continue to reduce reliance on contract labor/industry assist to meet our production objectives,” Eslinger wrote.
As more contractor positions have been phased out, some contractors have applied for direct-hire jobs with Boeing in order to stay in the Charleston area.
“Boeing, as a whole, has a number of strategies in place to acquire the skills needed to meet our current business demands and our customer commitments,” Eslinger said. “The selective use of temporary labor is one of those strategies.”