MADISON – Foxconn plans to hire 3,000 veterans by the time they are fully operational. The company has already started moving forward on this promise.
Foxconn Aiming to Hire 3,000 Veterans: Company developing team to recruit those with military backgrounds
By Arthur Thomas – Reporter, BizTimes Milwaukee
“I think there is no better management school than the military,” said Louis Woo, special assistant to Foxconn chairman Terry Gou, in an exclusive interview with BizTimes Milwaukee.
Foxconn’s first two Wisconsin employees are veterans – one a Navy pilot, the other a former Army planner. Six weeks ago, the company added a Marine who had just retired as commanding officer of a tactical fighter base and will now have responsibilities for the Wisconn Valley Science and Technology Park.
Hiring veterans was part of Foxconn’s original plan when it announced it would locate in Wisconsin. As part of an agreement with Rockwell Automation Inc., Foxconn committed to hiring graduates of the Academy of Advanced Manufacturing, a training program started by Milwaukee-based corporations Rockwell and ManpowerGroup that’s working to train 1,000 veterans per year by 2020.
“We’d like to have all 13,000 be veterans. Obviously we’re biased, but that’s not really realistic,” said Capt. Chris “Tank” Murdoch, a former Navy pilot and Foxconn’s first employee in the state. “If we can get to 3,000 I think that would be a remarkable accomplishment.”
A third member of the core Foxconn team of veterans joined six weeks ago. After relinquishing command of the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort, South Carolina, Col. Peter Buck moved his family back to Wisconsin, where he grew up and has extended family.
“I think our military background is we’re very action-oriented, and this is a very fast paced initiative that we have here,” said Buck, a Foxconn senior advisor who Woo jokingly refers to as the “mayor” of Wisconn Valley. “The team here, because of our common background, has immediately gelled, the chemistry is really good.”
Foxconn has about 100 employees in Wisconsin, split between its downtown Milwaukee headquarters and an experimental production facility in Mount Pleasant. Murdoch said he expects hiring overall to ramp up in the coming months.
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