$150 million Dougherty Co. lumber plant to be fully operational soon; Looking to hire new employees

$150 million Dougherty Co. lumber plant to be fully operational soon; Looking to hire new employees

ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - The $150 million, 320,000 square-foot Georgia Pacific lumber plant in Dougherty County is almost fully operational now.

The plant is looking to hire a little more than 40 new employees.

Plant employees said it’s not your typical factory, with minimal manual labor.

Lumber being picked up at the plant.
Lumber being picked up at the plant. (Source: WALB)

Say goodbye to the days of employees standing around machines and conveyor belts in factories and say hello to the new, innovative practices Georgia Pacific is bringing to a plant in Dougherty County.

As technology continues to change, so is lumber production.

“It’s not an old dirty, dangerous sawmill of the past. This is a true lumber production facility,” said President of Lumber Fritz Mason.

Fritz Mason, the president of lumber at Georgia Pacific.
Fritz Mason, the president of lumber at Georgia Pacific. (Source: WALB)

In less than two years, the Georgia Pacific Lumber Plant has gone from dirt to an almost fully operational facility.

“Reduces many of the real physical, hard, tough jobs. Have it be more a factory environment than what people are used to in lumber manufacturing,” explained Mason.

Being able to get a truck into the plant, loaded and then out again in about 15 minutes is something Mason said makes the Dougherty County facility a place where companies want to bring their business.

“As we progress as a society, companies want different things. We can’t approach the same thing the same way,” said Plant Manager Johnnie Temples.

Johnnie Temples, the plant manger.
Johnnie Temples, the plant manger. (Source: WALB)

Temples said the new plant is ahead of its time when it comes to mass production. Giving Georgia Pacific a competitive advantage for clients and for new employees.

“They’re real diverse jobs, from engineering jobs and technical crafts to production operation jobs to human resource jobs,” Mason said.

The plant currently employs 97 people, which leaves the company still looking to hire around 43 new employees.

In just six weeks, the new Georgia Pacific Lumber Plant on Sylvester Road will be completely operational.

Temples showed WALB News 10 why the newly built plant is different from other lumber facilities.

Usually, at lumber facilities, employees work around conveyor belts, doing a lot of physical and hard labor.

However, this plant is automated, using technology to produce the lumber.

“Not real manual, not a lot of folks standing in areas actually turning lumber over and that sort of stuff,” said Temples.

Pallets lined up at the plant.
Pallets lined up at the plant. (Source: WALB)

The plant even uses a barcode system. With a simple scan, plant employees know exactly how much lumber is loaded onto each truck and so forth.

The company is even able to get trucks in, loaded and out again in about a 15 minute time span.

The advanced technology attracts more companies to do business with the plant here in the county.

If you’re interested in a career at the new facility, you can find a link to job opportunities here.

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