A house factory of Lehto Group in Oulainen, a neighboring municipality of Pyhäjoki, supplies the Hanhikivi 1 construction site with accommodation premises. The growth of the Lehto Group factory influences the entire town. Jarmo Soinsaari, the Oulainen town business and development manager, explains how the town plans to respond to the demand.
1. How many vacancies are there in Oulainen at present and how many of them are at the house factory?
In mid-October, there were around 60 vacancies in Oulainen when taking into account all public sector jobs too. Around half of these were with Lehto Group. There are also footwear and metal industry companies in Oulainen, which have vacancies as well.
2. What kind of an impact does the Hanhikivi 1 construction site have on businesses and jobs in Oulainen?
A major one. The total value of contracts awarded to local companies is already dozens of millions of euros. For example, construction firm Sorvoja Oy has built the training buildings and gate buildings, and local earthmoving, HVAC engineering, and electrical engineering contractors have received contracts at Hanhikivi Peninsula. The town has encouraged local companies to join their forces to offer larger contracts for the Hanhikivi 1 construction site.
3. What is the labor market situation like in Oulainen and in the region at large?
Employment in Oulainen has improved by around six percentage units since 2014. The unemployment rate was 11.7 per cent a year ago in August, compared to 9.9 per cent at the end of August this year. We believe that this development trend will continue. Now we need motivated employees, such as people who would like to receive an education to change careers. Companies are searching for employees also outside Oulainen, which means that the entire southern Oulu region benefits from the project.
4. How will you ensure that there is enough workforce available?
We arrange recruitment training based on a company’s needs in cooperation with educational institutions, companies, and the TE office. The company guarantees that anybody who completes the training satisfactorily will get a job. A total of 150 people have been trained in this way in Oulainen, and the experiences obtained are positive. Vocational teachers go to companies for training periods in order to understand exactly what the companies need.
5. What kind of jobs are there in Oulainen and what can you offer to people who move there?
People come to work in Oulainen from an area of around 100 kilometers around the town. In addition to businesses, the educational institutions and Oulaskangas Hospital require expert workforce. The town provides support for people purchasing their first home, for any children under the age of twelve who move in Oulainen and for children born in Oulainen, and arranges daycare for them.