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Hinman Assists Call Center To Create 500 New Jobs in Grand Rapids Region

Megan Sall with The Right Place credits Hinman with assisting the local economic development agency in persuading Teleperformance to locate in Grand Rapids.  “Hinman played a meaningful role in working with Teleperformance executives in addressing their physical and economic needs for a facility.  Without Hinman’s involvement, these 500 jobs may have ended up someplace outside of Michigan.”

The Right Place, Inc., in collaboration with The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) and Cascade Township announced this summer that Teleperformance USA, Inc. would be establishing a new customer support center in West Michigan.  The project will create 500 new full-time positions, including customer care agents, supervisors, trainers, and IT specialists.  This new facility will serve as an inbound customer care center for the nation’s leading telecommunications company.

This new customer support center is located at Hinman’s Cascade Office Park at 2680 Horizon Drive SE (Cascade Township, near the intersection of I-96 and 28th Street). Cascade Office Park (formerly known as Horizon Office Park), was acquired by Hinman in 2010. At the time, the park was severely distressed and mismanaged. Hinman has since re-branded the park with a series of investments and new tenancies.

The resources that Grand Rapids has to offer, including the large workforce, were a huge factor in Teleperformance USA’s decision to move to the area. However, locating a large customer care center like this can be a very complex process for all parties involved. Because of the sizable nature of the project, the Right Place and MEDC and were instrumental in assisting Teleperformance USA with the selection of this location and applying for new market tax credits.

“Providing simple solutions for complex real estate needs for companies to succeed and jobs to be created is exciting and fulfilling”, says Roger Hinman, CEO of The Hinman Company.  “This is a great step toward the positive transformation of our economy with job creation and the addition to Cascade Office Park with yet another successful and growing company.”

Although Teleperformance USA has been open and operating out of the new facility since July, only recently were all aspects of construction completed. This two-story building required an extensive renovation, which included new plumbing, HVAC and electrical systems, as well as a 2,000 square foot expansion for the new main entrance, elevator and lobby.  Parking requirements to meet TelePerformance needs required acquisition of additional property and site construction for another197 parking spaces.

Teleperformance has been hiring employees since summer of 2013. With support from the Michigan Business Development Program through a $600,000 performance-based grant, Teleperformance will invest a total of $3.79 million, creating 500 local jobs in the region.  The global customer support and call center industry rely heavily on talent and technology to succeed. West Michigan’s solid telecommunications and fiber-optic infrastructure provide a reliable technology platform on which to build and expand. Most of these operations are online 24 hours a day, seven days a week and many require customer support in a variety of languages.

“With over 49 official languages spoken in our region and 82,000 area college students with flexible work schedules, West Michigan is quickly becoming a high demand area for the customer service and call center industry,” said Birgit Klohs, President & CEO, The Right Place, Inc.

Cascade Office Park consists of 6 office buildings that are owned, managed, and leased by Hinman.  The park is highly visible to I-96 and is close to the airport, retail, restaurants, and lodging.

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