Wichita, Kan. — There are signs of growth in Wichita’s aviation industry.
One of those companies is Apex Engineering International. It has across the board openings for assembly, parts fabrication and machining.
Another company, B/E Aerospace, has several openings for engineers.
Apex Vice President & General Manager Rod Holter says, “There is a demand, particularly in the military. Commercial aviation is growing in leaps and bounds.”
He says Apex is investing millions of dollars for new equipment to handle the current and future expansion. Apex is seeking city, county and state incentives tied to adding jobs to help in the expansion. Wednesday Sedgwick County Commissioners will consider a $90,000 loan which won’t have to be paid back if Apex follows through with 90 new hires next year and 18 in 2016.
Paperwork filed with the county states the average salary with the new jobs would be at least $35,363 a year based on $17 an hour pay. The company’s average salary with their current 168 full time employees is $49,597.
Holter says, “We need people. And so far we’ve had very good success at hiring local people that worked for some of the other aviation companies.”
Holter says commercial aviation is still showing great growth. He says Apex was recently recognized by Spirit Aerosystems with its “Supplier of the Year” award.
Holter says Apex is doing a lot of military work with Lockheed being its largest customer.
He says the company is also seeing good growth signs from the general aviation sector and is supplying work for Learjet, Cessna and Honda Jet.
Across town B/E Aerospace wants to expand its engineering workforce by 20% or more says Engineering Site Manager Jason Corcoran.
Corcoran says B/E Aerospace is already in the expansion process and says it’s connected to growth in commercial aviation.