“Meat” Your Opportunities in Beatrice
7 Oct 2021
Manufacturing jobs can be fast-paced and exciting, especially in an environment where the co-workers are friendly, respectful and value good communication. Opportunities in that atmosphere can be found at Beatrice’s Landmark Snacks, a meat snack manufacturer. NGage’s educational video series Opportunity Here illustrates the nature of the jobs there.
“It is our hope and intention to build the right atmosphere for our entire team to enjoy what they do every day,” said co-owner Chad Lottman.
Meat Snack Industry
He and his wife Courtney started Landmark Snacks five years ago in Beatrice as an expansion opportunity after running C&C Processing in nearby Diller for 20 years. Lottman said it was a long path of experience at C&C that led to Landmark, from meat processing through USDA certification. That path has led Landmark to be a co-manufacturer of meat snacks for two major nationwide brands today. They bring in frozen and fresh boxed meat to grind, mix and extrude into bars or sticks. They have commercial smokehouses to cook the meat before cutting and packaging for retail sale.
“We are able to focus on the production so the national brands can focus on sales,” said Lottman.
The move from Diller to Beatrice to startup Landmark was a natural fit, said Lottman, allowing he and his wife to expand their business yet remain close to home. But the city also offered a larger workforce to draw upon for their anticipated growth. Now, Landmark has a number of employment opportunities. Production and operation positions are open immediately for those without a college education. They also have a need for other roles that require some amount of post-secondary education. A significant opportunity exists for skilled maintenance positions, due to the robotics, circuitry and PLC controls running all of their equipment. In addition, openings exist in quality, accounting and general logistics. Lottman knows that businesses like Landmark across the nation are struggling to hire employees, so Landmark has taken a unique step to address the issue.
“We use radio advertising because we know the workforce is out there, we just have to find a way to educate them about what we do,” he said. “That is why we set up our Hiring Center.”
Located in downtown Beatrice, Landmark opened their Hiring Center this past summer with the anticipation of requiring 30% more staff due to an expansion that included a warehouse and cooking capacity. Human Resources staff are present from 9:00a.m to 5:00p.m. every weekday to offer prospective employees the opportunities to learn more about the company.
“All employers face the challenge of getting applicants to stop and ask questions,” said Lottman. “We encourage high school and college students to stop in to watch our videos and have conversations with our H.R. reps in an atmosphere that is not overwhelmed by a production environment.”
Lottman is proud of his company’s ability to provide more for its employees as it has grown. In addition to competitive pay, Landmark employees receive 75%-company paid health insurance, along with dental and vision benefits.
Lottman said Landmark has an eye on continued growth by building on the solid base they have established. The markets they provide continue to grow as societal trends, like high protein diets, continue, placing their products in high demand.
“There is a shortage of manufacturing in the meat snack business, so we are in a good position to grow as much as we are capable of,” he said. “That should open up the need for even more production, leadership and college-trained positions.”