Sneedville, TN, USA, May, 2019 -- Sneedville’s newest employer — Allied Dispatch Solutions, LLC, which is operating the new call center in the Hancock Co. Industrial Park — is now open.
The Johnson City-based company told the Eagle that it held a "soft" opening this week with a small crew and that the number of employees, which could eventually number more than 100, will be brought onboard in stages.
The new center and the jobs it is bringing to Hancock County were made possible through the Project 95 initiative which combines state and federal resources to create new jobs in a county that ranks only one up from the bottom in terms of high unemployment numbers statewide.
Hancock is the first county to be included in the effort to aid all Tennessee counties designated as "distressed" by the federal government by the year 2025.
Hancock has a population of 6,600, and a median household income of $29,500.
The current unemployment rate for March, 2019, at 5.8% — one percentage point above that of the same month a year ago — places Hancock County at 94th out of the state’s 95 counties, and in the Top 10 counties with the highest jobless rate.
Funding for the project came in part from a Community Development Block Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and other state and federal agencies.
Gov. Bill Haslam was joined by local officials for the announcement at Sneedville Baptist Church during a 2018 news conference.
"This is a very special day for Hancock County and its future," Hancock Co. Mayor Thomas Harrison said at the time. "Over the last decade, hundreds of jobs have left the county and many of our residents often have to travel nearly an hour across county lines for work. That changes today with the more than 100 new jobs Allied Dispatch Solutions will bring to Sneedville."
Haslam said that the Project 95 initiative, "is helping us take on the various challenges facing Hancock County and set it on a course for sustainable economic growth well into the future".
"Tennessee will lead in job growth and jobs are created when companies like Allied Dispatch Solutions put capital at risk," Haslam added.
According to specifications laid out by the state in 2017, a prospective tenant would have to commit to creating a minimum of 100 new jobs over a five-year period and sign an accountability agreement with the state.
While there were several companies that expressed an interest, but Allied "stood out" from the rest, Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bob Rolfe said during the announcement in 2018.
"This is a local company that understands the region, treats its employees well and plays an active role in the community," Rolfe said. "In more than three years, Allied Dispatch has grown to employ roughly 350 people in Johnson City. I’m confident that Allied Dispatch Solutions believes in the importance of Project 95’s mission in Hancock County and will have a profound impact on this community by putting its hardworking residents to work."
Founded in 2014, Allied handles roadside-assistance calls.
Allied also operates facilities in Washington and Carter counties, and is in the midst of a major renovation to a building in Johnson City where its corporate headquarters will be located.
"The State of Tennessee and the Department of Economic and Community Development should be applauded for making this a reality," Allied President and CEO Anthony Royer said at the time. "Allied Dispatch Solutions is extremely excited about the opportunity in Hancock County. We believe that this will help us continue to grow by showing the value of our employees. Starting soon, individuals across America that need roadside assistance will be getting that help from motivated, educated and professional customer solution specialists in Hancock County, Tennessee."
In addition to the federal partners that assisted with funding construction of the Sneedville call center, other agencies involved in Project 95 include the Tennessee Valley Authority, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Department of Tourist Development, Department of Education, Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, Department of Health, Tennessee Housing Development Agency and Tennessee Board of Regents.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
About Allied Dispatch Solutions:
While Allied Dispatch Solutions provides fully customized solutions ranging from customer service to real time tracking and data integration. We are prepared to meet and exceed the service needs of your business regardless of industry or size. We are not hindered by legacy systems and as a fully cloud based company we are able to integrate with your existing systems with little to no down time.
Published: Thursday, May 9, 2019
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