Updated: Nov 11, 2019
By Todd Herzog
Robotics is the name of the game in automotive-related industry and nobody knows it better than the folks in Middle Tennessee with several international companies finding homes for plants here.
One such global entity is Kasai which employs some 970 at its Manchester facility (located at 1020 Volunteer Pkwy.), which manufactures door panels, headliner, body trim, trunk liners and some exterior panels.
Over 95 percent of the Kasai-Manchester production involves adding something to plastic molded parts – clips, adhesive, additional material/coat, wiring harnesses, cloth/textile wrap, protective sheeting wrap, foam, etc. – additions that are valued added for Kasai customers.
Among Kasai’s primary customers are Nissan, Honda, Mercedes Benz, Toyota, Volkswagen and Mazda.
Manchester’s Kasai plant operates 43 plastic-injection molding machines and also vacuum-forming machines, with 150 robots in use with many more expected to be added.
With over 500,000 square-feet of space, Kasai-Manchester operates three shifts, five days a week in its injection-molding department and two shifts in assembly with maintenance crews doing projects over weekends.
While the number of the workforce is reported as “steady,” continuing needs are termed as being active. New employee applications can be processed online with 49 jobs currently posted from Kasai North America (kasai.applicantpro.com/jobs).
Kasai had had significant success hiring Mechatronics graduates from Motlow State Community College, especially those with an associate’s degree that Kasai has helped pay to go on to Middle Tennessee State University to obtain the Level Three bachelor’s degree in Mechatronics.
Kasai offers employees excellent fringe benefits, growth potential, quick promotions, opportunities for personal development, fair compensation, 30 years of stability at the air-conditioned Manchester plant, the ability to move from one department to another, and work that is neither physically hard or demanding.
Key management at Kasai-Manchester includes Plant Manager Glen Lowe and Thomas Crosslin, general manager – injection mold.
The Kasai-Manchester plant is interested in advanced skills training for its employees and new hires as well as interns. With a significant number of employees from Warren County, its management stressed it would welcome more.
With its world headquarter in Japan, global locations include the United States, Mexico, China, India, UK, Slovakia and Thailand. In additional to its North America headquarters in Murfreesboro, its other Tennessee facilities are located in Smyrna and Chattanooga.