Dematic Corp. in Grand Rapids launches new logistics products, plans to hire more workers

Sharon Hanks

Engineers at Dematic Corp. in Grand Rapids have developed exciting new conveyor and sorting systems, prompting the company to begin hiring about 80 employees who will be stationed largely in the Grand Rapids area. Dematic added more than 80 employees in recent months.

Many of the new hires will be professional, skilled workers in project management and engineering fields, including those in manufacturing controls, system controls, application, information technology, software and mechanical systems.

Ken Ruehrdanz, Dematic's industry manager, credits the growth to the company's creative engineers who "have brought out some new solutions with new technology." He says the new designs appeal to a broader base of customers including warehouses, factories and distribution centers.

Ruehrdanz says there have been increased sales for such new products as Dematic Multishuttle, Modular Conveyor System, and PickDirector 3.6 software along with other new solutions, such as "goods-to-person" picking, dynamic slotting and route delivery.

Dematic has increased its manufacturing production workforce "from a low of 93 to 150 in the last 6 months with plans to go to over 200 in the next month," Ruehrdanz says. "More warehouse and distribution operations have realized that optimizing processes and material flow from receiving to shipping is fundamental to success."

Ruehrdanz says the company is excited about bringing jobs to West Michigan, especially since the company, formerly known as Rapistian, at 507 Plymouth Ave. NE has had to lay off about 200 workers during the past decade.

"We know we have the talent here in West Michigan to grow a successful company," Ruehrdanz says. "West Michigan is a good place to do business and we feel real positive about the future."

Dematic is a global privately held company with operations in 22 countries, including 18 sales/engineering/service offices in North America.

Source: Ken Ruehrdanz, industry manager of Dematic Corp., Grand Rapids

Sharon Hanks is innovations and jobs news editor at Rapid Growth Media. Please send story ideas and comments for the column to Sharon at [email protected]. She also is owner of The Write Words in Grand Rapids.

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