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This story was updated on Monday, April 26, 2021, at 5:36 p.m. with additional information.

Volkswagen Chattanooga's workforce has crossed the 4,000 mark and staffing contractor Aerotek plans to bring on another 150 production workers.

The new employees sought by Aerotek will build the Passat sedan and the Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport SUVs, according to the VW contractor.

The hiring comes as an array of Chattanooga area employers seek workers amid an economic ramp up from the pandemic. Local manufacturers such as VW, Roper Corp. and Nokian Tyres are adding employees even as Food City, restaurants and other service employers staff up.

Aerotek will host a hiring event on Thursday from 9 a.m. to noon and 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at 1206 Pointe Centre Dr., Suite 100, in Chattanooga so candidates can apply and interview in person, the company said.

Hourly pay ranges begin at $15.50 and increase to $17 after six months, the staffing company said. Second, third or night shift pay begins at $17 and tops out at $18.50.

The socially-distanced event calls for the use of personal protective equipment, and all safety precautions will be followed based on local guidelines, according to Aerotek.

Tom du Plessis, Volkswagen Chattanooga's chief executive, said that current production is "very positive." He said the plant likely will have its best-ever year in terms of volume assembly in 2021.

Also, Volkswagen is investing $800 million in its Chattanooga factory to produce the new all-electric SUV, the ID.4, in 2022.

The Volkswagen Chattanooga CEO said more hiring is expected later for assembly of the battery-powered SUV. He said in late 2022, the plant is prepping for "high-volume" production of the ID.4.

Late last year, VW directly hired about 150 more production workers to meet demand. In addition, VW is continuing to convert contract workers from Aerotek, du Plessis said.

Amanda Plecas, VW Chattanooga's head of communications, said Monday the plant already has more than 4,000 employees on board. Earlier this month, the plant marked the first customer car produced in Chattanooga 10 years ago.

At the same time, VW supplier Gestamp is adding a new press line to stamp out more metal parts at Enterprise South industrial park. Also, Sese Industrial Services is raising a 300,000-square-foot axle assembly plant nearby on Hickory Valley Road to make the components for the automaker's battery-powered vehicle. It plans to employ 240 people.

Roper Corp.'s LaFayette, Georgia, plant is seeking workers to meet customer demand for its ovens and stoves. Nokian Tyres in Dayton, Tennessee, is trying to bring on the final 40 employees of 150-worker hiring surge it started earlier this year.

On Tuesday, the Pilot chain of truck stops and travel centers also is hosting its annual National Hiring Day with virtual meet and greets as it tries to fill more than 5,000 retail, driver, maintenance and other jobs across North America.

On Wednesday, grocer Food City is hosting a companywide hiring event for 2,000 full-time and part-time posts.

McDonald's is reopening dining rooms restaurants and conducting job interviews this week to try to fill 8,000 jobs across Tennessee, including 1,224 at the 44 McDonald's restaurants in the Chattanooga region.

Contact Mike Pare at mpare@timesfreepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @MikePareTFP.

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