Electrification: The Future

David Gibb Photography

Getting to ride razor scooters around the building is only one of the perks of working at Cummins in Southern Oregon. “It’s like a start-up company culture, within a large company,” says Joanna Quirke, Senior Line HR Generalist for the Talent site. “We’re collaborative, communicative, and relaxed, but also motivated to be successful and make an impact.” Before November of 2017, Talent, Oregon was home to Brammo, a power sports battery company. After its acquisition by the Fortune 150 business, Cummins Inc., the company culture and passion for electrification continued to thrive.

A Cummins Battery

Cummins, Talent, located in a newly remodeled building directly off I-5 exit 21, develops and manufactures high and low voltage batteries for urban buses, power sports, terminal tractors, and excavators. The team is also part of the New Power business at Cummins which focuses on a variety of zero-emissions technologies. In addition, the team innovates ways for batteries to perform better and more sustainably, while also encompassing hydrogen technologies like fuel cells and electrolyzers. “Electric power is the future for many industries,” says Joanna. Operations and Site Leader, Dustin Hall, agrees: “We are writing the early chapters of the next hundred years for Cummins.” For example, new passenger buses are frequently becoming electric, as are upgraded buses. As sustainability works its way across the nation, Cummins supplies the batteries and electrified powertrains buses use to be zero-emissions.

However, work in the alternative power industry isn’t without its difficulties. “Educating people on electrification can be challenging. We want people to know the products and how they impact the environment after their use,” says Joanna. Brammo was acquired by Cummins because of their success with battery solutions—they don’t just make the batteries, they also care about the afterlife of the product, whether that means reusing components, or recycling the product altogether. Cummins considers its ability to attract and retain employees one of the company’s largest successes. With benefits, stability, and a beautiful valley to live in and explore, Cummins offers high-tech jobs without the stress of big-city living. In addition, the company prides itself on comprehensive safety strategies. The well-being of employees is Cummins’ top priority.

The Cummins Building, Talent, Oregon

When it comes to recruiting employees, Cummins has opportunities for recent college graduates, and technical supporting functions. Cummins even offers the on-site training needed to be successful. Cummins has also been partnering with local schools to introduce students to electrification as early as middle school. Through STEM projects, high school career fairs, and college partnerships, Cummins is seeking out the engineers and employees of tomorrow. The company even provides up to four hours of paid time annually to allow associates to participate in EEEC (Every Employee Every Community) events. This permits the employees to work with the community, especially students, to help create sustainable projects. “We want to give them the resources they need to grow,” says Joanna.

Currently, the Talent site of Cummins has seventy onsite employees. However, those with battery experience and engineering technical degrees are not the only people Cummins needs. Administration, finance, operations, and production/warehouse workers are crucial, and as Cummins expands in the future, they will be investing in employees from numerous skillset backgrounds. And yes, the employees really do get to ride razor scooters!

Cummins | 300 W Valley View Road, Talent, OR 97540 | | (541) 773-8946

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