NARS call center to move into old Sears building

NARS call center to move into old Sears building
By: Kathy Sweeney
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. - It took only four months to land the deal.  Now, leaders with NARS and the city of Cape Girardeau must keep moving quickly to get the old Sears building at Cape's Town Plaza ready for a call center to employ at least 350 people.
"This is the largest announcement in Cape Girardeau of new jobs in over 15 years", enthused Cape Girardeau mayor Jay Knudtson.  "This project will anchor the redevelopment of a major area in our community."
NARS President and Cape native Chris Buehrle says he's "thrilled" to bring his new inbound call center to Cape.  "I took a deep breath, and thanked God for the opportunity", Buehrle said, right before he made the announcement Thursday night.  Buehrle thanked the hundreds of people who applied for NARS positions at last month's Cape job fair, saying that played a "huge role" in his decision.  He also announced Charter Communications as one of the client-partners NARS will work with at the Cape location.
Buehrle plans to open his call center in April of next year.  That means a lot of work will have to be done quickly on the old Sears building, both inside and out.  Plans for NARS calls for 400 work stations, and in-house day care center, fitness center and deli.  Outside, several new retailers will be added to the front of the existing building.
Mayor Knudtson says the city is "committed" to helping NARS make its deadline.  In the meantime, the company will begin hiring in just two short weeks to fill a temporary call center to be set up in Cape.  Buehrle says that location will start with 150 workers, who will be moved into the larger call center when it's ready.
Buehrle also tells Heartland News there's a "good chance" NARS will ultimately hire between 400-450 workers at its Cape location.