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Candy House Staff Doubles for Holidays - KOAM TV 7

Candy House Staff Doubles for Holidays

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JOPLIN, MISSOURI - It's said, if you want to see how the economy is doing, look at the real estate market.

But locally, you might get a better idea by looking at chocolate.

Patricia Angelopoulus has worked in packaging at Candy House Gourmet for almost five months.

"Before this I worked for a payday loan company," Angelopoulus said. "And then, after that, I was a stay-at-home mom for a few months."

She's one of roughly 40 seasonal workers at Candy House. And is hoping to land a full-time role at the company.

"I've been pretty loyal, stable, and show up every day," she said.

Terry Hicklin owns candy house with his wife.  

He says the yearly staff of 35 employees will swell between 70 to 75 this time of year.

"And that usually goes right on into Valentine's," Hicklin said. "Because Valentine's is only 6 weeks after Christmas."

While also relying on in-store purchases and online sales, Hicklin says the largest demand is large-scale corporate orders. Which wasn't the case during the recession.  

"We had huge growth in 2008. Then, of course, like everybody else things kind of tightened down," Hicklin said.

But with an economy on the upswing, and 57-straight months of job growth in the US, Candy House is reaping the success of bigger businesses.  

"Our corporate sales have just sky-rocketed," Hicklin said. "And by first of December this year, we were $10,000 ahead of where we finished the year last year."

And Angelopoulus hopes she'll be reap the rewards, as well.

"I really do enjoy the hours, and enjoy the people I work with, and enjoy what I do," Angelopoulus said. "And I'm looking for a permanent job."

Hicklin says the majority of the seasonal employees he hires comes via Express Employment Professionals, which has a location near 32nd street and Connecticut in Joplin.
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