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Dallas offers new technology, transportation employment opportunities

MIKE McGEE | 6/8/2015, 3:47 a.m.
“It is hard to get the grin off my face because days like this are very special,” announced Mike Rawlings ...
Mayor Mike Rawlings and Omnitracs CEO John Graham cut a ribbon to celebrate the relocation Downtown of the transportation data and software company’s headquarters. Mike McGee

The Dallas Examiner

“It is hard to get the grin off my face because days like this are very special,” announced Mike Rawlings at the May 21 ribbon cutting to celebrate the opening of the new Omnitracs LLC headquarters. The ceremony symbolized not just a new step for the company; the cutting of the fabric band may have also forecast the expansion of technology and transportation jobs into Downtown and eventually throughout the city.

Omnitracs, located at 717 N. Harwood St. inside the KMPG Centre, began in 1988 in California as Qualcomm, stated CEO John Graham. Material provided by the company indicated Qualcomm specialized in the use of computerized data transmitted to and from commercial vehicles, a services known as telematics.

Over the years Omnitracs branched off from the original company. “Today, Omnitracs develops and delivers end-to-end solutions for for-hire and private fleets of all sizes,” the company’s statement further revealed. An example of Omnitracs’ modern services Graham presented was in reference to the global positioning systems most people presently use on their cellphones.

The driver of an 18-wheeler cannot use a regular GPS since such vehicles are subject to height and weight limits as well as special trucking routes, the CEO explained. Providing a solution to this dilemma is the type of specialized transportation software service that Omnitracs would administer. Vehicle tracking, the electronic logging of miles travelled, and fleet profit management are some of the other areas the company administers.

The offices had opened a few months previously, Graham admitted, so the day’s ceremony was more of an official gesture. What was not a gesture was the improvement of services and job growth the company brought after the split from Qualcomm, he claimed.

“When we did that, we tried to look at where did we want to go. Ninety percent of our customers were east of the Rocky Mountains. Ninety percent of our employees were in Southern California,” Graham noted. “Probably not an ideal business model if you want to be customer focused.”

He called the city a “… thriving, business-friendly community.” The company began the move Downtown in July of that year. Graham confided to attendees that when the office first started operations the number of onsite employees was about six. Less than a year later than number has rocketed to more than 300.

A search of the careers section of the Omnitracs website reveals numerous local job openings for the company – more than any other geographic location with an Omnitracs office. Employment opportunities range from entry-level positions to jobs requiring experience and advanced degrees.

These hometown jobs might prove to be a welcome economic relief. The unemployment rate for the Dallas/Fort Worth region in March was 4.0 percent and 4.8 percent nationally for Whites as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics website. For African Americans, it was 10 percent nationally during the same time period according to the BLS.

Michael Davis, the area director of transportation with Dallas County schools for Irving, concurred that the job growth shown in the headquarters of Omnitracs alone could be considered remarkable.