SEATTLE -- Boeing announced today that it will establish three engineering centers in Washington state, Southern California and South Carolina.
One of these new centers is expected to impact jobs in Washington. Boeing plans to move 300 engineering jobs now in Puget Sound to California. The jobs involved engineering work for so called "out-of-production" airplanes to former McDonnell Douglas facilities in Long Beach.
That means work performed in Puget Sound on airplanes including the 707, 727, 757 and early models of the 737 will join work in California already being done to support planes like the DC-9, DC-10 and MD-11. The moves expected to happen over the next six to nine months.
Boeing spokesman Doug Alder said engineering employees currently doing that work in Washington will have the opportunity apply for those jobs in California, or move to other engineering jobs in Puget Sound.
Charleston, S.C., home to Boeing's only other current airliner factory building the 787, will become a center for propulsion engineering. In part, that move will put Boeing's propulsion engineers closer to General Electric, Pratt & Whitney and CFM -- all based in the eastern half of the U.S. Charleston will also build the new engine nacelle's for the 737 MAX, work that was previous done by an outside supplier.
In a letter to employees, Boeing engineering chief Mike Delaney said the moves are part of a broader strategy as the company moves into its second century of operation in 2016.
"That strategy calls for Boeing to become a lager, more globally competitive company with expanded production capacity and a more geographically diverse manufacturing and engineering footprint," Delaney said.
Part of Boeing's strategy is also overseas as the company plans to set up a new engineering center in Kiev, Ukraine to support Boeing's design center in Moscow, Russia, that was established in the early 1990s.