Trenchless Construction Services Goes Low Profile

October 2008 Vol. 63 No. 10

The company services a large portion of the Pacific Northwest including Washington, Oregon, Montana and Idaho. Gustafson has even sent crews to some extreme remote locations in Alaska. Taking on remote locales for construction projects, especially in Alaska, requires extensive preparation. Gustafson said, "Oh, you have to do a lot of planning. And you have to take everything with you – everything plus. Working in remote Alaskan locations is definitely risky business."

Team building

Over the years, Trenchless Construction Services has grown from three employees to over 20 employees today. Gustafson says that kind of growth requires a focus on people and sound business practices. He said, "Number one, what I think you need is a strong dependable team of people. You really want to take care of your people. You want to be selective bringing them on board, make them strong team members, and take care of them financially, educationally and socially. We're still a small family oriented company. We have a Christmas party with our spouses and a summer picnic get-away. We just work closely together. Number two, is you have to make sure you do quality work that meets your customers’ expectations. Finally, you need to price your services based on the value of the service you're providing in a competitive market place."

Safety is a concern on every job site and Gustafson takes it seriously. His belief in providing education for his employees ties directly into improving safety on the job site. Gustafson said, "We have an excellent safety record; in fact our safety experience factor is 0.60. Site specific safety meetings and tailgate meetings are very important. You can have a grandiose safety program, but you have to do the basics, look at the site, and really concentrate on what could happen at that site and draw everyone's attention to it. We also stress the buddy system. Watch out for your buddy."

While safety represents part of Gustafson's educational focus for his employees, he also makes it a point to bring employees to industry events and trade shows including the Underground Technology Conference (UCT).

For the Birch Bay Water and Sewer District project, the Trenchless Construction Services team would need to draw on years of experience and dedication to quality work.

Birch Bay