Celebrating 110 Years: Preparing for the Future
Looking at the past is interesting and certainly there are many things to be learned from our past failures and successes. One thing we clearly understand is that our future success is not assured – it must be earned. Many challenges lie ahead for not only Chamberlin, but indeed for the entire construction industry. Some of the challenges we will face cannot yet be seen, but one now stares us in the face: Who will do the hard, physical work in the field?
It is abundantly clear to us that the greatest challenge we are facing at both Chamberlin and in the construction industry is finding the right people to do the work on the projects. Without a doubt, finding quality people to do the work has been difficult for many years, but the problem has grown greater with each passing year. In our industry in particular, how do we continue to provide our clients with an ever increasing quality product at a competitive price when the work we do is so hot, so dirty, so strenuous and so unglamorous? How do we train people who have little formal education, who may not speak fluent English and who often only find a job in our industry because they have few other options?
We know firsthand that finding people who take pride in being a roofing or waterproofing mechanic is extremely difficult. We also know, though, that at the end of the day our clients only pay us for one thing and that is a high-quality product installed in a safe manner at the best possible price…no excuses.
Given the challenge before us, we made a business decision at the beginning of 2007 to formalize and invest in our own in-house training in the form of the “Chamberlin University.” For the last eight months we have been sharpening our plan with the assistance of a Human Resource Consulting firm. The Chamberlin University courses now cover a wide range of subjects from basic craft training on the mechanics of successfully installing waterproofing and roofing products to the reasoning behind safety, quality and productivity and their importance to the individual mechanic working on the project, and much more. Our big picture plan is essentially to emulate the strategy of our safety training program that we implemented a number of years ago, which has produced outstanding results.
At the end of the day, our goal is to have the best trained field mechanics in the industry bar none. And, we are committing the resources and capital to make it happen.
Our vision is clear, and we know that we can, we will, and we must make the same strides in educating and training our workforce that we have made in what is now our top of class safety program. The education and training of our workforce is key to our future success. So the challenge is before us, and as we look back at our past successes over the last 110 years, we look forward with confidence to the challenges that lie ahead.
From all of us at Chamberlin, we say thank you for the confidence that you show in us year after year by making us your first choice for your roofing and waterproofing solutions. We look forward to serving you in the years ahead.