Safety, Quality, Integrity

President's Message

Sat, May 27, 2017

President's Message

Of all the issues we face as a service provider to America’s industries, all pale in contrast to that of our declining “blue collar” workforce. In every aspect of today’s life in the United States, competent workers are at a premium. Clearly, we didn’t plan ahead when we axed the trade classes in our high schools. Corey Delta has always provided training classes for both our own as well as potential employees, free of charge. The results, while admirable, don’t begin to offset attrition nor accommodate growth. Every contractor, construction trade organization as well as labor unions are faced with the same dilemma, an abundance of potential business vs. a diminishing workforce. In previous times, robust periods of construction activity were accommodated by overtime as well as by workers who gravitated to the work from other areas of the country. In fact, the Business Roundtable Construction Committed initiated a white paper on the subject titled “the effects of overtime on construction projects.” Wages ballooned, safety went to Hell and productivity was comparable to a traditional straight time equivalent while costs soared. Our industry is comprised of contractors who are problem solvers. We take on a responsibility and, through creativity, experience and sometimes just guts, we persevere. Mistakes occur and those are converted to experience. We at Corey Delta have loads of experience! That equates to surviving lots of mistakes. One of the mistakes we have made, more than once, whether through circumstance or tenacity, has been taking on more than we were capable of accomplishing. Given the above, we are extremely cautious as to the commitments we make going forward. We continue to explore non-traditional methods of attracting /retaining / augmenting our workforce. We have been somewhat successful to date but continue our pursuit of the task. One method is the training of “off-shore” crafts. We invest in training programs, establish criteria for employment and, through the acquisition of visas, bring folks in for peak periods of activity. There are other options in play as well. That said; the potential industrial project sin the US over the next 3-5 years is daunting. In addition, scads of infrastructure projects are planned concurrently. How all of these projects will be built is anyone’s guess. My guess is that some or many will not be built. Corey Delta will continue doing the right things in terms of safety, performance, quality, meeting/ exceeding our customer’s expectations. Our primary focus is on not taking on more than we can do well! On another note, I have been elected President of our California Contractors Alliance [CCA], an organization of Northern California, non-building trades industrial contractors. It is a two year term. CCA has been an effective vehicle in representing our unique challenges of merit shop construction and maintenance. We have proven CCA to be a consistent and credible voice for our industry; I pledge to continue that tradition. One final note; we have move our offices… again. We are now located near the intersection if highways 12 and 29 in Southern Napa County, adjacent to Napa County Airport.