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Overcome Complex Construction Projects with the Right Electrical Construction Contractor

Choosing an electrical construction contractor isn’t as simple as opening the phone book or searching Google for the best one in your area. Due to complex construction projects, strict budgets, demanding schedules, and compliance regulations, choosing an electrical construction contractor shouldn’t be a lackadaisical decision. To ensure your next installation is nothing short of 5-stars, here are four things you should consider when selecting your next electrical contractor. 

Do Your Research

With so much information available at our fingertips, it can be tempting to read the online reviews of a company or business and make your decision based on that. However, it is essential to keep in mind that not all online reviews are reliable or authentic. Therefore, do the due diligence when conducting market research to find the right and trustworthy information. Compare the companies you have short-listed by visiting their website to better understand their services and history

Check their Experience

No one wants to put the reins of their project into the hands of a contractor who does not have enough experience and skills in the industry. This rings especially true when it’s as complicated and complex as heavy construction and interior and core & shell construction. So, narrow down a list of potential options and check their experience by requesting their portfolio or looking at the projects listed on their website. You will feel confident selecting the right contractor for your installation when seeing the results of completed projects similar to yours. 

Inspect their Versatility

When hiring the right contractor for your project, whether heavy construction, datacom, or interior and core & shell, you will want to consider how versatile they are

  • Are they a one-stop shop? 
  • Will you be able to design your build solutions individually, bundled, or on a turn-key basis?
  • Will you need to hire multiple contractors?
  • How will that affect your budget?

Get Multiple Bids

Going with the lowest bid can be tempting, however, this is not always the best approach. Getting multiple bids to compare the price and contractor’s qualifications, experience, and reputation is important. By conducting effective and timely research, you can ensure that you find a qualified contractor who will not only do the job correctly but on time and at cost.

Whether you are looking to expand your fiber routes or create a robust infrastructure that will stand the test of time, hiring the right electrical contractor for your build is one of the most critical decisions to determine its success. To talk to one of our design experts to find out if we’re the right fit for your project, gmoloney@hellmanelectric.com

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Announcing Electra’s 2021 Employee Excellence of the Year Award

As we enter the third quarter of 2022, we’re reflecting on our team’s significant accomplishments in 2021. One that deserves considerable recognition is Electra’s annual Employee of the Year Award, which recognizes those who showcase excellence, professionalism, leadership, team spirit, flexibility, and reliability.

After rising to the challenge, demonstrating outstanding work, and helping Hellman Electric excel from great to exceptional, we’re proud to announce that John Kreckel, Senior Project Manager at Hellman, was awarded the 2021 Electra Excellence Employee of the Year Award. 

John has been with Hellman Electric for seven years and has demonstrated his excellence on multiple occasions due to his experience managing multiple high valued projects simultaneously while increasing profitability. 

John was chosen because of his outstanding work on the 345 Adams Street, Brooklyn project. This project required the relocation of various NYC agencies, including the associated safety, electronics, security, lighting, power, communications, and backup generation for the building. The value of this project exceeded 20 million dollars and required a detailed manager to oversee the daily operations to meet a 12-month build cycle. Due to John’s experience working in the field and within his current management role, he completed the project on time and within budget, even with the challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic presented. 

While 2021 held many challenges, John continuously demonstrated his ability to manage, guide, and mentor other managers and employees in the office and in the field. Because of this, he has earned the admiration and respect of both subordinates and superiors alike, making us honored to have him a part of our team here at Hellman.

Congratulations again, John! 

 

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Overcoming Obstacles to Small Cell Construction in New York City and Beyond

Network operators and municipalities across the country are striving to enable 5G mobile services for customers in urban areas, and that requires the installation of thousands of outdoor small cells to meet coverage and capacity demands. The requirements are myriad, from the Civil and electrical requirements; the aesthetic requirements (“not in my backyard” or NIMBY) imposed by both private entities and municipal interests; and power company metering/power requirements that vary greatly across the country.

And the icing on top — organizational and campus settings and private LTE networks — can further inhibit any notion that the motion toward 5G can be streamlined. 

Simply put: accommodating the varied technical and aesthetic requirements while also incorporating future and evolving technologies has been and will be a challenge. Wireless construction and infrastructure enterprises see that dichotomy in real-time, especially in the tech-infrastructure savvy New York City marketplace.

 

Site acquisition and aesthetics                                                                                                                                                                   

Throughout the 5G build-out process, wireless construction enterprises have acknowledged that small cells are designed for street-level deployment, but they must also acknowledge that local governments want to provide attractive cityscapes for their residents. 

Aside from the pandemic, there have been obstacles to deployment.  When it comes to telecom infrastructure and the construction behind 5G deployments, it’s easy to overlook what a deployment fully entails. For infrastructure providers, there are federal, state and local permitting, rights of way, application timelines and other siting and application fees, as well as application review timelines or “shot-clocks.”  

For businesses, a survey by Gartner, the technology consultancy, shows that enterprises are interested in investing in 5G services and technology as long as those services come with enhanced mobile broadband, are ultra reliable, and operate at low latency. Another Gartner report predicts that less than 45 percent of global communications service providers will have launched a commercial 5G network by 2025. At the enterprise level, mobile service procurement teams must develop realistic estimates or budgets to ensure that devices and connectivity modules are compatible with their carrier’s 5G networks. And enterprises should look at all of the expected costs of 5G-reliant implementation, demanding service level agreements (SLAs) at every juncture.

While traditional cell networks have come to rely on an increasing number of base stations, achieving 5G-level performance will require a more comprehensive and expansive infrastructure. And small cells are the key to densifying networks in preparation for 5G.

 

Construction that breaks through the challenges

It’s hard to keep up with the technical requirements, especially for municipalities and public utilities who may not be as familiar as mobile operators. Enter the construction, design and manufacturing community to work with the ecosystem of stakeholders to design build-out — and concealment — solutions that meet today’s requirements as well as future considerations.

To make that transition, players in the construction field must collaborate with municipal customers to design and install infrastructure that satisfies the ever growing demand for network capacity, including ultra-fast broadband, 5G networks and densified fiber deployments.

Those construction crews, foremen, electricians and laborers must understand the importance of responsiveness and on-time delivery for projects of all sizes. Companies that are successful will be able to demonstrate expertise in all aspects of construction — from design and engineering through construction and installation — all with safety as a backdrop. 

Still, challenges exist, and there are ways to overcome those challenges.

One way to get there is through standardization. Initial small cell deployments were custom installations requiring site-by-site engineering, which made these installations too expensive for widespread use. Today, telecom equipment manufacturers are moving to standardize small cell deployment solutions. It would not be cost-effective to do custom-engineering for each cell site deployment, so solutions must be based on standard designs that can, in turn, be adapted for many different sets of technical and aesthetic requirements.  

Modularity is also important. A broad selection of modular solutions is critical to ensuring successful small cell deployment, particularly in urban areas. Site components must support a wide range of deployment scenarios, like locating the radio adjacent to the antenna or placing the radio at the opposite end of a pole from an antenna.

Another ingredient is aesthetics. Cities and municipalities want the benefits of 5G, but they don’t necessarily want to hang “unsightly” boxes from their streetlights or utility poles, hence the need for concealment. The good news is that manufacturers are building site concealment into their designs to ease aesthetic concerns, and have come up with a wide variety of options, from streetlight poles to wall-mounted enclosures disguised as street signs.

 

New York Minute

To facilitate build-outs, New York public utilities and municipalities may look to explore synergies with other infrastructure projects like distributed power systems, smart meter conversion and coupling fiber builds with street improvements to decrease the time and costs in the long haul.

5G will play a key role in closing the digital divide with faster speeds, expanded capacity, and lower latency. The overwhelming majority of Americans – 81 percent in 2019 – own a smartphone, making mobile devices an opportunity to address the lack of connectivity.

With the economy slowly but steadily rebounding from the pandemic, New York and the U.S. more broadly cannot afford to lose competitive footing.  It is critical that municipalities, carriers and companies like Hellman Electric work together to remove obstacles to small cell construction to facilitate next-generation connectivity to ensure we can survive — and thrive — in an increasingly digital world. 

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Meet Hellman Electric’s New General Superintendent

We knew the day would come when we would have to say goodbye to Frank Sergi, Hellman Electrics General Superintendent, who has been a part of our team for the last 25 years. Responsible for labor placement and hiring. Sergi managed, on average, 150 electricians over a range of 40 active company projects, which meant finding a replacement for him wasn’t going to be an easy task.

Enter Joe Esposito. After graduating from the Electrical Apprenticeship program, Joe began working for Hellman Electric in 2008 and currently holds a Local Union #3 “A” Journeyman’s card. With over 20 years of experience as a trained electrician, who has demonstrated the ability to take on a variety of project styles, it became clear to our management team who would be replacing Frank upon his retirement. 

Before Esposito’s promotion, he held multiple positions in the construction industry, such as a foreman, Project Engineer, Senior Project Manager, and Assistant Superintendent. Through these various positions, Esposito was able to gain valuable industry experience, allowing him to hone his skills and expertise. As General Superintendent, he will be responsible for overseeing all field labor operations and will be Hellman’s field labor liaison with IBEW Local Union #3.

When Joe isn’t working, you can find him hanging out with his wife and two sons.  One of his favorite pastimes is coaching youth football. During the off-season, he relaxes by hunting, skiing, or playing with his two dogs, Lucky and Dax. As for Frank, his retirement plan consists of playing pickleball with his wife Lillian at their second home in Florida while they prepare to become grandparents to their first grandchild in August.

 

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Building the Future at LaGuardia Airport

Hellman Electric is proud to be an established New York City contractor, where we work primarily throughout the five boroughs. When Delta approached Hellman to install, design, and coordinate new roadways, ramps, and conduits that would make up New Delta at LaGuardia Airport, we were thrilled.

Since opening our doors in the early 1900s, our core has been on infrastructures like heavy highways and airports. As we have grown, we expanded our divisions to become a one-stop-shop, allowing us to build from different perspectives to design and create extensive projects such as New Delta. 

Together with Delta and The Port Authority, our team of experts installed tens of thousands of feet of conduit both underground and on elevated structures, all within the intended deadline. Along with adding various systems such as CCTV and DMS signage, a mixture of technology was integrated to create a robust infrastructure that will not only stand the test of time but will lead the way in rebuilding historic entities throughout the Big Apple.

To learn more about how Hellman Electric is keeping the lights on at New Delta and providing locals and tourists a way to get in and out of NYC safely watch the video below.

2020 Employee of the Year
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The 2020 Electra Employee of the Year Award Goes To…

Each year, Electra recognizes an outstanding worker for their annual Electra Employee of the Year Award. The award recognizes those who showcase excellence, professionalism, leadership, team spirit, flexibility, and reliability.

This year, we proudly nominated team member Thomas Ginnane, General Foreman, for the 2020 Electra Employee of the Year Award and he won!

Tom has been with Hellman Electric for 16 years, and during that time we have seen first-hand his work ethic and attention to detail. This not only makes him the perfect winner for this award, but an incredible asset of the Hellman Electric team.

As part of his role, he has utilized his leadership and excellence as a field operations manager for the Robert F. Kennedy (RFK) Bridge Design/Build Security project for our field team.

RFK is constructed of three separate bridge structures, including a-mile-long elevated roadway that connects the boroughs of Queens, The Bronx, and Manhattan through Wards and Randalls Islands. It is unlike any other facility in New York City and we knew that we needed a leader to effectively manage the team, navigate the systems, and effectively oversee all production on the project; Tom was an easy pick.

More than a skilled electrician, it was Tom’s leadership that took this project to the next level. His ability to balance Hellman’s objectives, the demanding expectations of the client, and maintaining the high level of standards of his IBEW Local (Local Union #3) is what makes Tom so widely respected – not only by his field team and Hellman Electric as a whole, but to our customers as well.

2020 was a challenging year in history, but Hellman Electric was and is lucky to have Tom on our side. Between his strength of character, leadership, and hard work, to say we chose the right person for the job would be an understatement.

Congratulations, Tom!

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Electra Times, Featuring Hellman Electric

The Electra Group released its September 2020 edition of the Electra Times and Hellman Electric is honored to have Carlos Casal, our Senior VP, featured as a representative for the company.

In 2018, Electra USA, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Electra Group (TASE: ELTR), invested in Hellman Electric, allowing Hellman to continue its aggressive growth and diversification strategy. 

Located in 17 countries across four continents, Electra views itself as a customer-oriented company, with customer satisfaction its foremost priority, making its partnership with Hellman a perfect fit. Hellman’s established customer base and expertise in the New York market provided Electra the ability to continue to strengthen and expand its offerings to U.S. customers in the mechanical field. 

In this latest issue, the Electra Times highlights the accomplishments of its company at large, the progress it has made in 2020 and how it has managed to maintain operations globally while dealing with the pandemic that impacted several of its locations, including New York, the homebase for Hellman Electric. 

The magazine also features four Electra ambassadors who discuss their business perspectives from their respective countries. Hellman’s Carlos Casal was selected as the American representative alongside individuals from Nigeria, Poland and Israel.

Carlos, who first joined Hellman Electric as an intern nearly 23 years ago, is now the Senior Vice President of Project Management and oversees the Heavy Construction division. In part of the interview, Carlos shares his views on how culture and diversity in America plays a significant role in the country’s growth. 

“The ancestral diversity of the American people makes this a beautifully unique country. Although we are a relatively young nation, we have embraced the values of multiple cultures from around the world to help shape our society and way of life. The foundation of our culture is rooted in the blood, sweat and tears of hard-working families that aspire to improve the quality of life of their children and future generations,” said Carlos.

Carlos also touches upon the pride he has working for the company, his favorite holiday here in America and the importance of building strong relationships in order to succeed.

The Ambassador profile also includes thoughts from Tumbari Akumbe, a Team Leader at Etco Nigeria, Daniel Seta, a Project Manager at Electra M&E Poland, and Yarden Tovim, an Implementation Engineer at Electra Construction.

Read more of Carlos’ interview as well as learn more about the worldwide efforts of the Electra Group here.

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Got Power? Jerry Dolak, VP of Power, Sits Down for JSA TV Interview

Hellman Electric is the leading provider of specialty electrical power related services in the tristate area, and the leading choice for all of your major power related project needs. 

Projects such as the New York Aquarium, Pier 55, Manhattan Psychiatric Center, and more, are just some of what Hellman’s well-honed expertise, paired with skilled and trained personnel, have completed. Hellman has also played part in servicing the New York region’s major utilities, including Con Edison, Verizon, Long Island Power Authority, PSE&G and New York Power Authority.

In a recent interview with JSA TV, Jerry Dolak, Vice President of Power, discusses the successes of the team, expertise, upcoming projects, the industry, and more.

“We bring that additional level of technical expertise. We are familiar with the utility requirements and bringing utilities into buildings & infrastructures and the testing & commissioning some of these facilities, gear and equipment as they are installed in infrastructures.”

Dolak goes on to explain,

“The industry as a whole has remained fairly stagnant since the 1900s, but the boom of electronics in the ’80s has played a huge impact in technological advancements for the power division, especially in troubleshooting.”

Dolak, a Manhattan College graduate, brings extensive experience in the design, commissioning, testing and construction of major power and switchgear installations, and low, medium and high voltage major service installations for utilities, commercial, educational, and government installations in the tristate region. From working as a design engineer in a major NYC consulting engineering firm, to previously leading two specialty power and testing companies, Jerry brings practical and detailed hands on experience and expertise, as well as the management and theoretical technical skills to manage, troubleshoot, maintain, and construct complex power related projects. 

Looking ahead, Dolak expects that power distribution’s growth at Hellman will include becoming more involved in the client’s power system as a whole. 

To view the JSA TV interview in its entirety visit here or watch below. 

To learn more about our power distribution services, click here

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Meet Carlos Casal, Senior Vice President

An intricate part of the success of Hellman Electric lies within its leadership. This special blog series offers an up-close look at the five leaders behind this award-winning company.

Carlos Casal began at Hellman Electric as an intern, now years later he leads as the Senior Vice President of Project Management where he oversees the Heavy Construction division. Carlos attributes his success and drive to the intrinsic values instilled by his father followed closely by his desire to succeed and grow on a daily basis. 

It was that drive that allowed him to obtain his degree in Electrical Engineering, with a concentration in Communication Systems. Mr. Casal feels his educational background and his experiences from the NYSDOT ITS program over the years, led him to his current position where he oversees an office staff of 25 professionals coupled with a field team that together, are running $200M of work in the public sector.

“The experience and knowledge I garnered from those projects made me an expert in that space and gave me the confidence I needed to pursue new challenges in security and communications.”

Currently, Casal provides executive oversight of an MTA Design-Build Security project and says the team’s success with this project has been a huge source of motivation.

Casal says the Design-Build industry has opened up new opportunities for Hellman to showcase its talents, strengths, and technical prowess.

“It’s rejuvenated our team of professionals and has presented us all with new challenges and paths for growth in an emerging aspect of our industry.”

Casal takes the stance at Hellman to lead not only by example but also as a team player. He believes in defining roles, managing expectations and guiding his staff to help them meet their full potential. Additionally, Casal has no problem rolling up his sleeves to demonstrate that anything he asks his team to do can be accomplished.

“I often use an educator’s model. I love to teach and prepare my team for the various obstacles one will encounter on their path. Without the team, there is no success. I believe in that ideology through to my core.”

Whether it’s leading multi-million dollar projects at work or coaching his children’s softball and basketball leagues, Casal says he puts his best foot forward in any situation and embraces his role as a leader at Hellman.  

As the old saying goes, the only constant in life is change and working in an industry such as Mr. Casal’s, changes are met at every step along the way. Whether those changes be guidelines, safety measurements, or technological advancements, Casal thrives on the day-to-day challenges. He believes it helps him grow personally and professionally and keeps him excited about the company’s future growth.

“At Hellman Electric, we have the talent, strength, and passion to take on all emerging technologies and I’m ready to lead our team and division into the next generation of construction.”  

To learn more about Hellman Electric, contact us here

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