“We want them to see us as undertaking and overseeing the complete construction of a project, rather than having to deal with separately a large number of sub-contractors.”
Aidan Ford, General Manager of Auckland-based Asset Construction is convinced that putting good energy into reviewing systems and procedures to align with ISO accreditation frameworks has elevated the company’s performance.
When he joined Asset Construction four years ago he spent the first six months doing just this, realising that to gain a foothold into procuring high-end and large government funded projects the environmental, health and safety and quality systems needed to be second to none.
“I came from a background working for large Tier 1 companies and understand how these systems work. I based our systems review on existing ISO standards and tuned them to our own situation.”
Backing this commitment to manage change well, Aidan then employed the services of an independent auditor to assess/ certify the new systems to attain certification from Telarc for ISO14001, ISO9001 and ISO18001.
With the past year punctuated by the impact of COVID-19 with its necessary new ways of working, Aidan says the company now is busier than ever.
“At that time we had quite a lot of forward work locked in and these clients had no intention of putting them on ice.”
When Business North spoke with Aidan, he was looking to engage more qualified and experienced staff stating that maintaining a balance between those who carry skills and new trainees is a priority.
“We always need enough people who know how to operate to really help those training on the job.” Driving the culture of the company is a commitment to treat staff with respect.
As a civil construction business Asset Construction engages in both private and government-funded projects, sub-contracting often to Tier 1 companies to do drainage, car-park developments, foundation work as well as full construction for a couple of clients.
In Whangarei the company has been sub-contracted to undertake the civil work for an extension to Whangarei Boys High School. Working with short time frames Aidan says the project has some challenging aspects to it, with significant drainage requirements.
“We decided to devote a large number of our team on this project to give it a good jump.”
With the drainage and earthworks components completed the team on the ground have turned their attention to service installation. Later in the year, Asset Construction’s work on site will conclude with landscaping.
Asset Construction Ltd employs specialised operatives in drain-laying, timber construction, machine operators, engineers, concrete layers, asphalters and surveyors.
The company’s Operations Manager, Kingsley Brown is responsible for staff training and acquisition/maintenance of all plant, while Richard Scott, who founded the company in 2001, takes care of client relationships and procurement of future work as Commercial Manager.
Aidan says that key to the company’s continued growth and success is focusing on a key value proposition to clients. “We want them to see us as undertaking and overseeing the complete construction of a project, rather than having to deal with separately a large number of sub-contractors.”
He’s confident the company will continue to grow from strength to strength with such a diverse capability offering to clients.
Aidan says an important role is fostering an organisational culture. “I know the name of every one working for us and every one of them is an absolute star.”
Asked what he feels really sets the company apart from others working in the same sector, Aidan says it comes down to not being afraid to have a good hard look in the mirror.
“We don’t ascribe to the thinking ‘that is how everyone else does it, or that is how we have always done it’. We’re much more interested in innovative, out of the box thinking to inform how we go about business.”