More than Just a Name
Quality Mechanical is a mechanical contractor offering a full range of services out of its Belleville, Ontario location. The company has been operating for more than 25 years, and its breadth of experience has enabled it to grow into a very productive team of expert workers with an impressive portfolio and a solid reputation throughout the region.
Quality Mechanical offers a full suite of mechanical services including plumbing, HVAC, refrigeration, metal fabrication, full design and build construction, and more. The company is a complete turnkey business with the capacity to help clients take a project from the initial concept stages through to a full realization at the final signoff. “We’re a team that’s been together 25 years,” says Andrew Chartrand, Vice president at Quality Mechanical. “We have a good knowledge of the industry; we’re able to work together and complete projects for clients, whatever they need.”
The company was founded in 1992 in Belleville, Ontario by Roger Chartrand. In the beginning it focused on service and small commercial projects and built its expertise over time. Today, while the company still has a strong focus on the commercial projects that have carried it so far in the industry, it has expanded into industrial and institutional projects with a heavy focus on design build, larger commercial and industrial work, HVAC, plumbing and fabrication.
Over the course of its history, as the company grew, it also expanded its footprint. Today Quality Mechanical operates out of three facilities, with its headquarters in Belleville and additional locations in Kingston and Napanee, Ontario. It employs between 30 and 50 people, with up to 200 at its peak when large-scale jobs have called for additional manpower. Since 1992, the company has changed a great deal but has made a sincere effort to stay true to its roots.
Quality Mechanical has worked on many impressive projects throughout its tenure serving South Eastern Ontario. Two of the most impressive of these were completed for the Canadian Forces Base CFB Trenton. Located in the city of Quinte West, CFB Trenton is a Royal Canadian Air Force base in charge of air transport operations for the Canadian military. The first of these projects was an industrial maintenance hangar that Quality helped build with Bird Construction. This is a 188,000 square foot facility designed for service vehicle maintenance, and prior to its existence this work was done in five separate buildings. The addition of this hangar enabled the base to consolidate all of this work into one large facility, substantially increasing the efficiency of its maintenance operations.
Working with the military means operating within strict regulatory guidelines. It’s a matter of careful organization and diligent quality control, and these are characteristics that Quality Mechanical exemplifies. Having completed the maintenance hangar to the satisfaction of the client, the company was called in to work with a general contractor, Graham Construction, on a second project known as Hangar 2.
This 125,000 square foot facility contains two hangar bays, offices, and a shop area, and will house two CC-130J Hercules aircrafts. It was designed with a number of green features that enabled it to receive a gold level Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification.
One of the key challenges for Quality Mechanical and other contracting companies in South Eastern Ontario and elsewhere is a shortage of skilled workers. “Young workers seem to be few and far between,” says Chartrand. “The biggest challenge for us is trying to grow the company while maintaining the level of quality.” As the company continues to grow going forward, attracting new skilled tradespeople becomes a matter of being the company they want to work for. The reputation and the culture at Quality Mechanical have helped to make the company an attractive option for workers in the region.
Structuring the company to facilitate teamwork has helped it to encourage a culture of collaboration within the ranks. There is very little hierarchy between managers; everyone works together toward a common goal. Management is open to ideas and suggestions from workers, anything that will help to move the project forward. Keeping everyone engaged in this way results in a unified team of people who are all invested in the success of the project. Through this approach the company has been able to build a solid workforce and a solid reputation for high quality work.
Community involvement is also very important to Quality Mechanical, and every year the company holds a golf tournament to support charitable organizations within the community. 2017 was the sixth of these annual events and the company has raised nearly $60,000 in total for local charities. To be sure, giving back to the community is very important to the Quality Mechanical team. The company prides itself on the culture it has built and the business relationships it continues to build, but the charitable endeavours it undertakes within the community have given the company an even deeper sense of accomplishment.
The level of expertise within Quality Mechanical’s leadership and management team is key to its continued success. It’s a perfect mix of tenured industry veterans, some with up to 20+ years of experience at the company, and young, driven professionals with an eye toward growth and a fresh approach to progress. This collection of varied expertise gives the company a unique capacity to help clients throughout every phase of a project from early conception through to the very end. “It’s like a type A personality for a company,” says Chartrand, “we want to make sure everything is on track, everything’s organized, and everyone’s happy.”
Recently, Mirtren Contractors Ltd, hired Quality Mechanical to assist in building a 200,000 square foot warehouse expansion for one of Procter & Gamble’s largest facilities in North America, located in Belleville. The entire project was design build, so the company was on site from the very beginning. The building was designed for product storage, so the entire space had to be temperature-controlled using massive air handling units. As is always the case with projects of this scale, a number of mechanical challenges arose throughout the course of the build, but Quality Mechanical was up to the task. It hit all of its milestones and completed the work well within the schedule and budget.
The company was recently hired again by Bird Construction for ABBcan Medicinals (ABCN on the TSX) for an expansion to their existing facility. ABBcan Medicinals is an organically grown medical cannabis production company operating out of Napanee, and phase one of its expansion project is a 30,000-square foot addition to its existing facility. The project isn’t full design build, but Quality Mechanical is a design assist partner, which means that its team is working with the project’s design team in order to help them make decisions. This enables the company to help the clients engineering team to cut cost out of the project as much as possible, and to plan the mechanical aspects of the job with the help of Quality’s vast expertise.
Going forward, the company is planning for growth. Of primary importance to Quality Mechanical’s leadership is managing that growth with an eye to maintaining the company’s reputation for high quality workmanship. The team plans to aim for more design build work, and to continue providing exceptional service on the small commercial projects it has been performing all along to maintain the customer relationships it has built over a quarter of a century. “We want to grow, but we want to maintain our roots,” says Chartrand.
Over 25 years, Quality Mechanical has built a solid reputation for quality mechanical work throughout South Eastern Ontario. In this time, the company has achieved a great deal of success, created a name for itself in the region, and continues to grow year on year. “As a company, we wouldn’t be anywhere without our crews on-site, our management teams, and office staff,” says Chartrand. “They’re the ones that keep us going.”
It’s a company with drive, with dedication, and with a commitment to providing the best possible service to clients as a result of many long years of experience in industry. “We’ve been able to create a good name for ourselves and we do a lot of repeat work with clients. We’ve worked with some of the biggest general contractors in the industry over the years. I think that says a lot about us and what we can do moving forward.”