4G Plumbing & Heating Inc.
- Written by: Eric Gundberg
- Produced by: Chuck McKenna
- Estimated reading time: 4 mins
4G Plumbing & Heating Inc. offers far more to clients than its name implies. The firm – which services the industrial, commercial and residential new construction, maintenance and repair sectors – has 14 signature mechanical and plumbing services, including HVAC, boiler systems, excavation/grading, medical gas systems and mechanical design. The name 4G comes from its four founders: Gordon Jensen, Geniece Jensen, Glen Petit and Geneva Petit. Though the company is now owned by two other families – John and Judy Bukovatz and John and Melody Bryan – 4G has maintained the same commitment to quality and attentive customer service as established at its inception in 1964.
The company, which is based out of Missoula, Mont., has continually expanded its reputation for excellence and dedication to quality over the years. The firm achieves this by following three guidelines: that the customer comes first, satisfaction is guaranteed, and quality work is performed on every project. To help ensure these criteria are met, the owners brought on board a mechanical engineer in 2006. The addition allows the firm to provide full design-build engineered stamped drawings for any project.
4G has earned its reputation not just through past work and references, but also through its association with numerous accomplished organizations. The firm is a proud signatory contractor between the Associated Employers and Employees of the Plumbing and Pipe-Fitting Industry Local Union Number 459 United Association of Journeyman and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States and Canada. This allows 4G’s owners to draw from a large labor pool of qualified workers who have the finest training in the industry.
Taking Care of Customers
4G’s deeply ingrained dedication and experience starts from within the company. Melody Bryan, who became a company stockholder in 1997 and a co-owner in 2002, has been working at 4G her entire life. “My father bought into the company in the ’70s, and this is where I worked during high school.”
Melody, who now serves as vice president of 4G, still likes to hop onto the phones and perform dispatch duties. “That’s the part of the job I love the most; being able to help people. We have some older clients and they’ll give us a call and tell us their light bulbs have burned out. We’ll send a technician over to their house and have them change them out for them. We’ll just do it for them as a community service type of thing, we don’t charge them for the [service] call.” Having a highly qualified, customer-oriented service department is very important to the community, and 4G specializes in everything from line freezing plumping repairs, water heater/boiler replacement, A/C installation and HVAC quarterly maintenance, thermal leak detection and repair, and backflow repair, among other areas.
One reason that 4G has maintained its level of service over the years is that once employees are hired they tend to stay. A large number of the crew started as shop personnel and moved up the chain from apprenticeship to journeymen to foremen and eventually project managers. Some have spent their entire working careers at 4G, as the shop has personnel who have been there for 15 to 25 years.
“Our employees are what make our company,” says Melody assuredly. “When we had a new office building built and we had to move everything over to the new facility, we put a note in everyone’s paycheck that we only had two Saturdays to get the facility moved. It wasn’t job-related work, they weren’t going to be paid for it, we were just asking for help, and the entire company showed up to help us move.”
Because of the flexibility and professionalism found in the staff, the owners can bid on any commercial project and be confident that they can assemble the right team to complete the project. In recent years, 4G has worked on projects as small as $91,000 and as large as $8.8 million. The average size of 4G projects over the last eight years has been around $350,000.
Project Variety Highlights Diversity
4G recently worked on a few high-profile projects for the region that demonstrated the firm’s ability to complete jobs on time and in quality fashion. The first was a $264,584 project for the Community Medical Center Infusion Center in Missoula. 4G was responsible for the plumbing system, medical gas piping and the mechanical systems for the building and completed all of that within schedule and on budget.
A larger project that highlights 4G’s ability to pick and choose the right-sized crew for a project is for the Barrett Replacement Hospital in Dillon, Mont., where 4G has completed the first of a two-year project where it has been working on the plumbing, medical gases and mechanical systems for the building. There, again, 4G has been delivering its services on or before schedule and under the pre-approved budget of $4.47 million. “That’s what we’re known for around here – we make sure that a job is complete and the customer gets what they paid for. We don’t cut corners,” emphasizes Melody.
4G’s ownership takes a lot of pride in making sure every job meets the customer’s high standards. Because the company performs most of its services in-house, 4G has the advantage of truly controlling the outcome of projects, and making sure they meet both client and company expectations. “We can self-perform all the plumbing and heating related services; we only sub out sheet metal, controls and mechanical insulation,” reveals Melody.
There is an enormous amount of pride that runs through every member of the company, because 4G Plumbing & Heating Inc. has established a reputation for comprehensive service that assures the future is as wide open to continuing possibilities as Montana’s sky is big.
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