Case Studies

DH Construction

Setting the Standard for Quality and Safety

DH Construction Inc. (DHC) was officially incorporated in 2005 as the brainchild of principals Dan Harrigan and Matt Spacek, both who bring decades of industry experience to the growing general contracting operation. Equally as important, DHC has the core capabilities and professional experience to serve as a liaison for clients based in the U.S. looking for an entry point to the Puerto Rican market.

“We serve as an experienced general contracting choice for U.S.-based clients who often have reservations about taking a chance on a contractor with an island mentality,” says Spacek. Both Spacek and Harrigan have been residents of Puerto Rico for seven and 17 years respectively, with professional experience working in Canada and the U.S.

The pair built DHC around a hard work ethic and an ingrained entrepreneurial spirit to always push for better quality, schedule adherence and safety standards on the island and in North America. As a result, the company has been able to establish a presence in the commercial, hospitality, industrial, hospital, pharmaceutical and institutional markets, generating a strong group of repeat clients along the way.

Going the Distance

Though the company maintains its headquarters in San Juan, DHC regularly travels to all ends of the island for clients. DHC simultaneously delivered two retail stores for CVS Pharmacy in 2011, each with approximately 13,000 square feet on opposite sides of the island. Currently DHC crews are busy building a 7,600-square foot Romano’s Macaroni Grill in Mayagüez on the far western side of the island, another CVS Pharmacy near San Juan and are expected to break ground in March 2012 on a recently awarded hospital project in the metropolitan area.

The company was also awarded a one-year Job Order Contract in January 2012 with a potential four-year extension performing work for the United States Postal Service (USPS) to handle major and minor projects at all of its 130 plus Puerto Rican island locations.

In addition to landing the contract to service all three of the Puerto Rico islands, USPS is now looking to award to the DHC team the U.S. Virgin Island region as well.

“When we landed the contract it was apparent that the USPS was dissatisfied with the progress of their construction projects here in Puerto Rico,” says Harrigan, “but we now have a solid plan in place to address all of their construction needs for years to come and hopefully extend the contract to the full five years.”

One of the major advantages DHC brings to the Puerto Rican market is the diversity of its internal core capabilities. DHC offers design-build, project management, construction management, preconstruction consulting, site planning and permitting and general building and facility maintenance handled by an internal labor force. Harrigan and Spacek estimate that facility maintenance only accounts for 15 percent of DHC’s total volume, but its importance is tangible as the maintenance department has been growing and clients appreciate the extra support.

DHC is currently providing scheduled and 24-hour emergency maintenance services for all of the 14 CVS island locations with the addition of three more expected before the end of 2012. The company’s facility maintenance division encompasses its client’s entire facility; from landscaping, carpentry, electrical, mechanical, generator, air conditioning, potable/fire pumps to roofing maintenance.

Exceeding Expectations

Spacek and Harrigan count the company’s skill set diversity and ambition as essential factors in DHC’s strong performance in highly specialized markets that require extra planning and coordination. DHC recently completed work for a highly specialized pharmaceutical manufacturer that specializes in radio pharmacology, which produces radioactive materials used for diagnostic imaging purposes. DHC had to assemble a highly skilled team capable of not only working in an ISO Class 5 environment, but ensuring the manufacturer’s equipment and processes would be commissioned perfectly.

DHC is always pushing for more professional development programs, which management considers part of its corporate identity. “The programs and initiatives we maintain in-house are more common amongst global construction companies,” says Harrigan, “but we realize that investing in our own infrastructure and professionals’ development programs have also been directly related to our annual exponential growth and success,” he continues.

DHC’s primary performance metrics are: cost, quality, safety and schedule. Cost and schedule are tackled with advanced software solutions that consolidate related documents and timelines, but quality and safety require ongoing training.

To that end DHC developed a comprehensive environmental health and safety training program. All levels of team members, including upper management, are either required or strongly encouraged to advance their credentials with OSHA 10 and OSHA 30 certification in addition to other professional certifications.

“If there is a silver lining to the economic downturn, it is that there is a greater availability of talented, experienced professionals and we have utilized this to our full advantage, staffing our company with the best of the best,” reflects Harrigan.

Though Harrigan and Spacek are unsure about the timeline of the economic recovery, the DHC team is poised to make the most of the available opportunities as a company boasting diverse skillsets, an intimate corporate culture and penchant for professional development. In the process, DH Construction Inc. will help set the bar high for the local construction industry and solidify its place as a leader in quality general contracting.

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Summer I 2017

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