Case Studies

Eastern Diversified Services Inc.

Rebuilding Lives and Homes
  • Written by: Eastern Diversified Services Inc.
  • Produced by: Eastern Diversified Services Inc.
  • Estimated reading time: 4 mins

It takes a special breed of professional to succeed in the highly demanding insurance restoration industry, and the team at Eastern Diversified Services Inc. (EDS) continues to set a high industry standard by providing quality workmanship and the professionalism that comes from having over 25 years of industry experience. The EDS team understands that when disaster strikes the wheels must immediately start turning, and the company always goes the extra mile to ensure homeowners and property owners within southeastern Pennsylvania service region feel confidently covered.

EDS is based out of Souderton, Penn., led by Charles Ebersole and Mark Guinther (president and vice president, respectively) and operates with a team of 40 employees to serve clients in Philadelphia, across Montgomery County and into the Delaware Valley and Lehigh Valley. The company is licensed as a general contractor and has built a handful of commercial properties in a traditional general contracting capacity, but EDS is first and foremost a disaster restoration specialty company. The team has the resources to provide environmental remediation and restoration to commercial and residential buildings damaged by fire, smoke, storms, water and other spills.

Dedication, efficiency, professionalism, empathy and open ears have come to define the EDS team and fuel company growth over the years, so it comes as no surprise that EDS is a member of Disaster Kleenup International (DKI), North America’s largest disaster restoration contracting organization. Membership in DKI confirms a company’s reputable, experienced proficiencies for providing disaster solutions. More importantly than simply being the largest, though, DKI members share a culture of teamwork based in transparency and integrity.

Healing the Damage

The situations EDS addresses require an extra dose of empathy and concern for the needs of the client, and the company has a penchant for taking care of the smaller details. It might seem minor, but every EDS employee sports the EDS logo, whether on a jacket, t-shirt, polo shirt or sweatshirt; the company instituted the policy early on as a way of giving visual reassurance so that clients rest assured that every unfamiliar face is accounted for as a person working to make already stressful situations as painless as possible.

The company also insists on keeping jobsites as impeccable as possible out of respect for the property owner, and also to maintain the most efficient workspace. Clients, insurance agents and family members have been known to stop by to check on progress unannounced, and EDS understands that every jobsite and every visit can impact its reputation, leaving no room for error.

“When most homeowners decide to invest $350,000 into a home, they have a plan, they have all their finishes picked out and they hand-select the contractor,” explains Bob Strickland, director of marketing at EDS. “When EDS comes in to complete $350,000 of work, the work was totally unexpected, the homeowners are unsure of what they want, they might not be totally clear how insurance claims work, and they often have never heard of us before, but we work very hard to make sure the client feels as comfortable as possible.”

EDS has a full team of carpenters on hand to take care of things like small installations, framing, drywall and painting, and the company can also provide services around the clock, such as emergency board-up service and water extraction. The company also maintains an in-house hazardous materials response unit to contain and clean up spills and contamination.

Prepared for Anything

While capable of self-performing many tasks, EDS keeps a shortlist of contacts for electrical, plumbing mechanical and specialty trades to lend a hand when necessary. The company is extremely selective in establishing subcontractor relationships as subcontractors are held to the same high standards, if not higher, as EDS employees. It’s not unusual for EDS to reach out to a subcontractor in need of a response within an hour, the day or by the next morning, given the time sensitive nature of EDS’ specialty.

EDS’ membership in DKI also enables the company to serve clients across the country through claims forwarded from affiliate members. The company has previously handled claims from California to Maine and even in Florida, and when an affiliate member calls EDS with a claim the company honors the privilege by jumping into action. “There is a respect that all of DKI’s members have for the organization and the other members that makes it feel like more of a brotherhood,” expands Strickland. “Yes, we’re competitors, but we have heard of other members dropping everything in the middle of a hurricane to handle a claim, just because they knew it came from another member.”

Applying its exacting standards to all jobs, the EDS team has managed to help restore the homes and offices of many clients over the years. The EDS team more recently began work on an 8,000-square foot stone home in Philadelphia that suffered a total loss of the roofing structure. No room in the house was left unaffected and EDS was on-site within a few hours of receiving the call to begin salvaging possessions and secure the home. EDS will replace the entire roofing structure and restore the home to its original condition, which Strickland estimates will take around 18 months.

Even as unseasoned general contractors try to jump into the industry, the EDS team remains cool, calm and confident in the knowledge that not just anyone can succeed in the insurance restoration industry. Rebuilding a house from scratch is difficult enough, but it takes true agility to simultaneously negotiate the insurance claims side of the business, and this is where EDS is unparalleled thanks to more than two decades of specialization. The company’s consummate, compassionate approach will continue to guide Eastern Diversified Services Inc. to find growth that never sacrifices quality, service or safety.

Published on: March 5, 2013

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