Case Studies

Electric Plus Inc.

Leading by Example
  • Written by: Electric Plus Inc.
  • Produced by: Electric Plus Inc.
  • Estimated reading time: 4 mins

Tim Whicker started Electric Plus Inc. (EPI) from his garage in 2006. Just over six years later EPI has outgrown its original space and the team now numbers close to 130 professionals. The tightknit team at EPI prides itself on maintaining the mentality of a family-owned and -operated electrical contractor and provides every client with the personalized attention that turns first-time customers into longtime clients. The team maintains a diverse range of capabilities, which positions EPI to build a loyal client following in many markets.

“We strive to make the best better,” admits Whicker, president and founder of EPI. EPI relocated from Whicker’s garage to a former lumberyard just outside of Indianapolis, Ind. The Danville-based facility has since been renovated to accommodate a growing staff and an extensive inventory of equipment and supplies. Given its strategic location, EPI works with clients across Indiana.

EPI is affiliated with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which enables the company to augment its staff as needed for any given project. As a union-affiliated contractor EPI maintains the resources and experienced personnel to complete high-voltage and low-voltage work, as well as electrical specialties like temperature controls, fire alarm and security systems. In fact, the only items EPI regularly subcontracts out are excavation and telecommunications. Even then, EPI enlists the help of a handful of trusted, reliable subcontractors to complete the work at the EPI quality standard.

Keeping the majority of the team’s work in-house helps EPI streamline operations and also builds trust with clients by providing just one entity for a variety of electrical contracting concerns. EPI’s broad expertise and emphasis on accountability has helped the company become a fierce competitor in both public- and private-sector work. “We don’t rely on any one piece of the market, so as activity declines in one sector we can shift gears easily to focus on the others,” adds Whicker.

Forging Alliances

This flexibility played a major role in EPI’s growth throughout the economic downturn. In fact, Whicker attests that EPI managed to grow by almost 50 percent in 2011, though he hopes to stave off any more explosive growth for the moment. “With that kind of growth there come a lot of challenges, but I think we’re finally at a good size to be the kind of company we want to be,” admits Whicker.

EPI’s broad expertise allows the team to focus on building relationships with clients in a variety of market sectors, as the company stresses the importance of building those relationships with great transparency. The EPI team pledges to uphold the values of commitment, quality, integrity and logic in all of its operations. Logic stands out as especially important to EPI, as the company’s mission in the electrical trade is an inherently complicated one. EPI hopes to provide customers with more than just a basic understanding of the decisions being made for any given project. Instead, EPI wants customers to feel like they have an ally in electrical contracting that bases all of its decisions on what’s best for the client without having to sacrifice on quality.

Staying on top of emerging technologies is a key component of EPI’s mission as well. The company does its best to ensure its personnel are continually educated on the latest in energy efficiency and high-performance products. As a testament to its success, EPI has already established itself as a partner for clients across the commercial and industrial spectrum and some of its recently completed projects include work for clients like Verizon, General Motors, the Indiana Government Center Complex and the Miami Correctional Facility in Bunker Hill, Ind.

Staying Strong

When Indiana University awarded the electrical construction contract to EPI for the brand new baseball and softball stadium, EPI embraced the opportunity to take on such a high-profile project for the university. “It’s a really intriguing project that requires a lot of technology, especially building information modeling [BIM],” adds Whicker. This is the first BIM-intensive project in EPI’s short history, but the team shows no reservations.

EPI has already hit the ground running, mobilizing GPS-enabled devices to take precise measurements and layout the exact placement of all conduits and light fixtures. EPI’s model can then be overlaid with models from the project’s other prime contractors to ensure designs don’t conflict with one another, eliminating the likelihood of on-site surprises.

Whicker sees signs of the education market leveling off, but even if it doesn’t the company is well-positioned to continue growing at a steady and sustainable pace in the next few years. “We want to be the best, but we also want to make sure we still find ways to get better with every project,” asserts Whicker. “In the next few years I think we’ll continue to maintain a similar volume of work so we can focus on becoming more efficient and more competitive.”

Wherever opportunity beckons, the team will be sure to remember the values that set EPI apart from the competition. In doing so, Electric Plus Inc. cements the team’s place as one of Indiana’s leading full-service electrical contractors.

Published on: July 9, 2013

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