ISS Insulation Services & Solutions LLC: Fully Turnkey Installations for Industrial-sized Solutions
- Written by: ISS Insulation Services & Solutions LLC: Fully Turnkey Installations for Industrial-sized Solutions
- Produced by: ISS Insulation Services & Solutions LLC: Fully Turnkey Installations for Industrial-sized Solutions
- Estimated reading time: 4 mins
Insulation plays a critical role in the energy efficiency, fire safety and environmental impact of commercial facilities. ISS Insulation Services & Solutions LLC (ISS) understands the difference quality insulation can make and provides fully turnkey installation, fireproofing and sheet metal lagging services for a wide range of clients, from health care centers to chemical plants.
At ISS, certified, professional installers work in conjunction with manufactures to accommodate clients and the unique challenges of each individual job. ISS has an outstanding record for delivering projects on time and on budget, whether it is traditional small buildings or meeting the demands of a fully operating refinery.
The St. Louis-based company services western Illinois and eastern Missouri, an area it has called home for over a century. ISS’ history traces back to its parent company, The Young Company, which was founded in 1895. The Young Company, which is now MHS Legacy Group (MHS), started out as a roofing company, moving into the insulation business in the early 1920s.
“Through tough economic times, it’s comforting to know we have the support and backing of a strong, 117-year-old firm,” admits Tom Fleming, general manager of ISS. “The MHS name and subsidiary companies are well-recognized and well-respected throughout the region.”
The Go-to Industrial Contractor
Fleming’s confidence is shared among the team, which specializes strictly in commercial and industrial installations. “We don’t do residential work,” says Fleming. “You’ll find us on-site at schools, hospitals, office buildings and lots of power plants. Occasionally we’ll jump into the commercial sector, because lately there isn’t a lot of industrial work to be had in the St. Louis area.”
Fleming explains how ISS competes for a job. “We’re kind of like a subcontractor of a subcontractor of a subcontractor,” he details. “The majority of our bids go to a mechanical contractor who in turn takes prices from three to five insulation companies and gives the bids to a general contractor. The general contractor hands the list over to the owner.”
Operating in this manner has made for some recent economic challenges for ISS as the company fights to compete with other competitively priced installers on the market. “We’re fortunate to have a good reputation and to be backed by a well-respected parent company, but lately people are looking more for price than for a name or quality,” admits Fleming. “We’ve had to scale back some of our operations and our staff, because the work in this region is just really slim right now; it’s a tough little market. I’ve been in the industry since 1972 and I’ve never seen it this bad.”
Although ISS has run into some economic road blocks, the company remains afloat due in part to support from MHS and recent large-scale jobs. “Luckily, we just recently won the bid on a huge industrial project,” adds Fleming. “We’re insulating a boiler at Granite City Steel that blew up about nine months ago. It’s a major renovation in the industrial market for us.”
Self-performing for Quality
“We self-perform 99 percent of what we do,” stresses Fleming. “We employ insulators and sheet metal workers, allowing us to perform just about everything in-house.” Due to the fact the insulation is often exposed to the elements and requires a metal sheath covering, ISS hires skilled sheet metal fabricators.
“We buy and install all of the material ourselves,” details Fleming. “It’s all done with a core group of employees if we happen to need more labor, we work with local union contracts to gather the workforce needed for the job.”
ISS deals with a handful of suppliers for its insulation products. “We’re certainly not tied to one, but we work directly with several vendors,” explains Fleming. “A little competition is always a good thing to help them keep their prices right and reasonable.”
As far as more recent work, ISS has finished insulating a major medical facility in Illinois, along with several smaller-scale projects for the Ameren Utility Company. The Ameren Utility Company work consists mainly of boiler and outage shutdowns.
Although the company’s work has been slim over the past few years, Fleming believes it’s not about how much work, but the right work to survive the recession. “We’re really just trying to stay smart here,” he says. “Sometimes it’s better to not have a job than to have one that’s not going to be productive. We’re trying to be more selective of how we bid work to ride out this storm. Hopefully, when the market turns up again, we’ll be ready to rock and roll.”
Fleming is confident ISS Insulation Services & Solutions LLC will continue to serve the St. Louis area with the expertise and knowledge of a century-old organization, providing turnkey installations and professional support.
For more information about ISS Insulation Services & Solutions LLC, please visit: www.insulationservicesandsolutions.com.
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