- Written by: Molly Shaw
- Produced by: Kyle Gahm
- Estimated reading time: 4 mins
As Trans-Tel Inc. (Trans-Tel) quickly approaches its 40-year anniversary, the Oklahoma-based telecommunications and data infrastructure provider has much to celebrate. What started as a small copper cabling yard in support of Southwestern Bell in 1974 has since emerged as a global leader and strategic partner for major companies and federal agencies in need of secure networking solutions.
From large-scale infrastructure to individual inside or outside plant projects, data systems installation and implementation to fire and security systems, voice systems, collaborative lab testing, network operations and defense and 3-D training and visualization, Trans-Tel extends wide-ranging capabilities spanning numerous industries. Working in close collaboration with leading manufacturers and distributors of information technology (IT) components, Trans-Tel has connected with clients around the world while maintaining family ownership and turnkey service.
Precise, Planned-out Growth
Today, Trans-Tel remains headquartered in Norman, Okla., not far from where Jack and Jane Morgan founded the company in 1974. Trans-Tel relocated to the Oklahoma City area in 1978 and has grown by leaps and bounds ever since.
“We currently have a home office in Norman and another in San Antonio,” shares Brian Morgan, regional account manager for Trans-Tel. “We also have crews working from Washington State to the Virgin Islands. We work on a national and international level… that’s what sets us apart.”
It’s no secret that Trans-Tel has been expanding into new markets, but wherever the company goes, Morgan says it’s developing prime relationships. “We’re increasing our market and moving into different areas with jobs in Japan and now in the Virgin Islands,” he reveals. “But this kind of growth doesn’t come without planning. With the onset of the recession we experienced some road blocks, because the federal government is one of our primary customers. We had to sit back and reevaluate to make sure we were headed in the right direction and to understand what was most productive for our dollar.”
“We had to back off on some of our undertakings,” adds Ken Hodge, senior operations manager of Trans-Tel. “Choosing the right avenues has allowed for growth in our security, aerial, inside plant and underground construction.”
Turning to New Markets
With new customers in tow, Trans-Tel continues to focus on supporting federal government programs after being awarded its first multimillion dollar Department of Defense (DoD) project in 2000 with the Air Force. This project was a turning point for Trans-Tel, setting the tone of the company’s future expansion.
“Federal government programs remain a focus for Trans-Tel,” shares Morgan. “We accommodate government customers with our General Services Administration [GSA] Schedule 70 prime contract. Trans-Tel also provides its services to the DoD through our Navy SeaPort e-prime contract and the USAF NETCENTS 2 NetOps Small Business contract team partnership through Smartronix Inc. Also Army services via the Communications Transmission Systems contract partnership with Harris Corp., in addition to a continuing relationship with AT&T in the federal market.”
Trans-Tel work develops telecommunications infrastructure for the DoD around the world. “Wherever there is a U.S. military base we perform the installation and construction for their telecommunications program,” reveals Morgan. “We have spent a lot of time in recent years expanding our service offering in this market, from construction of weapons towers to duct banks.”
Several months ago, Trans-Tel wrapped up a $5 million, 5-monthlong homeland security job for the Port of Houston, but recent contracts have landed the company as far as Alaska and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
“In the U.S. Virgin Islands we’re installing 330,000 miles of fiber-optic cable throughout four islands,” notes Morgan. “We have a large crew of 40 people working on this $13 million job and it’s been a great opportunity for the island, because we have employed 60 percent locals. We’re aiming for completion by the end of December.”
Nearly 5,000 miles away in northern Alaska, at the new Top of the World Hotel, Trans-Tel is installing communications infrastructure and Internet service. “We have expanded our global reach significantly in recent years,” adds Morgan. “We currently have about 30 projects working simultaneously right now and that’s up from last year. Our security group has hit the ground running, generating a great deal of work.”
With a lot of change in the air at Trans-Tel a few things haven’t changed, with one being ownership. “Jack Morgan, Trans-Tel’s original founder, had come back in and has taken an active role,” shares Morgan. “He has always been a great, hands-on leader and his wealth of knowledge is unreal.”
Despite global growth, Trans-Tel works on maintaining a family feel. “I feel like I’m part of this family,” admits Morgan. “Once a month we have a celebration for all of the monthly birthdays and the day before Thanksgiving we all gather for a work family dinner.”
The biggest sense of pride in Trans-Tel is the honesty and integrity of its people. “There are no shortcuts; the customer is going to get what we sold ourselves on,” Morgan elaborates. Trans-Tel Inc. continues to take on global ground, developing returning customers and relationships with prime companies and federal agencies alike.
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