Western States Fire Protection Co.
Based on its core values, integrity, quality, commitment, professionalism and safety, Western StatesFire Protection Co., (WSFP) has developed into one of the largest fire protection and alarm and detection specialists west of the Mississippi River. Headquartered in Centennial, Colorado, WSFP protects lives and property while providing exceptional value to its customers.
Founded in 1985, WSFP originated with two offices in Denver and St. Paul, Minnesota. By 1987 the company had expanded to 125 employees and added offices in Los Angeles. In 1989 WSFP became a subsidiary of APi Group Inc., a holding company to more than 40 life safety, energy and specialty construction companies located throughout North America and the United Kingdom. Since its inception WSFP has acquired more than 30 companies, expanding its life safety services reach.
As part of its values and dedication to building the company, WSFP looks to develop its employees from the bottom up. “We’re very focused on not just putting managers in place, but developing great leaders,” says Troy Robinson, chief information director for WSFP. “Our values, mission, vision and leadership are what set us apart from our competition.”
Building upon talent
WSFP has established a safe work environment that creates employee retention. Currently at over 1,500 employees, the company insists on safe work practices and strives to send its employees home every day in better shape than when they arrived. With four dedicated safety professionals within the company, WSFP works with its staff to prevent accidents through training, audits and wellness incentives.
In maintaining a talented workforce, WSFP combines recruiting techniques with promoting and training from within. “We always provide opportunity for advancement to our people,” says Robinson. “We also recruit from multiple engineering schools. Many people start out as interns and then develop into full-time employees. We also are very interested in hiring veterans to help them establish a career in life safety.”
In addition to providing a potentially great career, WSFP has been able to build a strong team by offering great benefits to its employees. The company offers a matching 401(k) program along with an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). “We like to help our employees by finding out where they want to be and putting a plan in place to help them get there,” says Robinson. “We look to hire people that are looking to develop professionally and personally and challenge themselves.”
Starting out as a company that focused on the mechanical aspect of fire protection, WSFP is developing into a full-service safety firm. The company has now grown its alarm and detection and special hazard capabilities. “We’re also heavily involved with inspection and service,” says Robinson. “Approximately half of our work is new construction and the other half is service and maintenance.”
By staying on the cutting edge of technology, WSFP is able to utilize tools in the field that allow the company to communicate vital information toits office and other contractors in the most efficient ways possible. “We have people in the field with a pipe wrench in one hand and an iPad in the other,” says Jeff Daane, president and CEO of WSFP. “They have adapted to it so well because it makes their jobs that much easier.”
Carrying the torch
Daane began his career with WSFP in the Dallas office in 1987 as a designer and project manager. After spending a few years learning the business, Daane was transferred to Denver, where he continued to excel in project management by designing and managing some of the largest projects in the Rocky Mountain region.
After successfully holding numerous management positions within the company, Daane was promoted to president and CEO of WSFP in January 2014. He continues to travel throughout the country to support WSFP offices and their leaders and staff with his extensive knowledge, experience and leadership.
“There have been a lot people in this company and a lot of leaders before me who are responsible for the success of this company over time,” says Daane. “I’m just happy to have been a small part of it.”
Throughout his career, Daane has found his work to be rewarding. The fact that his company protects lives and property gives him a sense of pride that he feels he can only achieve with WSFP. “At the end of the day, our jobs have a very important purpose,” he says. “It’s very rewarding. We receive reports every month of our systems working properly and putting a fire out with just one or two sprinklers.”
WSFP has succeeded by sticking to its core values –integrity, quality, commitment, professionalism and safety. After more than 30 years in business, Western States Fire Protection Co. continues to implement its strategies and philosophy into its vision of being a full-service fire protection organization.
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