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Delaware’s Business Owner: When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Creative

During times of economic instability, there are a few industries that seemingly remain immune to the ups and downs affecting everyone else. While construction has been greatly affected by the events of the past few years, the HVAC industry has remained pretty consistent.

This is probably due to the fact that HVAC technology is a necessity all of the time, even when people are forced to cut back on other spending. Noland Mechanical is an example of a construction company, specializing in HVAC, that has managed to stay profitable even in the most uncertain of times.

Noland’s senior estimator and project manager, Keith D. Clarke, has played a big role in the success of the company. “I have kept up-to-date on air quality technology, which has become very important in today’s COVID-19 world. Noland is committed to keeping up with cutting-edge technology.”

HVAC is inherently valuable lately, too, which doesn’t hurt. As the COVID-19 pandemic worsened across the globe, and started to seriously affect the United States, the CDC recommended the use of HEPA technology as part of a multi-layered approach to handling virus aerosols responsible for infecting people with COVID.

Even apart from the pandemic, the need for HVAC systems is only increasing. Ecological disasters like forest fires and air pollution greatly increase the need for quality air-filtration systems in more places that they weren’t necessarily needed before, like private homes. Excellent ventilation and refrigeration has always been a necessity in healthcare, and that need only grew during the pandemic. Demand for quality heating and air conditioning is also growing as a result of recent unprecedented high- and low-temperatures across the United States.

Keith D. Clarke notes that especially during times of economic hardship, people still prioritize getting or upgrading their HVAC systems because a more efficient system means decreased energy bills, ultimately saving customers money even if the cost of getting a new system is more than they’d prefer to pay at the moment.

Of course, no company is completely immune to the effects of a recession, or an economy that’s been negatively impacted by something like a pandemic. Supply chain issues are unavoidable lately for every industry, and HVAC companies are no exception. Keith D. Clarke describes how Noland Mechanical had to purchase PVC pipes in bulk, to stockpile them and ensure they wouldn’t run out in the event of future supply issues.

Construction companies in general have had to diversify their scope of work. Noland Mechanical has accomplished that by focusing on projects like government-subsidized housing that got accelerated, rather than shut down, during the pandemic. Construction of private residential homes slowed down drastically, but many commercial construction projects proceeded more or less on schedule. Clarke recounts Noland Mechanical’s work on hotels, resorts, and other commercial projects during the pandemic.

Noland Mechanical also offers Design-Build services, which are a great benefit to company and client alike. Design-Build means that the architect and contractors work together as a team, sharing responsibility amongst themselves. This system increases open communication between everyone involved in a project, and greatly decreases the amount of conflict and finger-pointing that sometimes occurs between owners, architects, engineers, and contractors during a construction project.

It seems that the key component to the continued success of Noland Mechanical is a combination of flexibility and diversity. Other construction and HVAC companies should take note: when the going gets tough, the tough get creative. Focusing on industries that aren’t struggling, stockpiling materials, and finding new ways to increase efficiency are all methods that Keith D. Clarke, and Noland Mechanical, have employed in the past few years, and it’s clearly working out well for them.

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