Quality plumbing solutions
A-Plus Plumbing & Building Services is a privately owned-and-operated business that provides high quality hydraulic plumbing and civil solutions to a range of clients. From the start, they have been dedicated to excellence, and their vision is to provide clients with the best breed solutions at the greatest value. According to co-owner Nicola Paton, they have achieved “the perfect size” for that mission.
“We’re small enough to care but large enough to make a difference,” she says. “We have the ability to manage any size commercial plumbing contract, and at the end of the day our workmanship speaks for itself.”
A-Plus Plumbing was established in 2000 by Tom Paton, a highly qualified and dedicated tradesman. Over the last 13 years, he has led the business to considerable growth and evolution. He has taken A-Plus Plumbing from its original status as a sole trader, to a company with almost 70 staff. He has made it a company capable of taking on any commercial project, no matter how large or small.
The best outcomes
Today, A-Plus Plumbing primarily works throughout the ACT – though there are plans to venture interstate. They have a broad range of specialisations, so their work is varied, and encompasses both new construction and refurbishment work. They can be involved right from the commencement of construction right through to completion.
“We’re the first ones in, and we’re the last ones to leave,” Nicola says. “We’re there throughout the duration of a project. We have our own machinery, we have our own operators, and we have a very versatile staff.”
The majority of A-Plus’ projects are “not your normal, everyday, stock commercial apartments,” Nicola explains. They like to tackle more complex plumbing on projects such as schools, hospitals and science labs — jobs that require a range of services, which A-Plus has the staff and capabilities in place to provide.
According to Nicola, A-Plus is set apart in their niche by two main factors – their competitive pricing and their proactive approach to customer service.
“We work with builders, consultants and clients to give them alternatives, better cost outcomes and quicker building times,” she explains. “We don’t just price a job and not think about it. We pride ourselves on providing the best outcomes for our clients.”
Over the years, A-Plus Plumbing has become known for their ability to do just that – to produce high quality results. Nicola says that Canberra is a relatively small place, and word spreads fast. She says that if a company can’t live up to expectations, clients will hear about it. This means that A-Plus’ 13 years of growth says a lot about their quality.
Nicola credits that quality to the calibre of their staff, who she describes as “the backbone of the A-Plus delivery model.”
“We’ve got a great working relationship with our employees,” she says. “They don’t leave us, and when they do it’s for personal reasons, not professional ones. That tells me we have a very good working culture.”
A-Plus puts their own apprentices through – they are the largest commercial plumber in Canberra that does that, instead of hiring them from the outside. The majority of those apprentices go on to become tradesman for the company. Some have been with the business for more than seven years.
“As the owners, Tom and I always keep our doors open to our employees,” Nicola adds, explaining her team’s loyalty. “If they have any issues or need any help, we’re always approachable.”
A-Plus also forms close relationships with the companies on their supply chain. Nicola reiterates that Canberra is a relatively small place where everyone knows everyone, so they have been able to identify the suppliers that share their quality and passion – and those are the people they choose to work with.
A-Plus Plumbing recognises that in order to create quality outcomes for clients, they need to provide a safe work environment for their team. The company takes a lot of pride in achieving that safe environment, and their efforts have not gone unnoticed. At the 2013 MBA Excellence in Building Awards, for instance, A-Plus was recognised with an accolade in the Subcontractor – Work Health & Safety category.
“We value that recognition a lot,” Nicola says. “It’s especially valuable because of how intensely Canberra has been scrutinised by the media in relation to safety incidents. To be recognised for doing the right thing means a lot. It shows that we’re doing everything we possibly can.”
“Safety is our number one priority,” she adds. “The most important thing to us is ensuring our employees go home safe and in one piece.”
A-Plus employs a Safety Officer, whose sole job is to ensure the company is going above and beyond when it comes to their employees’ wellbeing. Nicola credits the award recognition to his considerable efforts.
“It helps the business at the end of the day,” Nicola says. “The construction industry is driven by safety, so we have to conform to certain standards anyway. But we wanted to go above and beyond, take the extra steps, and show initiative.”
“We hope that cements us as a really great place to work in the ACT,” she adds. “And if we do branch out interstate, we hope that this award will help us then as well.”
Moving forward, A-Plus Plumbing is looking at expanding interstate. Nicola hopes their award cognition will make them an attractive solutions provider throughout the rest of Australia as well.
Nicola also hopes to see A-Plus continue their streak of tackling larger and more significant projects. She explains the company has the right systems and people in place to “to take on anything.”
For more information, please visit their website at: A-Plus Plumbing & Building Services
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