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Plugged In Keeping Up with Technology & the Industry’s Next Gen

@Technology & Construction #getonboard p.14

“Friends” versus Friends. Gen Y Tips for Technology and the Workplace p.18

Chili Tasting...Bull Riding... T-Shirt Launching... Were You There? p.10

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2012 UNITED CONTRACTORS BOARD OFFICERS President ......................................................Rob Layne Vice President/President-Elect ..............Michael Ghilotti Secretary/Treasurer ..............................Michael Ghilotti Secretary/Treasurer-Elect.......................Kevin Albanese

UNITED CONTRACTORS BOARD OF DIRECTORS Kevin Albanese, Joseph J. Albanese, Inc.; Gary Andrews, Associated Constructors, Inc. Jami Brady, BakerCorp; Jerry Condon, Condon-Johnson & Associates, Inc.; Bruce Daseking, McGuire and Hester; Jack Estill, Appian Engineering, Inc.; Brian Gates, Top Grade Construction, Inc.; Rich Gates, DeSilva Gates Construction; Michael Ghilotti, Ghilotti Bros., Inc.; Brett Kincaid, O’Grady Paving, Inc.; Bret Lawrence, Woodruff-Sawyer & Co.; Rob Layne, O.C. Jones & Sons, Inc.; Robert Purdy, RGW Construction, Inc.; Bob Rahebi, Redgwick Construction Company

UNITED CONTRACTORS COMMITTEE CHAIRS Associates: Jami Brady (Associate Director), BakerCorp; Bret Lawrence (Associate Director-Elect), Woodruff-Sawyer & Co. | Caltrans: Michael Ghilotti (Chairman), Ghilotti Bros., Inc. | Government Relations: Chris Young (Chairman), D.W. Young Construction Co., Inc. | Safety & Insurance: Rick Seifert (Chairman), Preston Pipelines, Inc. and Level 10 Construction | Scholarship: Janice Lajoie (Chair), GE Capital

6 UP Front

Next Gen, Technology & Competition By Mark Breslin, United Contractors CEO


Spotlight on Negotiations By UCON Labor & Member Services Department


Annual UCON BBQ Heats Up

Mark Breslin, Chief Executive Officer; Leslie Lord, Deputy Director; Kelly Montes, Executive Assistant; Randy Ruby, Director of Labor Relations; Ruby Varnadore, Labor & Member Services Representative; Galina Velikovich, Labor Relations Advocate; Steve Geney, Labor Negotiations Consultant; Shelbie Tieman, Director of Finance & Administration; Terese Pollock, Finance Assistant; Jami Moore, Member Services Coordinator; Stacy Anderson, Director Communications, Events & Education; Denise Ramirez, Online Services Manager; Joan O’Brien, Education Manager; Jenn Rogers, Event Manager; Marlo Fregulia, Event Assistant; Michelle Vejby, Publications Manager; Emily Cohen, Director of Government Relations; Mallori Spilker, Government Relations Assistant; Kevin Pedrotti, Legislative Advocate; Tony Dorsa, CARB Consultant


Plugged In Kee Keeping eping Up p with Tec Technology chnology & tthe e Industry’s Ind dus ustry’ss Next Next Gen Gen

@Technology & Construction #getonboard p.14

“Friends” versus Friends. Gen Y Tips for Technology and the Workplace p.18

Chili Tasting...Bull Riding... T-Shirt Launching... Were You There? p.10

United Contractors Magazine (ISSN: 2166-3777) is published monthly, except December, by United Contractors, 17 Crow Canyon Court, Suite 100, San Ramon, CA 94583. Editorial comments, letters, and article submissions are welcomed and encouraged. Correspondence should be directed to the United Contractors office at the above address, by phone at (925) 855-7900, by e-mail at or by fax at (925) 855-7909. Reproduction of editorial material in this issue is permitted if accompanied by proper source credit. Periodicals postage paid at San Ramon, CA and other offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to: United Contractors Magazine, 17 Crow Canyon Court, Suite 100, San Ramon, CA 94583. © 2012 Published in the U.S.A.





Construction &Technology T • • • • •

The Next Gen’s Constant Communications Have You Posted and Tweeted Today? Strategies & Perspectives From Gen Y Mobile Apps for the Industry 50 Shades of Technology





By Mark Breslin, United Contractors CEO

Next Gen, Technology & Competition


have a Computer, a Laptop, a ThinkPad, an iPad, an iPod, a Kindle, a Bluetooth, a Droid, five adapters, a LinkedIn Profile (with 1,200 contacts), a dozen killer apps and three super, tech-savvy kids ages 18-23. And I still feel like the world of technology is leaving me behind. Thank God I work in construction, the land that technology forgot. Until now.

Each generation has formative trends that shape their thinking and behavior in profound ways. For young people today, technology is that driving influencer. There will never be another child born in this country that does not know what a cell phone is by age four. In contrast, for those over 45 years old, the formative element of technology was not an integral part of our lives until well into our careers. Since most of the serious decision-makers in our industry are in that older age group, a growing gap exists between the generations and technological leadership. This gap also translates to a loss in opportunity, productivity and innovation. Overall, the construction industry has been slow to embrace cutting edge technological advances. But among the membership and industry players, the pace of technological change is increasing exponentially. The 6 W W W. U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

vision, resources and strategy to use this change to a competitive advantage is beginning to play out—in bid rooms, on jobsites, and on the bottom line. The question is, “How ready are you for this revolution, and who in your organization is going to lead it?” Fully 80% of our contractor members are using the Members Only Resource Center on our website—a number that far exceeded our expectations—and a signal that we had better step on it if we want to stay cutting edge and relevant. It seems that a lot of our members are on the technology fast track. As we look at UCON’s capacity for the future, we also look to the best practices of our members to see where we should be headed. Here are a few questions to answer that a number of UCON companies are able to answer “YES” to. • • • •

• •

Is your office paperless? Do you have the technological talent that you need to remain competitive in the next five years? Is your staff trained to a superior level with the use of any technology that you have now? Are you promoting use of advanced technology as part of your recruiting plan for new talent? (54% of contractors are doing just that, per McGraw Hill SmartMarket Report, 2012) Do you use GPS to track your equipment and vehicles in real time? Would you judge your website (now the primary avenue for branding your company and image) as excellent?

Overall, the construction industry has been slow to embrace cutting edge technological advances. But among the membership and industry players, the pace of technological change is increasing exponentially.

Are you using LinkedIn (now judged as the #1 most effective method) for recruiting currently employed prospects? Are your foremen iPad enabled and can they 1) order equipment and materials on it; 2) submit vital data and financial information; 3) see changes in plans, specs or schedule in real time? Are you using your Next Gen talent pool to push technological change in your organization?

Many contractors prefer the roar of diesel to the hum of a CPU. Many think that the get ’er done mindset is the way to make the most money. But this thinking defies the massive shift in focus and strategy that technology is bringing to construction and engineering today. It is really time to think hard about the old saying “Lead, Follow or Get Out of the Way.” Maybe senior leaders, not so interested in technology, need to take that advice to heart. The best ideas that UCON is developing related to technology are coming from our young employees and leaders. As CEO I have to be receptive to change and open to investing resources in the area of technological innovation. By listening and trusting our young staff team, we are finding new ways to deliver value and responsiveness to our member companies. Smart companies are going to their 20- and 30-somethings to be their tech leaders and champions, and then giving them the confidence, support and money to take action. This is something you too might think about as you consider your Next Gen, technology and competition. ◆

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LABOR “Being part of the Laborers’ Craft Committee has been one of the more rewarding experiences I’ve had as part of United Contractors. UCON was well represented, not only by knowledgeable staff, but I was especially pleased with the tremendous effort and commitment that fellow UCON members put forth, showing up for every meeting, prepared, engaged and effective. We made tremendous strides in establishing a solid foundation for a healthy and prosperous relationship with the Laborers that will reap benefits in the future as we strive to produce important results through UCON’s role as stewards of the industry.” — Michael Ghilotti, Ghilotti Bros., Inc. Co-Chair, Laborers Negotiations Committee

By United Contractors Labor & Member Services Department

Spotlight on Negotiations: New UCON-Laborers Master Agreement Negotiations concluded in late June for a new three-year agreement between United Contractors and the Northern California Laborers, effective July 1, 2012. In contrast to the last round of negotiations, positive gains in contract changes were made. Most importantly, even during times of disagreement and difficult discussion, the Laborers continued to talk with the contractors at the bargaining table and stayed committed to the process of coming to an agreement. One very important component to the contracting community is that the Union is focused on solving the unfunded Pension liability. Information on the new agreement, including the 2012 rates, is available to our members in the Resource Center of our website.

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8 W W W. U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

Member FDIC

We would like to take this opportunity to h k all ll off the h negotiating team members b thank for their dedication, and for all their contributions of time and expertise. United Contractors Laborers Negotiations Team: Michael Ghilotti; Ghilotti Bros., Inc. (Co-Chair) Robert Spinardi; St. Francis Electric (Co-Chair) Jim Alvey; Appian Engineering, Inc. Robert Chrisp; Chrisp Company Jack Estill; Appian Engineering, Inc. Richard Harris; R.M. Harris Company David Heslop; Preston Pipelines, Inc. Michael Hulce; Granite Construction Company David Kennedy; RGW Construction, Inc. Donna Rehrmann; Stomper Company Inc. Kim Scruggs; Columbia Electric, Inc. Greg Silva; Knife River Construction - Stockton United Contractors Staff: Mark Breslin, Randy Ruby, Steve Geney, Ruby Varnadore

Several members of the Negotiations Team (from left): David Kennedy, Jim Alvey, Jack Estill, Donna Rehrmann, Richard Harris, and Michael Hulce.

Contractor members who are interested in participating in our Craft Committees should contact UCON staff liaison Randy Ruby, or (925) 362-7305. ◆ “I cannot begin to explain how fulfilling working on the labor negotiation team has been. Yes, it required a huge amount of time and a lot of frustration, but I took away much more. I learned a tremendous amount about union negotiations and our Master Labor Agreements, and I got to meet and interact with a great group of people. No matter the size of our respective companies, our needs are pretty much the same. And I have a huge amount of admiration for our Co-Chairs, Bob and Mike—pretty cool guys under pressure and always on top of the matters at hand. And finally, the time, patience, dedication and commitment of United Contractors staff is unparalleled.” — Donna Rehrmann, Stomper Company Inc., Member of UCON’s Laborers Negotiations Committee SEPTEMBER 2012



10 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

United Contractors Annual BBQ Networking with your peers, creating new business relationships, chili cook-off competition tasting, mechanical bull riding —were you a part of it? UCON’s largest industry event with a record breaking year of attendance! Over 900 contractor and industry associated members registered.




SPONSORS: Platinum Sponsors: All American Rentals Cement Masons Local 400 CEMEX Condon-Johnson & Associates, Inc. FMG, Inc. Joseph J. Albanese, Inc. McGuire and Hester National Trench Safety, LLC R & B Company Vulcan Materials Co., Western Division

Gold Sponsors Appian Engineering, Inc. Foundation for Fair Contracting (FFC) GALLINA LLP Ghilotti Bros., Inc. Laborers International Union of North America Laborers Local No. 304 LECET Southwest Leonidou & Rosin Professional Corporation McInerney & Dillon PC Operating Engineers Local No. 3 Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (America) Inc. Stacy and Witbeck, Inc. Stomper Company, Inc. Sweeney, Mason, Wilson & Bosomworth Wells Fargo of California Insurance Services, Inc. Zurich North America Surety Silver Sponsors Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance Brokers of California, Inc./Gallagher Construction Services Chrisp Company IronPlanet Midstate Barrier, Inc. Moss Adams LLP Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 355 (Underground Utility/Landscape) R.E. Serrano, Inc. Sanco Pipelines, Inc. State Compensation Insurance Fund TBC Safety Woodruff-Sawyer & Co.

Event Co-Chairs: Tana Karr, Enterprise Fleet Management (Chairperson) John Parodi, IronPlanet (Co-Chair) Jeff Prevost, Lockton Insurance Brokers, LLC (Co-Chair) Volunteers: Ryan Wade, Advanced Drainage Systems, Inc. Steve Passerine, Andreini & Company Andy Alvey, Appian Engineering, Inc. Jami Brady, BakerCorp Jeff King, CEMEX Dave Perry, Central Concrete Supply Co., Inc. Kimberly Scruggs, Columbia Electric, Inc. Mike Welton, D.P. Nicoli, Inc. Bill Wallace, Daily Construction Service/ Reed Construction Data Tana Karr, Enterprise Fleet Management Bromley Palamountain, Enterprise Fleet Management Lore Pool, Ferguson Waterworks Mike McGrath, Graniterock Paul Cianciarulo, Graniterock dba Pavex Construction John Parodi, IronPlanet Regina Market, IronPlanet Andy Betts, IronPlanet Rachel Ruhe, Johnston, Gremaux & Rossi, LLP Russell Rigler, Johnston, Gremaux & Rossi, LLP Jeff Prevost, Lockton Insurance Brokers, LLC LaNelle Bergen, McGuire and Hester Glen Hungerbuhler, Mission Clay Products Rene Cameron, Moss Adams LLP Christi Plum, P C & N Construction, Inc. Fabian Garcia, Rain for Rent Richard Mirowski, Trench Plate Rental Co. Mike Landucci, Wells Fargo of California Insurance Services, Inc. Donna Revis, Wells Fargo of California Insurance Services, Inc. Bret Lawrence, Woodruff-Sawyer & Co.

12 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

8-Seconds (or longer) Bull Riders: Brian Hammel, Peter Kucera, Cameron Burns, Jonathan Robinson, Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance Brokers of California, Inc./Gallagher Construction Services; Mike Hudson, Candidate for State Assembly District 11; CJ Zlenick, Eli Shikaloft, Con-Quest Contractors, Inc.; Mike Almeida, Jessica Cleary, Condon-Johnson & Associates, Inc.; Julie Thome, Construction Testing Services; Cody Bik, Alysia Gonzalez, Allison Posey, Ben Espinoza, District Council of Plasterers & Cement Masons of Northern California; Bromley Palamountain, Enterprise Fleet Management; Steve Ferolito, Oldcastle Precast; Cory Divers, UCON Cowgirl: Teresa Rebman, Pacific States R&L Brosamer, Inc. Environmental Contractors, Inc.; Scott Hustad, Dean McMillan, Trevor Hustad, Dennis Luchay, Penhall Company; Teresa Rebman, Elena Talley, Neal Wilden, Melany Williams, R & L Brosamer, Inc.; Andrew Blundell, Mitch Zutter, RGW Construction, Inc.; Jim Scott, South Bay Foundry Inc./Phoenix Iron Works; Roger Silva, Ed Ibanez, Western Traffic Supply, Inc.

UCON’s Chili Cook-Off Competition Heats Up: Judges Choice – Best Chili:

Team “Numero uno al Peperocino (#1 Chili)” of Ghilotti Bros., Inc. People’s Choice – Best Chili: Team “Bauman’s CT660 Smokin’ Hot Chili” of Bauman Landscape and Construction, Inc. and Peterson Tractor Co. People’s Choice – Best Booth: Team “R & B’s Duck Hunter Chili” of R & B Company

Thank you to all of our Chili Cook-Off competitors: American Industrial Care, Inc., Hell House Heart Attack Chili; Bauman Landscape and Construction, Inc. and Peterson Tractor Co., Bauman’s CT660 Smokin’ Hot Chili; Condon-Johnson & Associates, Inc., CJA Chili Champs; District Council of Plasters and Cement Masons of No. Cal., TNT Vicious & Delicious; Ghilotti Bros., Inc., Numero uno al Peperocino (#1 Chili); Mechanics Bank, Blazin Bankers; R & B Company, R & B’s Duck Hunter Chili; Stacy and Witbeck, Inc., Rail Hot Chili Peppers; Stomper Company Inc., Stomper Chili Busters; Western Traffic Supply, Inc., Wild Western Chili SEPTEMBER 2012


special feature


By Emily Cohen, Director of Government Relations

Construction &Technology Status Update: Next Gen’s Constant Communications #OneDayYou’llThankUs@Constructionindustry If you walk into a UCON Board of Directors meeting, you’ll find that there are no binders; instead, each Board Member is using an iPad. Walk by the employees in your office and take note: on their desk you’re likely to find more than just a computer and an office phone. You’ll find their Blackberrys, Androids, iPads and iPhones. And chances are, these are their personal devices. Check out their computer screens and you might find Skype, AOL Instant Messenger, Google Docs, and G-Chat. Ask them what they’re doing with these at work, and they’ll likely tell you that they’re just as important, and arguably just as necessary, for their work as the technology and devices you have permitted them to use.

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How did this happen? Why did it happen? And what does it all mean for businesses? Should industry employers be concerned? Perhaps not. For all the good, the bad and the ugly that is discussed about Gen Y, this “under 30” group has brought their own unique and personal methods of interacting with one another into the office and workplace, and it’s changing the way companies operate and innovate. And it’s spreading to the rest of the workforce.

Mobile Devices. iPads, iPhones, Androids. These devices allow us to work anytime, anywhere—and that’s exactly how the Gen Y workforce likes it. Studies will tell you that your Gen Y workforce doesn’t plan to work 10-12 hour days. Long, grueling office hours are out. But constant communication is in. When Gen Y isn’t sleeping, they are looking for ways to engage with each other. You can reach them 5 different ways at any given time: text messaging, cell phone, Skype, G-chat, email or Facebook. (A likely fact: If they’re not responding…they’re just ignoring you). Gen Y has helped to create the blurred boundaries between work and home and, according to Forrester Research, approximately 70% of organizations now encourage teleworking, when possible. Which leads to their next big contribution…

Online Meetings and Visual Collaboration. Meeting face-to-face in a board room is beginning to change as technology pushes us towards more efficient and creative ways to meet, present, collaborate and brainstorm with one another. The United Contractors Government Relations Committee now meets “faceto-face” using Fuzebox (, an online video conference program. Using this program, we are able to hold reliable, pixel perfect, hi-definition meetings and videoconferencing that can be used from anywhere in the world. GR Committee members can share documents and make edits to work in real time, watch and control power points, hear from speakers in Washington D.C. and Sacramento, all without ever having to leave their own office or home. Using technology like this for online meetings, United Contractors can bring webinars, educational materials and the highest quality member services to each one of our members, regardless of location.

Instant Messaging/Skype. AOL Instant G-chat aren’t just “UCON did Messaging, an outstanding job. and TheySkype provided more than forexcellent socializing and catching up with long-distance service. You can see they really know their stuff family members. Gen Y has inspired companies to and we rely on that.” integrate these things intoPreston their everyday ce — Michelle Hernandez, Pipelines,intra-offi Inc. communications. Staff members can share ideas and

information with one another using these instant messaging systems. Companies are creating department and group chat’s so teams can collaborate throughout the day while working.

Social Networks. Facebook was created by a Gen Y’er and has transformed the way we share our lives with people. Twitter has transformed the way we communicate with one another and the way we share ideas, stories and opinions. But these social networks aren’t just for your personal life anymore. Networks like Facebook and Twitter can have an enormous impact on businesses too—even in construction! United Contractors is using Facebook to provide updates on critical information including relevant political and policy items related to the industry, regulatory updates, upcoming events and industry educational materials. We update Twitter regularly with news stories, industry perspectives and more. We also follow the updates of our state and federal policy makers, and we even used Twitter to raise the profile on the issue of Federal Highway Reauthorization and MAP-21. Like it or not, for many, the integration of personal mobile devices and social networks into the workplace is here to stay. Gen Y will only continue to have a stronger impact in the workplace as time goes on—and so will the technology they love. Rather than banning the use of personal devices and social networks at work, look for ways that your company can incorporate them to create a more productive, innovative and efficient workplace (not the opposite). Rather than resenting Gen Y for their bombardment of networking and communication devices and applications, consider embracing what we, (I mean they), can offer your company. ◆

at United Contractors

follow us on at unitedcontrs

at United Contractors SEPTEMBER 2012


special feature


By Denise Ramirez, Online Services Manager

Construction &Technology ARTBA is an aggressive and effective advocate on behalf of the U.S. transportation design and construction industry before Congress, White House, Executive Branch and Federal agencies. They are an affiliated partner with United Contractors, advocating for Transportation funding for America’s road and highway systems. Emily Cohen, Director of Government Relations, sits on the ARTBA Council of State Executives Board, and the ARTBA Young Executive Leadership Development group.

Have You Posted and Tweeted Today? Easy Steps to Keep Your Company in Front of the Competition Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest… the list goes on. We live in an era where keeping track of all your passwords is now added to your list of most prized possessions. And guess what? Yes, there is an app for that! Feeling overwhelmed yet? Having trouble keeping up “socially”? It’s no wonder a significant number of the population is hesitant to the idea of embracing social networking sites. I was a late bloomer to Facebook, joining in 2008—two years after it launched to the general public. I only joined after a bet with my husband on who would get the most friend requests. After getting more friends in one week than I did in two months, he won. Six years and 850 million users later, it is definitely more than just a popularity contest and a “blast from the past” experience. Social networking has rapidly grown into a robust and savvy marketing tool for all kinds of companies. So let’s stop here and think about this – how is your online presence affecting (or not affecting) your business?

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16 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

The power of networking is not a new idea…as an association, United Contractors knows the value of personal connections, as seen at our most recent event, our Annual BBQ, where a record number of participants attended to see current and potentially new contacts. The only difference with social networking is that instead of networking in person, you are connecting online, at any given time, day or night. As a business tool, why wouldn’t someone use it as a means to maintain and attract new clients? Personal, face-to-face connections, word of mouth, and the “handshake” are proven and effective ways to do business in our industry – social networking is just a more efficient and viral way of getting your message across.

Consider these interesting factoids: • Studies show that organizations seeing success with

tools like Facebook are spending just an average of 2.6 hours a week on the site. Minimal time investment can create a real identity online. There are 4.8 billion mobile users in the world compared to only 4.2 million people who own a toothbrush. That means there are significantly more people looking at their phones than there are brushing their teeth. ( Gross, but really puts things in perspective.

the benefits that social media has to offer your business. Creating just one of these networks and remaining active can make significant and positive effects on increasing your company’s profile. For quick easy resources to get started, check out the and download their “How to Use…” guides for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more. ◆

If you’re selling dental hygiene products, then maybe you’re out of luck, but for the rest of you…what’s the hold up?

Advantages of Social Media Let’s take a look at the 3 key leaders in social networking and what they can do for your business: • Facebook allows you to create a page for your business. Build your fan base, receive customer reviews, highlight your business, your staff, culture, and more. Use it as your website or in conjunction with your current one to reach a broader audience. 20% of all page views on the web are from Facebook. • Twitter allows you to “tweet” short messages to your followers and drive traffic to your website. Promote and introduce new products or post testimonials – tweet it and use #hashtags to get more views and potentially more followers. An average of 175 million tweets are posted per day on Twitter. • LinkedIn allows for a more professional environment to connect with colleagues and is a great way to find potential vendors, clients, and employees. Make new contacts through referrals in your network. Two new members join LinkedIn every second and it is in the top 50 of most visited websites in the world. Whether you’re technology challenged, a late bloomer, or a Facebook fanatic, it’s never too late to take advantage of

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special feature


By Mallori Spilker, Government Relations Assistant

Construction &Technology Smart. Confident. Needy. Strategies & Perspectives from Gen Y Smart. Attention craving. Confident. Educated. Connected. Techsavvy. Needy. Multi-taskers. Entitled. Achievement-oriented. There are many different adjectives to describe Millenials, or those affiliated with “Generation Y,” which by definition are young adults ages 18-29. While 1 in 5 Millenials are college graduates, this age group is faced with historically high levels of under-employment and unemployment, leaving approximately 37% without full-time jobs. As a Millennial, I was astonished to find that when I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree from University of California, I was not swarmed with job offers from top employers… (sense of entitlement, much?) I had my degree, a high-profile internship, and, in my mind, had done everything right… but my job search continued unsuccessfully. Not working was not an option. Frustrated, I decided to postpone my job search and work for my Dad’s construction company performing manual labor. In the winter.

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18 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

Never in a million years did I think that I would be putting on a hard-hat and safety vest each day to shovel concrete and help my Dad pre-drill holes while my “precious” college degree was sitting somewhere in a box. To say this experience was humbling is a massive understatement. My sense of entitlement quickly fled my cement-covered body, as I learned the value of hard work and never using the words “I can’t.” Almost a year later, my vigorous Craigslist perusing led me to an employment ad posted by the Engineering and Utility Contractors Association, now United Contractors. After multiple interviews, including a terrifying one-on-one with Mark Breslin, I finally had myself a job. Working alongside some the most intelligent and professional individuals I have ever met quickly made me realize that I had much to learn. While Millennials are a highly educated and achievement-oriented group, they can sometimes lack the professional training that would greatly benefit them in the workplace. We have the education, the drive, the motivation to be great employees; but we may need some “fine-tuning.”

Millennials, you are going to o make mistakes. Learn from them, and get over it. In the meantime, put your heads down and learn, bearing in mind these few tips for our generation.

1. Don’t Be a Baby at Work. W Always remember to QTIP T (we TIP f aren’t talking about the fuzzy ear n It Personally. ng cleaners here): Quit Taking o otions and develop Be in control of your emotions D not react; remember emotional intelligence. Do e ession to check your facial expression and body n nsive language. Don’t get defensive in the event y may not have your of a conflict. Remember, you “dream job” right away, but that is no excuse to jump ship in search of the perfect job. Don’t give up; find ways to do more of what you like at your job.

2. Don’t “Friend” Your Boss. Social media is starting to play a major role in the professional world. And almost everyone has personal social media sites, which may contain, let’s say, questionable content. As Forbes gently stated, “All of those drunken pictures on Facebook should be removed, or locked down with privacy settings. Everyone… needs a polished LinkedIn profile.” Create a separate Facebook for professional purposes and LinkedIn profile to brand yourself in the workplace.

3. Stop Multi-Tasking! Fred Pryor teaches that multi-tasking is a myth and encourages employees to work on one project at a time. Millennials often go 100 miles an hour checking Facebook, Twitter, Outlook, and their phone while simultaneously working on projects. It is important to stop and focus on one task at a time in order to give your full attention to each item.

4. Don’t Be a Crappy Communicator. Communication is currently the number skill “UCON did an outstanding job. They providedone more than excellent service. canU.S. seejob they really know their stuff being asked forYou in the market. Un-learn and wecommunication rely on that.” habits and re-learn new, more bad —effective Michellehabits. Hernandez, Preston Pipelines, Inc. Become a great communicator

y being b by in charge of your m message. It is important to match your body language with your words, and tailor your re response to an event effe ec effectively and positively to produ uce a win-win outcome. And produce don’t you ud dare use any “text” lingo like LOL or W WTF to communicate in the workplace- you uw will give Gen Y an even worse reputation!

5. Don’t Forget to F Fi Find a Mentor. More and more orga organizations an are acknowledging the importance of the th he concept of mentoring. Find some who has been th there, done that, and can give you some perspective perspective. Find a role model who can motivate and inspire you. A good mentorship can help bridge the gap between generations, as well as transfer vital knowledge and leadership skills from one generation to the next. ◆

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Toll Free: 1-888-532-7937 SEPTEMBER 2012


special feature


By Rachel Ruhe, CPA Johnston, Gremaux & Rossi, LLP UCON Associate Member, Treasurer, Construction Millennials of America

Construction &Technology There’s An App For That Mobile Apps for the Industry

It can often seem as if technology, with all its set-up time and glitches, slows you down instead of speeds you up. As members of Construction Millennials of America (also known as CMA—an industry group of Gen Y’s), we see both the need for continuous advances in technology as well as the importance of face-to-face conversations and good old-fashioned hard work. The construction industry is seeing countless numbers of new products on the market promising efficiency and cost savings. CMA is proud to have three members creating new technologies for the construction industry. These individuals have spent time in the construction industry as project managers and project engineers before deciding to utilize their knowledge and experience to create cost effective tools to help construction companies work better and faster. Millennials are not the only ones pushing for new technologies in construction. At the July Engineering News-Record (ENR) FutureTech Conference in San Francisco, one of the panels was a “Field Guide to Mobile Apps in Construction.” Tablets and smart phones are becoming increasingly popular on construction sites. CMA member Mahil Keval, CEO of Knockout Designs, LLC, believes that in the very near future the majority of construction job site employees will have a tablet (possibly one with the ability to be docked as a workstation) as their primary computer. This tablet, along with a cloud computing system (a type of online file storage system that does away with proprietary servers in order for files to be accessed from web-enabled devices), would allow companies to not only eliminate unnecessary hardware; e.g. desktop computers, servers, cameras, etc., but also decrease down time when trying to access files and share information.

SpeedPunch Mahil and his company have created SpeedPunch (, which is a mobile, cloud-based application that is designed to streamline the punch list process. Mahil saw a need for clearer, quicker, and more visible punch lists in the industry. It is designed as a collaborative application that grants access to the electronic punch list to everyone needing it. Already over one million square feet are using the application (across the country, and in Europe). These companies find that SpeedPunch eliminates confusion, wasted job site visits, and repeat fixes that ultimately save the company time, money, and resources. The application is currently available for the iPad.

Threshold Adam Freeman, COO of 383 Studio, identified another need while working in the field— efficient project photo documentation. His company has been working since December 2010 on a web application designed to speed up and improve the process of organizing and managing the vast collection of project photos. Their solution, called Threshold (www.thresholdcm. com), is designed to enhance productivity on the jobsite by utilizing user’s plans to allow contextual photo management via the web or the new mobile app. In addition, they have taken a different approach to user Continued on page 22

20 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

Whether your company is large, small or something in between, we cover it. Small construction companies are different from mid-size companies. And they’re both different from the big guys. That’s why, at Travelers, we have dedicated account executives, risk control and claim specialists with an in-depth knowledge of construction companies of every size. So, whether we’re talking about one employee or one thousand, we’ll build insurance and surety programs to meet your needs. Contact your independent Travelers agent to learn more. No matter what size the construction company, we think you’ll see a big difference. ©2012 The Travelers Indemnity Company. All rights reserved. Travelers and the Travelers Umbrella logo are registered trademarks of The Travelers Indemnity Company in the U.S. and other countries. The Travelers Indemnity Company and its property casualty affiliates. One Tower Square, Hartford, CT 06183

special feature


Construction &Technology Mobile Apps for the Industry (cont.) access and encourage all members of the project team to contribute pictures for no additional cost. The application has been in beta testing, and was just released last month.

BuildingConnected, Inc. Dustin DeVan, CEO of BuildingConnected, Inc., saw that more and more industry professionals were migrating to LinkedIn but not finding any real value. DeVan believes this is because LinkedIn is a horizontal platform and construction needs something unique that caters to industry specific needs. BuildingConnected is a vertical professional network that allows people to create professional profiles, build contacts, host RFPs, and share documents. The goal is to create a marketplace that makes finding people based on capabilities and qualifications easier and more efficient Join CMA at their upcoming event, Construction Industry Trends Affecting All Generations, with presenter, Ron Magnus of FMI Consulting, November 13, 2012, at the Walnut Creek Marriott. Visit their website for additional details.

by streamlining the RFP process. DeVan hopes this will help unify what he feels is a very fragmented industry. BuildingConnected launches August 19, 2012. BuildingConnected’s basic features are free in it’s initial launch phase and after a free initial launch phase will charge for content management services. These three millennials have one thing in common— developing applications using new technologies in order to provide companies with cost effective and efficient solutions. They are creating user interfaces that require minimal training hours. They want your business to be successful and know that technology, while it cannot and should not be the end all solution, can do much more than most companies realize.

Do you use new technology in your company? How do you decide if your company should be utilizing any new technology? Analyze your current processes to uncover any inefficiencies and gaps. Ask others in your network what kind of technology they are implementing and why. CMA member Jake Concannon of Gallagher Construction Services has begun an IT Peer Group with CFMA in Sacramento to help contractors analyze systems, share information and fill in the gaps. Ask your employees who are technology-savvy to spend some time looking into those inefficient areas of your business and research any application that shows promise. We bet you will find something that makes the time spent well worth it. ◆ 22 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

special feature


By Joan O’Brien, Education Manager

Construction &Technology 50AR ARTBA RTBA TShades BA is a an n ag aggressive ggr ge essof sive sive e and aTechnology nd d effective advocate effe ef fect ctiv ive e ad dvo voca ate on behalf beha alf off

With UCON U.S. the th e U. U S. ttransportation S. rans ra nsp ns pUniversity, port po ort rtat atio at io ion on design de desi esi sig gnYou Won’t Be Left Behind gn and construction industry before Congress, White House, Executive I try to keep up Federal with Twitter, texting, Facebook and Branch and agencies. They Instagram, but for my generation it feels are an affiliated partner with United like a complete waste of time and energy. I watch Contractors, advocating for my kids stare at their phones for hours—updating, liking, tagging, and Transportation funding for America’s messaging. this encourage narcissism, cyberroad andDoesn’t highway systems. Emily bullying and a whole new set of social media challenges? Cohen, Director of Government Why are my kids texting me from the next Relations, sits on the ARTBA Council room asking what’s for dinner? Whatand happened of State Executives Board, the to the art of conversation? Is there a technology school of detox I can ARTBA Young Executive Leadership send them to? Suddenly, I realize I’m turning into my Development group. mother! She couldn’t understand my generation, so why is it that I’m not conforming to theirs?

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24 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

I returned to work five years ago after a six year hiatus of raising kids. I was so excited to re-enter the work world. Company networking events, lunch break, social interaction...seems like a dream job. I noticed new inventions; white-out now came in a pen instead of a bottle—what genius invented that? However, after only a few weeks at my new job, I started to realize that I was really out of the loop. My co-worker was constantly showing me up with her internet savvy skills. Not only that, everyone had something to bring to the table during staff meetings. They all collaborated, took initiative and exemplified leadership skills. I knew I needed to quickly step up my game. Demanding full-time jobs, along with hectic family responsibilities, prevent many of us from continuing education and professional growth. Career development is crucial in order to stay relevant in the industry and competitive in the job market. Gaining knowledge, exposing oneself to new ideas, technology, processes and methodologies are a must in today’s economy. Taking advantage of these learning opportunities shows your employer your willingness to evolve and improve. Luke Middleton Owner

510.577.7707 Fax: 510.577.7709 411 Pendleton Way Suite C Oakland, CA 94621 Phone:

CA State Lic #897311,A

Do You Have What It Takes? Talent development can no longer be put on the back burner. “Employees need to get smarter, faster” (Forrester Research). New studies show that our traditional approach to training needs to be revamped completely. What does training and development look like for this new economy? Emerging trends show that economic demands on learning will continue; a multigenerational workforce is the norm; business alignment is critical to survival; and social media will become an essential part of learning. These changes, or rather new demands, in the business environment have made it necessary to employ solid leader development strategies moving forward—enter, United Contactors University, solution provider.

UCON University’s Project Management Career Advancement (PMCA) Program The highly effective PMCA program begins this month: Tuesdays, 3:30-7:30pm, September 18 through November 13, 2013. Don’t miss out. Contact Joan O’Brien at (925) 362-7303,, for more details.

UCON University constantly explores developments for the construction industry to provide our members with a wide variety of educational opportunities. As the industry evolves, so do we. In addition to our current lineup of industry experts, United Contractors welcomes FMI to this year’s curriculum. FMI is the largest provider of management consulting, investment banking and research to the engineering and construction industry. Whether you take one of our OSHA & Regulatory Compliance courses, Leadership Training, Construction Administrative Professional Seminars, or our nine-week Project Management Career Advancement Program, you are investing in yourself and advancing your career. I still don’t have a Facebook account and I may have to defer to my kids to solve my technology problems, but I will continue to develop, grow and expand my knowledge, not only to cohabit in the cubicles of my peers, but to be a more valuable employee, effective team player, and primarily because I don’t want to be left behind. Wherever you are in your job, generation or journey, it’s never too late to step up your own game. ◆




California’s union-affiliated construction industry in the public and private market. Each dollar raised at this event goes towards building, maintaining and protecting our industry!

Saturday, November 3rd, 5:00pm Location: Craneway Pavilion, Richmond Marina District Cost: $130 per person Theme: The Classics


UCON takes a trip back to the classics, ‘30s, ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60s, complete with vintage cars and motorcycles. By supporting the United Contractors annual Government Relations Dinner & Auction you are supporting the efforts to promote the policies and politics that work for

• Attend the Auction – And invite other UCON members and even those outside of the association to attend and support our industry. • Donate – Donate an item for the silent or live auction, or money in any amount to help us with the event! • Sponsor – Be a key sponsor of the event and get premiere marketing for your business. For more information contact Jenn Rogers, Event Manager at, (925) 362-7309, or visit ◆

First In Service Since 1979




First In Service – Since 1979 Los Angeles, CA N. LA/Ventura, CA Orange County, CA San Brndno/Rvrsd, CA

Escondido, CA 877/246-4085 800/821-4478 San Diego, CA 866/829-6906 877/246-4087 North S.F. Bay Area, CA 800/321-5550 800/772-8004 South S.F. Bay Area, CA 877/246-4086 877/246-4085 website: email:

26 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

Sacramento, CA Reno, NV Las Vegas, NV Houston, TX

800/548-0688 877/809-6492 877/809-6493 866/247-9449

































up UCON Education & Training Classes Receive Top Scores Rated by those who have participated, our classes receive top scores based on a scale of 1 to 5, rating content, instructor, materials and format. Contact Joan O’Brien, Education Manager at (925) 362-7303,, for more details on our education programs.

EDUCATION & TRAINING FIRST AID/CPR 8 HOUR Saturday, September 15, 8:00am-4:30pm Location: Executive Conference Room, San Ramon Cost: $85 member; $110 non-member Cal/OSHA requires every jobsite to have a person who is certified in both First Aid and CPR, and requires this certification to be renewed every two years.

RATED 4.70

FIRST AID/CPR 4 HOUR REFRESHER Saturday, October 20, 8:00am-12:00pm Location: Executive Conference Room, San Ramon Cost: $65 member; $90 non-member A 4-hour refresher class for those needing to renew their certification, or to sharpen their knowledge and skills.

RATED 4.85

HIGH PERFORMANCE, HIGH PROFIT FOREMAN Wednesday, October 24, 6:00pm-8:00pm Location: Holiday Inn Dublin, Dublin Cost: $99 member; $199 non-member No one is more important in the profit equation than the foreman running the job. This course offers your foreman a chance to work side by side with their peers, and gain valuable insight on everyday practices that can be immediately applied to their workplace.

RATED 4.77 28 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

United Contractors SEPTEMBER MEMBER ANNIVERSARIES United Contractors would like to take this opportunity to recognize and thank the following companies who are celebrating their anniversary of membership with our organization in September:

35 YEARS – 1977

18 YEARS – 1994

Associate Member: Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance Brokers of California, Inc./Gallagher Construction Services Doug Bowring

Associate Member: HUB International of CA Insurance Services Rachel Stroup

28 YEARS – 1984 Associate Member: John S. Shelton, Inc. John Shelton

27 YEARS – 1985 Contractor Member: Andreini Brothers, Inc. Mario Andreini Associate Member: Babcock Insurance Rob Babcock

16 YEARS – 1996 Associate Member: Shamrock Materials, Inc. John Zimmerman

13 YEARS – 1999 Contractor Members: Anrak Corporation Mark Anderson Cozart Brothers, Inc. Dan Cozart Drill Tech Drilling & Shoring, Inc. Thea Shupe

30 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

12 YEARS – 2000

4 YEARS – 2008

Contractor Member: Vadnais Corporation Paul Vadnais

Associate Member: Arch Insurance Charlie Tasto

11 YEARS – 2001

3 YEARS – 2009

Contractor Member: Andes Construction, Inc. Danilo Mayorga

Contractor Member: J D Partners Concrete Jason Eggert

10 YEARS – 2002

Associate Member: Santa Maria & Company George Luther

Contractor Members: Apply-A-Line, Inc. Steve Puderbaugh Griffin Soil William Howard J.J.R. Construction, Inc. Carlos Raposo

9 YEARS – 2003 Contractor Member: Joseph J. Albanese, Inc. Kevin Albanese

7 YEARS – 2005

2 YEARS – 2010 Associate Member: Petrinovich Pugh & Company, LLP Kevin Kaefer

1 YEAR – 2011 Contractor Members: Golden State Boring & Pipe Jacking, Inc. Jeff Johnson

Sierra Mountain Construction Contractor Member: Douglas Benton E.E. Gilbert Construction, Inc. Shane Gilbert

Michael Camello Vice President General Manager

Central Valley Ready Mix Office : (916) 941-2906 Mobile: (925) 200-3854 5180 Golden Foothill Parkway Suite 200 El Dorado Hills, CA 95762-9608

Bay Area Division 336 E. Gish Road San Jose, CA 95112 (T) 408.573.9364 (F) 408.573.8364

Fonseca/McElroy Grinding Co., Inc. Asphalt Milling & Grinding Cold Foam In-Place Recycling License #796046

Central Valley Division 3460 S. Cedar Avenue Fresno, CA 93725 (T) 559.445.0139 (F) 559.445.2679

WEST REGION (925) 249-3085 OfÀce (925) 294-8571 Fax

50 El Charro Rd Pleasanton, CA 94566 SEPTEMBER 2012




Industry Strength

900+ Members and Guests, 2012 BBQ A.C. Transit A. Y. McDonald Mfg. Co. Absolute Wireless Advanced Drainage Systems, Inc. Alarcon Bohm All American Rentals Allen A. Waggoner Construction, Inc. American Flow Control American Industrial Care, Inc. Ameron Int’l Water Transmission Group Andreini & Company Anozira, Inc. Aon Construction Services Group Appian Engineering, Inc. Argonaut Constructors Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance Brokers of CA/ Gallagher Construction Services Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Ruud & Romo Babcock Insurance Badger Daylighting Corp BakerCorp Bauman Landscape and Construction, Inc. Bay Cities Paving & Grading, Inc. BB&T Tanner Insurance Services Blackwell General Engineering, Inc. Blue Iron, Inc. Bozzuto & Associates Insurance Services Breneman, Inc. Burr, Pilger and Mayer CA State Assembly District 17 Cal/OSHA California Alliance for Jobs California Bank of Commerce California State Council of Laborers California Trenchless, Inc Candidate for State Assembly District 11 Candidate for State Assembly District 18 Candidate for U.S. Congressional District 3

Carone and Company, Inc. Cazadores Construction, Inc. Cbeyond CEMEX Central Concrete Supply Co., Inc. Chartis Environmental Chrisp Company Columbia Electric, Inc. Conco Pumping Condon-Johnson & Associates, Inc. Con-Quest Contractors, Inc. Construction Engineering Resource, Inc. (CER) Construction Testing Services Contech Engineered Solutions Corix Water Products Cupertino Electric, Inc. D.P. Nicoli, Inc. Daily Construction Service/Reed Construction Data DeSilva Gates Construction District Council of Plasterers & Cement Masons of Northern California District Director for Assemblywoman Mary Hayashi, District 18 District Director for Congressman John Garamendi, District 10 Ditchwitch J.W. Ebert Corp. Enterprise Fleet Management Evans Brothers, Inc. Farwest Corrosion Control Co. Farwest Safety, Inc. Ferguson Waterworks Fine Line Sawing & Drilling, Inc. FiveCubits, Inc. Flatiron Construction Corp. FMG, Inc. Foundation for Fair Contracting (FFC)

32 W W W . U N I T E D C O N T R A C T O R S . O R G

GALLINA LLP Ghilotti Bros., Inc. Ghilotti Construction Co. Granite Construction - Materials Division Granite Construction Company Graniterock Graniterock dba Pavex Construction Groeniger & Company GSE Construction Harris Salinas Rebar Inc. HD Supply Waterworks, Ltd. Heffernan Insurance Brokers Hertz Equipment Rental International Fidelity Insurance Company International Partnering Institute InterWest Insurance Services, Inc. IronPlanet J&M Inc. J. Flores Construction Company, Inc. J.M. Turner Engineering, Inc. J.S. Cole Company Jensen Corporate Holdings Jim-n-i Rentals JMB Construction, Inc. Johnston, Gremaux & Rossi, LLP Jones, Henle & Schunck, CPAs Joseph J. Albanese, Inc. KriStar Enterprises, Inc. Laborers Int’l Union of North America Laborers Local No. 304 LECET Southwest Lehigh Hanson Leonidou & Rosin Professional Corporation Lewis and Tibbitts, Inc. Liberty Mutual Surety Lineation Marking Corporation Lockton Insurance Brokers, LLC Mabey Bridge & Shore, Inc. MAG Trucking McGuire and Hester McInerney & Dillon PC

MCK Services, Inc. McSherry & Hudson MDR Inc, dba ACCU-Bore Directional Drilling Mechanical Rebar Testing Mechanics Bank Mecom Equipment LLC Michelle Kalian Wilcox, CPA Midstate Barrier, Inc. Mission Clay Products Moss Adams LLP

“The UCON BBQ is a great event I look forward to each year. It provides the opportunity to come together with all of your peers within the industry, catch up, enjoy great food, drinks and laughs.” —Jason Edwards, Cazadores Construction, Inc. R & B Equipment, Inc. R & L Brosamer, Inc. R.C. Fischer & Co. R.E. Serrano, Inc. RAM Rick Albert Machinery Rain for Rent Ray’s Electric Redgwick Construction Company Reliable Trucking, Inc. RGW Construction, Inc Rinker Materials - Concrete Pipe Division Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (America) Inc. RLI Insurance Robert A. Bothman, Inc. Rogers Joseph O’Donnell Ryan Engineering, Inc. San Jose Concrete Pipe Co. Sanco Pipelines, Inc. Sedgwick LLP Shimmick Construction Company, Inc. SIGMA Silva Grading & Paving, Inc. Smith Denison Construction Co.

Sweeney, Mason, Wilson & Bosomworth Syar Concrete Syar Industries, Inc. Talus Construction, Inc. TBC Safety Tennyson Electric, Inc. TerraCon Pipelines Inc. The Conco Companies Top Grade Construction, Inc. Transportation California Travelers Trench Plate Rental Co. Tri-Valley Excavating Tri-West Tractor, Inc. Umpqua Bank Underground Solutions United Rentals United Rentals Trench Safety United Site Services US Concrete Precast Group Vanguard Construction Victaulic Vulcan Materials Co., Western Division

“The BBQ never fails to provide a comforting atmosphere to not just network, but socialize and discuss industry topics with all... including competitors.” —Mike Welton, D.P. Nicoli, Inc.

Mountain Cascade, Inc. Mozingo Construction, Inc. Myers Construction Solutions National Trench Safety, LLC Northern California Carpenters Regional Council O.C. Jones & Sons, Inc. Oldcastle Precast - Enclosure Solutions Operating Engineers Local No. 3 P C & N Construction, Inc. Pacific Highway Rentals, LLC

Pacific Sanitation Pacific States Environmental Contractors, Inc. Pacific States Cast Iron Pipe Co. Pape Machinery Penhall Company Peterson Tractor Co. Precision Concrete Preston Pipelines, Inc. Proven Management, Inc. R & B Company

South Bay Foundry Inc./Phoenix Iron Works St. Francis Electric Stacy and Witbeck, Inc. Starr Companies State Compensation Insurance Fund Stevens Creek Quarry, Inc. Stevenson Supply Stomper Company Inc. Summit Financial Group, LLC Sunbelt Rentals

WACA Watt, Tieder, Hoffar & Fitzgerald, LLP Wells Fargo of California Insurance Services, Inc. West Callaway Stotka, Inc. West Coast Aggregates, Inc. Western Traffic Supply, Inc. Western Water Constructors, Inc. Woodruff-Sawyer & Co. Zurich North America Surety


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at Gre tor trac n o C ite dS r a Y

9.43 ACRES OF LAND AVAILABLE Asking Sale Price: $6.00/SF x

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For more information, please contact:

Ted Gallagher Vice President 925.627.2894 LIC #01467047

Eric Rehn, CCIM Vice President 925.627.2892 LIC #01365267

1850 Mt. Diablo Boulevard, Suite 540 Walnut Creek, CA 94596 ph: 925.627.2880 fax: 925.627.2899 Cassidy Turley Northern California

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Santa Maria Plant Division Lodi Chico

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September 2012 - Construction -The Next Generation/Technology  

Next generation in construction, construction mobile apps, technology in construction