In a time when skilled labor can be hard to come by, a West Michigan construction firm’s staffing agency subsidiary is working to grow.
Holland-based staffing firm EV Group, a subsidiary of Elzinga & Volkers, hired Dan Rogers as vice president of operations and business development to direct the future of the company, which has operated for more than 25 years.
EV Group was born out of requests over the years for the 72-year-old Elzinga & Volkers to rent out its construction management teams. Eventually, the construction firm’s leadership decided it would no longer rent out its own staff but provide staffing solutions and professional services with EV Group.
Until Rogers’ hiring, the firm operated with little strategic plan, business development and marketing. Now, he’ll lead a three-year strategic plan to diversify EV Group from primarily food and beverage operations to include pharmaceuticals, technology and IT, and biotech.
“As EV Group continues to grow and serve many industries across the United States, Canada and abroad, we are eager to have Dan jump in to further develop and execute our strategic plan,” Elzinga & Volkers CEO Mike Novakoski said. “The exciting part of this plan involves our team seeking ways to translate the organization’s employee-centric culture to its geographically diverse workforce. It’s certainly a pivotal time for EV Group as we strengthen our relationships in the industry and national reach.”
The firm also hired Jim Badaluco as director of business development and Tricia Elkey as administrator.
Initially, EV Group almost exclusively provided construction management services, but now, the firm will provide specialists, including engineers, SAP specialists and lab technicians. EV Group’s team also specializes in operations, administration, cold storage, food manufacturing, packaging, automation, production lines and new equipment installation and startup.
“Our customers today are seeing us as more than just construction management,” Rogers said. “We’re broadening our scope to who we can provide and where.”
Currently, Rogers said approximately 50 percent of EV Group’s business is construction-related positions, and he believes the company’s bread and butter will remain helping capital projects.
Elzinga & Volkers’ growing facility services division also will help EV Group further its growth and diversity of services.
“We’ll find talent for them, and they come to us to staff,” Rogers said. “The synergy is there for the two of us, and we’ll grow together.”
With the economy humming along and no end in sight for capital projects, Rogers said supply of quality employees to fill positions falls short of the demand.
Customers of EV Group will use placed employees for anywhere between two weeks to five years, Rogers said, and there are between 90 and 120 employees placed at any one time in 25 to 30 states.
Employees of EV Group fall into one of three categories: independent contractor; part time with some benefits; and full time with complete employee benefits. To keep and attract employees, Rogers said it’s all about how the people are treated. He said the key is treating the employees and their families with care and making sure they know they have a home base in Holland.
“It’s key for us to stay focused on being different in the way we treat our customers new or old, our field employees and candidates,” Rogers said. “It’s all a part of that program that is defined by, ‘It’s unmistakably EV Group.’
“It’s not about low price with us, not low cost, not end dollar and gross margin. It’s about growing our business through a different model that will grow itself once that engine starts.”