Family Ties

The Sims Group

The company grew into the Sims Group, comprising five distinct divisions. The first, A.L. Sims & Son Ltd., focuses on the remanufacturing and refurbishing of equipment for the rock drilling, blasting, mass excavations, road construction, underground servicing, tunnelling and mining fields; Roktec Services Inc. is British Columbia’s rock and tunnel specialist with expertise in mining, tunnelling, construction, explosives and blasting; Skeena Power Systems Ltd. services major power lines in northern B.C., and provides its clients with a range of electrical services; B.A.T. Construction, with offices in Kamloops and Peru, is involved in drilling, shoring, high angle rock scaling, and slope stabilization; and Sharp Construction conducts works such as earthmoving, site clearing and site preparation.

The Group has a large base of skilled employees working across all divisions. With such a broad range of services in its wheelhouse, the company is able to offer these employees cross-training opportunities throughout the company, exposing them to a rich base of experience and enabling them to expand and diversify their skill sets. According to Group management, “The company itself is spearheaded by the principal, going down through the Sims Group to the Chief Financial Officer, and through the various office administration to H.R, I.T. and safety. From there it branches down to the four core companies that all have their own supervisors, managers, site foremen, technicians, and base level employees.”

The Sims Group maintains a core of approximately 60 fulltime employees, and can call on trusted sub-contractors as projects require.

The company’s owner was always interested in developing operations in South America, and has done so by expanding divisions of the company in Peru. These branches are Roktek and B.A.T. Construction, both with offices in Lima. “The owner has been interested in Peru for many years,” management explains, “and as a result has worked toward identifying the company and its capabilities to be able to perform various different functions in Peru in terms of civil, government projects and mining activities.”

When one looks across the board at all of the different companies sitting under the Sims Group umbrella, it becomes obvious that the company has set itself up in diverse areas of the construction sector. “Given the diverse structure of the company, we can undertake any heavy industrial contracts in most sectors using the resources that we have in our group.

Sims Group divisions serve both as a subcontractor and a prime contractor, depending on the designation of the project. In other projects Sims Group may contract directly to the owner of the project or the engineering company that’s been appointed to engineer the job.

In Canada, the Sims Group primarily focuses on the north western region of the country, but has completed jobs as far away as New York and India. “We’re primarily a Canadian based, Canadian focused entity, but we do have capabilities of being national and international,” management explains, “whether it be for mining, civil, government agencies, or private industrial. We can build roads, bridges, dams, or we can do any base level mass excavation needed for any major construction project such as a smelter, a major mining plant, a gas plant or any other large industrial facility.”

The company is privately owned and the principal remains very hands-on. Sims Group has the ability to recognize opportunities and can adapt to suit just about any requirement a client might have because of the diversity that each core company brings to the Group. “It gives us a unique ability to provide project satisfaction to the client, with a high level of both integrity and safety.” A great deal of attention is paid by the Sims Group to providing equitable employment opportunities as well.

The principal of the company values people very highly and his personal level of integrity and commitment to both staff and clients is very high. As many of us can appreciate, there is little better than being able to go into work and feeling like your contribution is valued; at the Sims Group, this is a given.

Within a history stretching back to 1972, the Sims Group is proud to have been a bonded corporation at all times. According to Group management, “The company’s greatest achievement would be the fact that since 1972 the company has been growing to the point it is at today, while still under the same ownership.”

The fact that Sims Group has maintained a bondable status speaks to the high level of integrity with which the entire company operates. The other companies that have been brought on board since A.L. Sims & Sons Ltd.’s initial launch – B.A.T. Construction, for example, was purchased from the original owner – have adopted the values and principles of the founding company while contributing and strengthening its reputation and client base even further.

One of the main challenges the company is encountering today is in finding good and reliable staff members who hold the same values as the rest of the company. To try to attract like-minded individuals, management states, “We market ourselves on two fronts. One is to advertise our group and their capabilities. Two is important: we market ourselves to create both interest and challenge for potential employees.”

The Sims Group is also very conscious of how it operates within the broader community; head Office of the group does business in the City of Prince George, the hub of northern British Columbia, making it the go-to place for many people, whether they are looking for a nice place to live, a good job, or are just visiting.

To do its part for the community, the Sims Group is an integral member of an organization called I.P.G, which stands for Initiatives Prince George. I.P.G is a group that does a lot to promote Prince George as a business friendly region to assist with the attraction of labour force members. “We support teams, we support universities, and we are very involved in a number of different community spirited functions.” Indeed, the Sims Group does its part for local sports clubs, Shriners International, Elks of Canada, and was one of the first to contribute to the Northern Health Initiative.

Going forward, the company has continuing operations planned in all its diverse areas of expertise. With a strong skills base, a national and international presence, and a keen focus on its local community, the Sims Group is sure to enjoy continued success for many years to come.

August 21, 2017, 7:54 AM EDT

A Model that Addresses Infrastructure Demand

The Labourers’ International Union of North America (LiUNA) is a National Union representing over 500 000 members – over 110 000 in Canada with an International Office in Hamilton, Ontario. It has Local Unions across the country and is the most common union of construction, healthcare, waste management, and show service workers in this country. In fact, LiUNA, established in 1903, is Canada’s largest Building Trades Union.