Hensel Phelps is dedicated to small business outreach and achieving the highest possible level of diverse business inclusion on each of the projects our company undertakes. As a leading general contractor within the industry, it is important that we set an example. Our professionals are accountable for the implementation of this corporate commitment and work hard to customize an overall outreach plan to reach small and emerging businesses in our preconstruction, purchasing, and construction efforts. Not only do we host and attend outreach events for the small business community, but we solicit opportunities for these contractors. We help them both internally and with larger subcontractors — assisting in their prequalification, mentoring them through our Emerging Business Program, and unbundling larger scopes of work to create attractive prospects. Hensel Phelps also holds numerous networking events related to existing and upcoming procurements. These events are designed to reach out to local small business communities, elected officials and the surrounding neighborhoods as a whole.
Brad Lewis, our Corporate Director of Supplier Diversity, works with his team and directly with leadership in each of our district offices to assure that we not only comply with client objectives regarding subcontractor participation, but that we make every effort to support these small subcontractors’ growth through mutually beneficial partnerships. The end goal is to foster a healthy, competitive local business community where we all can thrive.
Small Business Programs
The Hensel Phelps’ Emerging 10 small business program is a two-year program focused on engaging opportunity-ready, small and minority-owned businesses and identifying capacity building opportunities with Hensel Phelps. Participants of the program receive direct one-on-one business development and project support in an effort to build relationships with project team members, and to communicate best practices for a successful project experience.
Our company’s Technical Assistance Program (TAP) offers practical support to small business subcontractors with whom Hensel Phelps does –or is seeking to do- business. Presenters from our procurement and estimating groups, safety, quality control, and project management collaborate with our Supplier Diversity professionals to provide a presentation detailing key contact personnel within the firm, policies, procedures, and project expectations –the focus being on fostering a successful and profitable experience working with Hensel Phelps.
TAP addresses many areas where small and minority-owned businesses need our help. These include:
- Scheduling and manpower analysis
- Safety program review and evaluation
- Quality control program review and evaluation
Hensel Phelps also proactively trains small businesses to ensure appropriate cash management. This is achieved through the following methods:
- Assisting with Schedule of Values for payment requisitions to help small business maintain positive cash flow
- Formulating joint checks with second-tier subcontractors and suppliers
- Using bi-weekly payment when needed to help fund payroll
All of the material covered is organized around a central goal of helping these contractors work successfully with Hensel Phelps on our projects –thereby promoting overall growth, and providing new opportunities for the participants.
Hensel Phelps, in a combined effort with The Barbour Group, has developed an exclusive program entitled the Head Start Bonding Assistance Program. The Barbour Group, a woman-owned small business, provides bonding and commercial insurance, and the programs seeks to break down bonding barriers and help small businesses overcomes challenges unique to their operations by addressing any issues affecting these businesses with total transparency.
After completing these exercises:
- 92% of first-time surety bond applicants received approval
- 100% of U.S. Small Business Administration Surety Bond Guarantee Program applicants received bond approvals
Since 2009, Hensel Phelps has used Head Start to provide $48.6 million in bonds to small businesses unable to obtain bonding through a standard surety program.