The JV Driver’s Group 4 Values for Success
Since JV Driver’s inception in 1989, it has been thinking differently about construction. Don’t just take my word for it—the company has received multiple client and industry awards for project execution and safety performance and is recognized as one of Canada’s Best Managed Companies.
“There is a lot that drives our culture, and it began with our ‘Think Safe, Work Safe, Be Safe’ initiatives,” said Vice President of Fabrication Corey Callahan. “This has impacted how we work for a long time.”
“We’re a construction company, but ultimately we’re in the business of people,” said COO David Forest. “It’s all about the relationships with the people who work here, taking care of each other, and doing everything safely so they get to go home at the end of the day in the same shape they came in.”
The JV Driver Group provides a wide range of contractor and fabrication services in the industrial, commercial, multi-unit residential and industrial buildings, marine, environmental, and public infrastructure/institutions space. The company has maintained a distinct strategy of diversification, building its business in a sector, understanding the market’s needs, and growing into other sectors.
The construction market is known for its variability and constantly changing landscape. Commodity-driven industries ebb and flow, and JV Driver’s long-term strategy of diversification has enabled them to be through these cycles.
JV Driver’s innovative approach ties back to one thing: culture. Everyone I talked to from JV Driver made it clear that the key to nearly everything the company does is its adherence to a Core Purpose to Think Different, Build Better, and Core Values: Be Innovative, Build Great Things, Take Care of Each Other, and Have Fun.
It takes more than hard work and determination to prove to clients that safety and innovation are truly at the heart of everything a company does. It becomes incredibly apparent that these are engrained in JV Driver’s culture when you see the innovative programs and world-class safety results, such as major projects like Imperial Oil’s Nabiye SAGD, completed on-time and on-budget—with zero lost time incidents.
“We realized that as an industry, safety had plateaued,” said Forest. “To counter this we created the Vigilance Program and shifted from a procedural-based Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) program to a behavior-based HSE program. Instead of just having management telling people what to do and how to be safe, our Vigilance Program engages our workforce to identify and mitigate risk on a daily basis. We have data analysis in place to give real time feedback to our teams which allows them to bridge any gaps in the system. We’re seeing people intervene when they see a risk before it becomes a problem.”
A large part of developing this culture within the next generation workforce is through mentorship within the Vigilance Program. This ensures valuable insight is not lost; instead, it is passed down to the younger generations so that the newer workforce can continue to uphold the company’s tradition of safety and continue building great things.
The construction industry is always evolving and looking for a better, safer way. JV Driver understands that innovation is what will keep the company ahead of the curve. It recognizes the importance of this and has created the Think Different, Build Better program to capture innovations and develop ideas across the group.
“Our people and sometimes even our clients bring us ideas, and the best ideas win,” shared Boyd Mitchell, JV Driver’s Marketing and Communications Manager. “We encourage innovation and forward movement. I think that letting people think differently in our space, really sets us apart.”
Build Great Things
At JV Driver, building great things goes beyond the project site and includes building people, teams, and communities. JV Driver develops its people through the JV Driver University and various innovative programs, such as the Next Gen Leadership Program. Through active participation in local communities, including the Family Support Program, the company is able to provide support to those in need.
It only takes a few examples to see the depth of experience in the JV Driver Group and the great projects they’ve built across multiple sectors. JV Driver has completed several large expansion projects including the Olympic Village for the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver, an airport in Jamaica and a host of other industrial facilities, high-rise buildings, and infrastructure projects.
Take Care of Each Other
The projects listed above have been huge successes for the JV Driver Group, but none would be possible without having a dedicated, passionate workforce committed to the company’s core values.
“JV Driver has experienced steady growth for over 25 years and has completed many projects across multiple sectors” said Forest. “We believe if you build a good company with strong values and a great culture the employees will come.”
It may seem simple, but JV Driver puts a lot of work in behind the scenes—with safety initiatives and its innovative culture—to appeal to current and prospective employees.
“Our HSE culture really appeals to workers—people like to stay on with us because we are safe. It’s in the company’s DNA to take care of people,” Forest shared. “Through the ebbs and flows of construction, our workforce grows and contracts with the size of our projects and due to our culture we have a core group of workers that choose us first. There’s something to be said about that.”
“We have second and third generations working here,” said Callahan. “Being trusted with someone’s loved one is one of the highest compliments that can be paid in a business like this. When a father tells us that his son or daughter just graduated and wants to come work for JV Driver, it’s a huge honor and big responsibility.”
There’s also something to setting a precedent for having a good time. Construction is a difficult, stressful business and many people put in plenty of hard work. These projects are not without risk, to the employee or the company. So JV Driver determined that to maintain the mental health of its employees, “Have Fun” had to be a priority.
“This industry can be tough. If we don’t make it fun, it can burn you out,” said Callahan.
This realization led JV Driver to establish family events that bring their actual family and their work families together.
“We have a host of events throughout the year,” shared Mitchell. “From company Christmas parties and birthdays, to golf tournaments and even an annual children’s Christmas party for the kids. JV Driver is committed to this culture.”
Many companies just rattle off their “values”, but few can integrate these pillars into every project and every business day. JV Driver is one of the few, and it is easy to see its commitment to its people, clients, and excellence, in a truly tough industry.
“There’s no compromising for us—we will always stay true to our values. As we diversify, moving into different markets and different geographies, you will always know that when you work with us you’re going to get the best we can give,” said Forest.
JV Driver’s culture gives its leadership the tools to make good decisions and avoid putting the company into risky situations. Forest shared that the work done by the executive team in the last few years has established a good foundation for the company to meet its next decade’s goals.
Established in 1989, the JV Driver Group through its subsidiary companies provides a wide range of contractor and fabrication services in the industrial, commercial, multi-unit residential and industrial buildings, marine, environmental and public infrastructure/institutions space. This flexibility coupled with a strong track record, particularly in safety, gives us an unique offering in the market.
In the industrial sector, we provide all facets of fabrication, civil, construction, and plant maintenance capability in the oil and gas, chemical, mining, forestry, power, and marine sectors. We provide these capabilities through our subsidiaries JV Driver Projects, JV Driver Fabricators, IDL Projects, TIS, DF Barnes and DFB Driver.
Our extensive background in constructing commercial, multi-unit residential and industrial buildings spans over 40 years. We provide these capabilities through our subsidiaries IDL Projects, Metrocan Construction, Metrocan Projects and Scott Construction.
Our deep public infrastructure experience includes constructing roads, bridges, port facilities and airports. We offer these services in Canada through IDL Projects and internationally through JV Driver International.
We have been offering services and manufacturing in marine sector for over 80 years through our DF Barnes subsidiary.
In each of these sectors the JV Driver Group has the capabilities, capacity, geographic reach and track record to provide high value solutions to clients most complex and challenging needs regardless of location.
JV Driver Headquarters
212 – 3601 82 Avenue
Leduc, AB • Canada T9E 0H7
Website - jvdriver.com