Engaging Our Workforce
Our CEO, Marty Kropelnicki, has a well-known saying: “We aren’t a ‘pipe company,’ we’re a ‘people company.'” We believe that if you put people first, everything else falls into place. That’s why we are committed to caring for our workforce by fostering a diverse and inclusive culture, providing training and development opportunities, and protecting our employees’ health and well-being.
Championing Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion
By integrating diversity, equality, and inclusion into every aspect of our business, we create a company culture where everyone can thrive and a stronger team that can better address our customers’ needs and, ultimately, drive our business forward. To uphold our values of integrity and equality as outlined in our Business Code of Conduct, we enforce a zero-tolerance approach to discrimination, harassment, and retaliation; provide equal opportunity regardless of religion, gender, age, race, cultural origin, sexual orientation, or disability; promote cultural awareness at every level of the organization; and integrate inclusion into our hiring processes and company culture.
Creating Opportunities for Our Veterans
We are committed to helping veterans reintegrate into the workplace and partnering with them to align their military skills with opportunities within the company. As part of this commitment, we partnered with the Lifetime channel and “Military Makeover with Montel Williams” in 2020 to encourage veterans to consider a career in the water industry.
Training and Developing our Employees
We seek to give our employees every opportunity to grow, learn, and develop by investing in training programs that will help them reach their potential and deliver on our promise to provide quality, service, and value every day. Collectively, our team members hold more than 1,500 industry-specific certifications, and we support them in their efforts to further increase their qualifications. We also invest in our employees’ continued education through tuition reimbursement and opportunities that support their career development, such as our Future Leaders of Water program.
Future Leaders of Water
Future Leaders of Water (FLOW) is our leadership development program aimed at identifying and developing high-potential employees representing the diversity of our organization as well as the communities we serve. The 18-month program includes modules that teach participants about leadership, business acumen, strategic thinking, executive presentations, business writing, ratemaking, risk management, project management, and more.
Prioritizing Workplace Health and Safety
Our employees are our most important asset, and we prioritize their health, wellness, and safety both on and off the job through occupational health and safety programs and instilling a culture of safety into our one-team approach. Our regular cadence of comprehensive safety trainings helps ensure that our employees stay safe on the job, while resources such as our Employee Assistance Program and emotional support services invest in the health of our team members both at work and at home.
In early 2020, we took swift action to protect our essential workers from COVID-19. In addition to providing emotional support and education about the spread and prevention of the virus, we gave employees up to 15 days of paid COVID leave beyond their regular sick leave and vacation allowances. We also activated our Emergency Operations Center to manage communication and coordination around new health protocols. By doing so, we were able to develop and manage a coordinated response, reduce impacts, and fulfill needs across our operations and offices. For our comprehensive efforts to keep employees safe and informed throughout the pandemic, we were awarded a Silver Stevie® Award in the “Great Employers’ Most Valuable Employer for COVID-19 Response” category.