AS PUBLISHED IN HUNTER BUSINESS REVIEW
Founded in 1987, North Construction & Building specialises in the education, health, hospitality and aged care sectors. By leveraging a mix of personalised service and high quality outcomes, combined with putting their values front and centre, North continues to lead the way toward higher accountability amongst players in the space and further reinforce being one of the most trusted builders throughout the Hunter Valley, Newcastle and Central Coast regions.
With an unwavering commitment to excellence and the advancement of people, this 100%-employee-owned builder is doing business differently.
“We are working hard to be not only THE builder of choice throughout our delivery regions, but also THE employer of choice as well,” stated North Managing Director Matthew Cook. “To our purpose, in everything we do, we are building trust with our clients, our subcontractors, our staff, and in our community.”
North further afield
Throughout their 30-year history, North has been delivering commercial construction projects from beyond Muswellbrook to Newcastle, and from the Mid North Coast down to North Sydney. Having first established an office in West Gosford in their early days, North moved their head office into the Tuggerah-based Mariner’s Centre of Excellence in 2016. A permanent Broadmeadow office was later established to better service Newcastle and Hunter Valley clients and employees.
Once again, the time has come for this local mid-sized construction company to expand its reach and extend efforts even further afield.
“As a regional builder, our solid reputation and delivery of commercial projects continues to grow,” expressed Cook. “For a long time we have had clients gauge our interest in working further afield and for us, the timing is now right. Any strategy of growth must be done without there being a dilution of our culture, our purpose and our genuine business differentiator: Building with Trust. Since the expansion of our employee shareholding group in 2018, growth into other NSW regions has been carefully considered and planned to a point that we are now confident our reputation of Trust and the same approach to business in our current regions will be upheld and indeed successfully replicated.”
To that end, North has recently signed an early contractor involvement (ECI) contract to progress the development of a new secondary campus for St Matthew’s Catholic School in Mudgee. “This significant development will mark our first presence in Western NSW,” Cook said. “As an early engagement contractor to the Catholic Diocese of Bathurst, we will be a key partner throughout the entire design process, providing design management input and buildability solutions. We’re looking forward to bringing our school construction expertise to this project and, as a marker to the business, establishing its presence in a further region.”
North’s commitment to their clients, subcontractors, employees, and communities in which they live and work, will remain unchanging as they enter new markets.
North has five values that drive the behaviour and culture within the company: trust, excellence, respect, relational and fun. When you look around the business, it’s not hard to find proof that North’s values are much more than just words. Testament to this is the fact that more than 50% of all North’s employees have only ever worked for the company in addition to North being named Australian Medium Employer of the Year at the 2018 Australian Training Awards.
In addition, the company has a rich history of investing in work placements, trade apprenticeships and construction management cadetships. They go above and beyond in the industry with current staff participating in one of the workplace learning programs making up 25% of all North employees. By doing this, the company is best able to directly contribute to the pool of future North employees while, at the same time, strengthening the overall construction industry.
“These corporate values and commitment to clients, subcontractors, employees and the community will remain the foundation of the company moving forward and continue to form the basis of our reputation of being a trusted regional builder and employer,” Cook professed.
North enjoyed a spectacular night of success at the Master Builders Association 2019 Newcastle Excellence in Building Awards. The business had six projects nominated across a diverse range of categories and was successful in the following:
- Extensions, Renovations & Refurbishments ($2m-$5m) - St Philip's Christian College, Waratah - Kindergarten and Early Learning
- Public Buildings ($3m and under) - EDSACC Grandstand, Bateau Bay
- Public Buildings ($3m-$7m) - St Philip's Christian College - Cessnock Activate Centre
- Restoration of an Historic Building - St Philip's Christian College, Waratah - Kindergarten and Early Learning
- Aged Care Medium Density Developments - Regis Aged Care, Elermore Vale
- Industrial Buildings - Newcastle Light Rail Depot and Stops
- Commercial Projects ($5m-$10m) - San Clemente High School, Mayfield
- Best Use of Bricks - Regis Aged Care, Elermore Vale
"It is rare to see a contractor with that diversity extending across the general commercial, aged care, education, heritage, refurbishment and industrial sectors," Cook said. "Receiving recognition from the peak building industry body in our region supports our claims of consistency, quality and professionalism. It is this reputation that so many of our employees, subcontractors and clients know and trust.”
The business is the reigning Australian Medium Employer of the Year from the 2018 Australian Training Awards, and more recently at the 2019 NSW Training Awards, North employee, Nelson Florimo, was named NSW Apprentice of the Year.
"Our success here is something we're immensely proud of,” said Cook. “We are very grateful to our clients, but it is our staff, suppliers and subcontractors who contribute so much to these achievements,” concluded Cook.