a Great Career?
At Holland BPW, 185 people make an impact on the community every day. Living in Holland, residents are accustomed to reliable and affordable utility services that are essential to our way of life. Achieving great results in electric, water, wastewater, and broadband utilities requires a dedicated workforce whose passion is serving the community.
“The most satisfying thing about my career at the Holland BPW is the fact that I’m a part of a team of dedicated employees from Customer Service to our Facilities team and all those in between who have a significant impact on the lives of our community. I know prior to working at the HBPW I took my utilities for granted now, I have a much better appreciation for the process and the people that go into maintaining our community utilities here in Holland,” explained Michael Wise, Electric Distribution Planner.
Lots of Opportunities
Within Holland BPW, there are a variety of opportunities to work in energy, water, broadband, and business. “It’s a privilege to work for my community’s utility provider. There are so many careers at Holland BPW that positively impact our community and the best part of my job is learning about those roles and the committed people who provide these essential services,” said Katie DeVries, Communications Specialist.
Rocky Clay has been with Holland BPW for 27 years. After working at the James De Young Power Plant for seven years, he moved into the Water/Wastewater Services department. He said, “One of the nice things about being a Water/Wastewater Services Technician is the variety of activities we do.” Water crews are trained in both water and sewer systems. The team is responsible for maintaining and fixing water and sewer mains, snowmelt mains, and 36 lift stations.
Andrew Reynolds, Community Energy Services Manager, finds tremendous value in his job at Holland BPW. His team is dedicated to promoting energy efficiency. “We make an impact locally by helping our customers reduce their bills, but it also creates larger benefits beyond just our service territory by reducing our community’s carbon emissions.”
As an organization, Holland BPW is driven by a robust set of core values. These core values are used to communicate the expectations of every team member. The well-rounded list creates alignment and inspires action toward a unified purpose among employees. “Holland BPW’s culture driven by core values makes it a place where everyone is willing to help each other,” said Adriana Gonzalez, Human Resources Specialist. “We have a common desire to serve the community. Facilitating initiatives throughout the organization means we are working together to serve the common good.”
Sam Bender, Water and Wastewater Process Engineer, describes the environment that results from Holland BPW’s core values. “The people I work with are the most enjoyable part of my career with HBPW. Frontline staff and managers take seriously the responsibility to provide safe, reliable, efficient utility services day in and day out while also maintaining a jovial atmosphere. Executive leadership stays current with industry and regulatory trends; the course they chart allows the organization to effectively manage risk. The efforts of the whole team result in a healthy and stable utility with a long history and bright future.”
Carlotta Ellison, Customer Service Representative, talks about employee fulfillment. She said that she most enjoys the fellowship she has with other Holland BPW employees and the relationships she has with customers, both in and outside of work.
Holland BPW demonstrates these core values through business goals, processes, and an annual employee review process. Corporate metrics for safety and professional development are reported quarterly. All departments create and maintain five-year plans that are updated annually, a process that drives continuous improvement.
Each year, employees write about examples of how they lived each core value in a 360 review. A 360 review is a process that allows each employee to reflect on their accomplishments and performance throughout the past year. Then, the employee’s direct supervisor reviews and responds to the review. The 360 process brings two people together to have a focused and supportive conversation about past performance and future goals. It also keeps Holland BPW’s core values on top of mind.
Our Core Values
- Continuous Improvement
- Customer Focus
- Employee Fulfillment
- Open Communications
- Professional Development
Work Force Development
Holland BPW thinks strategically about the future of our workforce. The utility industry recognizes the availability of skilled labor as a challenge. Proactively, Holland BPW takes the initiative in promoting utility careers. Holland BPW intentionally fosters partnerships with local school systems and community education programming to inspire potential interest in utility careers. These relationships also open the opportunity for communication with teachers about skills that are needed in the workforce that could be practiced in the classroom.
Hands-on experience is extremely valuable and Holland BPW’s summer internship program has launched numerous utility careers. Grant Koster started as an intern and is now the Electric Production Engineering Supervisor. “I enjoy being involved in our daily operations at the plant as well as being a part of cross-department teams that make decisions and policies that affect the entire organization,” explained Koster.
Communications Intern, Sydney Masteller, is a key contributor to the team. She designed a Holland City Fiber Construction Information trifold brochure, an employee pet photos bulletin board, and a Holland Board of Public Works Career Fields brochure. The careers brochure presents the variety of ways career seekers can make an impact with Holland BPW. It also connects O*NET OnLine interest profiles to utility occupations. Flow charts of common education paths show how students can find their way into the wonderful world of utility careers. The careers brochure will be printed and distributed to local high schools and is available online.
Looking for Career Opportunities?
Typically, there are 8-10 summer interns who come on board to support different departments. Departments that have offered internships include safety, communications, electric production, water treatment, water reclamation, broadband services, customer service, community energy services, water/wastewater distribution, records and information management, finance, and information technology. So, there is a wide range of skills that are needed to fill the summer internship positions including occupational safety, GIS, engineering, accounting, networking, graphic design, marketing, copywriting, and more.
Holland BPW’s internship openings are posted in February. Most begin work in late May after the winter semester wraps up. Opportunities can be found on hollandbpw.com/careers, Indeed, and Handshake.
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