These are the fundamental aspects that have come to characterize Quality Enterprises USA, Inc. (QE)’s operations for over 52 years now. A leading construction firm based in Southwest Florida, QE focuses on major civil, building, and specialized construction in both the private and public sectors. QE offers advanced construction technology and services, resulting in increased accuracy and efficiency, and self-performs over 90 percent of each respective project.
Howard J. Murrell III, QE’s Construction Technology Manager says, “We do a little bit of everything. We specialize in underground utility work, but our services also expand to road construction, bridges, and aviation projects. That, along with our use of state-of-the-art technology and the ability to control our own timeline is how we differentiate ourselves in the marketplace.”
QE’s beginning dates back to 1969 when Howard Murrell Sr. – Howard’s Grandfather- established Quality Electric Co., a small business focused on commercial electrical and residential renovations in Virginia Beach. Soon, Howard Murrell, Jr., came on board and the company broadened its services from repair work and tank replacements to bidding on complete service stations. The company’s fast-paced growth prompted the family business to break new grounds in Florida, and in the years that followed, Quality Engineering expanded its operations to include heavy civil, buildings, utility and mechanical piping installations, and asphalt and concrete paving. With its growing geographical presence and evolution of project experience, the company renamed to Quality Enterprises USA, Inc. in 1995.
Fast-forward to today, and QE does everything, ranging from small local projects to larger, more complex Design-Builds. The firm has added Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) to its scope of services, along with material & concrete sales, the implementation of 3D positioning systems in all heavy equipment, and a Construction Technology Van equipped with all robotics needed for grade control and surveying that is operated by a trained construction technology technician at each job site.
It is apparent that technology plays an integral role in QE’s daily operations. From investing in high-tech components used in heavy equipment, to utilizing advanced software for fleet or bid tracking, to simply managing job sites from an iPad, QE uses cutting-edge technology to assist with daily activities. This aligns with one of the firm’s leading values: Work Hard & Work Smart.
As a result, QE’s job performance is faster and smarter, yet completed with accuracy and great attention to detail. “If there’s an opportunity to use new technology to better serve our customers, then we’re ready to take on the challenge,” says Howard III.
Contractors can easily overlook one of the most vital aspects of a well-run jobsite, the need to invest in “top of the line” heavy construction equipment. That may be due to the fact that construction equipment is costly; however, this investment leads to greater employee and customer satisfaction, a fact that QE has come to recognize firsthand. There is no denying that QE’s well-maintained equipment fleet stands out from the rest, as the company commits to choosing machines, options, and features needed to create and sustain a high-quality fleet.
QE machines are fully equipped with site positioning systems for machine control grading and 3D technology. QE has also invested in Trimble sitework technology, a site modeling program that leads to savings in material usage and manpower and improves accuracy from the ability to perform “as-built checks” or changes on the fly. Trimble technology allows QE to achieve millimeter accuracy with fewer passes and no manual staking, and 3D site models yield detailed progress and material movement reports.
Within QE’s advanced equipment fleet is the Caterpillar NEXT Generation Excavator with built in CAT grade and slope technology. This machine was further upgraded to better utilize GNSS data, ensuring the highest level of accuracy on projects like roadways, or airport grading and paving, and provides images when satellites (GPS) are not available due to overhead obstruction.
Many of QE’s machines, such as CAT dozers and excavators, are GPS enabled. The integrated GPS receivers communicate with the base site station and can control blade or bucket movement. Additionally, all of QE’s mid to large excavators are equipped with the Cat Pin Grabber Coupler System. This upgraded feature increases machine performance and versatility and helps to ensure jobsite safety. By removing the bucket and using the coupler’s rated lifting eye to move needed items, the operator can increase the machine’s lift capacity and improves visibility.
And it doesn’t stop there…from an administrative standpoint, the company utilizes the industry-leading, cloud-based construction ERP solution, Vista by Viewpoint, to manage all areas of the business. This software allows QE’s Project Managers, Superintendents, and other operations personnel to easily review AP invoices, request Purchase Orders, facilitate safety trainings, and complete daily reports and job billing information directly from the field using their iPad. Vista enhances team collaboration and helps to build stronger customer relationships, thus supporting the company’s mission: To build Quality infrastructure to provide Quality lives for our families, customers, and community.
Viewpoint Field Management, an application that allows equipment maintenance work orders and heavy equipment/ vehicles requests to be made directly from the field on an iPad and/or iPhone, is also utilized by the firm. When the equipment arrives, one of QE’s Superintendents confirms delivery on the application, automatically updating the Dispatch board. QE’s dispatcher also verifies the location of all equipment using GPS units tracked in HCSS Telematics. QE has come to find that this direct line of communication between the office and field reduces the need for Superintendents and crews to continually visit the office, thus allowing a project to be completed on time and within budget.
QE is future oriented, curious, and always asking the question “What’s next?” QE is proactive and unafraid of change and innovation. With a multi-generational leadership team equipped with cutting-edge technology, QE is paving the way for the future of infrastructure.