Strata Group

A dynamic company engineering futures for its team

  • Strata Group2

    The RCR/Colliers building for Wallace Development Ltd
  • Strata Group

    The new ABB building at Hawke's Bay Airport

Current major projects for Strata include the new Hawke’s Bay Seafoods manufacturing and processing premises in Ahuriri and The Village Exchange, a boutique hotel complex in Havelock North.  The company has just completed the very impressive Cosmopolitan Club building in Napier and the ABB building at the Hawke’s Bay Airport.

Although offering a broad range of engineering and consultancy services, Strata’s core business is structural engineering.  However, with changes in legislation following the Christchurch earthquakes, a significant percentage of their work is devoted to seismic assessments, as Guy explains.

“The seismic assessment and strengthening work has been instigated by the events in Canterbury.  After the earthquakes there was a heightened awareness of risk, and demand for assessments has increased significantly.  In 2011 and 2012, we had to focus on design and construction techniques specifically relating to older buildings.”

‘Best practice’ are words Guy uses frequently and he’s not just paying lip service to the often over-used term.  The Strata team is committed to actively exploring new and better ways of doing things in all aspects of its business.  The company recently teamed up with Auckland University to develop best practice and processes around earthquake strengthening for unreinforced brick buildings and has already applied this knowledge to several jobs in Hawke’s Bay, “We don’t want to be just a provincial practice; we want to be an industry leader.  And we are well placed to be that with our commitment to best practice across the latest technology, the latest design software and system implementation,” says Guy.

Strata Group is also very involved in the community through its sponsorship of the Tour of the Bay, the Flaxmere Boxing Academy and is also a major contributor to the Pan Pac Kiwi Creche at Lake Opouahi.

Before Guy and Russell joined forces and set up Strata, Moore Stephens Markhams director Dan Druzianic was already the pair’s accountant.  Eighteen months ago, Guy and Russell introduced Xero into the business and are impressed with its functionality.  “Xero has been great and Dan has been instrumental in getting it running for us,” says Russell.  “Our existing timesheet and work planning system, Workflow Max has integrated seamlessly with it and the reporting that comes out of it is excellent.

“Xero has a very simple front end.  We create the invoices and feed them into the system and it generates reports from that.  Plus, being cloud-based means we can access Xero any time anywhere and in real time and can see how we’re tracking; it’s brilliant.”

Dan also helps Strata Group with compliance, tax and the company’s annual accounts.  He provides business advice when needed and his experience and knowledge of the industry and dealings with other engineering clients has been beneficial to Strata.  “Benchmarking against other engineering firms is very useful to track costs and expenditure and see where there could be savings to be made,” says Russell.

Strata Group has doubled in size under the guidance of Guy and Russell, whose staff now number around 20.  Engineer Duncan Bruce is now a director of the Group, reflecting the importance they have put on succession in the company.

“It is very important that we create career pathways for our team.  We can’t compete with the big city salaries, but we can provide a supportive and collaborative environment that rewards ambition.  It’s important to retain good and talented people here in Hawke’s Bay.  To do that you need to offer a work environment where everyone prospers.”

Published Spring 2014.

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