A Conversation with Vermont Contractor Jay Hammond

Efficiency Excellence Network member Jay Hammond, President of Colchester’s Hammond Electric, Inc., shared a bit about himself and his company with us.

How long have you been in the business, and what led you here?

JH: I began working full time at Hammond Electric Inc. in 1974 right after high school. At that time I was also a second-year Vermont State registered apprentice; prior to that I worked summers and school holidays with the crews. My dad, Lynn, started the business in 1968. I have been handling the overall responsibilities since the late 1980s.

What’s the secret to your success?

JH: Exceptional customer service, being honest, meeting and exceeding customer expectations. We feel it is very important to understand the client’s needs and concerns and satisfy them to our fullest ability. I was once told “treat people the way you would like to be treated”; also “treat each customer as if it was your own family.” Those two bits of advice we remember on a regular basis. This seems to have benefited us over all these years with a wonderful large group of repeat customers. There’s only one issue in the service industry: We are subject to a “feast or famine” work schedule—but we always get through it!

How does Efficiency Vermont factor into the work you do?

JH: Working with Efficiency Vermont provides us with credibility; it also gives us knowledge and assistance with project review. Additionally, it enables us to provide customers with a better end product through rebates. On a recent RELIGHT project for our friends at Carlson Mechanical, Paul Carlson was amazed what a good lighting design, (courtesy of Mel at Buss Lighting), motion sensors, and T8 versus T12 technology could provide. Another recent good customer, Vermont Smoke & Cure in Hinesburg, really appreciated the LED fixtures in its production areas “dimming down” when occupancy levels are low. Liquid Measurement Systems in Georgia now has dimmable LED fixtures throughout its two new seminar/conference rooms and employee lounge. These projects are all thanks to rebates offsetting the initial cost.

Anything else you’d like to add?

JH: We feel very proud of our relationship with Efficiency Vermont. I have been fortunate enough to be involved with energy-efficient projects from the early days of utility incentives, energy management systems design and installation, and lighting retrofit projects. And I’ve learned that the real benefit of successful energy projects is that the end result doesn’t only produce happy customers, but also creates friends.

Jay Hammond is the President of Hammond Electric, Inc., a commercial and industrial wiring company that operates across northern Vermont.