May 2019 | Industry and commerce

Specialized in the maintenance and rehabilitation of roadways throughout Quebec, Constructions HDF plays in the heart of the Great! Present on many of Quebec’s most prestigious projects, including the new Samuel-De Champlain Bridge, the Gilles-Villeneuve Circuit and the Pierre-Elliott-Trudeau Airport, HDF is attracting many entrepreneurs and public organizations. In 60 years of existence, the family business located in Cap-St-Ignace has developed a leading edge expertise, recognized and sought after throughout the industry, as well as a culture and strong values that support its growth and sustainability. Its committed and motivated teams of workers are fuelled by challenges and have an enviable reputation across the province.

There is no doubt that its founder, Honoré Pelletier, would be proud to see the breadth and notoriety of his company over the years. “The name of the company, HDF, refers to Honoré, Daniel and François” explains the president of Constructions HDF, François Pelletier, co-owner with his wife Caroline Hébert, who acts as general manager. “The company was founded in 1959, but it was incorporated in 1976. Originally, we specialized in excavation, earthworks, snow removal and bulk transportation. HDF has evolved a lot over the years. In response to market needs and business opportunities, we have significantly diversified our service offering.”

The brothers Daniel and François joined their father at a very young age in the company, they touched a little bit of everything and climbed the ladder one by one. And it was in 1992 that Honoré Pelletier handed the company over to his sons who were both passionate about honouring their father’s work. Caroline Hébert joined in 2000.

“In 1999, paving became HDF’s main activity until 2013,” says François Pelletier. Then, the cold-milling equipment that we acquired from 2011 led us to expand our customer base and the territory served. Today, HDF specializes in pavement maintenance and rehabilitation, which leads us to do different types of bituminous asphalt paving, spraying and stabilization, bituminous asphalt paving, sweeping, snow removal public roads and the purchase, sale and rental of heavy equipment. ”

Expansion and investments

The year 2019 kicked off for Constructions HDF with the opening of an office in Sainte- Catherine, in the Montreal area. “This new office will allow us to be even more competitive and better serve our customers throughout the province,” explains Caroline Hébert. “We have also acquired specialized equipment to carry out asphalt asphalt surfacing work, micro cold-milling and rough strips. These investments are in addition to the one made last fall for the acquisition of infrared preheating units, which are currently operating on the new Samuel-De Champlain bridge. And in 2017, we got a 3D guidance system (robotic control) for cold milling.”

Private and public customers

Constructions HDF’s clientele is largely composed of general contractors, but the company also works directly with Transports Québec and the municipalities. “There is competition in our business sector, that’s for sure, but we are distinguished by the high quality of our work and a very personal customer service,” says François Pelletier. “Our customers trust us, and many of them for a very long time. Customers appreciate that we dare to do things differently. We do not hesitate to interact with them and to think outside the box to optimize the realization of their projects. At HDF, the corporate culture is based on teamwork and passion, which is reflected in all our actions. ”

As a true partner of their projects, HDF often advises its clients far beyond the mandates entrusted to them. “Our expertise is vast, we have a global vision of the sites, explains the director of operations Eric Couture. “And if we can not make a contract because of the many commitments we have already made, we will not hesitate to refer them to another company. We never leave customers without resources. It is no mystery if HDF is one of the most important players in its industry. With us, the respect of commitments is primordial. We are known for being reliable and transparent.

A loyal and motivated team

Forty people are currently employed by Constructions HDF. The company has a very low turnover rate. “At home, we work in a family atmosphere where everyone shares the same values,” says Hébert. We are very proud of our employees, they are loyal, committed and highly motivated. They represent the company on the various sites. ”

Caroline Hébert sees labor recruitment as a stimulating challenge and not a constraint to business growth. “We have put in place a work environment and a corporate culture that encourages employee retention,” she adds. Some have been with us for almost 40 years! ”

Also at HDF, training is a priority. The young candidates come mainly from the vocational training of construction equipment. But as soon as they are hired, they are supported by an inhouse trainer who trains them specifically for the positions they will have to occupy. “For us, the attitude of an employee is as important as his skills,” insists the executive director. We are looking for people who share our values and our business vision. The strength of HDF is that it has always surrounded itself with the best elements. Our teams work directly with customers in the field. They are the image and reputation of the company. ”

Growth and succession

Even if it’s on a roll, Constructions HDF wants to keep evolving and staying ahead of the game. “We have great aspirations for the company, says the president. And we are already thinking of the next generation. Caroline and I have six children, and four of them are working in the company during their studies. Because they are sincerely interested, they represent for us a potential succession. In addition, Eric Couture, recently hired as Director of Operations, was also identified to take over the torch. Eric came to us with a lot of experience in the field and a great motivation to take part in the development of the company.”

To put the shoulder to the wheel, François Pelletier began in 2018 the Elite program of the School of entrepreneurship of Beauce. He intends to equip himself with the best tools to ensure the growth of the company. “I’ve already learned a very important lesson: in business, you have to be good to be good! “