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Thread: Synergy One Locating LLC

  1. #31
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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    I'm sorry but I just had to come in and post about Synergy One. If there is only one thing that you guys will ever listen that I say, let it be this.

    Don't work for Synergy One. You have no idea what kind of raw deal you are walking into. The owner has been sued by employees in multiple states for unpaid wages. In fact the united states department of labor just settled one of the claims in new york a few weeks ago.

    I had a fairly close friend that worked for Synergy One. She was given an enourmous territory, something like 5 or 6 counties to mark for, and was told if she couldn't mark all the tickets that came in for those counties, she would be let go. The trouble was, they only paid her 40 hours for a territory that would have taken 60-80 hours depending on the work load. Her hourly wage was also rather low, and with no overtime, it was pretty bad.

    You will also probably get Rycoms as a locating instrument and it's likely you will get one of those mini 'netbooks' as a laptop. Not the best equipment.

    Synergy One was built as a utility locating contractor for time warner cable. They only pay thier people 40 hours a week, and if there are any tickets they can't get to in that time, they will simply clear them. If damages happen, they play the card in court that 'the excavator should have contacted us if he didn't get a response so it's his fault'. Synergy takes an issue of public safety and turns it into a game, even more so than USIC or Utilitquest.

    If you work for another company right now, and you think that Synergy might be a good place to go, you are sorely mistaken. Don't do it. I'm begging you, don't throw away what career you have left. Nobody I've ever talked to has said that Synergy One was where they wanted to go, wanted to be, or was a good choice for them.

    If it's true that Synergy One really got a huge frontier contract that is spanning multiple states and might be 300 employees large, then it's the first real contract they have ever gotten. Cable TV is the easieast utility to locate by far, with electric a distant 2nd. As far as I know, before this frontier deal, that's all they had before hand, 90% cable TV and 10% electric worth of contracts. You can work gimmicks on those utilities and survive in some pretty slimy ways.

    But Telephone is a different monster altogether. Rural telephone can be a nightmare, buried everywhere, even 100 feet off the side of the road in the middle of some corn fields, and the inner city duct backs in the urban areas can be a spider web of confusion. Usually there are poor maps for telephone as well, since the land line companies arn't making much money anymore, they don't want to put any more money into thier mapping system to make it better.

    You don't have to take it from me, if you don't want to. If Synergy One really did get that contract, and they really do hire all those people, you can bet for sure there will be posts in this forum eventually exposing what I speak of now.

    Do yourself a favor and stay where you are or look elsewhere. It's likely that the owner's gimmicks won't work on a telephone locating contract, and the company will fail at least at the frontier contract, and lose it. So you might find yourself out of a job sooner than later if you go work for them anyway.
    union_YES and Caregiver like this.

  2. #32
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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    I couldn't have said it better myself! Not a guy you want to work for.

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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Thanks for the heads up.

  4. #34
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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Let's for the sake of discussion take what is posted below as accurate. If that is the case a large phone contract can bankrupt them. Phone offers some challenges to locate especially compaired to TV and in my experiance electric. But the thing about phone damages is this, they are very expensive. As a rough rule each cut duct line in a duct bank is $50,000. If there is heavy fiber and a long run of it more money. If the copper is the old paper insulated more money. I have seen damaged duct banks cost between $500,000 and $1,000,000. Don't count on insurance, you won't have it very long getting damages like that.

    If employees are feeling cheated out of their wages, does not matter if they are right or wrong about that either, expect someone to come along and intentionaly mismark a duct run or two. Yes, they can get fired but as a poor performace issue. They will use 6 months of unemployement to fund their job search.

    All of the above jepordises contracts and can devalue a company. Let's see what Omars gets for USIC.

    And during all this employees are filing complaints for missing wages. As I recall the employer can be required to pay three times the wages due plus the legal fees. There can also be fines imposed. Ask Utiliqest regards requiring employees to work off the clock. I know, I got some of that settlement money.


    Quote Originally Posted by HelpEachOther View Post
    I'm sorry but I just had to come in and post about Synergy One. If there is only one thing that you guys will ever listen that I say, let it be this.

    Don't work for Synergy One. You have no idea what kind of raw deal you are walking into. The owner has been sued by employees in multiple states for unpaid wages. In fact the united states department of labor just settled one of the claims in new york a few weeks ago.

    I had a fairly close friend that worked for Synergy One. She was given an enourmous territory, something like 5 or 6 counties to mark for, and was told if she couldn't mark all the tickets that came in for those counties, she would be let go. The trouble was, they only paid her 40 hours for a territory that would have taken 60-80 hours depending on the work load. Her hourly wage was also rather low, and with no overtime, it was pretty bad.

    You will also probably get Rycoms as a locating instrument and it's likely you will get one of those mini 'netbooks' as a laptop. Not the best equipment.

    Synergy One was built as a utility locating contractor for time warner cable. They only pay thier people 40 hours a week, and if there are any tickets they can't get to in that time, they will simply clear them. If damages happen, they play the card in court that 'the excavator should have contacted us if he didn't get a response so it's his fault'. Synergy takes an issue of public safety and turns it into a game, even more so than USIC or Utilitquest.

    If you work for another company right now, and you think that Synergy might be a good place to go, you are sorely mistaken. Don't do it. I'm begging you, don't throw away what career you have left. Nobody I've ever talked to has said that Synergy One was where they wanted to go, wanted to be, or was a good choice for them.

    If it's true that Synergy One really got a huge frontier contract that is spanning multiple states and might be 300 employees large, then it's the first real contract they have ever gotten. Cable TV is the easieast utility to locate by far, with electric a distant 2nd. As far as I know, before this frontier deal, that's all they had before hand, 90% cable TV and 10% electric worth of contracts. You can work gimmicks on those utilities and survive in some pretty slimy ways.

    But Telephone is a different monster altogether. Rural telephone can be a nightmare, buried everywhere, even 100 feet off the side of the road in the middle of some corn fields, and the inner city duct backs in the urban areas can be a spider web of confusion. Usually there are poor maps for telephone as well, since the land line companies arn't making much money anymore, they don't want to put any more money into thier mapping system to make it better.

    You don't have to take it from me, if you don't want to. If Synergy One really did get that contract, and they really do hire all those people, you can bet for sure there will be posts in this forum eventually exposing what I speak of now.

    Do yourself a favor and stay where you are or look elsewhere. It's likely that the owner's gimmicks won't work on a telephone locating contract, and the company will fail at least at the frontier contract, and lose it. So you might find yourself out of a job sooner than later if you go work for them anyway.

  5. #35
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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Quote Originally Posted by ProfessionalLocator View Post
    ...As I recall the employer can be required to pay three times the wages due plus the legal fees. There can also be fines imposed. Ask Utiliqest regards requiring employees to work off the clock....
    As with all stories, the obfuscation increases with time. I am a former SOL employee. I am getting my settlement. I attribute most of these stories to disgruntled employees who feel violated to some extent. I know some of them and I am truly sorry that they feel that way.
    The fact that SOL continues to grow is proof to the success of thier business model. I applaud them.

    I have said it many times in this forum. SOL is just another ****ing locating company (JAFLC). Most of them have some baggage they must carry with them. If you blelieve what a few posters have said, then mercy to whomever goes to work for UQ, USIC, ELM, ect... that have been bashed in this forum.

    If you are thinking about working for SOL, go ask people that actually work there. PM me if you want to hear my stories. I have worked for at least five different contract locating companies, and have been associated with people who have worked at many more.

    If you look at all of the posts these naysayers have made, you will mostly just find bashing. Negative people attract negativity.
    Last edited by PokerAdam; May 6th, 2013 at 11:54 PM.

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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Well after all the negativity given out by USIC from the management about how bad Synergy One is, it made me think; why is USIC putting down SOL and trying to convince us not to jump ship so much? We have been told by supervisors that if anyone wants to go over to SOL, we should wait till even a few weeks after they take over the contract to get more $$ as then they will really need us. That we will be working for USIC again but if we get rehired, it will not be for what we were making. Sounds to me like USIC is actually scared of competition in their backyard.
    I know many of us have been on the fence about going to SOL. After talking with the management teams traveling around, seeing the investments they are making into people, equipment and infrastructure, I know myself and a number of co-workers are going.
    I know people will be surprised when they try to wait till the last minute to jump ship and may find it already full, I hope if your on the fence, your not in that position.
    While your sitting on the fence, take a look at the threads about omers/usic sale, everyone knows how great that will work out for the guys actually doing the work. More productivity required to look pretty....
    also look at all the positive comments you can find about USIC (good luck) so all the negative comments about Synergy One must be true.
    I'm going, I got a good (not great but better than USIC) offer with realistic job description with hours I know will possible after the start up settles down so I can actually spend time with my family and enjoy my weekends.

    PM me if you want to know more. or go apply on their website.

  7. #37
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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Quote Originally Posted by Conundrum View Post
    I know many of us have been on the fence about going to SOL. After talking with the management teams traveling around, seeing the investments they are making into people, equipment and infrastructure, I know myself and a number of co-workers are going.
    Good luck to you Conundrum. Hope you enjoy the new ride. When I worked there, I got a brand new Suzuki. Awesome little car. Stay in touch, and post often.

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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Should be a great adventure and after the start up calms down life will be great.

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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    from what I am hearing USIC is betting on the SOL will not be able to handle the contract and will get it back in a few months. I also heard that SOL was having some issues in getting a full staff. Seems a lot of poaching of USIC is going on though. Also heard a rumor that frontier has assured SOL that if unable too that they will take their locators in house and retrain them to be splicers and such. Sounds like frontier's honeymoon with usic is over.

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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    By Greg Roumeliotis and Soyoung Kim

    NEW YORK | Wed May 1, 2013 4:35pm EDT

    May 1 (Reuters) - The private equity arm of OMERS, one of Canada's largest pension plans, has hired Barclays Plc and Harris Williams & Co to explore a sale of United States Infrastructure Corporation (USIC), three people familiar with the matter said this week.

    The Indianapolis-based infrastructure services company, which maintains the underground cables of telecommunications, power and water utilities, could be valued at around $800 million based on annual earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of about $100 million, the people said.

    USIC and OMERS declined to comment, while spokespeople for Barclays and Harris Williams did not respond to requests for comments. The sources asked not to be named because the process is not public.

    The niche market for utility line-locating services was valued by Standard & Poor's Ratings Services at $1.6 billion last year.

    USIC was formed in 2008 when private equity firm Kohlberg & Co acquired and merged two companies active in the underground locating and marking service sector - SM&P Utility Resources Inc and Central Locating Service Ltd.

    In just over a year, USIC's EBITDA had grown by 65 percent, according to Kohlberg's website. In 2010, Kohlberg sold USIC to OMERS Private Equity for an undisclosed amount. It was OMERS' second private equity deal in the United States following its acquisition of rail maintenance equipment company Nordco Inc in 2009.

    OMERS Private Equity has over $6.5 billion of assets under management and has been carrying out investments since 1987. In 2012, it posted returns of 19.2 percent, strongly outperforming the total portfolio of OMERS, which reported a 10 percent return. OMERS has total net assets of over $60 billion.


    hmmm makes you think or should

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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    some newer info out there as well,

    Canadian pension fund investor OMERS Private Equity is seeking a sale for United States Infrastructure Corporation (USIC), Reuters has reported.

    It has appointed Barclays and Harris Williams & Co to look at exit options, the report said. A sale could fetch close to $800m, based on the company’s EBITDA of $100m.

    OMERS acquired USIC in April 2010 from US buyout firm Kohlberg & Company. The company provides outsourced sub-surface utility locating services throughout the US. Based in Indianapolis, Indiana, it was created in 2008 through the combination of SM&P and CLS, formerly the second and third-largest locating firms in the US.

    At the time it was the second private equity investment led by OMERS Private Equity in the US, after its acquisition of Nordco in 2009.

    Copyright © 2013 AltAssets

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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Some of the management at USIC. may be using scare tactics but having worked for Synergy One I found out the hard way. Dervon Gaskins and crew make promises that they will renege on. Their tactics include deception and treachery. I have worked for 20 plus yrs in the industry and have found them to be the most unscrupulous company out of them all. The truth believe it or not . They have lost contracts because of breaching agreements, with utility companies while telling employees everything was alright.

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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Because they under bid, with no interest in completing or fullfilling there obligation, to the utility companies, they wont pay damages due nor fines imposed until companies wise up and they loose contracts Georgia contracts are an example.
    Locator in NY likes this.

  14. #44
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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    He speaks the truth! I know first hand.

  15. #45
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    Default Re: Synergy One Locating LLC

    Quote Originally Posted by JAZZYJAM View Post
    He speaks the truth! I know first hand.
    Here we go again. The following is what I posted in a USIC bashing thread. It applies here as well, just insert Synergy One in place of USIC.

    I've said it before, and I'll say it again. USIC is no better or worse than any other contract locating company out there. (JAFLC) The constant rant on here about how horrible these companies are is proof that the industry needs to change. There has been alot of talk about unions, but that has not (and will not) come to fruition. Certification is definitely a way to improve things, except it does not address the "bean counters" out there managing the industry. So I will harken back to one of the first thing I learned about doing this job - learn the ropes, don't complain, overdeliver on expectations, always be available to help, CYA, and try to mentor the new meat for the grinder and hope you get enough talented individuals so that you are not constantly doing the hardest locates everyday all the time because no one else can or will.
    Complainers will complain, doers do. The company never changes (even if the sticker on your truck does).
    yahoo and UULC like this.

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