When it comes to choosing an HVAC company, there are countless options available in the market. However, not all companies are created equal in terms of safety practices, expertise, and overall services offered. At Air Ideal, the Long Island-based company prides itself on going above and beyond for its customers by prioritizing safety protocols while delivering exceptional expertise in all aspects of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems.
Air Ideal’s commitment to progress and staying at the forefront of innovation has allowed them to become a leader in the industry. ONE18MEDIA recently had the chance to sit down with Air Ideal President Sean McEntee to discuss the inner workings of the company and how they stand out from the competition. From its emphasis on safety to fostering a healthy company culture, here’s how Air Ideal works to maintain a top spot in the HVAC industry.
Air Ideal’s Commitment to Safety
From adhering to industry standards to regular training for its technicians, Air Ideal ensures that its team is equipped to handle any situation that may arise. Safety has always been a top priority for Air Ideal — and with an EMR of 0.73, its commitment to ensuring the safety of its employees, customers, and the environment with the highest standards is evident in every project they undertake.
An EMR of 0.73
Experience Modification Ratings or EMRs are an important factor in determining the premium rates that businesses have to pay for their workers’ compensation insurance. Essentially, EMRs are a reflection of a company’s safety record and are calculated by comparing its actual losses and claims history to what is expected for its industry and size. If a company’s losses are lower than expected, it will have a lower EMR, indicating that it is a safer place to work and therefore less risky to insure.
Conversely, a company that has a higher than expected amount of losses will have a higher EMR, meaning that it will most likely pay higher premiums for coverage. A good EMR can have a significant impact on a business’s bottom line, making it a key metric for companies to track and manage to ensure a safe and healthy work environment for their employees.
The EMR industry standard is 1.0 — with a lower score indicating a safe workplace, as previously mentioned. In Air Ideal’s case, the company boasts an 0.73 rating, owing up to its commitment to safety — but what does McEntee think?
“I think it’s terrible,” McEntee bluntly stated, despite having a positive rating. He then discussed how a competitor has a lower rating, which “drives [him] crazy” as he “[knows] they’re not paying as much attention to it” as Air Ideal is.
Despite such, Air Ideal is dedicated in its efforts to promote safety both in and out of the company. What do Air Ideal’s efforts entail?
The Importance of a Full-Time Safety Director
In his sitdown interview, McEntee detailed the rigorous application of safety measures put into place. “We have a full time Safety Director that nobody our size can say. That’s how hard and serious we take this,” he revealed. To put it into perspective, McEntee noted that “The next biggest company that has a full time Safety Director is almost double our size”
The buck doesn’t stop with the Safety Director, either. The President also went into detail about how deeply ingrained safety is in regards to the company culture. “I stress to every single one of the people that work here — from whoever is just putting stuff in the mail to a guy that’s on a scaffold or doing a crane rig with equipment that weighs thousands of lbs. and it’s 200 ft in the air — we want you to go home the same or better than you came in in the morning.”
“Might be a little tired,” McEntee added with a chuckle, “But past that, we want you to go home in one piece.”
Air Ideal’s team places a huge emphasis on utilizing safety equipment — including, but not limited to, hard hats, vests, eye protection, gloves, platform ladders, steel toe boots, and more. With Air Ideal’s unwavering dedication to safety, customers can trust that their HVAC needs will be met with the utmost care and precaution.
What Sets Air Ideal Apart from the Rest
Exceptional Customer Service
As an HVAC service provider, offering excellent customer service should always be a top priority. Your customers are investing in your company for a reason — to ensure their comfort and productivity in their businesses and homes. Providing top-notch customer service sets you apart from your competitors and strengthens your reputation within the community.
A positive customer service experience can lead to repeat business and referrals, while a negative experience can lead to lost customers and a damaged reputation. Customers want to feel heard, valued, and prioritized — and by listening to their needs, offering clear communication and solutions, and following up on their satisfaction, you can help establish trust and a long-term relationship with them.
For what separates the Air Ideal team from the rest, McEntee says …
“It’s how we treat our customers and how our customers view us … Every customer that we have — that we view as a good customer — is a partner and a friend. We’re in it together.”
He further added that “Our customers view us as that, as opposed to just ‘Oh, that’s my air conditioning guy. It’s like, ‘Oh no, that’s Sean and he helps me out.’”
Air Ideal takes pride in fostering a company culture of growth and friendship. The workplace can often be a source of stress and pressure, but Air Ideal believes that employees who feel supported by their colleagues and managers can thrive both personally and professionally.
Not only does Air Ideal foster great relationships with clients, but also from within. When asked about the company culture and camaraderie at Air Ideal, McEntee simply said, “I work with my friends” — further noting that those are “our biggest differentiators.”
McEntee cited having a strong support system that includes the likes of VP, Director of Field Operations Bill Powell and CEO Vijay Biradar. “We really try [along with] my partner Vijay and my partner Bill and all the people here. We make sure that we’re doing the right thing for [our clients] because they’re going to do the right thing for us.”
The company encourages open communication and collaboration, creating an environment where team members can learn from each other’s strengths and weaknesses. By investing in the team’s interpersonal relationships, Air Ideal promotes a sense of camaraderie that goes beyond individual departments and roles. This ensures that employees feel valued and appreciated, which in turn leads to increased job satisfaction and productivity.
Growth Extends in Different Directions
McEntee went on to mention that “A big part of our culture is everybody wants to grow and be better than what they are.” In a poignant revelation, he recalled how some colleagues will voice intentions to move on with their careers in the coming years — a point that McEntee genuinely appreciates.
“You’re open enough with me to tell me that — let’s [utilize] what we have here and … what can I do to make you more successful? Because, you know, what if five years from now you want to work for a development company?”
Growth obviously means a lot in the long-term for Air Ideal, no matter what career path colleagues choose later on. What ultimately matters is that, when you’re with Air Ideal, the team will meet you in the middle and help you achieve those goals you may have — whether it’s short-term or long-term. Overall, Air Ideal’s focus on growth and friendship in its company culture benefits both the organization and its employees.
How Air Ideal Plans to Adapt in the Future
HVAC Industry Growth as a Net Positive
When it comes to preparing for the future and being malleable, McEntee noted that the HVAC industry isn’t changing as fast as people are making it out to be — pointing out that VRF systems, which have existed in Asia since the 1990s, have “just been slowly adapted here.”
Moreover, he did acknowledge the change in indoor air quality equipment as a “good thing” — stating that said growth will “help [Air Ideal’s] business grow with different types of filters, filtration, different types of sterilization of air going through spaces,” and so on. And with legislation making headway — citing legionella as an example — McEntee again sees another positive.
“The legionella type of legislation is actually a really good thing because it makes sure that you’re having clean water going through your equipment. My guys are exposed to that — that’s good to know that it’s much more unlikely to have a legionella situation than it was before.”
Air Ideal Meets All Your HVAC Needs
When it comes to choosing an HVAC service provider — be it commercial or residential — look no further than Air Ideal. As detailed, the Manhattan-based company puts an emphasis on safety, customer satisfaction and retention, and personal/professional growth. So whether you’re in need of coil cleaning or improving your indoor air quality, Air Ideal has got you covered.