Dylan Ford and Scott Bordelon have been busy! They took a break from overseeing production at the new DIS-TRAN Steel Ohio facility to share the latest updates on the expansion. We’re proud to introduce you to two of the people leading the way in Ohio.
Thanks for talking with us! First, tell us what you’re working on.
Dylan: I am the acting manager in Ohio, working with the teams as we begin production here.
Scott: I’m a plant manager in Pineville and have worked there the last 16 years. I’ve been here in Ohio since August, getting the plant set up, hiring, and training. We are waiting on more machines to be installed, but production is up and running.
What kind of projects are you running right now?
Dylan: Just like in Pineville, different projects are going out to different states. We’re doing slip holes, arms, and poles.
Scott: The team here is still training, still learning, but I’m so impressed with them so far. We are hitting the same quality standards as the headquarters location and running everything through the same inspection process. The team members in Pineville typically have 15-20 years of experience each; these guys are learning, and they’re doing great.
Dylan: The Ohio area is great. There are other steel mills and welding and steel fabricators. Of course, steel poles are different. We pay a competitive wage and are getting candidates who are willing to take the training and do the work. You’re taking a welder but teaching the specific DIS-TRAN ways of doing things.
Scott: It’s a learning curve for everyone. We bring new hires down to Pineville and bring Pineville people up to Ohio to cross-train.
How can you tell it’s working?
Scott: We measure the success in volume and quality. Right now, we’re averaging 15 tons/day and seeing improvement every week. The guys we bring up work side by side with the new hires to make sure all of our quality and safety processes are consistent. As we increase capacity, we’re running at a two-week lead time.
Dylan: The quality is already spot-on; things are going out the door.
What’s the next milestone?
Dylan: We are still hiring—with four or five more great hires, we’ll hit the magic number.
Scott: We also have some plate processing equipment that will be delivered soon, which will make us more self-sufficient and increase our capabilities in pattern and pound. Everything has really fallen into place. I’m from Pineville—there has been so much support from our employees and our vendors to get the Ohio plant up and running. Everyone has pulled their weight to make it a success. It was an easy transition to start producing because everyone did their part. The new plant is producing steadily without sacrifice in quality.
Dylan: It’s really been a team effort. With what is basically a startup operation, I would have expected more turbulence, but it’s been really smooth going. It’s been fun to see it come together from the ground floor up.
The community here is great. We have good support from the local Chamber of Commerce—we are getting a warm welcome in town. When you go out to eat in your DIS-TRAN shirt, people notice and are interested in what we are doing. They’re really receptive to the industry. Reminds me a lot of Pineville—good, hardworking people not afraid to get dirty and work hard. It looks a lot like home.
Scott: Creating a pole plant from scratch has been a really exciting challenge. When I started 16 years ago, I walked into a fully operational pole plant. We started here with an empty building. Now we are seeing it all pay off. We are instilling in them the DIS-TRAN culture: whatever our customer wants is what they get. If it takes coming in on your day off, it gets done. It’ll be the same thing up here. We make sure our customers are happy.
Learn more about the opportunities at our Ohio facility!