A Model of Quality & Mentorship
Allied Fire & Safety Equipment Company operates with integrity
A commitment to quality defines the performance standards of the fire protection and life safety industry. Technicians spend years developing expertise and creating best practices that lead to the mastery of their trade. Then they take that knowledge and rigor for doing the job right and pour it into others. They pass down lessons designed to enhance and evolve the skill sets of their team, all so this industry can rely on the competence and care of experts. Lives depend on it. This is a model of mentorship and performance that Allied Fire & Safety Equipment Company, Inc. (Allied Fire & Safety) has helped establish during its 48 years in business. And it works.
“Reputation is everything here at Allied,” says Marios Goumalatsos, Fire Sprinkler Install Division Manager. “It goes a long way with our customers and with the work staff.” Marios joined the Allied Fire & Safety Engineering team in 2003, and grew in expertise and leadership in the company. In 2012, he was promoted to his current position. Today he works in collaboration with Sprinkler Install Manager Scott Vigar, a 17-year veteran with the company. Together, their work has been integral to the quality that Allied Fire & Safety’s Fire Sprinkler Division is known for.
Marios’ 15 years of loyalty and commitment speak volumes about this company. “Most managers have started with us and one way or another have climbed up the ladder,” Marios says. Allied Fire & Safety chooses to promote from within, because it knows the value of retaining and growing talent in-house to build the foundation of a great culture.
With strong roots in quality, Allied Fire & Safety has been a company of consistency in the safety industry, and has over 40 years of experience as a signatory union contractor. At the same time, this team has embraced innovation along the way, building in efficiencies as technology has refined manufacturing methods. Thanks to its vision and willingness to adapt to change, today, Allied Fire & Safety is a model for safety and dependability.
Origins and a Commitment to Excellence
Robert Newell and his brother, Ron, started Allied Fire & Safety in the 1970s, installing portable fire extinguishers and fire suppression systems. Soon, they incorporated fire sprinkler systems and became recognized for their work and for building long-lasting relationships where quality and care came first.
Nurturing customer relationships has been the bread and butter of a company with humble beginnings. Early days of building trust through one-on-one relationships have set the precedent for how this company operates. “Integrity, professionalism and honesty build strong customer relationships within the workforce and within the community as well,” Marios says.
Add a full spectrum of top-quality products and it’s easy to see how a privately held and family-owned fire protection company that started out of a bread truck with only three employees ended up growing into one of New Jersey’s largest and most trusted players in fire protection.
Today, James T. Newell is President of the company, taking the reins in 2000 after his father, Ron, retired. James started with Allied Fire & Safety in 1990 as a service technician and has over 28 years of experience in the fire protection field. He was the past President of the New Jersey Association of Fire Equipment Distributors and today sits on its board of directors. James holds a certification through the New Jersey Division of Fire Safety in Fire Alarm Systems, Portable Fire Extinguishers and Kitchen Fire Suppression Systems. All that is to say that the company is as sure-footed and experienced as ever. Headquartered in Neptune, New Jersey, Allied Fire & Safety has 60 employees, a fleet of trucks, a reputation for its commitment to quality and the traction of all-inclusive, one-stop-shop services for fire protection.
“Our motto is ‘One Call Does It All,’ “ Marios says. “We handle everything in the fire protection and life safety industry; everything from fire extinguishers, kitchen systems, clean agents, sprinkler installations, fire alarms and special hazards to kitchen hood cleaning. Most guys only handle one area.”
The community in New Jersey has seen Allied Fire & Safety thrive. Today, the company’s portfolio includes fire sprinklers, fire suppression systems, fire extinguishers, fire alarms and more, created for schools, medical facilities and military hangars, to name a few.
“While we have built 25- to 30-year relationships with many customers, like NJ Transit in New Jersey, Exelon and Six Flags Great Adventure & Safari, we continue to land big install work, most recently LG’s North American headquarters in Englewood Cliffs,” James says. “We like to think of ourselves as the Contractor of Choice, whether the client’s need is service or install-related.”
Culture & Mentorship
Time-tested methods of inspection and care passed down from generation to generation add to this company’s reputation. The attention to detail and quality is part of the culture here. There’s a thorough review of each system, product and installation to ensure the work exceeds company and government standards. New employees can expect a thorough and comprehensive training.
“We don’t throw anyone in the fire,” Marios says. “Depending on their experience level, we will send them around to each division to learn about the entire industry.” That may mean a week with the fire extinguisher division, a week with fire alarm specialists and a week in the fabrication shop.
“People have been with the company who have decades of experience,” Marios continues. “We have four designers with a combined 100 years of experience in the industry. There’s a strong relationship between new guys coming in and guys who’ve been here for a while.”
That camaraderie and relationship building has created a strong culture at Allied Fire & Safety. The company hosts events where people get together for employee appreciation days during the summer and at the end of the year; they host backyard barbecues and holiday feasts. “It’s an opportunity for us all to break some bread together and makes everyone feel appreciated,” says Christine Troia, executive assistant. “We’re always looking to grow internally, and invite qualified individuals to join our family and our team.”
The company also comes together for events to help out the local community, sponsoring a canine program for local police officers, donating concert and sporting events tickets, helping fundraise for organizations, and creating campaigns to donate to breast cancer awareness by donating $1 for every pink inspection tag used during breast cancer month. “We call it ‘Pinking the Town’,’ “ Christine says. “All of our inspection tags are pink that month.”
“Our motto is ‘One Call Does It All.’ We handle everything in the fire protection and life safety industry; everything from fire extinguishers, kitchen systems, clean agents, sprinkler installations, fire alarms and special hazards to kitchen hood cleaning.” Marios Goumalatsos, Fire Sprinkler Install Division Manager, Allied Fire & Safety Equipment Company, Inc.
The Integrity of a Company
This company is proud of its past, and it has a great track record of custom work and a tradition of excellence. “At the same time, we also take pride in being progressive. For example, over the summer, Allied Fire & Safety went totally paperless, using tablets in the field instead of clipboards and forms,” Christine says. “We don’t shy away from change.”
Every job is a custom job. Sprinkler piping is prefabricated in a 5,000-square-foot fabrication shop on their property. “We’re one of the few companies that fabricate in-house,” Marios says. “We have state-of-the-art equipment and fabricate branchlines and mains prior to it hitting the job site, which makes for faster installation. We accept change, and we know that the industry changes. When the economy took a turn in 2008 and the country went through a recession, we made adjustments and increased our efficiencies. Not a single member of our team was let go.”
To increase efficiency and performance, Allied Fire & Safety purchased a boom truck. It can extend 80 feet, or four stories, and haul large equipment. With every season, the company assesses where it is and what revisions and adjustments need to take place. And it never loses focus on what it’s here for: This business is built on keeping people safe.
Safety and peace of mind are the fuel for how this company has operated. It’s part of the integrity of a company that focuses on human life, the livelihood of its clients and on the safety of the community. With every new product and new innovation, new processes are developed to increase efficiency and communication, all leading to customer assurance and overall satisfaction. For almost five decades, Allied Fire & Safety has led the way.