Fortis Favors Diverse-Business Inclusion

In the last 5 years, Fortis has worked with more than 120 MWESB/COBID-certified businesses. Approximately half of these firms have developed in a sustainable way, allowing them to graduate from small-business status.

What Do We Do to Ensure Success?

Early Teaming

Fortis encourages and wants involvement during preconstruction
so that firms are set up for success before bid day.

Getting Personal

Specific to project needs, we hold preliminary community-focused and MWESB/COBID-focused meet-and-greet events, which take place well in advance of bidding to help maximize understanding and involvement and set a foundation for success.

Tailored Bid Packages

We look closely at the entire project early, in order to identify scopes that are good matches to the skill sets of small and diverse subcontractors. We may break larger scopes of work into better-manageable sizes for certified firms and/or work with larger and more-established subcontractors and suppliers to ensure they actively solicit and involve diverse second-tier subcontractors.

It’s a Team Effort

Achieving a high MWESB/COBID participation rate requires a commitment and courageous decisions from an Owner with the bigger picture in mind. When financials are the only measuring stick, certified-firm participation suffers, so Fortis works to provide a pathway to meet the target goal. This could mean modifying outdated processes or accepting a higher bid from a certified firm to give them the right opportunity.

Early Payment Policy

Fortis realizes that MWESB/COBID-certified contractors can struggle with cash position; to help with this we provide an option for early payment with subcontracts under $200,000. Payments are guaranteed to be made to these subcontractors within 15 days of invoice approval.

Partnerships in Supporting Diversity

Our mutually beneficial relationships with organizations including the Professional Business Development Group, LatinoBuilt, and the National Association of Minority Contractors help us to stay at the forefront of industry MWESB/COBID utilization while continuing to build relationships.

What Does Success Look Like?

The steps we take to set up MWESB/COBID-certified firms for success ensure that we achieve utilization goals and deliver on budget, schedule and quality. Having the right firms aligned with the right scopes have allowed us to achieve award-winning results – as shown by the projects below – with honors including one of the nation’s top-10 projects for sustainable design excellence as well as designations of the region’s top public project and top education project, among others.

Creating a Safe, Welcoming and Inclusive Jobsite

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Training Program for a Hate-Free Jobsite

Our responsibility, as leaders and supervisors, is to create a welcoming, inclusive, and hate-free jobsite. Period. To assist in this responsibility, Fortis provides training on our Zero-Tolerance Policy, expectations and behaviors for ALL Fortis employees and subcontractor partners who work on our sites. In addition, our company-specific Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Training Program includes jobsite-culture initiatives that address Bias Awareness and Harassment Prevention. This ensures consistency on all our project sites and develops project environments that are inclusive for all.

Fortis is proud to be a signatory member
of the Safe From Hate Pledge in Oregon