The three principals at TNT Engineering may have different skillsets and experiences in the industry but they share a sense of pride in doing the job well for their valued clients. That’s exactly what made them ideal partners to form a unique engineering firm. In 2010, Neil Gunderman, Trevor Kearnes and Trevor Skippen came together to create an innovative EPCM oil and gas services company that has served the Canadian and international markets ever since.
Kearnes and Skippen worked at a different engineering firm and Gunderman spent his career in the field doing project management and construction supervision. The three crossed paths on various projects and not only worked well together but genuinely enjoyed each other’s company.
“I was looking for a change and the three of us got together and we decided that it would be a good move for them to leave their firms and start this up with me,” says Gunderman.
It was a great decision. They started as a firm of three, each wearing every necessary hat to get the company off the ground. Within a year they hired engineers, draftspeople and administrators to bring the employee total to 10, and three years in they had reached their goal of 40.
Since the beginning, the principals were selective about who they added to their team, seeking only those professionals who mirrored the founders’ dedication to high-quality standards and a positive culture. The result is a complement of skilled staff experienced in all areas of the business that is leading the company into its second decade and establishing TNT as a trusted partner for oil and gas companies.
“As an Engineering Procurement Construction and Management company, we do it all. We do the detailed engineering, design, drafting for electrical, mechanical, process, and civil,” says Gunderman. “The field experience is something that really sets us apart—having not only the technical side but the practical knowledge.”
TNT unites field expertise and engineering to deliver well-designed solutions to complex challenges, on time and on budget. By offering the advantage of single-source efficiency, the firm supports the entire project from the engineering, automation, and management to inspection, regulatory and operations support. Over the years, TNT Engineering has diversified its offerings across Western Canada, northern United States, Latin America and the Middle East. It provides expertise in such areas as pipeline modelling, compressor stations, day-to-day operations, optimization of oil and gas facilities, and design and evaluation of water injection systems. It also excels in installation and expansion of oil batteries and design and construction management of upstream oil and gas projects.
There is little the TNT team can’t do, from offering an extra set of eyes on a design up to $250-million projects and everything in between. As a small firm, TNT Engineering is nimble and can provide quick turnaround for clients. The team can make and implement decisions quickly, which allows the company to adapt and navigate a wider range of sectors for its clients than its larger competition.
“We have the efficiency of a small company but we can handle jobs like we’re much larger,” says Gunderman.
“We make ourselves available 24/7 for our clients, and we are fast to respond to client issues,” adds Skippen.
TNT is the best of both worlds. Clients enjoy the individual attention and tailored solutions the small firm provides while benefiting from big-firm quality standards that come with the vast experience attached to the high-calibre project teams. TNT also boasts a unique mix of field and engineering not found in many firms. Gunderman’s field focus and expertise allows TNT to see things from both sides and ensures both are represented. They pride themselves on effective communication with contractors and tradespeople in the field and by speaking the same language, the job gets done right and done well.
TNT Engineering has spent the last 10 years exceeding clients’ expectations with its creative designs and solutions. While project managers work within an increasingly diverse portfolio, they have built a solid reputation in the Montney play.
“We’ve been doing a lot in northeastern BC with high-volume gas wells. We’ve spent a lot of time and effort making these efficient,” says Trevor Kearnes. “We’re on the leading edge of design for multi-well pads.”
The work they have done there fits with their mission to provide quality services that are also environmental, cost-effective and efficient for clients. The founders all have a great foundation in Montney projects and worked together on some before they even formed their firm. They carried that expertise into TNT where they continue to engineer well tie-ins, compression stations, gathering systems, and sales pipelines for several clients in the area.
TNT also completed engineering and design for three well tie-ins along with an expansion to an oil CPF in Iraq. TNT performed a 3D scan of an existing central processing facility that was increasing throughput from 10,000 to 35,000 barrels a day, and prepared a 3D model of all-new piping and equipment with accuracy to within a couple millimetres. Off-site fabrication was necessary and everything was modularized, fitting perfectly. Customers can count on quality domestically and internationally, that’s what keeps them coming back; clients are loyal and TNT’s approach helps them retain their clients, as well as their staff, long term.
TNT treats staff like family and the culture is one of collaboration, support and respect. It is also one of community. The company is involved in various community groups including the Mustard Seed, Calgary Stampede, and the Drop-In Centre and the team supports causes close to their hearts, from helping veterans to single mothers to troubled youth.
The principals are invested in the team’s success, are hands-on, involved with projects and mentor project managers, all without micromanaging the very capable team.
“They started an engineering firm because they knew they could do it better than anybody else. They only pick people who are cut from the same cloth—and none of us is going anywhere. It’s a strong company culture and the people who are here want to be here through thick and thin,” says Jana McDonald, director of business development and client relations.
Through thick and thin, the good times and these challenging ones, TNT Engineering has established an enduring reputation for excellence that will carry it into its next 10 years.