Jack Doheny Companies is the world’s largest sewer cleaning and maintenance equipment dealer organization in North America, operates fourteen locations in the United States and Canada and has the largest rental fleet of vacuum and inspection trucks in North America. “Every one of our branches are totally focused on customer satisfaction,” says Kay Doheny, CEO of Jack Doheny Companies.” Jack had surrounded himself with extremely competent people who are compensated accordingly.”
Logging the Miles
It had been a long road, literally and figuratively, for Doheny. He got his start in the sewer cleaning business in 1948, demonstrating coiled rodders and sectional rodding machines for O’Brien Manufacturing with his father, Earl J. Doheny.
Jack Doheny joined O’Brien Manufacturing in 1953 after a hitch in the U.S. Air Force. O’Brien had introduced a coiled rodding machine with a one-inch cable and a power feed for cleaning larger pipes. Doheny hit the road to sell that product.
In the years after World War II, sewers were being put in the ground at rapid pace but the cities didn’t have funds to maintain them. They were one of the first companies that allowed cities to purchase sewer machines using installment payments.
The contacts made on those trips helped Jack when he started his own business, Jack Doheny Companies in 1973.
Good Credit Risks
Jack Doheny Companies immediately started selling Vactor combination sewer cleaners, distinguishing itself by selling on credit and offering guaranteed buy-backs. Kay says “When Jack started in this business, nobody would finance a sewer machine. He did. Unlike people in some other professions, people in the sewer cleaning business have made a commitment that they don’t mind getting their hands dirty. They are workers, and they do pay their bills. I know of no occupation that has a better credit rating than sewer cleaning people. A huge percentage of the equipment we sold was financed.”
Kay observes “Jack made daily judgments on character and gave those who wouldn’t otherwise have a chance to get into the business an opportunity to do so. We help launch those contractors. They build their credit rating and mature into a relationship with a bank, and we hand them off. In the end, their success is our success.
Service All the Time
Once contractors are in business, the Doheny’s philosophy is keep them operating with little downtime. Our long suit has always been service and equipment availability.
As for repairs, JDC goes out of the way to make sure equipment is running. Sewer cleaning is an emergency business. A contractor can’t call the bank and say, ‘My machine’s broken, stop the payments.’
We have well in excess of $6 million of parts in stock, so if someone calls here before 4 o’clock in the afternoon we can have it to them the next morning. If a man needs a part that we don’t have in stock, we’ll pull a $5 part off a $300,000 machine to get him back in operation.
Built Around People
Jack Doheny Companies also offers comprehensive, formalized training and certification programs for customers in operations, maintenance and safety. The key to it all is quality people.