Tampa contractor beats the odds despite barriers against union contractors

Morrow Steel, a leading steel fabricator and erector, ranked high in Tampa Bay Business Journal’s 2022 Top 200 Largest Private Companies list. The company’s story of beating the odds to make it big is truly inspirational.

Morrow Steel has been in business for over 50 years. The owner of the company is a union ironworker from Iron Workers Local 397 in Tampa. It is a blue-collar success story of blood, sweat and tears. In 1995, Bill Morrow bought the company from his previous employer after working 7 years as a union ironworker and 15 years in management. It was a dream come true for the young ironworker who later grew the company into one of the top 200 largest private companies in Tampa Bay through hard work and dedication.

The immense success of Morrow Steel is especially impressive because it is extremely difficult for union contractors to make it in the South, a non-union stronghold. Bill believes diversification of his business to offer both steel fabrication and erection services has been one of the main reasons for the success of his company.

“Our customers like being able to work with only one company to meet all their needs from steel fabrication to erection,” said Bill. “We take care of our customers. If we say we are going to do something by a certain deadline, we make it happen. We are well known for delivering on time. Well over 90 percent of our business is repeat business, which means our customers have confidence in our abilities to produce. In this business, it’s all about your reputation.”

Bill also attributes his success to the company’s safe and well-trained workforce. His company’s field workforce is made up of all union ironworkers and Bill believes that their superior training has been the key to delivering projects on time. “I consider the superior training our ironworkers receive from the Iron Workers registered apprenticeship program at the start of their careers, safety and update training they receive throughout their careers, and other specialized jobsite supervision training they receive from IMPACT, the labor-management arm of the Iron Workers Union such as Superintendent Training and Foreman Training, to be a key factor in the success of our company.”

International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers aka Iron Workers Union is proud of its signatory contractor Morrow Steel and the skilled army of safety-conscious ironworkers it employs.

Morrow Steel continues to dominate the steel fabrication and erection industries in Florida, regardless of the fierce competition, and hopes to continue to be in the top 200 largest private companies in Tampa for years to come.

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