Rio Rancho maintenance facility generates appreciation

Rio Rancho crews load a regulator on a flatbed for delivery to a job site.

Rio Rancho crews load a regulator on a flatbed for delivery to a job site.

The challenge of the job, the comfortable environment, the camaraderie — that’s what makes the Tri-State maintenance south facility in Rio Rancho, N.M., an appealing place to earn a living.

So say some of the 48 people who work at the Tri-State operation in Rio Rancho’s Enchanted Hills, ranked first among the 25 companies designated as 2013’s top workplaces for small businesses in New Mexico.

“What was nice about this is that it came from the employees,” said Tri-State maintenance manager Mike Montaño, a native of nearby Bernalillo, of the company’s nomination. He oversees the three departments — telecommunications, substation and line — that make up the Rio Rancho operation.

The Rio Rancho crews are responsible for ensuring power is reliably and safely delivered to the 12 co-ops served by Tri-State in the Land of Enchantment.

“The territory is pretty big,” Montaño said. “We cover 85 percent of New Mexico.”

The bulk of the workforce is in the field Monday through Thursday. The crews work a 10-hour-a-day, four-day a-week schedule adopted in 2002.

Mike Montano, transmission maintenance manager for the south facility, oversees 48 employees at Rio Rancho.

Mike Montano, transmission maintenance manager for the south facility, oversees 48 employees at Rio Rancho.

A survey for the top workplace competition asking why “I love my job” reveals that employees appreciate what their company has to offer.

“The work environment is very comfortable, considering the stress that can come from a job of this nature,” one worker said.

“The challenging area of work that I am in and the camaraderie of those directly in my department and all other departments as well,” another said, with a tip of the hat to management. “I feel we have a manager that truly cares about his employees and getting us home safe.”

-Excerpted from the Albuquerque Journal, May 19, 2013

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