Projects

MCERF underwrites industry-critical research conducted by leading experts and consultants. This research provides our best chance of addressing our industry’s largest challenges.

MCERF has many loyal and generous financial contributors, including the Partnership Enterprise who have given over $100,000 to the Foundation. As major stakeholders, members have an active voice in defining MCERF’s research agenda, bringing forward the industry’s concerns and prioritizing various issues. Other ways to receive funding consideration from MCERF include:

  • The Board of Trustees may publish a Request for Proposals (RFP) to an extensive mailing list of academic leaders and industry consultants
  • Meetings with other partners, including MCAA’s Manufacturer/Supplier Council, the Mechanical-Electrical Academic Consortium, various legislative or allied associations
  • Unsolicited proposals may be sent to the MCERF office

Once a project has been approved by the MCERF Board of Trustees, a volunteer task force of industry experts is assembled to shepherd the project from development through deployment. The task force will:

  • Consist of persons who have extensive knowledge and/or enthusiasm for the given research area; these may be contractors, service representatives, manufacturer/suppliers, affiliated association executives or students.
  • Serve as a resource for the research principal; providing contacts and information, especially for sourcing focus group members or objective reviewers
  • Hold live meetings and conference calls, as needed to keep the project moving forward, hosted by the principal
  • Present, or assist in the roll-out presentation of the final product at an MCAA national convention
  • Present interim or final findings to the MCERF trustees
  • Include one or more MCERF/MCAA national staff members

APPLY NOW

Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.

PROJECT EXAMPLES

  1. MCERF released the Complexity Measurement Tool (CMT) which analyzes and documents a building’s mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) spaces for congestion and complexity. The CMT is an add-in for the Autodesk Revit platform. >DOWNLOAD or >VIEW
  2. Achieving Spatial Coordination Through BIM – A Guide for Specialty Contractors helps MEP contractors reconcile and incorporate leading edge technologies and processes into their projects’ spatial coordination efforts. >DOWNLOAD
  3. MCERF underwrote a project wherein Iowa State’s intern Joe Hines who was hired by Waldinger Corporation of Omaha, NE, developed ideas and uses for Mircrosoft’s HoloLens product to aid the mechanical contracting industry. Hines’ findings are available in the full report. >DOWNLOAD
  4. Building a Successful Internship Program was developed and contributed by Dr. Mostafa Khattab, Department Head, Construction Management Department at Colorado State University. Internships are an opportunity to identify and evaluate potential full-time hires for your organization. Dr. Khattab shows how building a structured internship program will provide the opportunity for MEP firms to recruit talented students and provide a flexible, cost-effective labor force without a long-term commitment. >DOWNLOAD
  5. Online Piping and Usage Specification, or OPUS, was the result of a Foundation research project to see if its venerable core body of knowledge publication, the Guideline for Quality Piping Installation, could be converted to and formatted for a more modern online delivery. OPUS is particularly useful for students, faculty, or even recent industry hires who need to know more about the basic materials and methods of the mechanical contracting industry, the world-class manufacturers and suppliers who provide these materials and the methods to use them effectively and profitably. >VIEW
  6. When all participants in a supply chain strive to provide value to their direct and indirect customers, while removing waste from their processes, that supply chain becomes a value chain. By streamlining work processes, developing stronger relationships with suppliers, and using technology, contractors can significantly increase their company’s profitability. The Value Chain–Adding Value to the Supply Chain report highlights key concepts in supply chain management that will help contractors transform their supply chain into a value chain. If you read it, you will discover the opportunities and the challenges which emerge when you integrate the business processes of contractors, suppliers, and manufacturers. >DOWNLOAD
  7. The Water-Efficiency Technologies for Mechanical Contractors: New Business Opportunities report identifies the range of opportunities for mechanical contractors, from water efficiency audits, to rainwater harvesting, gray water reuse, high-efficiency fixtures and cooling tower water conservation. The continued rapid growth of the LEED green building rating system, especially the LEED for Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance program, puts mechanical contractors at the forefront to find green solutions. >DOWNLOAD
  8. The Green Building SmartMarket Report publication, produced by McGraw-Hill Construction (MHC), is an extremely useful introduction to the concepts and terminology of green construction in the U.S. It is exactly the publication MCERF would have designed for industry education if McGraw-Hill had not already done it. The Foundation partnered with MHC to make nearly 2,500 copies of the report available to members of the industry that McGraw-Hill would not have otherwise reached. >VIEW
  9. RFID technology has allowed a wide variety of firms to track assets in a wide spectrum of industries, including the construction industry. These RFID systems, which involve tags that collect data automatically, can be an important tool for increasing productivity in the mechanical contracting environment. The Measuring the Effectiveness of RFID on Mechanical Contracting Jobsites: A Practical Evaluation report confirms that RFID technology is a viable strategy for products with the stated characteristics and operational parameters. A methodology derived in the RFID Supply Chain Lab at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, called Design for Six Sigma Research, was used to evaluate the performance of RFID technologies in a construction environment. Lab and on-site testing were used to analyze RFID reader interrogation rates. >DOWNLOAD
  10. The Five Key Trends for the Future of the Mechanical Contracting Industry report identifies five major trends resulting from technological advances, scientific breakthroughs and changing social structures that will impact the mechanical construction and service industry between now and the year 2020. Two of these trends evolve from current industry conditions, and three of them are exterior to the industry but, nonetheless, they portend significant impact. The report is structured to include implications for the industry and identifies subjects for future research. One of the most important and practical aspects of the report is its inclusion of activities that contractors can undertake now to better position their companies to meet future challenges and opportunities. >DOWNLOAD
  11. The Procurement Chain Management in Construction Industry research was commissioned to investigate the prevailing, existing, and alternative models of procurement. In order to adequately assess the strengths and weaknesses of each model, a neutral comparison of each model was conducted. After thorough investigation, a common problem was discovered in each procurement model being practiced. None of the existing and alternative models are offering an efficient, streamlined approach to procurement. >DOWNLOAD
  12. The MCERF-funded insurance liability reform study by Ducker Worldwide, The Contractor Liability Insurance Cost and Coverage Problem – Solutions to Improve, was completed and made available on MCAA’s website in 2005. The comprehensive industry survey and analysis was compiled from interviews and survey data from hundreds of contractors and industry experts. It describes the growing problems of mounting cost and decreasing scope of liability coverage; and it shows that premiums have increased an average of 50 percent over the past five years, while the scope of coverage has narrowed considerably. The report suggests a broad scope of remedial approaches including federal reforms and state law tort reform measures. >DOWNLOAD
Of Interest...

Congratulations to our four finalists for this year’s Student Chapter Competition: Ball State University, Milwaukee School of Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park and the University of Missouri-Columbia. You can see the final four teams compete at MCAA2020 on Monday, March 16 from 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Don’t miss the opportunity to learn from these students’ insightful approaches to a real-world contracting bid!

Andrew Nguyen has accepted a summer internship with MCA of Metropolitan Washington (MCAMW) member The Bowers Group, also known as W.E. Bowers. Andrew is a junior at Virginia Polytechnic Institute, studying Building Construction. He shared that, “…attending The 2019 Great Futures Forum was my first experience with MCAA and my golden ticket into the mechanical contracting industry.”

MCAA congratulates Paige Theby, a member of the MCAA Student Chapter at the University of Missouri-Columbia, for graduating with a B.S. in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and accepting a full-time position with Murphy Company. Paige reflects on her experiences and how MCAA, the MCA of Eastern Missouri, and her student chapter and internship experiences helped her find her GreatFuture!

Caleb Kowalski, an MCAA Student Chapter member, shares the opportunities and internship experiences he has received with the support of MCAA and MCA-Omaha. Caleb says, “since joining MCA-Omaha, I have had opportunities that I never thought were possible, and I know this is the industry for me.”

Kathy Deng, a Mechanical Engineering graduate from the University of Southern California, a past MCAA student chapter member and a current Design Engineer at Murray Company reflects on her experiences in college and how MCAA and CPMCA helped guide her to her career path.

The MCAA Student Chapter Competition received 33 submissions from chapters. This year’s project details were generously provided by Fresh Meadow Mechanical Corporation of Fresh Meadows, New York. The students have been tasked with developing a proposal to be the prime contractor on a chiller and cooling tower replacement project in the Penn South building in New York City. The Final Four will be announced by Friday, January 17. The Final Four teams will compete at MCAA2020 on Monday, March 16 from 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.