A new voice/data association wants to improve the lives of telecom contractors and other electrical companies with interests in this growing market. Looking to provide growth strategies and tools for privately held telecommunications and electrical contractors, the National Telecom Alliance (NTA), Houston, opened its doors in March. NTA said it would teach telecommunications and electrical contractors how to expand their businesses, improve sales and marketing effectiveness, increase labor productivity and leverage contracts, relationships and services.

“Market fluctuations in the last 12 months have led to changes in the telecommunications industry that will require more aggressive sales and management techniques for contractors working in those markets,” said Michael O'Mara, chief executive officer of NTA.

O'Mara is the managing partner of Acquisitions Management Group and was the former president of a $21 million mechanical contractor. He said he got the idea to start NTA from participating in the industry's first contractor alliance, Anderson & Howard, a $50 million electrical and telecommunications contractor based in Irvine, Calif.

Besides the programs it plans to offer, NTA will offer rebates and incentives from electrical and telecommunications manufacturers and distributors on supplies, components and equipment, as well as vehicles and insurance.

NTA does not see itself playing the same role as associations like NECA and BICSI. “We are not going to be a technical trainer,” O'Mara said. “Our whole focus is we are there to help make these contractors more successful.”

The alliance is taking a neutral stance and is neither pro-union nor open shop.

NTA has an advisory board of six contractors that represent about $275 million in combined annual revenues. Eventually, the association plans to add four to six more members to the board, said O'Mara. The association also plans to form a non-contractor industry board that would include industry representatives such as representatives from other associations and industry magazines.

The NTA's first national summit is scheduled for May 18-19 in Las Vegas. NTA will offer one-day introductory meetings to explain the programs and benefits that it will offer. The introductory meeting dates are set for March 30 in Scottsdale; April 6 in Houston, and April 20 in Atlanta.