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How Business Development Manager Julian Hunter Brings Solutions to Contractors’ Biggest Challenges

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The people behind HoldRite – Julian Hunter, business development manager at RWC

Without the passionate and talented people on our team, HoldRite wouldn’t be the respected plumbing manufacturer it is today. So we’re highlighting one of the people who help deliver solutions that make pros’ lives easier. 

Today, we’re chatting with Julian Hunter, RWC business development manager in the New York, New Jersey and the Philadelphia metro markets. Julian has been with us for three years and spends much of his time walking the job sites with plumbing, electrical and mechanical contractors to bring them our latest technology and listen to their needs.  

Can you explain your role at RWC and who you serve? 

I spend the majority of my time on commercial construction sites in the residential sector and engage with installers of the mechanical, electrical and plumbing (M.E.P.) trades.  

After observing what products and installation methods they currently use, I present solutions from RWC’s family of brands to either the installers onsite or the decision-makers within their companies. 

Basically, I go onto the job site, watch what they're doing and see if there's anything we can provide to help them do their jobs faster and safer. 

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evopex installation

Do you have a brand you focus on most?  

When I walk onto a new job site, I typically will lead with HydroFlame Pro firestop sleeves because those are installed very early on in the job. But one of my favorite product lines to show installers is the SharkBite EvoPEX™ plumbing system. They get excited when they see how quick the fittings are to install when making PEX-only connections. 

The green indicator ring on the EvoPEX fittings is revolutionary. Now installers have visual verification of completed connections — they realize it’s a solid system that can help save time and ensure complete connections in water distribution lines. 

One of my favorite product lines to show installers is the SharkBite EvoPEX system. They get excited when they see how quick the fittings are to install when making PEX connections.

Tell us about your background and how you got to RWC. 

After high school, I worked in construction for a while. I would later go on to work as a customer service manager for a computer hardware manufacturer, and more recently a warehouse manager for a commercial electrical contractor where I was eventually promoted to Purchasing Agent.  

After about five years with the company, I was becoming burned out. I was working 10-12 hours a day. It was a lot.  

One day, I was chatting with a friend who worked at John Guest, and the topic of outside sales reps came up. He said if I knew anyone who would be interested, he had a position in North Jersey he needed to fill. 

It sounded like a good opportunity, so I gave him my resume. Long story short, they gave me a shot, and it was a pivotal moment in my life. Finally, I had an appropriate work-life balance...I could eat breakfast with my wife & children in the morning before work & school. I just had it in me not to fail. I had to make this work, and it was such a huge game-changer for me and my family.  

I just had it in me not to fail. I had to make this work, and it was such a huge game-changer for me and my family.

When RWC acquired John Guest, I wasn’t sure if I would be able to stay in my position, but the company offered me the opportunity to represent RWC in the Mid-Atlantic region. Of course, I accepted. It's a great company and I feel valued not only by our customers but also by the company in general, my team and our managers. I'm just really happy to be part of this organization. 

What are some of the more challenging parts of your job? What do you enjoy the most?  

It's a very physical job. So you get the heat in the summer, and then in the winter we could go days on end where it’s below freezing. I typically carry a backpack full of catalogs and sometimes products — like HydroFlame Pro sleeves, TestRite and maybe a pipe support — up 20- to 30-story buildings. It's a challenge, but I do enjoy it and it makes it even more rewarding. 

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hydroflame pro sleeve

Once I find the decision-makers on the job site, it can be difficult to show them our products in a short amount of time. They’re incredibly busy, so I have maybe a couple of minutes to explain and show why RWC’s products are best. 

I like to provide solutions that make contractors work easier and help ease their pain. There's a great deal of satisfaction knowing that RWC products have helped them meet a deadline or stay within budget for a project. 

I like to provide solutions that make contractors work easier and help ease their pain. There's a great deal of satisfaction knowing that RWC products have helped them meet a deadline or stay within budget for a project.

As someone who works with our customers and target audiences regularly, how have you seen the industry and customer needs evolve over time?     

I have just over three years with RWC, and I can say the biggest impact I've witnessed is the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in material shortages. These shortages, coupled with the skilled trade labor shortage, have helped move RWC to the forefront of contractors’ minds since the majority of our products target the need to get more done in less time and with fewer people. 

Even if the upfront costs of RWC products are higher than our competitors, our customers know we're going to save them a huge amount of time and money on labor costs. 

Read: What We’re Doing to Support Pros in the Labor Shortage