Northwestern Mutual Tower & Commons

A state-of-the-art tower that has permanently enhanced the Milwaukee skyline, the Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons project is one of the crown jewels of Staff Electric’s portfolio. A sleek and sophisticated glass structure, the space spans more than 1.1 million square feet and was designed to promote innovation and collaboration. Staff Electric was responsible for 90% of the electrical portion of the project, including existing build-outs, emergency systems and infrastructure for low-voltage systems. To accomplish a job so massive, Staff Electric brought together a team of successful, experienced individuals at all levels – from management to labor. At any given time, there were more than 600 people on-site during the build-out of the tower.





This project was the first in the area to work from the Code of Excellence. A job-wide standard, the Code of Excellence required everyone working on the project to adhere to strict guidelines to assure a collaborative, efficient work environment. Tenets of the Code implemented on this project included:

  • Established starting and quitting times for all laborers
  • Minimal tardiness and absenteeism
  • Zero tolerance for substance abuse issues
  • The creation of a safe working environment by all contractors
  • The highest quality on all work performed on the project

We worked closely with our local union to shore up labor support for the project, which allowed us to maintain a steady operational flow for each phase of the project. We made a commitment to the City of Milwaukee to utilize workers through the Residence Preference Program (RPP). This program works to utilize under-and unemployed residents on projects where possible.

Scott Wollenzien, Assistant Director of Facility Services for Northwestern Mutual, said of Staff’s involvement: “The scale of this project was unique. But, whether it’s a small operational project or large project like this one, Staff has all the resources. They are a one-stop-shop that prevents us from having to source for other expertise. I can pick up the phone at any time and call anybody at Staff, and I know I will get a phone call back. That is a really important feature that we value in anyone we work with.”


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