Someone please educate me on the need to let the genset warm up before applying a load.
Again, I come from the boating world and it is normal practice to start the genset and hit it with everthing at once.
It's debatable just how much "warm up" is required before applying the load. However, at a bare minimum, you want the engine to be fully started and the RPMs to stabilize first. With no delay whatsoever, many transfer switches will close while the starter is still spinning, thus loading the engine before it has even fully started. This puts additional strain on the starter as well as the pistons and other engine components. Also, since voltage will not be fully up to nominal, any induction loads will actually be harder to start and draw more current, providing even more resistance and also reducing the life of those induction motors.
BTW, many marine generator installations that I have seen do include such a delay mechanism, even if it is as simple as a contactor in-line which will not close until a minimum voltage has been reached. But almost every marine genset comes with instructions to let the generator fully start (and/or warm up) before applying the loads, so the assumption is that this will, at minimum, be done manually if there is no automatic delay.