Spring is in the air! – Part 2

The sun is out, the snow is melting, and the crew can’t wait to work outside again! Last week we sent you the first three ways for you to help jump start your business for the spring season! We hope you were able to take some of those suggestions and put them to work for your business. Here are the last four suggestions we have: 4. Dust off your training manual – new employees will need training and our trainers will need a plan of action. Don’t just put new employees out in the field and expect your crew to train and produce when they are trying to keep the job on track. Have an action plan in place and set aside training time to make this happen. 5. Safety first, so inspect the outside equipment that has been sitting in the shop all winter. Ladders might need to have new rope installed, the dogs might need to be oiled so they catch the rungs. Make sure the dogs are straight, because if they hang off the back of the truck too far, they might have gotten bent when your driver unexpectedly backed into something. Check out your tie downs and ladder racks as well. Test-run the power washers and spray equipment if that has been sitting unused for any length of time, and if you forgot to add an additive to the gas tank, you might want to change the gas in those machines. 6. Marketing: If you have not started marketing for exterior work, get the word out!  Offer your customers a walk around the property to see if...

Spring is in the air! – Part 1

Spring is in the air, and the crew can’t wait to work outside again! It has been a long winter. The phones are starting to ring off the hook as our customers begin to inspect their homes and see winter damage from ice and snow. Here are 7 ways to spring into action. 1. Communication: I just came back from the PDCA Expo 2015 in Charleston, SC, where there was a lot of communication going on. One of the topics of concern was the level of communication between the crew and the office.  As the estimator goes to meet with the client and learn about all of their painting needs, important information can be lost between that conversation and what the crew needs to know about the job. That lack of communication may cause a crew to backtrack or perform tasks out of order, causing loss of profit and additional time on that job. The solution is to produce a work order that will give your crew an account of all the areas and all of the items in any given area. Using the PEP Cloud Pro estimating program, I am able to tell our crew the actual type of surface they are working on, the level of prep to that surface, the number of coats to apply, the color and amount of product to purchase, and I can display an actual picture of the area or item. The program also allows for notes  to explain or to define the task at hand. The work order is well-organized and assists the crew in tracking the time spent performing each task, giving them a...