Embrace Technology in Your Restoration Business: The Pathway to Efficiency
Whether we like it or not, change is constantly happening all around us. You have to decide whether or not the change works for you or if you just want to keep on doing what you’ve been doing. We can whine about how it used to be, but the reality is we can only control how or if we respond to the change in the future.
Let’s talk about some things that are happening in the industry that are going to revolutionize the way you estimate losses, along with some options for resolving them.
Attracting New People
The first thing that comes to mind is attracting new people into your business. To attract new people, they need to know what you want them to do and whether or not they want to do what you want done. They also need to know whether or not they have a future with your company. Additionally, can they earn a wage that will allow them to raise a family in a 40-hour or less work week?
One solution that will help you, while also attracting younger people, is using more software in your business. This will allow a more effective and efficient flow of work. Unlike a lot of people currently working in your company, the younger people enjoy using software and do not particularly like going outside to a jobsite. This is not an industry for anyone who says, “I do not like to sweat.”
Ironically, this also opens up opportunities to address the high turnover you are experiencing with your techs. By teaching the techs how to work with this new software in the field, they can have the opportunity to earn more money by being more productive, while working fewer hours on each job.
In order to be more competitive in the marketplace, you need to become more efficient. You may have noticed that people in your company like change even less than you do. They will go to even greater lengths than you to avoid change.
Let me describe a process I know works and is working in the field. The goal is to train your on-call techs that respond to a loss how to use the new technology. They will be taught to retrieve the data your estimator (back in their office) will need to know in order to bid the job accurately. I believe you can refine the process to fit your company, so your estimator will not have to initially go to the job site, if ever. The tech will be trained to take the pictures necessary to allow the estimator to prepare an estimate for the entire inside work. In order for this to happen, some of my clients are using the new Matterport camera for all of the interior information the estimator will need. The clarity of the picture is as though you are standing right at the loss. The pictures are so clear, you do not have to go to the loss site to check out a missed or forgotten detail that you might need more information on. This allows the estimator to do more estimates more effectively and efficiently without going to the loss site.
The estimator, with a laptop, can then use Renoworks 3D Visualization FastTrack powered by Geomni software. This allows the estimator to get all of the exterior dimensions, elevations, and pictures needed for a complete estimate.
This will then allow the estimator to do a presentation to the policy holder(s), either online, in their office, or at the job site. The estimator will be able to set up the presentation in the software to visually show the loss from start to finish. The estimator can make changes, based on the client’s desires to change colors, styles, and materials, at the click of the keyboard. In addition, the estimator can show them visual samples of all of their product samples. The estimator can set the software to only show the samples to choose from that are allowed in their estimated allowance budget. No more lugging around sample rings and boards to have the selections made from.
So, as an owner, you might want to think about taking a look at some new technology out there. One final thought I will leave you with is that the estimator could do the estimate from any place in the world, maybe even as a subcontractor.
I know this will help you run a more efficient and effective company with increased accountability!