An Australian Franchisor Interview
Franchisors name: Craig Penty
Name of franchise: Enviro Chasing Services
Tell us about how/when Enviro Chasing Services was started and the motivation behind establishing the company.
The business was first franchised in 2008 but only after years of research and development work designed to develop equipment that was purpose-built for wall chasing and therefore safe to use in a wall chasing setting. The motivation behind the business was to ensure that the key hazards associated with wall chasing were mitigated and this was achieved by designing equipment specifically for the task. Currently all of our competitor’s still use general-purpose saws and equipment not specifically designed to address the key hazards associated with wall chasing.
When and why did you decide to go down the franchise route?
In 2008, once the equipment was perfected, the decision was made to franchise the business as it was decided that this was the most effective way to expand the business quickly and showcase the significant advantages that our “chasesafe” system can offer over competitors.
What have been Enviro Chasing Services’ biggest achievements/successes to date so far?
We are the only wall chasing company in WA that fully complies with the safety codes. Our business is growing rapidly and we have doubled the size of the business in only 2 years. On average, our franchisees have seen their incomes rise significantly over this time. We also have several patents on our equipment.
What challenges have you had to overcome?
Designing and perfecting the equipment was a lengthy and expensive process of trial and error. Also, attracting franchisees is sometimes challenging as we work in quite a specialised area. Franchisee recruitment is our key challenge at the moment as we are growing so fast we constantly need more franchisees to join our team!
What marketing/promotional tools do you use to grow your franchise?
Much of our marketing is based on building and developing relationships with the building, electrical & plumbing trades. We do this in varying ways including face-to-face interactions such as on-site demonstrations, other interactions via industry bodies and through advertising channels. We also have a comprehensive website and are currently exploring social media including Twitter and You Tube to showcase our differentiated offer and our expertise from a health and safety perspective. All marketing costs are borne by the franchisor and franchisees do not need to contribute to a marketing fund.
What differentiates Enviro Chasing Services from the competition?
We are the only wall chasing provider who uses purpose-designed equipment that mitigates the hazards associated with wall chasing. This makes us the safest option for our customers. We also pride ourselves on our quality and customer service levels. All franchisees undergo a comprehensive training program and we have a dedicated Quality Manager who ensures our quality levels are consistently high. We also use an in-house designed customer & franchisee contact system that enables us to efficiently manage job coordination between customers, franchisees and head office. Franchisees connect to this online system via IPAD’s and customers can access their own dedicated areas to enter and track jobs in real time.
In your opinion, what makes a successful Enviro Chasing Services franchisee?
Our franchisees need to have a strong customer service ethic and be focussed on delivering a quality outcome every time. They need strong communication skills and a “can-do” attitude. It also helps if they like working outdoors and have reasonable levels of fitness.
What changes have you seen in your industry over recent year? And how have you adapted to them?
We believe we are leading the industry and driving the change. In terms of safety we are definitely leading the way and we believe we are the only fully compliant wall-chasing operator in WA. Additionally, our trade customers expect a high level of accuracy and quality and we have developed many systems and procedures to enable us to provide a quality service that consistently makes us the business of choice in our industry.
What does the future hold for Enviro Chasing Services?
We are expanding rapidly and aim to double the business again over the next 2 years. This means we are always on the lookout for more franchisees.
What expansion plans have you got nationally and internationally?
We are currently the market leader In WA but we still have major expansion plans over coming years within the state. We are also looking to expand into NSW in the near future. In addition, we have a medium term plan to take the business into a suitable overseas market.
What advice would you give to someone considering franchising their business?
Do your research and spend some time developing all aspects of your business model. The devil is in the detailed planning!
If you had to do it all again, what would you do differently?
Ensure we had enough resources to enable us to grow our franchisee numbers in line with our rapid business growth.
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