Greg Begelhole has been in the trade industry for “a long, long time!” With an apprenticeship under his belt in the ‘80s, he dove into a business venture for 20 years, before selling up and shifting into more managerial roles.
The office work had Greg thinking his days of working on-site were long behind him. When he relocated to a small town in Victoria, Melbourne, work opportunities were scarce so for a few years, Greg travelled and worked out of town.
That wore thin after a while – until he realised there wasn’t a single fridge mechanic in the area. Turning adversity into opportunity, Greg found himself launching a business once again – and Total Cool Refrigeration was born.
Greg’s experience in the industry dates back to the ‘80s, but thankfully, his approach to running a trade business doesn’t. This time around, Greg knew an efficient software system would be the bedrock for building a successful business.
“I started to search around for apps that could help with scheduling and timesheets – all that hands-on sort of stuff,” he explains.
Old-school system = lost profit
Total Cool Refrigeration isn’t Greg’s first rodeo. When running his old business, he used an invoice book, a receipt book, and job cards. It wasn’t conducive to running an efficient business and Greg noticed a loss in profit.
“In the old days, when I had guys working for me, I’d go to clean their van and find a job card down the back of their seat that could be worth a couple thousand bucks. You relied on them to bring the job cards back to the office.”
Greg also recalls having issues with timesheets which, again, caused losses. In the past, he relied on his memory to keep track of time and was constantly chasing his guys for their hours.
“You’d be thinking, how long was I at that job? I’ll just make it two hours.”
The guessing game didn’t work in his favour. Greg would always underestimate his time, leaving him out of pocket. So when he stepped back into the business world 10 years later, he knew there must be a better way.
The best solution for modern trade businesses
Looking back, Greg can’t believe how different things are now.
“Back then, I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be great if everybody had an email address and we could email bills out – no more folding them up and sending them in the post?’ So, when I came back 10 years later, it was just so exciting because all that stuff was there.”
When he started Total Cool Refrigeration, Greg looked at other software options, many of which were far too expensive – and none of them matched up to Tradify in his eyes.
“When I found Tradify, I was very excited. Hardly a day goes by when I don’t say to my wife, ‘This programme is unreal!’ It does everything I want it to. I’m really impressed.”
Professional, streamlined quotes in minutes
20 years ago, Greg was spending a large chunk of his day manually creating quotes – time that could’ve been spent on securing more work.
“I’d go home at night, dreading doing quotes – then having to save them manually on my computer.”
These days, his quoting system is worlds away from what it used to be.
“Because Tradify is so streamlined, I can do a quote sitting in my car - while having lunch!”
Tradify’s quote templates make things easy for any new job Greg takes on. He simply fills in the fields he needs before sending it off to the customer, who can accept the quote online and that’s that - it’s a done deal.
What’s even better is it all happens automatically, which means Greg has more time to focus on running his business.
It sure beats the way things were done in the ‘80s, Greg admits.
“With Tradify you can generate a really professional quote in a couple of minutes.”
Keeping tabs on materials and time
Something else that appealed to Greg was having all his job information and timesheets accessible from one place. Tradify helps keep the business in order – and unlike the past, he’s not losing money because of missed information down the back of car seats.
“With Tradify, once you do a job, all the information is there.”
When a customer rings about a job, Greg can quickly enter the details into Tradify, so he doesn’t forget to bill it out. Once the jobs are logged, tracking progress is easy too – and he’s never stressed about missing time or, consequently, profit.
“The timesheet function is awesome as well. Being able to get to a job, push the start button, then the stop button when you’ve finished. You don't have to worry about going through your diary a couple of weeks later, forgetting what hours you did.”
Scheduler and maps help Greg navigate new towns
When Greg started Total Cool Refrigeration, he was operating in foreign territory. The navigation system in Tradify helped him find his way and made getting from A to B a whole lot easier.
“If I don't know my way around the area, I just click on the job, hit navigate and away I go.”
Tradify’s scheduler has also helped Greg work better with his subcontractors. He sends them the Scheduler, and they immediately get access to a full rundown of their jobs for the day.
If his subcontractors don’t know what Tradify is, Greg is quick to rave about it.
“I always tell them how good and streamlined it is.”
It’s a harder task to convince other tradies from his generation, he admits. Many are apprehensive about trying a modern system, but Greg’s an avid Tradify supporter and says others need to get on board.
“I’ve certainly recommended it a number of times. It’s an awesome programme, it really is.”
Totally cool software for Total Cool Refrigeration
- Quick, professional quotes: in a couple of minutes.
- Cloud-based: customer details and job info accessible on the road.
- Scheduler: maps help Greg find his way around new towns for appointments.
- Tidy timesheets: every minute of work is tracked and charged out.
- Affordable: Greg says Tradify is worth every penny.