Richard Walters spent most of his early working years as a corporate employee. In his late 20s, he decided to pivot from his corporate life and retrain as an electrician. After several years on the tools as a contractor, he started a solar panel installation company with a business partner. That kept him busy for the next decade until it was time to go out on his own again. That’s when Stag Solar Solutions was born.
"I decided that I could work with myself and earn a little bit more,” he laughs.
Things were a little stop-and-start, to begin with. Richard and his team were limited by the pandemic and subsequent material shortages, but since October 2021 business has started to pick up. Richard says while a steady increase in enquiries is great for business, the spike in demand caused their admin processes to falter. If Stag Solar Solutions was going to continue providing the best customer service possible, they needed to upgrade their systems.
For many years, Stag Solar Solutions was run like many trade business start-ups — with a lot of blood, sweat, and spreadsheets. This system was fine when managing a handful of customers, but as referrals grew, so did their client base. It got to the point where clients expected Richard to remember them without fail.
"Customers would ring me and expect me to know them, but when you’re working with 16-20 customers all at once, the memory bank starts to fail you,” he laughs. “I needed a database where I could put all those job and customer details and access it while on-site.”
Tradify provides the solution
Richard was also concerned that they were dropping the ball with enquiries, and therefore missing opportunities to quote for more work. Luckily for Richard, he’d already found the perfect solution. He’d seen advertisements for Tradify while browsing YouTube, and after a little bit of research, Richard says it was time to put his pride aside and make the investment.
“What Tradify saves me in time and money is worth far more than the monthly cost of the app.”
Fast response to every enquiry
Recently, Stag Solar Solutions experienced a significant spike in enquiries, something they admittedly weren’t anticipating. If they hadn’t transitioned from their old system to Tradify, Richard believes some of those enquiries would have fallen through the cracks.
“I think we would have lost customers in the sense that they would have got lost in the tidal wave of business that was coming our way.”
Now, Richard has Tradify’s enquiries software integrated directly with his website.
"When someone sends an enquiry through our website, it goes straight into Tradify – the address, telephone number, email — it's all done. I really like that,” says Richard, “as we deal with each enquiry, we move it across to the jobs list, so we can see who we still need to touch base with.”
From there, Richard can add notes and photos to active jobs, which helps him keep his subcontractors in the loop.
“It’s a lot better for subcontractors. They can go into Tradify and look at photos before they turn up for the job.”
Customised quotes and invoices a bonus
Though Richard is relatively new to Tradify, he’s excited to discover all the features it has to offer as he expands his business and grows his team. An added benefit that he wasn’t expecting was the ability to customise his quotes and invoices.
Prior to Tradify, he’d been using other apps for quotes and invoices that Richard thought could be better.
"With other systems, the logo was sometimes three times bigger than ours; they were advertising their business more than ours. Tradify’s quoting software is far more customisable, and we feel our quotes look more professional.”
Without Tradify, you’re walking a bike instead of riding it
Richard recommends that every trade business gets onto using a system like Tradify.
“Tradify has protected us from what would have been a fall-over of the business. If you wait until you're busier, chances are when you get busy, that’ll be the hardest time. So, if you're building your business, get on it now.”
If you’re concerned about halting operations to integrate Tradify, Richard also has this advice:
“It’s like the difference between walking with a bike or stopping to get on and ride it. There might be a brief pause, which you may feel you can't afford. However, think about how you’ll feel in two months when you are riding the bike instead of walking it.”
Stag Solar Solutions powering up with Tradify:
- Room to grow: system can scale as business grows.
- Professional paperwork: customised quotes and invoices.
- Cloud-based: access to customer info from anywhere.
- Enquiry feature helping to win more work.