By Anh-Minh Le
After almost 30 years working as a subcontractor in the property management industry—including 12 years as a maintenance supervisor—Randy Rochte decided to hang his own shingle. In early 2014, he launched The Hired Man, which takes care of maintenance needs in the residential market. For Las Vegas-based Randy, there are numerous perks to operating his own business.
“I am sure most would mention the benefit of setting their own schedule, no other boss besides themselves to answer to, or possibly the ability to take time off when you want to,” he says of self-employment. “Yes, all of these are true, but the thing I enjoy the most is meeting new people—getting to know them, not just their client number. I like taking an interest in my customers. I learned a long time ago that, ‘People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.’”
For the past seven months, Breezeworks has helped Randy with those client relationships that he values so much. “Many of my customers have commented on the new professional look since I have been using Breezeworks,” he explains. “They especially like receiving the text and email notifications for their appointments, which also saves me time in follow-up phone calls. Customers have also noticed how all aspects of my paperwork are streamlined now—from estimate to appointment to billing and invoicing. All the paperwork they need is in their in-box before I’m back in my truck. [The app] allows me the time to focus on the customers’ needs, rather than cutting visits short to allow for paperwork.”
Before Breezeworks, Randy handled the administrative part of his job the old-school way, such as hard-copy work orders and physical receipts. After a long day out in the field, he found himself spending another couple of hours in front of the computer. “I was usually trying to cook, eat, and do my paperwork at the same time, to save time,” he recalls. “But now when I get home from work, I am actually off work. What a concept!”
Breezeworks’ new Estimates feature has also made a huge difference for Randy. As soon as an estimate is approved by a customer, the app immediately notifies you, providing the option to schedule the work. And after the appointment is scheduled and the task completed, all of the customer’s data is dropped into an invoice, so that requesting and collecting payment is a cinch. “I don’t know how many times I have forgotten to transfer some information from the estimate to the work order or invoice,” says Randy. “Breezeworks does the thinking for me.”
If only every part of small business ownership were that easy! Randy acknowledges that “every day has its unique challenges—whether it be time constraints or financial limitations. I prefer to look at challenges as opportunities. It makes the effort worth it.”