Checklist for a Successful Restoration Business in 2023
January 4, 2023 •Ember Davis
Introduction: Why it's Important to Set Up a Checklist for the New Year
The new year is a time for reflection & the end of the year is a time to look back and see what we accomplished, what we learned, and how we can plan better for the future. As a thriving Restoration contractor, it can be hard to find the time for deep work, but the new year is the perfect time to reflect on our past and plan for our future. This checklist is the perfect way to organize your thoughts & make a solid plan to move forward into the new year
Step 1: Practicing Gratitude & Appreciation
Being grateful for what we have is a key component of life. Cultivating a sense of gratitude and appreciation can have a profound effect on our mental and physical well-being. The Restoration industry is about giving back to your community and to the customers that rely on us to make their homes or business whole again. Before we do anything else, it is important to take time to celebrate your wins, show gratitude for our partners in the industry and customers and identify opportunities for improvements.
The lifeblood of a restoration company is its employees and its important to celebrate employees and their contributions to the organization. Whether this is your water mitigation team, estimators, or your office team who handles your job scheduling, showing them the appreciation they deserve is key to starting strong in 2023. Appreciating the relationships that we have with people in our lives, which can make us feel more connected. Networking is also important because it allows us to build new relationships and get closer to people who may help us in the future. Begin to look at the upcoming events for 2023 and make sure you are planning to attend those that make the most sense for you to connect and reconnect with industry contacts.
Step 2: Set goals for 2023
It's the beginning of a new year and we've all made our New Year's resolutions. But what about 2024? What are your goals for the next five years?
When it comes to business, many companies have goals that extend beyond 2023. Some companies have goals that span decades. One of these companies is Nike, which has been setting its sights on 2030. This was revealed by CEO Mark Parker in an interview with Fast Company in December 2018. Nike’s goal is to be a “purpose-driven company” and make sure that they are doing good in the world as well as good business.
As a restorer, I know this resonates with you too. Doing good is a core motivator and drives our companies forward. What changes can you make this year to drive your outlook in not only 2023 and beyond? Not too long ago Rachel Stewart teamed up with Chris Nordyke and Brandon Reece with Floodlight Consulting Group on our Visioneering Series to do just that. If you missed this powerful series, stay tuned for a second chance to watch this ultra-valuable business resource so you can watch your vision come to life.
Step 3: Identify Weekly and Monthly Tasks - Then AUTOMATE!
Businesses need to be productive and organized. Huge wins do not come from a single action but are won by small changes every day. Once you have your master vision in place and your team’s buy start addressing what you can do on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. Better yet, one of the best ways to make these changes is to automate. More on technology later, but companies such as Zapier, your restoration estimating software, and restoration software can help you do more with less.
In addition to the visioneering, check out our free Water Mitigation Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to get you started. Once you have your plans in place what can you do to make your life easier? Start looking at your processes and see what you can automate. Zapier & Encircle (who we are proud to have solid integrations with) is a great way to start automating simple processes. When you are ready to take it to the next level start looking into restoration software to alleviate the burden of job management. Make sure when you look to ensure that automation and customization are top of the list not to mention a restoration software company with your best interest in mind.
Once you have your tasks and SOPs identified make sure your whole team knows what is expected and obtain their buy-in. These simple changes daily will lead to huge results in 2023 and beyond.
Step 4: Track KPIs & Results
Now that you've built your business, it's time to scale. A lot of businesses struggle with staying on top of all the information they need to know to take their company where they want it to go. Fortunately, specific KPIs (key performance indicators) can help track and measure the progress of your business and tell you what needs more focus. If you haven’t yet downloaded our free KPI Tracking Guidebook to see exactly what you should be tracking and how often. Not only will we help you identify what to track, get some restoration industry expertise on how to improve these numbers.
Things like your Water Labor Efficiency Ratio & Onsite Arrival Time should not only be tracked regularly they should be easy to track. Your restoration software should make tracking these things effortless by just completing your work. Once you have that data it makes it easy to set your benchmarks, make small daily changes and crush your goals.
Step 5: Reevaluate Technology
Technology has changed the way we work. It has changed the way we communicate with our customers, subcontractors, and our insurance carriers. It’s even changed where we work and made it easier to work in the field. Your tech stack should reflect your values as a restoration contractor and where you want your business to go and the partners you choose along the way.
As a restorer, you should be looking for a few key components in your technology suite. You should have a solid water mitigation documentation platform. Our top picks are our partners Encircle & Clean Claims. They make documenting your customer's damage easy and streamlined. While we’re on the subject of documentation make sure your job photos are rock solid with Matterport DocuSketch. Your adjusters will thank you and you will get paid faster ensuring that all of your documentation is in order.
Next, make sure your books are in order with comprehensive accounting software such as QuickBooks. Not only is this going to save you time every month for invoicing and payments your tax season will be a breeze!
Finally and most importantly you need restoration software that ties all these platforms together. Swivel chairing from system to system is a waste of time and creates bottlenecks. Look for a job platform that puts all of your information all in one place and streamlines your processes through task workflows & SOPs, integrates with your email, and calendar, and has built-in scheduling so your jobs will always be on time and on budget.
In addition, you need a CRM that is built for the restoration industry. It should help you to see exactly where your restoration jobs are coming from, and which partners you should nurture and drive accountability within the sales team. Restoration contractors can use CRM software to automate some of their processes, like scheduling inspections and customer follow-ups. This helps them improve their time management and make more time for other tasks that are important for running a business.
Once all of this information resides in one space it makes steps 3 & 4 that much easier. You can easily automate your processes and then report making growth almost effortless!
It is up to us to rethink how technology can help us do our jobs better, making a plan to partner with companies not only with cutting-edge technology but also invested in your long-term priorities should be a priority when setting your 2023 business goals.
Conclusion & Useful Resources on Business Planning
The restoration industry has seen a lot of changes over the past decade. The introduction of new technologies and software has changed the way we work, but it’s also changed the way we interact with our customers.
Here at Xcelerate, our focus is not only on providing cutting-edge technology for restorers we are focused on elevating what job management software should be based on customer needs and providing more than just software. Our passion is fueled by watching our customers succeed and partnering with them to help drive that success.
Our doors are always open to help solve restoration industry challenges with you and provide solutions. If you would like to learn more schedule a strategy session today!
KPI Tracking Guide
Water Mitigation Standard Operating Procedures
COMING SOON! Visioneering Workshop - On-Demand