Your roofing contractor business plan is the backbone of your success. With a strong, clear plan for growing your customer base, increasing your profits, and providing your customers with great service, your roofing business will be well-positioned for years to come.
This spring, many roofing contractor business plans were upended following the challenges of dealing with coronavirus. As things start to stabilize and more restrictions are lifted, contractors are grappling with how to make the most of the second half of 2020 when the first half didn’t go according to plan. This can seem daunting, but it also provides an opportunity to re-evaluate your current business plan, learn from your experiences over the past few months, and develop an even stronger path to achieving success.
Here are a few ways to assess the state of your roofing business and things to think about as you move forward.
Take the Time to Learn
Many roofing contractors may feel that they have no time to take stock of their business plan because they have too many other pressing tasks. While this is certainly the busiest time of year, it’s still important to take whatever time you can to evaluate your business plan. If you enter your busy season full steam ahead with a business plan that has stopped working, it will make it a lot harder to reach your goals and grow your business.
It’s especially important to ask yourself questions about what you’ve learned during this period of restrictions, shutdowns, and social distancing.
- Are there aspects of your business that you struggled to manage during this time?
- How well were you equipped to keep working?
- Were there things you had to stop doing completely?
- What adjustments to your business were the most successful?
By answering these questions, you’ll be able to better assess how well your roofing business is positioned for future growth.
In addition, the answers to these questions may expose some challenges you’ve been facing as a contractor. Times of crisis often magnify issues that already existed—and can help you identify those issues so you can solve them.
For instance, if you had trouble staying in touch with your employees while they were working outside of the office, it’s likely that you need to improve communication between your roofing teams. Answering key questions about what you’ve learned from the past few months will help you find effective strategies to grow your roofing business for the rest of the year.
Rely on Adaptable Tools
If there’s one major lesson we’ve all learned from this time, it’s that the future can bring unexpected challenges but also rapid change. The best roofing contractor business plans are flexible and adaptable. So it’s important to ensure your plan anticipates the possibility of change.
One way to prepare for change as a roofing contractor is to find tools that will help you adapt to changing circumstances. Some tools that contractors use to manage their roofing businesses are more adaptable than others. As we’ve all seen when working remotely, relying on tools that require the user to be in a specific location can make it hard for roofing businesses to be effective in times of crisis. In contrast, a tool that you can use anywhere and that helps you access valuable information from many places will equip you to succeed in a variety of circumstances.
Business management software like AccuLynx allowed many roofing contractors to adapt during in first few months of the coronavirus pandemic. It stores all your business information in the cloud, which means contractors can access it from anywhere—the office, the field, or their own home.
When you update job files in AccuLynx, your entire team can instantly see the changes, so you all stay on the same page no matter where you are. And you can use AccuLynx to send communications, so you don’t have to scroll through separate emails or make lots of phone calls back and forth to find important information.
Build on Past Successes
Where and how has your roofing company performed well in the past? This is an important question to answer as you evaluate your roofing business plan. While the past few months may have disrupted your typical patterns, looking at historical performance trends can help you find ways to grow your business this year.
To get the best insights, it’s important to focus on more than just overall business performance.
- Find where your most profitable jobs are coming from.
- Identify trades and geographic areas that could generate high-performing leads.
- Look at how your salespeople have performed and the percentage of leads that have closed to learn if you need to adjust your sales strategy.
- Follow up on how long it takes your invoices to get paid and your jobs to complete so you can figure out if there are any breakdowns in your system that can be fixed.
With AccuLynx, it’s easy to run reports on all these areas of your business. Reports in AccuLynx can be quickly customized to help you see trends more easily and pinpoint the ones that are important to you. AccuLynx offers a variety of pre-built reports focusing on key aspects of a roofing business, making it easy to understand your business performance. And you can set up automated emails that deliver reports to your inbox on a weekly or monthly basis, so you can keep track of your performance even during your busiest times.
Staying on top of business trends, identifying good and poor past performance, and focusing your efforts on leads and jobs that have yielded the greatest profits can help you build a better roofing contractor business plan.
Keep Employees in Mind
A roofing contractor business plan will only be successful if everyone on staff has buy-in and is able to carry it out. When you’re creating or updating a business plan, it’s important to think about how it will impact your employees:
- Will they have to make a change to a specific process or use a new tool?
- Does your business plan shift focus to different areas or trades?
- Are you asking any employees to take on extra work?
- What practical steps will it take to accomplish your business goals?
Sometimes, business plans fail because the goals they set rely on unrealistic expectations for employees, such as sales quotas that are too high for the number of salespeople on staff. Other times, employees aren’t sure what a new business plan means, and so are confused about how to put it into practice.
Getting your employees on board with a new plan is crucial. When you put together a business plan, discuss it with your staff and clearly communicate your expectations. Make sure you answer any questions and address any concerns they might have. And don’t just focus on what they’ll need to do to implement the business plan—inspire them with a vision for what your roofing business will look like as a result. Emphasizing your overarching goals like selling more jobs will help your employees feel motivated to make changes to their work or processes.
Another way to make it easier for your employees to adopt a new business plan is to choose a software system that is easy to use. If your staff don’t have to spend a long time learning how new tools work, they will find it much simpler to adjust their processes and follow the business plan.
AccuLynx roofing software was designed with contractors in mind, so it’s simple and intuitive; and your staff won’t need much training to incorporate it into their day-to-day work. You won’t need to make major changes to your processes to get AccuLynx to work for you—it integrates seamlessly with what you’re already doing. By managing your business with a tool that was built for contractors, you can help your employees get and stay on board with your business plan.
Now is a great time to take stock of where your business is right now and where you want it to go in the future. You can build a better roofing contractor business plan by learning from past experiences, finding the right tools to help you achieve your goals, and getting buy-in from your employees. And having a better business plan will set you up for success this year—and beyond.