Jim Middleton from Oyne near Aberdeen, Scotland has many strings to his bow. Aside from specialising in electrical services and security and CCTV installations, Jim is big on processes and efficiency. So a few years back he started thinking about better ways to run his company’s operations, which led him to research the best field service management software tools out there.
Before he ventured out on his own and founded JMTEC Services in 2020, Jim was running the operations of an electrical company that he started with his ex-business partner back in 2015. By his own admission, not having a proper system in place was driving him “absolutely nuts” and, even with a dedicated admin person in the office, managing the company was quickly becoming an ordeal. Relying only on a few accounting software features and Excel spreadsheets didn’t cut the mustard for a busy sparkie business. The situation called for a tailor-made solution for tradies and soon, Jim was on a hunt for the right field service management tool. He watched at least a dozen demos before he came across Fergus and was immediately won over by how simple and user-friendly it seemed. It wasn’t long before he and the office administrator started using Fergus from A to Z and found that they were ticking more things off the list than ever before.
Once Jim decided to go solo and start his own company, teaming up with Fergus was a no-brainer:
“One thing I got wrong was that [at my first company] I didn’t get it right from the outset. If I could give one piece of advice to other tradespeople starting out is that you should implement the system before there’s even a real requirement for it. It’s good to get it early, even if there’s not much happening, so you can start playing with it and learn how to use it. Get Xero and Fergus before you do anything else.”
Although he describes himself as “not a computer person by a long stretch”, Jim found the system instinctively easy to use. And the more he uses it, the better it gets – for example, it’s super simple for him to go back to an old quote and use it as a template. His terms for certain types of jobs never change, so he can always use the same quote as a template for any new jobs.
Sending out invoices from Fergus has been another game-changer not just for him, but for JMTEC’s customers as well:
“Nobody can challenge you on it [your invoices] any more because it’s all just so transparent and clear. Also, the presentation of your documents is so much more professional because it’s all preformatted and ready to go.”
It’s the dashboard functionality that takes the cake for him though, as he finds that “it just encourages you to be good”. Having all jobs in one place, grouped by status, helps him to always follow the correct procedures and see what needs to be actioned right off the bat.
“You feel like you’re going somewhere with it, and quickly – you wouldn’t believe the difference it can make to your business”
Jim says that now Fergus has dedicated and personal customer success and support on the ground in the UK, it’s even easier for him and those new to Fergus to get up to speed with the system.
With the extra time on his hands, Jim loves to go on hunting and fishing trips and just hanging out with his family. Just the other night, he built out a four-section quote in Fergus while half-watching TV.
Although he’s happy working on his own at the moment, he feels confident about future growth, knowing that he has the proper back-office infrastructure to manage additional workload.
“I definitely could expand my business with Fergus if I decided to. I can easily add new employees and subcontractors in the system, which might come in handy one day.”
“Even if you run a one-person business, get job management software because it’s a massive time-saver and it will allow you to be more efficient than you thought. You’ll be proficient in no time at all – just jump in!”, concludes Jim.