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Watch this video to see how you can integrate your Fergus account with Xero Accounting Software to manage and sync your supplier and...
Watch this webinar to learn how your trades business can best tackle high demand.
It is 11:00 on the dot, and I think we should start right with what? We've got a busy hour as always. We'll go through a lot. If at the end, you need more clarity, you just hang around and we'll stay on the line. I've got the time to stand on the line and answer lots of questions if there's more clarity required. But this is not a support call. But you can ask questions at the end and we will try and get through them.
So what we're trying to do is help the business cope with the high demand. But with something getting for those who don't know. Me I'm Dan Pollard, founder of Fergus and plumber to the stars of the plumber for 24 years in the plumbing company to 25 staff. And then got into the software to run the plumbing company.
Also joining me are the allstars, Dan and Christie from customer support and figures who now have exceeded my knowledge of Fergus internal workings. So they are experts to get to do some screen sharing of how to use Fergus. So I think scanning Christie for giving up some of your time to come to join us today. Right say hi, Dan Christie. Hi Hello. Hello good morning. Good morning. Intro just for housekeeping. Your lines. I'm used to school noise and the students, but do talk them into the Q&A box and we'll answer them as we go or at the end will be recorded so you can watch it at night to put you to sleep.
We will stop to watch it later on. As always, we like specs for when we do the next one. So do seen them do sing the feedback for us to improve or to do another topic. All right. Moving on then, next slide. Right maintaining the customer experience like as we were running through this yesterday with Dana Christie support. They said my approach of customer transfers was not atypical of. Next slide. What it's like to maintain the cosmic spirits is the way I read my business is not the way that they hear it running all the time. So we're talking a little bit. So what is. What does it mean to maintain the customer experience? Right so when you get busy, it's normal number. You want to take shortcuts or save time and do stuff that can mean not calling the customer.
Right? because you're busy trying to work materials and just forget to call the customer stay in touch, which means that a customer is not experiencing a thing. A nice experience with you. So when we talk about the customer experience, it would be customer focused. What does that actually mean? Like everyone sees that the customer focus, but what does it. What does it look like from a customer to experience good a customer focus experience.
So what it would look like is you would ask the customer. These three questions and it'll make sense. Why, which is when do you want it completed? By what costs are you expecting and what quality level are you after? Right so let's know this. They've heard of the time cost, quality triangle and your job as a tradesperson or as business is to manage for the customer that they achieve the job in the right timeframe, at the right price point to the right quality level. So for example, so it's a rental property and new tenants moving in on Saturday morning and they need a new kitchen temp done, right. So they want it done by 4:30 on Friday and they don't want to spend more than 500, $500. Right so those three points need to be gathered and they need to be communicated on the job cuts. So the tradesperson doing the work now needs now knows what needs to be achieved by what cost. And so part of the customer experience, being customer focused is now anything that's going to interrupt the ability to achieve those three things is now communicated to the customer, right?
Because it is going to exceed the agreed costs. The customers now are going to be grumpy because they're expecting 500 bucks. They don't want to build for 800 or 400. Right they want it done by 4:30 on Friday because they've got tenants moving it. And the time and the quality also lets you know that they didn't want to spend $1,000. Right they don't read well, they don't won $1,000 kitchen tip. They're happy with $100 buying tips. Right so you've gathered it and you need to communicate that to your tradesperson. So they now need they know what to achieve. And anything that goes on during the week or the job it interferes with, they need to call the customer as soon as possible and talk to them about what is happening so that you can achieve that outcome. And so as a culture, the business that's changing because they know nothing is more important than delivering to the customer was agreed.
And so when this is the focus, you'll be amazed how quickly your business starts to improve. Your cash flow will be amazing, I guarantee it, because when customers achieve the outcome on time, on budget, guess what they pay because like our customers was expecting, this is why, you know why it is so amazing. Right? and so once you are experiencing that awesome cash flow, you start having a life changing business, right? It's amazing when you have cash flow like. 25 staff and the plumbing company with 4K we can wages. And when you think about that let alone other things to pay it 50 grand a week, we need it just to stay afloat. And that's frightening when you think you need 50, 50 grand a week to come in, just to stay on top of things. But because we hit that customer focused business, I mean, we would have the cash to pay the Bills and it was fine. And so it was interesting talking to Dana Christie about the feedback from a lot of businesses.
They let me know that a lot of businesses are not comfortable sharing the costs, you know, not the cost, but the retail price of the labor materials. So the trade know what's going on. And that really surprised me because I thought it was a given that businesses would always kind of have a price given to the customer for anything, and they would communicate it to the staff and take the staff on the duty so that they know what they need to achieve. And so. I'd have to challenge all of you who don't do that. Like, I totally agree. You don't need to share the cost. Price absolutely. That's what the customers is expecting to pay what you've allowed that absolutely needs to be communicated to the staff so they know how to achieve it. And I know you're starting to slip. So I kind of know what staff cost anyway for retail price and that's on the job card at Sears, 500 bucks and they're at the merchants and they got a hold of materials and it Sears $800.
Well they need to know that that's part of the culture. They need to check that and go, shucks, it's more than Cousins expecting me to call the office or the customer. It needs to be a pathway for them to call somebody and say, hey, we're already over budget, what are we going to do? And so that's really critical that your staff know about the costs and what's expected, because if no one knows the cost, how can anyone achieve the goals that old saying, if you don't know where you're going, you're never going to get there. So if you're in that mindset that you don't think. We're not comfortable sharing this information with your staff.
Honestly, I'm just going to say you're actually just wrong. You have your staff have to know what the maximum fixed price a customer is expecting. So they can start trying to work with the net that budget. And I'm not saying sheer costs. I get that. But there's nothing wrong with sharing expectations around time and money on the job. Hits this thing a little bit like I don't know how we could have an internet who gives a big business decision in maintenance loans? You have to share the expectation on cost, and if you want great cash flow, that's how you do it. So that's one little challenge to put that in. Happy to take Q&A on that as well. So right. So coming back to head over to Kristie and Dana in just a second, in the 61st section, so full of business where you guys are going to pay your bills on time, write cash flow, the simplest thing you can do is find out from the customer those three things. What time frame, what cost and what quality. And communicate that clearly on the job cut, right? It's like the top line description. Now, the next thing you want to do is escape to that, obviously, and then send it to the customer by estimation and do this every time. So I'm always quite surprised to talk to customers. So I try these customers and I'm surprised how many people don't see the sketch of why you see me or calendar. Like, I'm really surprised. So we're just going to flick over to Dan and Krista you is just going to quickly show you where those features are on the job card. When are they going to do this? At the pentagon? They're going to do those, all the products. I think the hype will carry on. So the customer communication is so critical. So the customer knows when you're coming in. So if you're not doing this, all this will be staggered. If you're not sending an email every time you get an event to change the image. Different for a renovation, which doesn't really matter for new build, but if it's a maintenance job or a service job, you absolutely need to be setting the schedules every single time to the customer. So that's the customer experience of being customer centric. And really there's no other way. If you want to build a business that's growing and growing successfully, you need to structure the business around capturing those three bits of information. Tom close calls he put on the job card and then make a pathway for your staff to be able to talk to someone if it's going over budget. And so what I mean by that pathway. Is some people don't like conflict. So some traders would be very uncomfortable to call their customers to talk about the budget and the cost. So that's one some countries are comfortable that, look, I'm comfortable with it. But if you have traders who don't like that complex and you try to make them to take their conflict because you're trying to abdicate your management responsibilities and you're also busy, you're setting yourself up for failure. So your job as a business owner is have to make what's called psychological safety, safe ways for your staff to communicate to achieve the outcome, because the outcome never changes.
The outcome is always at the customer is communicated with to achieve those three outcomes, technical quality. Now, how that is achieved, you need to have multiple pathways. So one of the pathways is you may need an officer is that they can call, he does on behalf or they may call you on behalf or they might text you. But it's your job as a business owner. It is to make pathways available for staff to communicate so the outcomes to the customer are achieved. And so achieving the outcome is non-negotiable. How the outcome is achieved is flexible. Right next slide then. So I'm going to try and get through this rather than talk the whole time. So I've got time to product and ask the questions. So I'm going really fast. You can just ask me questions at the.
OK so nailing your internal processes. So what does this mean? So how do we get our trainees? To start doing the internal processes. Right how do we get the checklists done? How do we get timesheets done? Like, how do we actually get stuff done? And so one of the biggest challenges to the customer experience is staff and really the business not understanding internal processes or expectations. And so what does it mean? So I'd like to frame it up in this concept, which is on the slide you've got urgent business importance. So I'm not sure if you know this urgent is efficient. A serious business, urgent and external always wins over internal and important. So what does it mean? So urgent for a business will always react to an external customer with the need e.g. a broken pipe will always tank during the invoicing. Right? so a business always has these attributes as these two needs, right?
We need to do the work because that's what triggers the ability to see an invoice in a cash rise. That's always urgent. But until we do the invoice, we don't get the ability to generate cash. So we always have these two tensions going on in the business. We can't do the work and we go to the invoicing. However, the broken pipe, the broken switch, whatever that will, that's urgent. So that would always Trump important. And it's this tension is this is what breaks all businesses and breaks businesses. Until they learn how to manage that tension. You don't need to grow. And so I've got a slide at the end. It explains this so that there is a proven model that gets around this problem, and it's pretty much is only one proven model that actually works. And it's a very straightforward solution, but it only works in a very specific way. And this is the way that it works, is that you must employ people whose only job it is to make sure internal processes are followed. Right so what that means is in reality. In a new business, you will have a part time role. Full time role, someone who just answers the phone for scheduling and booking the customer queries and, you know, booking new jobs, changing the schedule, all that. And so that person is the one who takes all the phone calls from your trainees calling in and your customers calling in. And that person's job is never to do invoicing or health and safety or vehicle maintenance, because when a person is tasked with doing urgent versus important, the urgent will always Trump it. They'll never get the important, and then they'll get stressed and burnt out. And that's how you break people, trying to make them change states from doing reactive stuff who actually find to them proactive, doing invoicing this. The changing roles and splitting of jumping is what breaks people and causes straightness. That's what causes burnout amongst business owners, right?
Is how do I get the work done and do the business and stuff? It's impossible to keep it going. So the way you fix it is you split the roles into two separate people and make them part time roles. Right and so and. I talked about it. So let's look at. So looking at it practically. I told you that I was not talking a lot about the real world around timesheets and how we solved this problem. So look, I in the room, in the ideal world, the Chinese would follow the system and pre-school buttons and do what's required. I mean, we just have that saying like just press the button, right? Like if the trays would just press the buttons, all of them would go white. But the reality is that's never going to happen 100% of the time. And I think it really got drilled home to me one time when I was actually working again on the tools because, you know, you watch like you don't work that often on the tools anymore. But I happen to guys do drainage and it was like a winter's day, it was wet and it was a take up for me. It was three or four of us taking a couple of minutes to do to dry for approximately trucks and diggers on site.
And we want to get done to the day to work and how in the riots, wet and muddy. It's dark and it's cold. And with that feeling, you know, late at night. And it's just about gone dark, you know, as we finally finished, you know, backfilling, compacting, getting asphalt down water, blasting the site down because it was a psychomotor jobs as many of you were. Right and I think it was like, how about sex? We were all done loose and the terrorists in Oakland. And so they went to throw all the gear in the van and then drive home. So now it's light, it's dark. We were all hungry and just kind of grumpy. And we would walk home in traffic. And then we're expected to do timesheets, photos, checklists. And I was like, we're just going home. And instead it's never forgetting.
This is like what your child is actually facing that day is a court is a cow. Was it just a miserable day? And so forgetting what the tray is actually doing in the real world. And so after that, it was like, actually, I need to be a lot softer on these guys, what they're going through. And so that was one of those pivotal experiences where after that I just started getting one of the office ladies to call the guys every morning to put the time in from the day before.
And I would done that. It was another one, the life-changing moments in the firm, when I realized less than an hour's worth of four, the ladies do it. It took away all the pressure and the thing when everyone's timesheets were done every day. The traders were happy because the timesheets were done. Descriptions were done right. It meant we could do invoicing every day because the hours within and it was costing me probably 30 bucks with labor for a tradesperson to solve all the issues and all the streets around the business. The only non-negotiable was they couldn't talk to Leanne and take a phone call and call back. That was non-negotiable. No one ever got a Warning, but that was the deal. If you don't take that phone call, you will get a Warning, right? And so after I learned that just worked, took all the stress of May to all the stress of the staff, you know, having to go in and try and press the buttons. And we just started rolling that out for everything.
So forget this. I just started paying one of your guests. That is After Hours to do all the search, right? So as long as the guys saw the deal was to go and take the photos and do the pressure test for this part, and another guy would do it. I guess it's not quite an exit to the assets. Right and so the only deal was if the guys didn't take photos that it to go back in their own time to take photos of the job. So if do the gets it right. But just taking all that pressure off to try to do this, just to follow the prices is. But putting in steps to allow it to happen. The same for you. Checklists in your forms, you need to create them. So they're on the jobs because some of us will fill them or whatever. But the thing is, you put someone in your office who will call the goes to complete the checklists or forms, but as long as it's done right. And so. Rather than getting annoyed and frustrated that low compliance just put in a process that allows the paperwork to flow, like never forget to keep your eye on the prize and the prizes in which you give your life. You want all the data in every day sort of droplet which can be created. So you want others to come and review the invoice and pristine, right?
And so once you real once you cross the speed to barrier of realizing that it's just a bit of money to pay someone, but that one resource will fix so many holes in your business, you can see it becomes a no brainer. Right? and so because I took their process and this will allow us to grow to 25 staff and it was actually quite simple. And so if you think you're making more money with two or three staff than I was making 25 staff, of course you're not. So if you go to the next slide, then it's really interesting to slide. And so I love this light. It's a really this light school that's like. It's been around a while and. You can look at it. It's really explains what happens in a business is when you first start out. The pleasure of optimism. Right so it's going well. But you reach a point where a lot of trade routes. So stressful. Right you haven't got, you know, what needs to be done, right.
Because you've now learned you got need to get all the stuff done. If you were to answer the phones, I need people to I want to do all the things you talk about, how do I do it? And so you've got the knowledge on the blue line, but you're in the red line, which is the chasm of the sphere, which is like, how do I solve these problems? Like, how do I get there? And it's actually supposed to be cool on the right hand side, but Deathmatch is supposed to be called on the promised land. And so your job is to work out what I mean. My kids will disappear. How do I go on this long, slow March to the death match? And so the things I'm talking about is how you is how you do this. You have to put a couple of people in your business.
One person is external only part time and trying to find and scheduling another piece and preparing, doing all the paperwork so you can come and do the invoicing. So there's a part time roles and they're going to cost you a fortune. This means you're going to earn this profit. That's all it means. But they seem to be cost neutral because they bring so many efficiencies into your business. But if you really want to start growing and getting through your business, that's what you have to start doing is that slow little death match to get to the top, to the top of the hill, to the promised land. So that's how you fix it. And so once that person or two people are in your business, you start to invoice every day. And it's easy to invoice and you start to realize that this is what was missing in your business the whole time. And because you sort of this way, you've now fixed your cash flow problems. And you fix your compliance problems and the whole business that starts to work quite, quite nicely. So, you know. That's kind of how it works, right? So we can get through it. 22 minutes. Not bad. And going. We're going fast. I'm talking too fast. Just let me know. Right next slide in. So keeping training workers engaged. Means more to you. So this is another one is like. How do you make sure I've touched on the answer on the previous slide? Right so how do you keep your staff engaged and willing to be there and willingly wanting only one thing constantly?
How do you get in wanting to do the right thing? And there is a never ending challenge and requires constant adapting and change. Like every time you grow important new staff on and your new customer, you always need to make minor adjustments to your processes. However, the guiding principles never change are guiding principles. I like where customer focused. Customer focus looks like this. Any time there's a change, the time comes to quality outcomes on the job and we need to communicate that to the customer. So that's one of those guiding principles. The second big guiding principle that you always have is that we will always complete our internal processes, right? So they will be completed. Now how they get completed, they need to be fixed or not. And so. You need to bring in. Generally speaking, it's easy to bring a person in to ensure that these compliance to the system is cheap. It's that old saying what's inspected is respected like he knows trades.
That you will always do a slightly better job. But businesspeople are coming to check your work. So it's the same for trace and paperwork. They know someone's checking up. They are more likely to do a better job than if no one's checking at. And also, if you're getting something to the processes, what you're saying is culturally as we value this, because I'm putting time and money into checking that these processes are done, and then this show that you care about this and you're following it up is a way of showing to your staff. This is what we value in our firm, and it's valuable. And that makes your staff more willing to engage rather than just look say the same as well, this is what I want you to do. But actually I don't lead by example. Make sure it's hit and run. So that's a very important thing to you to understand. If you want them willingly to do the right thing, you have to lead by example of putting resources into allow the right things to happen easily and not get angry. You stop, get tired because we're hungry and cold or hot or overworked, right? So that's a big thing. There's another couple of points for team engagement. There's a couple of key principles. People love to be involved in a company that is growing and kind of doing good work. Right kind of makes sense. They don't want to feel like they're just supporting your lifestyle of your flesh boat in your holiday home and your kids private schools. So if you can try and minimize exposure to your personal lifestyle, like if you're not just feeding it because it feeds a lot of resentments. Vichy, the New Zealand. So if you are growing, they want to show you a bit of a social good about the work you do.
So you might have discounts on senior citizens, solo moms, people with disabilities just have ways of giving back a bit to the community. So you're just it's just not all about value extraction for your personal life. And people are they feel appreciated and they didn't have a place. So learning to praise, learning to recognize good works. Let me say thank you for following the system, putting a process in place of recognizing when people are doing good and following the system. Right because they would agree if the paperwork is if they do all the paperwork, you don't recognize it, why should they bother? So that's the lowest common denominator. You know, if the Slack is, it doesn't get punished. Why should the business doing more work states universal keeping work they don't like start dropping down. Right and some of it is just common sense. So your job as a boss is to push the bottom person up and hold them to account to a high standard. So the people doing the high work go on all the favors. Trying to push people up to my standard only got higher to keep raising the bar. Right? it's less leadership and action. And so if they don't see you as the boss leading that by putting in people to follow the processes to achieve higher outcomes than your high achieving workers would just dropped to the level of supporting workers. And that's kind of what happens, right? So I've got a good example. TV background, like I said, is a film doing good work, undertaking solar and flash films, and they're really high in stuff. Those jobs are cool. However, the boss is very arrogant and great stuff is none other than most people. Substantively, there is hard stuff to know. There is stuff you use, right? Not a good example to a business owner is a really nice guy, but obviously disorganized. And so all the ghosts play this. They get so frustrated at the level of this organization. Also not good, right?
So what you want to be is a food that's progressive and also considerate of your staff. So if you think about it, most people, if you think about Moscow, don't really want to be at work. Really? most people would rather be doing something else. So you have to how do you create an environment that people don't when working there and consistently do their best to deliver outcomes? Right and so the answer is you have to create a system that checks and followed through on what is trying to be done. You know, we're talking about look at it. Look at the inspections, right? When it when I think most a leaky home homeowners the drivers can be equated to the inspections have just haven't happened once a quarter. So when humans have somewhat of a saying what they do they are going to be decades. And if 96 people do, I have to say that's just human nature. And I could talk a lot about the self-justification for outcomes, how human nature itself justifies what it's like to be lazy. And I've talked about it on other video, so not today. Suffice to say, people tend to do the lazy side and justify what's OK. I think we can all understand why we justify what some kind of get out of bed life, what's OK enough to do what we should. That's just the way it is. And so what we do is go to a culture that makes allowance for that. And this is what inspecting, inspecting inspectors, people checking does helps build a higher count. So I'm talking about the real world example of timesheets in the previous example, right? Putting a person into check that the processes are done is the single biggest thing you can do to change culture and make your staff willingly to work because no one to be able to feel that they haven't done their timesheets like doing it sick of it. So when you put a process in with someone calls them because you understand that they're tired, hot, grumpy, angry, whatever it makes it Linux's. It takes all the stress out and makes people wanting to willingly do the right thing. He's not yelling anymore. And so. And on that phone calls, I can grab all your stuff around, descriptions, whatever. Just just make it easy for the Chinese to comply and to record out, like, always. Keep your eye focused on what you want to achieve. So the prices. That you want the ability to invoice every day, because if you invoice every day, your flow will improve and flow gives you so much freedom from that stress once you can pay your bills. That's you. Life will just change. So let's leave it to this. I'll do the next to rip on to find ways for your team to achieve voluntary compliance. What if you do try and find ways of optimal compliance and include your team in that path of compliance? The only normal negotiation is non-compliance, right? So always lead the discussion with your teams. What are we trying to achieve? Right so every day, any time, any checklist on stage falls on. But how we achieve that is fixable. I want to come out with your input as part of the solution. And part of the solution is going to cost you some time because you're probably going to employ someone to help do that. But it takes the stress out, right? Because you say something like this. Hi, guys. I want to invoice every day. I need a paper to be done. Why? I'm tired of being stressed. I'm tired of being on invoicing and never having enough cash to pay the Bills. This makes me very stressed. So you go tell them why you're trying to achieve. And so when you make the why obvious, people are much more likely to work with you. Right Three last topic. I'm going really fast. I do. Have you asked me questions at the end if I'm going way too fast. So running a tight schedule. So I'm going to forget about it. Just, you know, one or two people and then expand it front from back up from there. So like I, I've had three businesses in construction, maybe four. So in my case who didn't go well and the first one, Texas based, I've made the second one just go out. The third one, we've got a 25 staff, right? So I learned a couple of things, but I still have flashbacks of the streets of when I used to get through a 1,500 minute a month plan on my phone. You know, the endless messages the industry staging and the streets that caused then affected me. Like that was my stress levels, my anger and frustration. It was overwhelming, that amount of pressure to try and get through all this phone calls, all the scheduling and trying to work in an in the cash to keep it going. And I had to make some changes because it was literally breaking me. And so a couple of things I did which started getting me on the track to success. And my third business was I used a company called Ancer services. And so if I missed a phone call, it would go down to the end. I would answer the phone on my behalf and they would say, amount of plumbing. And as I say, this is kind of taking this place and. They could take it. They could take some job details from New customer. And then they would email and text it to me. And so that means I never got any voicemails again. And that was just life changing because my schools, the customers just happy that the phone call was answered. Right and that they were able to drop off that message. And if it was urgent, I'll get the text message and another call urgently. That was the first big thing I did that really ease the stresses off me to start giving voice, to think and function and lower my stress levels. Right the next thing, because it still wasn't enough for me, David, was I was like, stop it. I'll just put a person in the up close two or three hours every morning, five days a week, just to answer the phone and do the sketching, just so I can stop trying to get some work to work, right? To get cash or to get invoice and get jobs completed. And then I went to visit my clients to answer services or to that person to the office. And that was when I started getting on top of my business. Was somebody some time before I. And the cup was an adjustment for the customers to get used to. They couldn't talk to me full time all the time, but they got you very quickly got used to that. The phone call is always answered by someone, and I think that is if you don't know that the phone call needs to be answered by and not a voicemail. So going to answer services is incredible. Or another person who answers it on your behalf and it can just be two or three hours in the morning when your starting is. You know, because we all know the worst phone calls are from 8:00 in the morning to 11:00 in the morning. I mean, that's the worst period for trade generally, and it dies down after they arrive. I mean, you can jog on the job getting the work done. So those are the times we need to get frayed. And when you find that make alternative pathways to allow the customer to get their outcomes achieved, which is they just want to talk to somebody. And so the first part of trying to get on top of your skedaddled is getting you your own self in a position that you can think and not be so stressed. So that's the first place to start, is giving yourself the ability to function and thing, right? So once that's in place, then you can start to breathe, right and go, OK, now what do I need? What needs to happen. So I can get organized and get more efficient? Because running a tight schedule is not about having the calendar booked out. Right? it's about is it gone? I made some list of all the thing that's actually about. It's OK. So running a tight ship, it actually means the lungs, like in your stage for the jobs that we spend, like what we during the week, there's going to be stuff that's going to happen. So what your excuse to start doing is you have to start allowing, say, we studies on Thursday from midday, there's nothing booked. Because it allows for when a job does come in on the Monday of the Tuesday, you've got a time slot or a job takes longer, you've got a time slot, you've got some Slack in the system to allow you to get other jobs to done. And you don't even have to worry about nothing's booked because you can just do Frawley's job on Wednesday or Thursday and you can do next week's job. You can always still transport. But the reality is, if you've got Slack in the system, that's also come on, you fellas. It's almost unheard of, especially at the moment that you would never fill those time slots. But if you don't put some Slack in the system. Is you four days a week already fully booked. And those jobs come in. Jobs run like ours. A significant break down. What are you going to do? So the first thing of running a tight ship is actually having slick venue systems to allow for real light. Right so that's the first one. The other one is, is luck? As hard as it is, you have to use used telling customer that you can't come for a few more days. I know that customers are trying to get an inspection, but I know they got the plane and now they got the waterproof. I know they got the toilet. I know the customers have got deadlines. But you know what? You just have to say, I'm sorry. I can't come. I've got these jobs booked in. But what we do at this firm is wait for really had always keep our bookings. And once they get used to that, they go, oh, well, at least the policy is on Tuesday. But he will come on Tuesday. And so that's more important over the long term. And so if you have Slack in your systems on Wednesdays and Thursdays, that then means you can pretty much always keep your system because you do slip to an upper level real like. That's right. And so then you start to bring all your stress levels down. So running a tight ship also means your vehicles are serviced so they don't break down. Right that actually means upgrading your fleet. Well, I mean, I'm guilty of having shitty beans that broke down. And gosh, when you realize those veins that are always reliable, so you can always trust, it's going to start. My gosh, it's getting changed all on driveways. Oh, my gosh. So it's best to get rid of those vehicles that are just not working. The other one was getting really strict on booking jobs close to go and times are I mean, we stop of Manukau and North Shore and it's amazing how often that crossed him and I'm like, why are we doing that? And so it takes a bit of diligence to stop the obvious people just because that guy, he lives in the shower, head of the space. They put too many hands like, no, stop it. The person managed to do the jobs in South Auckland and the people on the shore did its job on the shore and the customer can just wait. And so being cognisant of the impact on New trainees means you try is a much happier because not driving your way across town. Right they get much more work life balance. It's about having the right tools in the business, right? Having enough coffee break, as complicated as it's the right printers. It's about making sure the veins are, well, not overstocked, not understaffed. It's making sure your staff have a good tool kit, funding them into good tools. Right so it's organizing deliveries to sites. It's the stuff like making sure the plans and specifications are in Ferguson. It keeps the jobs in the trade, it gives the site figures. It's got these features, right. And so that's how you can turn out to the bathroom, you know, the new house or the maintenance job. And you've got the footage from the customer of the tech that the replacing. So when you set the suppliers, you can look at the will, the hot wallets and go, oh, it's a low pressure pharmacy built by both the Wright brothers and parts at the suppliers. So all of a sudden, now what's going to happen is your jobs are going to stop running on time. So your sales are going to get tighter because your staff are not wasting a time frame to the merchants twice coming back to get basic parts or basic tools or being organized. Right so all these little things are what, just getting planes and fighters in space and the job cuts, the mobility is massive. And so is huge improvements. And so the job's going well. And what happens is the jobs run on time, they run on schedule, they run on budget, they come on catch 22, the quality. The invoice goes out, the customer's happy and you get paid. So running a tight schedule is so much about the prices that goes that happens just before the job starts. And this is what having some office people who are dedicated for those internal and external roles really do. And it's amazing how when you get two part time people, one is dedicated to one state because in order to make sure this information is in people Slack in your system for scheduling, you'll be amazed at how quickly your business can start to is just like location of the sphere. It's amazing when you do those two things, you'll certainly go up to the deathmatch, to the promised land, and that is the end of me talking. You ease off. Thank you all for listening to Christy and Dan. You're going to run through some of the stuff and I'm going to stay online to answer any questions and answers, and I'll be at the end as well. In cases, you need to request a deal that you want to go, but I'll stay and run into any Q&A with you guys. Thank you for listening, all of us. Dan and Christy, over to you. Sweet Thank you, Dan. And Cheers. So, hey, guys. So my name is Christy and also got my colleague Dan. He was part of the customer success team here at Fergus. Really keen to take you through a few parts of the Fergus software that kind of align with what Dan Paul has just been talking you through. So we're going to start off with specifically maintaining the customer experience. going to be talking about the consistency of it all. That's really clear from Dan's explainer on keeping your customer comms consistent and the same with each job. So when you're on a job card in Fergus, we really recommend using the HMS or text feature in our email function as well, so you can send these every time on jobs. It's a recommendation to send the schedule to customers. They know when you guys are going to be hitting out to site and just keeping everything really clear and transparent. So to be able to do that from your Fergus job card can be done quickly. You can just click on this icon up here. So we've got a text icon like this. So if we click on that icon up at the click on my screen, I think, Kristie, you should be able to. Is that one working now? Beautiful Yeah. There you go. Awesome So if we click up there on this icon, you can see we can send this to the customer via text. So if we click on this, that's the first option that we've got. And the second option that we have is sending it via email to the customer. So that just keeps everything consistent super quick and a really valuable tool just to build into your workflow. If you're not using it already, you can see here, you get a basic template which can be adjusted each time if you need to, and the team members that are being scheduled, it will be sent across to your customers. They know who's turning up and when specifically. Really handy tool and it will just help you to continue streamlining your processes. The other helpful handy tip to use and you need to enter it in on average your card anyway. But it's this description field here. You can start to flesh it out a bit and we'll put a lot more detail in if you need to and really use it to your advantage by putting those extra detailed notes in for the team. It's really handy to keep them across and in the loop on all the requirements for the customer and for the customer's needs. So really just keeps all of that aligned from the office right through to everyone out on site. Sweet so what I'll be taking you through is really referring to what Dan was talking about when it comes to nailing your internal processes. So what will be showing you is how to utilize custom forms and checklists inside of Fergus, how to do this. So I've got my job card here already and we've already booked my staff that I would have access to this on their phone at this point to make sure that we're keeping a really clear process in place. We need these checklists forms completed in every single job. So to create these from the computer, I'm hitting two sittings.
And way down the bottom of our list, we've got forms and checklists just above. I'll take you through checklist first, because checklist is a free Iran, which is available to everyone. And then we can take a look in two forms as well after that. So starting with checklists on our account, we already have a series of checklists already made. You can create a new checklist here. I'll use a pre-made template to start us off with. But it's super easy. All we need to do is name the checklist, type out a few boxes that we need our staff to complete. Hey, we've just got generic tick saying item one, two and three. But this would be, you know, arrive on site, contact the customer, take photos of the job before we start off. Once we completed, take photos of the job and making sure that your Staff Mark each of these points off on every single job. Make sure that, you know, our process is a tidy while kept and we're also in turn impacting the customers experience because we're always giving the best that we can. This checklist will add to our job in a moment. But first, I want to take you into custom fonts. So custom forms is currently a free add on. I really do encourage you to check this out. This is probably the coolest thing that folks have brought out in a while, and it's free during the COVID crisis, which is likely to go on for some time. But here we have dozens of forms pre-made that our account has, but we're going to use this one as our example. Now custom forms are very similar to checklists. They can be used either to meet the requirements by your customer. For a lot of people who are doing jobs for their local councils. There are very specific requirements that need to be met and custom forms inside of Fergus can help you meet those meet those tasks. The custom form. I've got here is designed as a work health and safety form. It is a lot more detailed then. Then a form needs to be. They can be quite simple. But here we're leaving fields where our staff can record their details, confirming that they have the correct PPA for these jobs, noting down any risks that they might notice on site and noting the rest of this staff over here as well who might also be at risk. I won't go through how to create a form today because that can be quite detailed and might take a bit more time than we're willing to put aside. But we, as always, do have a whole bunch of resources online and form of training videos and help articles, so I encourage you to get on them there. And plus, we have a lot of group training sessions every week where we're more than happy to go into these features in a lot more detail. But I want to show you now how we take those forms and checklists and add them to the jobs so that our staff have access to them easily on their phones. So our site visit here 1751a we've already booked for our staff. This is what they will view on their phones. All right. So in order for them to easily access our form, we're going to add our form here and inside of the site visit, selecting from the dropdown menu on the right. And that form has now been added. So our staff can go ahead and fill this out from their phone. And our checklist is added exactly the same. Very easy. Depending on the level of access or permissions you give your staff, they will be able to add these forms themselves as well. Once you have created the templates for them. Awesome perfect. If we move on to one of the next steps. So talking about efficiently managing the schedule, we have another handy feature that's been it's relatively recent as well. It's out Google Calendar integration. So with that one we have can set it up under if we go up to make sure that I'm there we go up to our settings. It sits under the integration tab on the left hand side. So if you hit over here, we're able to set this up. And it will just allow you to keep on top of the scheduling and additional detail. Again, if you're using Google calendar, then that's going to be the most helpful for you. If you're not, then it's not really going to be as relevant. But you can just scroll down here and it's just set up in this section right here. So you can see our account is already connected. And we'll just allow you to access your staff's personal calendars, which is pretty crucial if you're wanting to make sure you're not looking over their personal events, for example, doctor's appointments or picking the kids up. So to turn this on, you can turn it on right here for the user if you need any extra help. Again, we won't be going over specifically how to set this one up today, but you can watch the overview here with a quick video. But also we have a really detailed help article as well, which we'll go into a lot more depth. So this is where you can set it up and then it will integrate directly with the calendar. It's also going to pull across the focus events and to the staff's own personal calendars as well. So it has that connection between the two. Really good to have a look over these articles, often needing a bit of extra insight or feel free to pop the question in for us.
So, guys. All right, Primo, jumping back to our job, I want to take you through purchase orders inside of Fergus. Purchase orders is quite common, right? If we have a big job coming up in a couple of weeks, it is quite common to contact the supplier and advance get the materials prepared. However, it's I often hear this from people that I work with, that staff go in to pick up the equipment. That's fine, but that's 20 minutes we've lost on travel to the supplier and then end up mucking about, having coffee, chatting with the other team. And you know, it's time we're losing. And the goal for us, you know, we're trying to make money here. So we want as much of a time as possible to be chargeable on to our customers against these jobs. So to alleviate this pain, we can create purchase orders from within. Fergus as a part of this site, visit all the jobs that we're currently looking at. This will firstly streamline the process for incoming supplier invoices and also means we don't have to send our staff off to pick things up all the time because we can actually ask the supplier to have that equipment delivered to our site, to the customer's address or to our own address. And I will quickly run you through this because it's not super detailed. So here in my purchase orders tab, I can create a new purchase order. I just need to tell Fergus which supplier I'm looking to purchase from. I'll go with Currys for now. Here I'm filling in telling Fergus which branch I'm purchasing from. This option will not always appear. It depends on which supplier you're using. Corey's I have the option to determine which supplier I'm working with specifically. Then here, I can determine whether my purchase order needs to be delivered or prepared for me to pick up. Of course, the choice is yours. As to which you go for, but if we select delivery, we can then determine where that equipment is sent to, whether it's the job address, the customer's address, or our own head office. Of course, I realize these are the same address. In this case, the order number is preloaded. You can update this if you want, but generally there's no need to because Fergus is no. Fergus already knows that we're looking for that invoice or other order number when the invoice arrives. Leaving this as is makes things a lot easier for us further down the line. And finally, here we are searching through our Corey's price book to find the materials that, when needing to have ordered because I selected CRS as the supplier here by default, I will be searching through the Corey's price book, but we can change this if needed. Perhaps you had like a personal price that you might want to be searching through. Once we have selected everything we need simply clicking email and sending this away to my supplier. I was smart enough to preserve that email address. But nevertheless, here we go. So this would just be attached as a PDF and the way I get sent. Now that I've sent the purchase order, Ferguson will ask if I'd like to create an invoice to come, which has been sitting here already, and we're just waiting for that invoice to arrive. And Fergus already knows that. We're looking for order number listed below there. All right, Tim, we've seen a few questions come through. This is what Christina had prepared to go through in terms of what the products can do for you. But we are more than happy to go through questions that you might have. I see there are a few coming through already. I'll start off. I see one on here. What are the checklist? Some forms have to be added to the site visit rather than the job itself. Perfect no, that's a great question. So I think the key there is to have a good understanding of the difference between our job, which is at the top here and the site visit. Within that, our job has its own title and has its own description text. However, when we create our site visit, which is done automatically for a new charge up job or is done automatically when your court is accepted. This is what I'll actually be scheduling to my staff, depending on the accessibility and the permissions we give them. They may not have access to once back here on the job itself. If I was to add a form to the forms tap here on the left. So just pick one of these at random. You'll see that this form has been added to the job. Now my staff members has been scheduled for this job.
Christie can't actually access that form because she doesn't have access to the job. However, she does have access to the site visit. And that's why I always encourage you add your forms and checklists to the site visit specifically. It's more often we need them on a site visit than we need them on the job itself. So I hope that helps. Answer your question there. Christie, did you want to run through some questions or I can go through the whole lot of it. No, no, no. We have another one here of a different message via the site because it description is wanting to communicate for different days. Does it mean a new site visit should be created? So there's a couple of ways you could tackle that one, Greg. So if you have a description in here and you're wanting to keep that site visit open, usually you'd want that to be open for longer than a day. If it's a job that's going over an extended period of time, even if that is just a week. So my recommendation to start would be to just adjust the site visit description or has could have, for example, Monday with a desk and whatever tools you needed to have brought to site for that day against that, that description there. So yep, exactly like this. And then for Tuesday, the next day inhibit just below referencing the tools for the next day. And it makes it easier rather than having to create a new site visit, usually want to do the whole new site visit if it was a different phase of work or a different stage of work. Hopefully that one helps to clarify in a bit more detail as well. And you can see there exactly as Dan has typed, you've just got the different days outlined. Pretty easy for the guys to be able to see that on the app and know which day they need to bring which tools to add to that as well. Because we've already booked our staff for this job earlier this morning. Making these adjustments will go live to their phones if they were to refresh their app. Another really easy way to send immediate communication to our team is inside of the notes field. So again, keeping in mind that our job and our site visits have different note entry fields. My staff say Christie here on the job may not have access to the notes for the job itself, but inside the site visit I could send out a quick message, so I'm going to type it to bring out my staff. Bring up Christie's name. It's and so because I've used the symbol to tag that staff member, she now gets a notification on her phone, which brings her attention to the notes section. Within that ciphers, it means it's a lot more reliable way of sending information between our team. there was another question here. I wanted to take a look at. And I've lost it. So many questions coming in and I can't keep up with them. Is there a way for checklists to be automatically applied to all jobs rather than having to remember to load them onto each job? At this stage, there is no automatic way to do this, so it will need to be a manual process. This is something we have brought up to our product team, so we will take on your advice and have a chat with them again. That's fine. There was another question they're asking about checklists or forms being added to. Here it is from Rupert. Can a checklist be assigned for a particular calendar entry? The site visit may be several actual trips to site, but a checklist only needed on that last day. All right, so here I have my checklist. It's been added to the site visit. Let's assume that this job or the site visit will take place over an entire week. What we can do is assign. Excuse me if I open up the checklist. I can assign this checklist to a staff member. And I'm just going to pick on you again, Christy. No worries. Nothing new there. So I've now assigned this to Christy. She gets a notification to let her know this is her responsibility. And I can set a due date for this as well. If I said to Thomas at a time as well. So this will now notify Kristy on her Fergus up look checklist example or rather example checklist needs to be filled out on this job. By this point, we can do the same for our forms as well. So that's just been assigned it. Let's do the same here. I'm just going to open up my form. And it's a very similar process, just the settings cog in the top, right? And it's the same process, just assigning a date, setting a reminder and any additional notes we need there as well. Hopefully that helps you out there. If it wasn't, there was another question just popped in by GSA for adding a monthly view. If there's the option for that in the future to add a monthly view on the service calendar. At this stage that's not on the horizon, mostly based on with our calendar design, the layout is the time frame gets longer, the book sells or book events get smaller. So currently, the max that it's set to is where it will remain. But if there was any plans to change the calendar, we would definitely pass it on to everybody passed on to all of our customers. But at this point, unfortunately, not on there, not on the new horizon. Yeah, but it is important for you to send us this kind of feedback because your feedback like this gets passed on to our product team and it helps them get a better idea of where we need to send the product. So by all means, we'll pass this message on ourselves. But if you have any other feedback you'd like to send through, get in touch with our support team. It's down the bottom here or you can access us here. So there's a support box that's top. Den Pollard still on the cool guy. So if you had questions for Dan, not necessarily about the products but also about his experience with his business as running an old place, feel free to let him know he's still around. Also just quickly. I'm pretty stoked, Greg. Yes you message there saying that you were relating to the impact that the admin company had for Dan when he had his businesses running. So I think he'd be pretty suck to see other people enjoying the benefits there as well. Yeah, sure. Just try to look, see if there's any other questions that you guys put through. There is one from Tamara. Is there any way on the Fergus app, on the phones that can show all the guys' jobs on the calendar? If you're a full user. So this is a Yes and no. Currently, you can't access the calendar on the mobile app. However, as a full user, if you view the timesheet screen by default, you'll be looking at your own timesheet. But at the top of the screen there, you can actually toggle to view staff members timesheets and that lets you see the events that they have booked in for today and also see whether or not they've added time to this. I won't be able to share my mobile phone on the screen right now because of the way it's all set up. But I can take a couple of screenshots and maybe send that to you afterwards tomorrow just to let you know how to access that. Wasn't perfect as we're running just over time now. So if there were any other questions, definitely feel free to pop them through. Otherwise we will make sure not to keep you too long. Looks like there's the last couple of questions here, Dan, if we want to just cover those off screen, one of them just popped through in the chat. So when you just asked, when you send a note via the site visit notes, I think what you were just covering off before when you asked the staff member how were they notified by mobile and how do you set that up? So there is under Settings for the users some notification settings. So yeah, you can see there, Dan has clicked at the top right under the user. I think we can go to Settings. Sorry I didn't mean to cut you off. Go for just walking over. So I'm. Because I'm logged in currently I can hover over my own profile click user preferences and this will be sitting up my personal notification settings. However, if I want to update settings for my staff, just go to big boss there. We can enable or disable certain notifications. So this is the one here that we're looking for, Wendy. So I guess kind of related to the notes here, but a really important tip to be aware of when it comes to communications with your staff, your dashboard. I'm hesitant to share the screen with you because it is a messy account shared by many people. But the notice board here on the top, right, this is a public board that each of your staff can access. And you can see my team use this quite a lot. We can tag our staff, whether we're selecting at staffing by name or just saying at all. This will send a notification to all of our staff to let them know that needs to be done Exeter and our staff uses quite a lot. Whereas what we were doing before leaving a note inside of the site visit will only because the notes field is only accessible to those who have access or permissions to access this site. Right currently, we've got Christine myself here. But if I was to leave a note for Dan Pollard, I mean, if he doesn't have access to this job, he wouldn't have access to that field. So it's a really great way to keep communications related to this job within that job. I hope that helps for sure. There's just one last one that will try and cover off there from Tim. Just asking if there's any plans to integrate with ground plan. Not at this stage again, but like Dan just mentioned before, these sort of requests or questions are always really helpful for us and we will be passing them on to the product team. But at this point, we don't have any plans to integrate with the ground plan. Awesome OK. Any questions for Dan Pollard on? I'm sure he'd be very keen to help out.
And you guys are pros. It gets made a lot going on in there now who? It was a good. Much more looking for questions. Any clothing, jokes? Oh, you've done it now, Ben. Why do that? OK why did that why did the picture go to jail? Because that was framed. Who? why do you do this to us? Been good men. All right, well, I guess we'll leave it at that for now, guys. The session is being recorded, including all of those horrendous jokes. So if you did want to run through it again, get in touch with our support team. You can do so just with the chat box in the bottom of your focus window. I mean, as soon as the link is available, we can have that sent out to you as well. If you come up to any other issues inside of Fergus, whether it's feedback you'd like to share with us, whether it's something you're not quite sure on how to do again, I'll support. Tim as we're ready to go, or we do have a series of training videos online and help articles here. Don't be shy. Just let us know what you need and we'll do our best to help out. All right, guys. I guess we'll leave it at that. Thank you again for joining.
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