The ability for snow and ice management companies to grow and thrive, especially in a tough economy, is directly related to five business advantages gained by their effective use of systems.
The ability for snow and ice management companies to grow and thrive, especially in a tough economy, is directly related to five critical business advantages gained by their effective use of systems that they build or buy, according to GIS Dynamics CEO Mike Rorie. Advantage One: Control
Owners preemptively solve problems and implement change when systems are applied. A great information system will provide a "dashboard" view of accurate, real-time data. Owners can stop guessing and start knowing the right things to do to achieve their goals. Advantage Two: Reduced time investment and capital costs
Processes are streamlined, problems are avoided and a business becomes efficient when systems are carried out. This allows business owners to become proactive instead of reactive. The key to this advantage is that information systems should not be complicated or hard to use. They should also be integrated in one place, so it is easy to see the big picture and then drill down into details.
"Systems are a benefit to any organization because they work for you 24/7, 365 days a year," Rorie says. "Although they require some cost to implement and maintain, they are inexpensive given the hours and value of having a person complete something manually." Advantage Three: High performers
Systems transform average employees into high performers. Systems break procedures down into step-by-step instructions, allowing employees to achieve predictable and measurable results. Owners will enjoy increased productivity, reduced turnover and higher quality people seeking positions at their company when systems are put in place to offer employees guidelines, deadlines and rewards.
"Systems-driven companies not only increase productivity, they increase employee satisfaction," Rorie says. "Systems allow your staff to get to the important needs of the business versus the routine and non-variable tasks, which in turn allows them to play a more integral role." Advantage Four: Protection
Not only do great systems prevent a disproportionate reliance on people, but they increase company stability. A systemized work process allows a new employee to quickly adapt and effectively fill the gaps; therefore, if an employee leaves, he or she doesn't take a piece of the company with them. Advantage Five: Scalability
Great systems create equity acquisition interest in a company. Companies looking to purchase contracting businesses pay a premium for the predictability, replication and scalability advantages that a systems-driven business provides.
Determining where to start building systems is the first step. In order to do this, owners must know what the root of the problem is. To discover the root, Rorie suggests conducting an 80/20 audit: "Owners must identify the 20% of their business that is causing 80% of the problems. Once they do this, it will be easy to prioritize where a system will be effective." Mike Rorie is former president of GroundMasters and CEO of GIS Dynamics, parent company of GoiLawn.com.