There are many books and articles that outline the best ways to run businesses across a variety of sectors, but spray foam is one that has a specific set of practices that are specific to our industry. In this article, we review some of the universally significant practices and give some suggestions specific to spray foam.
The primary goal of companies is getting the money you deserve for your labor! It’s a simple concept, however lots of spray foam contractors fail to pay their bills promptly and thus have a tough time receiving the money they’ve put in so much effort to get. Your management team must follow this simple rule of thumb:
Repairs, rework, call-backs Whatever you want to call them, they destroy profits more quickly than other things in the business. Most common callsbacks to spray foam contractors are to apply foam when it has been sprayed too thin or not present at all. We’ve all seen the ease of sprayers wearing proper equipment to leave a tiny area or gap in foam in the window or next to an outlet that is electric however, the majority of spray teams have a frequently overlooked team member who is able to almost always spot the mistakes as long as they’ve been properly trained to spot them.
The assistant is the last person who will see the majority parts of foam and If they’re educated to recognize these flaws and avoid them, the majority of calls are prevented. A simple checklist could be developed to help train and establish the required quality standards for the job. And the quality standard should be followed by all employees of the business to prevent calls backs.
A smart business owner can create and categorize images suitable foam applications. Everyone within the organization must be taught about how important it is to adhere to the company’s quality standards and be able to discuss the design and appearance of different jobs. For example, spray foam might be used to meet the R-20 wall cavity code by using medium-density closed-cell foam. The stud cavity will not be filled to capacity, however certain builders may not be aware of the superior thermal properties in spray foam and insist on the SPF contractor returning to fill the cavity completely. This confusion can be avoided if salesperson has your photo with the contract that was signed by the construction company. The photo must be taken to the construction site to allow the team to be aware of the requirements. This is easy and will save you from costly calls backs.
A checklist is your step-by-step plan for each task that is completed by any person on your team. Sales representatives have specific forms required to start an assignment. A checklist should be used to define the conditions and, once completed, it is required to file it with the other paperwork for the job. One of the items on the checklist is to include a photograph of the agreed-upon look for the foam at the site. Checklists that the estimator uses will allow them to pinpoint commonly overlooked areas or job conditions that could make the task more challenging, and a list of the steps to break down the bid can help avoid the chance of confusion later.
The crew is provided with an agenda for preparing to rigs, another one for cleaning the building or house as well as other checklists to address all possible scenarios they could face. If a step on the checklist isn’t implemented, then discuss the issue and make changes to the list or modify the way the crew is acting. These are permanent documents, and should be followed so that you can maintain the safety of workers and complete the task effectively.
Checklists are fantastic when everyone is aware of their value and is willing to use them. Checklists can also make the calculation of compensation more straightforward as performance on the job can be easily tracked. Accepting and understanding the checklist is a part of training that each SPF contractor is accountable for. The training to learn about the quality standard of the company and how every team member helps to achieve “Zero-Defect” tasks is the most effective way to success. Participating in the creation and managing those checklists can make acceptance and constant adherence to the standards more simple. Many SPF contractors complain that they have to spend an enormous amount of time and money training personnel who leave their company, however that it’s more expensive to not educate them and make them remain! Workers who aren’t trained cost the company time and money, therefore the need for training is vital. A customized training plan for each employee can be designed and a checklist developed to define expectations and understand when to alter the compensation.
UTILIZE AVAILABLE TECHNOLOGY
We’re so lucky today that every member of the team has a laptop computer that is in every pockets! Cell phones and inexpensive storage of data have transformed how we run our businesses and train our staff. The salesperson is now able to “walk his job” in virtual reality, or live in a recorded version for the team. The salesperson can highlight the areas that need attention and tell the crew what’s expected. Photos taken before and after the spray foam application must be added to the work record. If the team encounters issues with the application, a short video and some pictures will guide the salesperson, so mistakes and omissions are prevented in the future.
ArmorThane has a group of highly trained technicians who are just one phone call, text message or video-chat away. Sometimes, a few minutes of video-calling could mean many hours of downtime. The Ar tech service team is able to assist with most issues when they’re manageable before shutting down your equipment. One of the best things to check off on your checklist is to include the contact details and name to the ArmorThane tech representative on the checklist for the jobsite.
A PLACE FOR EVERYTHING
The most successful companies around the world employ a system known as “5-S” to manage every part of the business. The shop, office and sales vehicles, rigs all of it! This rig is more secure once it’s organized, cleaned and created to Shine. Once it has been Standardized and a system is designed to support this system The spray rig can be at its maximum performance. As long as the rig’s performance isn’t improved, the crew isn’t as safe or efficient as it is possible. There are many excellent books and articles on 5-S, sometimes known as”the “Toyota Quality Management System.” The program is easy to implement and highly effective. when the entire business works in concert to implement the 5-S plan, everyone is more productive and happier, and the business will be more profitable.
Plan for Success
Who could have predicted 2020’s events? Who was ready for both the crash in the spring as well as the boom that would follow? We’ve been a long-time advocate for SPF businesses to continuously contribute to a fund for growth that they can use to buy the latest spray equipment or to fund an additional middle or salesperson until they are capable of paying themselves. The fund for growth could have been appreciated when the business industry came to a grinding to a halt after we entered the COVID lockdown in March. The bills kept coming in and overhead costs didn’t slow down as quickly as revenue, but businesses with a reserve survived those months of uncertainty. They were also able adjust to the increasing demands for spray foam during the time after. This is a must for the long-term viability of any company and is essential for businesses that rely on labor, such as spray foam.
Spray foam is a fan of warmth. The rig is at its best when it’s warm. This means that the chemical flows much more quickly and consistently and the foam adheres to warmer surfaces more easily and yields will be significantly higher when everything is warm. Heating is possibly the best investment you could make for your business. You can add heat to your chemical storage system to reduce many hours of preparation time every day, specifically using low density, open-cell foam. Include heat in your equipment for a more relaxed and more secure crew, and to help your equipment run more efficient. Incorporate heat into the substrate to increase adhesion and ensure the hose heat is operating properly. Every list of checklists for sales and operations should include the issue of heat and how it can be controlled to achieve optimal performance.
Spray rigs can be costly to maintain. Those without an established maintenance schedule and a checklist for confirming that they are completed will be more expensive. Regular maintenance should be done in the workshop instead of on the field. A spare gun for each machine is a great investment to ensure that the crew doesn’t have to stop and repair or replace the gun. A drum pump at least in the workshop is vital. A temperature sensor for fluids along with other components that are that are known to fail must be in hand…in their appropriate position and always in working and in working order.
The aim of each SPF contractor is for each rig spray at least six hours per day. Utilizing a tiny tip on a large proportioner the set of chemicals can be processed in just 100 minutes. It’s not unusual to find spray equipment to spray properly-processed foam in less than 3 hours each day. Find out your average production rate and collaborate with your crew to establish expectations. Training and adhering to checklists, in addition to maintaining the equipment, however without it the equipment won’t make money.
Be aware of your worth
The majority of us working in the industry typically believe the fact that spray foam is the best insulation and air-seal material on the globe. Making a value proposition for your company is a great method to engage every employee in the organization to establish the direction for the company. As the business itself contributes to the building industry and the SPF employees add value to the business. Giving thanks when each task is accomplished is a great way to show appreciation. Informing everyone about the benefits the business brings to the construction industry assists them in understanding the ways they contribute towards energy saving, reducing the amount of greenhouse gases, and slowing the pace of climate change. Everyone from the CEO to the site assistants is making a significant impact, one home and one building at an time.