Paperwork. It makes most tradespeople shudder at the mere mention of the word. After a long day of hard work, a tradesperson’s business isn’t done. Evenings filled with paperwork – quoting, costing, invoicing, chasing and following up are common and no-one’s idea of fun.
Paperwork is also frustrating for customers – 83% of 10,000 customers recently polled stated that waiting for quotes and estimates was their biggest frustration when dealing with tradespeople.
Paperwork, however, is a vital part of any trade business. So here’s how you can improve your paperwork – to save you time and win more business.
- Know your services and prices
Even though each job you complete is bespoke, there are many aspects of your work that are likely to be the same. Have a menu of services which can be easily re-used. For example, you might often find yourself removing and disposing of old kitchens, installing windows or laying flooring. Finding the elements of your work that are often repeated will allow you to start setting standard prices, and lead to quicker and more accurate quoting.
- Clearly detail costs and materials
Detail the work you’re providing so your customer knows exactly what they’re getting within your quote. Your quote is your opportunity to demonstrate your expertise and start building trust with your customer. Including details such as time and materials can help build that trust. This needn’t be time consuming; creating template descriptions for the work you provide could save you hours!
- Send paperwork promptly
Get in the habit of collecting your customers email address and email quotes as soon as you can. This means it’ll arrive quickly for your customer to review and they’ll know that you’re organised. Make sure you have a system that lets you create and send quotes quickly and beat your competition!
- Chase up paperwork and stay in touch with your customer
When surveying a job, let your customer know what to expect after they receive your quote – a telephone call to make sure they have everything they need, or an email inviting questions. Make sure you follow-up with what you told them you’d do. This gives your customer faith that you’re efficient and on-hand to help. Staying in touch with your customer with gentle follow-ups could have a big impact on the business you win!
- Stay organised and your customers stay happy
Don’t adhere to the stereotypical image of a disorganised tradesperson, make sure you have a system that keeps you organised and efficient.
- Keeping customer details and job notes up to date, and easy to find
- A system for setting yourself future reminders like calling customers, sending quotes, ordering materials etc
- Keep a diary or calendar, check it – and update it regularly! An online calendar is accessible wherever you are and could make a big difference when scheduling work.
An easy online tool for easier paperwork
We believe professional paperwork can make a big difference to your business, so we’ve arranged a great deal on an online tool exclusively for Magnet Trade account holders.
YourTradeBase is an easy to use web-based tool that makes creating and organising all your paperwork and managing your workload quick and simple.
Magnet Trade account holders get an extended 90-day unlimited free trial of YourTradeBase and superb savings on subscriptions. Learn more about this and other great benefits for Magnet Trade account holders here, or find out more about YourTradeBase at www.yourtradebase.com.