Need advice on software-looking for new options

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by centraltxturf, Aug 14, 2013.

  1. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,956

    Been following centraltxturf's thread. Good one. We too have a "partner company" that does our mowing. We concentrate on applications (lawn & tree) plus aeration, seeding, etc.

    Question.... why the need for smart phones, I pads, tablets, laptops, etc during the day when you are out working? I guess I don't get it.

    Odd thing is, I am the only person in my company that does not have a smart phone. The rest of my guys do. So do the gals in the office. Everybody in my company is provided with a cell phone/two-way radio (which I use).

    Half the time, I feel like throwing my cell phone in the river because it's always an interuption. I'm either driving, speaking with a customer, applying chemicals, etc.

    Our office does the billing and answers phones. (duh, kinda figure this is what offices do) Our marketing & sales are not accomplished by using any sort of mobile device. (can this even be done???)

    Incorporated in 1990. Approx 3000 accounts. Shown profits every year since day one. Mobile devices ever used.

    All we need is routing software BEFORE we send out routes.

    Are some folks trying to manage a company while sitting behind a steering wheel??? Not trying to be a smart a$$, but this is the picture I get from lots of posts.

    I'll park it right here. Feel free to beat me up now.

    Proud Texan who happens to live in Iowa.

    p.s. we have fired 3 employees this past year for being on their (personal) smart phones too much during work hours.
  2. Service 1st Lawn Care

    Service 1st Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 643

    American you have 3,000 clients and you are still applying apps yourself? WHY
  3. fl-landscapes

    fl-landscapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,542

    Some people just can't pull themselves away. My brother in law owns a big hydraulics company in Boston and makes in a year what I make in five, he is the first one in and last one out every day. I think he's crazy but to each their own. He takes probably 7 nice vacations a year but when he's at work he is getting dirty. Some people just can't sit behind a desk.

    CTPTURF LawnSite Member
    Messages: 80

    Cloud based is great if you have multiple users of your software who do not come the "office " everyday.

    I have been using CLIP tied to QuickBooks since 2004, both on the desktop. Between me and a part timer we service around 600 properties with a third having tree/shrub jobs also.

    I don't have a dedicated full-time office person but someone who I trust that answers the office number(cell#), sends out invoices, sends me estimates and service calls(via texts), does AR from their home. Needless to say our current system is FAR from perfect.

    We have asked CLIP for two years or more if/when they would have a cloud based version but nothing so far. So we are in initial stages of transferring to Jobber and I bought two 10 inch tablets for each truck. I hope to be completely paperless in a month.
  5. ted putnam

    ted putnam LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,752

    Painfully...That's me...

    On the flipside,I do think that it's also an ingredient that makes a business successful. Not that you can't be successful without being that way.

    I will say that in my area at least, I can think of at least 3 businesses off the top of my head that grew pretty quickly and the manager/owners/partners started to have the "hands off" approach and things went down the toilet pretty quick. One of them is still a current competitor but they are hanging by a thread and I figure they will fall apart by the end of this year. Their customers are jumping ship left and right while I steadily grow. Just 2 yrs ago, they were trying to buy me out...:laugh:

    Shooting stars will sometimes go down in flames.

    My largest local competitor has around 4000 customers. He still goes out and does some sales/service, Tree/shrub apps and I've even seen him out doing some aerations(with a helper). He's a helluva guy. We are good friends

    Larry and I have bumped heads on many things in the past and I'm sure we will in the future but on this one, he gets a "knuckle bump" from me.
  6. fl-landscapes

    fl-landscapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,542

    Ted, I think there's a fine line between micro managing and getting in the way and pulling back and having things fall apart. I'm like you guys and I think it's because I always have this awful feelings things just won't get done to my expectations if I'm not there watching or doing it. Type A personalities don't sit around getting fat, but they don't always get dirty with banged up knuckles either. Like I said to each their own. Im kinda in the hands on camp like you guys, but I still think my brother in law is crazy....but maybe I am too:laugh:

  7. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,956

    Thanks Ted. I too have seen the same thing as you in my market. 2 of the largest have recently merged, changed owners, changed names, or refinanced several times. (folks can check out their market by checking their Secretary of State website for "corporations").

    I honestly don't know what I would do if I were not involved on a daily basis. (get fat & depressed for sure) I don't even like taking days off during the growing season cuz I feel guilty if my guys are out working and I'm not (this would stick in my craw bigtime). I've always loved team sports so I gotta be with my guys. This group interaction/team effort is what helps me feel good about myself. I enjoy interacting with the public (customers & non-customers). Many say interacting with people keeps their mind sharp and prevents depression, etc. I agree.

    Give me a truck, a route, and trusted friends, and life is good. (no fords please) :laugh:

    All I ask when I die >> bury me with a spray gun in one hand, and an invoice in the other. ;)

    BTW, I am a RAZORBACK fan (as Ted already knows) cuz of my many Arkansas relatives.
  8. Service 1st Lawn Care

    Service 1st Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 643

    Great answer Larry that's why we do what we love, you sure you don't want to be buried with a T-3000 name plate. LOL
  9. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,956

    Okay Service -- you got me there. :laugh:

    Serious question (most know I'm a real cheapskate) :waving:

    Regarding technology: Been using TomToms to (voice) navigate between stops. Problem is, our's will be 4 years out-of-date this year, and many new neighborhoods are not listed.

    Is it better to "upgrade" or to "buy new"?? Don't care what brand (Garmin, TomTom, or whatever).

    Upgrade or buy new???

    Thanks in advance.
  10. Bill H

    Bill H LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    I have used Billmaster for the past year and loved it. Very easy to use! Can't imagine life without it now! I service 600 fert and squirt customers and it works great!

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