How Footprints Floors Franchise Owners are Reaping the Benefits of Using Subcontractors
In the construction industry, few mainstays are quite as essential as subcontractors. However, when you’re new to construction or home renovation, the idea of managing workers that aren’t technically your own employees can be scary at first. The paperwork involved and the unique circumstances surrounding that type of professional relationship are foreign and confusing to most of our new Franchise Owners. Luckily, our founding Footprints Floors team has been there and knows what it takes to build strong relationships with a network of subcontractors–not to mention the amazing benefits behind this practice.
In this blog, we’ll dive into why the construction world has leaned on the subcontractor relationship through the years, the advantages of this arrangement, and how Footprints Floors has made hiring contractors so easy.
Downsides of Hiring W-2 Employees
When most first-time business owners join a franchise, one of their first thoughts is hiring an in-house staff – a.k.a., a team of W-2 employees. While plenty of businesses thrive on this arrangement, there are some–like Footprints Floors–that are better suited for subcontractors, also referred to as 1099 contractors. Many brands in the construction industry rely on the subcontractor arrangement and would likely see decreased profit margins, among other things if they were forced to only retain a W-2 staff.
When you hire a W-2 employee, there are a ton of expenses involved with each new onboarding that quickly add up impacting your bottom line. Even if you opt for a candidate with all the ideal prior experience, you still need to set aside the time to take them through all their initial paperwork, schedule a variety of workplace training courses or videos for completion, and have them shadow an existing employee before they can take on work of their own. All of these not only take time, but each new hire costs a business $1,252 on average, money that could otherwise be spent on marketing initiatives.
In the construction and home renovation industries, each line of work requires the use of complex tools and equipment to get the job done, none of which are cheap. So, when you bring W-2 employees on board, you’re expected to furnish them with this equipment, an expense that can quickly run away from you when you’re growing. If large purchases like this are constantly eating into your profit margin, you can hardly expect continued growth if you don’t have funds to dedicate to your growth.
Subcontractors & Footprints Floors Franchise
Since our founding back in 2008, Footprints Floors home services franchise has relied on the use of subcontractors and has continued this practice with each new flooring franchise awarded. In late 2008, our founder–Bryan Park, started completing projects around his community independently. However, by May 2009, he was able to scale the home improvement business thanks to the team of subcontractors he had connected with, allowing him to have four different jobs running at one time. Today, each flooring franchise is built on this relationship, allowing Franchise Owners to focus on sales and overseeing operations, while subcontractors are trusted to take care of just the installation and finishing involved with each project.
Advantages for Franchise Owners
As a Footprints Floors Franchise Owner, there are many benefits to using subcontractors that become apparent before you even send someone out to complete your first flooring installation job. As we discussed earlier, a subcontractor isn’t required to undergo the same rigorous and lengthy onboarding process as a W-2 employee. With this, both time and money are saved and the Franchise Owner can leverage the certifications, experience, and territory knowledge of their subcontractors much quicker than the alternative. Since subcontractors are already involved in the local construction or home renovation markets, they become valuable resources for home services Franchise Owners that they otherwise wouldn’t have.
If that wasn’t enough, subcontractors also come equipped with their own tools to complete jobs and their own vehicles to get to and from work sites. This lower upfront cost allows our Franchise Owners to increase their profit margin or even dedicate more money to their marketing goals. On the off chance that a subcontractor doesn’t work out, Footprints Floors Owners can choose to end a relationship right then, without needing to go through the usual Human Resource headaches that govern business-employee relationships. This way, you can move on to the next subcontractor and keep project disruptions to a minimum.
Advantages for the Subcontractors
Many subcontractors in the construction industry today choose not to tie themselves exclusively to just one business for many of the same reasons businesses opt to work with subcontractors. While the money can oftentimes be better than the alternative, it also allows them the freedom to work as much or as little as they want at a given time. This means they can tailor their work schedule to their personal life.
Additionally, subcontractors can also leverage their professional network to help them learn more in-demand skills and diversify the kind of work they can provide to their clients. This allows them to work with a roster of many brands or choose a select few to remain loyal to as they grow.
How We Support Franchise Owners in Hiring Subcontractors
We understand that managing subcontractors can often be a sticking point for some potential home improvement franchisees. That’s why we train our Franchise Owners on everything they need to know to hire, oversee, pay, and maintain subcontractor-based crews. With the Footprints Floors franchise business model, we also ensure our crews are paid extremely well and guarantee we can keep them busy 12 months out of the year. This means that once the right subcontractors are in place and crews are built, each person becomes loyal to our Franchise Owners and becomes an easy piece of the business to manage.
In addition to our business model and initial training, our Footprints Floors support team is always available to Franchise Owners, no matter how long they have been a franchisee. This way, if an Owner has a unique situation they need answered or needs additional support to maintain their subcontractor knowledge, they know they have someone in their corner when they need it.
Training, Tools & Our Owner Network
When you first join the Footprints Floors flooring franchise, you will learn everything you need to start a successful flooring business from day one–especially the ins and outs of working with subcontractors. Your first two weeks of training in Colorado will include classroom courses, Franchise Owner shadowing, and even a ride-along to see what your subcontractors will be doing. After going back to your territory for hands-on training, you’ll return back to Colorado to guarantee that all your questions are answered and you’re prepared for success.
During this training, you’ll be given the Craigslist ad template each home services Franchise Owner uses to attract new subcontractors, as well as the process you’ll follow to ensure you’ve found the right person for the job. From there, your training will cover all the 1099 paperwork involved and provide guidance on maintaining this type of work structure.
While business ownership of all kinds can be rewarding, joining an established home services franchise can be even more fulfilling because of the built-in Franchise Owner network involved. At Footprints Floors, new Franchise Owners are introduced to each other during the initial training when scheduling allows. Once each person has their flooring business up and running, they can also connect with other, more established franchisees to build those professional relationships. With our franchise, Owners gain a unique network of like-minded individuals via a chat forum so they can feel comfortable reaching out when they need advice on anything – including the management of subcontractor relationships.
Subcontractors Enable Scalability
In business ownership, scalability is the name of the game. Running the same business is enough for some, but most entrepreneurs get hungry for growth in the form of more sales or more territories. In order for a business to scale sustainably, it needs the existing business model to support this expansion, too.
When you’re not dedicating a huge portion of your time to guiding W-2 employees through training and the HR process, you gain hours back in your day to focus on growth initiatives like attending public events or connecting with local networking groups. On top of this, using subcontractors also means you aren’t regularly buying new vehicles or equipment for staff to use, saving you tens of thousands each year so you can commit more funds to your marketing or to growing your profit margin.
Whether you’re new to the world of home renovations or you’ve worked alongside subcontractors in the construction industry before, Footprints Floors has the business model and Franchise Owner support you need to get started. With our free Franchise Report, you can learn everything you need to know to move forward with the franchise ownership process and rest assured knowing that you’ll get all the support you need to understand the Franchise Owner-subcontractor relationship.
Take our qualification quiz to see if you’re ready to be the next to join the Footprints Floors home services franchise!