How to Build a Junk Removal Business: Tech, Culture, and Careers
Andrew Weins is a U.S. Veteran and an entrepreneur by nature—it’s clear that hard work, process, and tenacity are in his blood. It all constantly pushes him forward on a path of success.
Andy comes from a history of hard working entrepreneurs. His grandfathers and his father have owned multiple businesses. Andy has owned junk removal businesses for ten years, and has also started his own consulting business.
He started out with owning one JDog Junk Removal & Hauling franchise, a franchise company which is exclusively owned and operated by Veterans across America. Now, Andy and his business partner and brother Isaac Weins own four franchises. Talk about a successful team!
Today, Andy’s business has over 500 five-star online client reviews. It costs him about 1$ to maintain each client account, and a minute to update account information.
“All I know how to do is work a business. Junk removal is in my name.” Andy explains.
We spoke to Andy and his colleague, Andrew Zell, Senior Project Manager, about their business, JDog Junk Removal & Hauling Southeastern Wisconsin.
According to Andy and Andrew, here’s what it takes to run a successful business:
- Having a business strategy that works like a well-oiled machine
- Having a strong company culture and values
- Helping people build their careers
1. Have a business strategy that works like a well-oiled machine
Andy knows that process and structure are everything—he’s a Veteran, after all!
Through experience, Andy found the best way to establish process and order was to use a reliable field service software.
Without it, his team was writing everything down on paper, freestyling appointments as the phone rang, and using GPS to get around for each new appointment.
As his team and business grew, he knew that this impromptu strategy wasn’t going to last.
Things became disorganized. He wasn’t able to keep track of customer accounts; information would be put into different systems up to four times; information would go missing; and his team wasn’t able to stay on the same page.
Even with tech such as Google Calendar, Timetree, or Outlook, Andy lacked a cohesive process that brought his team together and saved everyone time.
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For things to be any less simple as it is with Jobber is a headache. If you’re in the field, you open the app, take a payment, and leave. No extra information needed.
Once Andy found Jobber, the game changed.
“Life before Jobber was cumbersome and not well managed. Life after Jobber made operations and my whole business smoother. Jobber gives you processes that can be repeatable throughout all members of your company. It drives transparency and process.”
Andy practically lives by Jobber, he says. “If it’s not in Jobber it didn’t happen. Jobber governs everything: our workflow, client information, receiving payment, and knowing where people were at as exact moment….I do what Jobber tells me to do—even if lunch time comes around.”
These days, it takes Andy about a minute to create a client account and maintain it in comparison to over four minutes.
Andy says his 18-year old and 60-year-old staff can use Jobber “My mom doesn’t know how to check her email, but can use it.”
Jobber is in every one of Andy’s trucks on a mobile device so everyone can stay on the same page no matter what.
2. Company Culture and Values
Andy has worked very hard to build up a reliable team that embodies strong values—a crucial strategy that has led to his company’s success.
For Andy, all of this starts with hiring employees. He hires people who are compassionate, considerate, kind, and can communicate effectively. That’s the type of service he wants to give his customers, and the way he wants to treat his employees.
The next priority is treating his employees like friends and family. “We’re like any other family. We’ve got each other and help one another.”
Company culture isn’t just about personal development and growth, it’s about fun stuff, too. They hang out, go go-karting, try escape rooms, do team building exercises, play softball, and even get tattoos together (yeah, that’s right: company wide tattoos!).
Andy says, “it’s about doing all the things you’re supposed to do: engage with employees on a passionate basis, document when they mess up, have coachable moments….talk about what should they do to be better team members. You have to put a sense of ownership in your employees.”
3. Helping people build their careers
Andy firmly believes that helping his employees build a career at his junk removal business is crucial because it creates a strong and trustworthy team.
“The people who punch in and out don’t last here. JDog is very career focused. It’s not a seasonal job. Retention starts when you walk into the building. From day one it’s about your career. Some people have left and then have come right back and haven’t thought twice about it again.”
Andy focuses on making his team feel important and valued to retain them. He gives them more than a salary. He creates employee features through their internal communication platform, posts on social about the team, and does full-day company wide shut downs for employee training. He gets them a professional headshot, and encourages them to use it on their LinkedIn profile.
“I want to treat my employees like they are going to stay forever. I’m not going to cut hours when things get slow, or not train them.”
Providing his team with more than an employment experience is part of Andy’s strategy. “Every other Tuesday we do training and development. Sometimes we bring in third party speakers to talk about financial planning or wealth-building. Sometimes I’ll give a lesson based on what my employees want to know.”
It’s all about career progression and personal development. When you have a strong team, you have a strong business. That shows through in Andy’s business success.