Home – New Forums New here? Share your story Hi All – Growing Business Looking for help

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  • #981397
    Edgar84
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    • Total posts: 3
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    Hello,

    I was looking for information on growing a business and came across this site, looks like an awesome source of information.

    I currently own and run an electrical/communications business that i started 3 and a half years ago in my back shed by myself, we now work out of a premise in the industrial area and employ over 20 team members.

    I see huge potential for our business to continue to grow rapidly over the next few years, but am looking for some information or advice on the different ways we could go about it. I am currently developing a detailed business plan to gain finance for further growth.
    Maybe i could post some more specific questions elswhere.

    Thankyou

    #1130114
    Divert To Mobile
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    • Total posts: 2,751
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    Hi Edgar,

    Welcome aboard, congratulations on the superb growth and success.
    Hopefully you can answer some questions as well.

    Steve

    #1130116
    PRO
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    • Total posts: 450
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    Hi Edgar

    Well done.

    My best mate is a sparky and I spent many school and uni holidays in trenches and pulling cables through ceilings. Great intro to hard work.

    Welcome to the forum

    #1130117
    akagrp
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    • Total posts: 315
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    Hello Edgar

    And welcome to the flying solo community, I am sure you will benefit from the interaction

    Firstly congrats on the growth you have achieved in the very few years you have been operating, though at this point you may be finding that working capital is more critical to meet your growing payroll, as 20 staff would not come cheap.

    That said what I would be looking at growing is the maintenance division within your company, look at things like emergency lighting testing ( a good point would be to join for some alliances with strata managers, fire control company’s, )other areas is equipment tagging this will allow regular fixed income to assist with cash-flow

    What I also find in your industry is the wide gap from one project to another with regards to profit margins. Large jobs are not always as profitable and tend to carry a greater risk of non payment as you tend to be contracted by a head contractor etc

    What state are you based in?
    What is the technical/skill mix level of your team eg Licensed, Trainees
    What is the capacity of team on a daily basis, for example if on a large site time vs what you earn, can you make more via 4 smaller jobs a day ( as ability to charge 4 lots of service calls)
    Do you wish to specialize in one area or become a total solution
    Eg add a Repair/service for Whitegoods/new installations etc
    Who is your ideal customer

    A tip for growth is make sure you create system that allow the process to be streamlined and allows the same level of skill/service no matter which team member performs the work

    All the best for the future, I am sure we will be reading about you up coming BRW of fast starters

    #1130118
    Anonymous
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    • Total posts: 11,464
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    Hi Edgar,

    Welcome to Flying Solo :)

    Anna has kicked things off with some great points there, but please feel free to post specific queries in the appropriate part of the forum too.

    Looking forward to having you around,
    Jayne

    #1130119
    kathiemt
    Member
    • Total posts: 1,167
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    Welcome Edgar, great to have you with us. Seems you’ve already been doing some of the right things to grow as you have. We look forward to getting to know you more.

    #1130120
    TheGoldenGoose
    Member
    • Total posts: 860
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    Hi

    Welcome and congratulations on such growth in a short period of time. You must be doing something right! ;)

    Specific questions are good :)

    #1130121
    Edgar84
    Member
    • Total posts: 3
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    akagrp, post: 147501 wrote:
    What state are you based in?
    What is the technical/skill mix level of your team eg Licensed, Trainees
    What is the capacity of team on a daily basis, for example if on a large site time vs what you earn, can you make more via 4 smaller jobs a day ( as ability to charge 4 lots of service calls)
    Do you wish to specialize in one area or become a total solution
    Eg add a Repair/service for Whitegoods/new installations etc
    Who is your ideal customer

    A tip for growth is make sure you create system that allow the process to be streamlined and allows the same level of skill/service no matter which team member performs the work

    Thankyou for the welcome and responses everyone,

    We are based in WA and mainly work on communications contracts (NBN Related), with a small team working on electrical works.

    The unique problem I have is there is as much work as I want, the more team members I can get the more work I can get done.

    We need more working capital that is for sure if we want to grow quickly, so to do that i need to pitch a good case to the bank.

    Although we have been going for a few years the first 2 weren’t that great on paper though we continued to grow. We were going alright all of last year and then a builder i worked for went bankrupt leaving me without a very large amount of money. Since that point our focus has mainly been on building our comms work in which we know the money is in the bank and there is an unlimitied amount of work for many years.

    The other issue is working out the changes I need to make to the structure of the company to allow the growth to be seamless (i know it never will be, but maybe).

    I haven’t had any business loans before, its purely been our own investment, Am i even wasting my time going to a bank with poor financials except for the last few months?.

    #1130122
    AgentMail
    Member
    • Total posts: 1,741
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    Hi Hector,

    I think with the kind of exponential growth you are experiencing, it would be very wise to seek the services of a business coach, or even better a business mentor. It is very easy to get swept away in the growth of a business and lose sight of what our the keys to keeping it moving.

    If you can find one that has experience in raising capital, you might find this very useful as well.

    One that comes to mind is an active FS member, particularly for the business structure and fund raising aspects – James Millar (do an advanced search for user JamesMillar and you will get a flavour of his knowledge)

    #1130123
    akagrp
    Member
    • Total posts: 315
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    Hello Edgar

    Agree with agent mail if you have yet to speak to a business advisor you have reached that time.

    Though you may feel the financials are not that crash hot for the bank a good advisor may be able to present them in a better light and associate a story to the condition of trading

    The fact that your contracts are based around the NBN rollout should also give confidence to the bank manager

    Depending on where you require the working capital, you may be able to package a variety of different lending that will appeal to a lender

    Eg equipment finance, debtor finance, overdraft, term loan

    With regards to structured are you currently trading as a Pty Ltd?
    Have you reached the point that you would be happy to give part of the equity to an investor?

    If so what would the ideal investor be, eg Money plus operational experience or simply cash only (silent partner let’s you attend to everyday operations)

    Feel free to to ask questions of the group

    Please note above is general and niot intended to replace seeking professional advise

    #1130124
    Dino
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    • Total posts: 5
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    Hi Edgar and welcome. Congrats on your business success so far and very wise seeking advise on growth. Good advise is a smart investment, but watch out for the “Dodgy Brothers” advisers. I was fortunate to get good small business advice early on but I did my homework first and asked other businesses in the area.

    Good luck ;)

    #1130125
    Gizmo
    Member
    • Total posts: 731
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    Hello Edgar,

    Congratulations on your success.

    What exactly do you do in relation to NBN contracts?

    I ask this because I too work closely with companies involved in NBN related matters. I’d be happy to organise a meeting between you and them.

    However I do not want to waste anyone’s time so the more info you can give me about what you do the more likely I would be able to determine if there would be any benefit in the introduction.

    #1130126
    bestfeature
    Member
    • Total posts: 1
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    Hi,

    Sounds like a good business to be in.

    Perhaps you can improve your cashflow by getting part (or all ?) of your payment up-front.

    And not extending credit.

    If business is going well, why not weed out the good customers, and reject the time wasters.

    eg The builder you worked for that went bankrupt:
    Could your terms have been 30% down-payment, weekly progress payments, payment on completion.

    If they don’t accept the terms, ..you have plenty of good clients to pursue by the sounds of it.

    Make your terms harder and your prices higher and higher until you start loosing business, then you know the level is about right.. ?

    Also: if you need electronics designed or manufactured, I can help.

    Regards.
    Richard

    Edgar84, post: 147804 wrote:
    Thankyou for the welcome and responses everyone,

    We are based in WA and mainly work on communications contracts (NBN Related), with a small team working on electrical works.

    The unique problem I have is there is as much work as I want, the more team members I can get the more work I can get done.

    We need more working capital that is for sure if we want to grow quickly, so to do that i need to pitch a good case to the bank.

    Although we have been going for a few years the first 2 weren’t that great on paper though we continued to grow. We were going alright all of last year and then a builder i worked for went bankrupt leaving me without a very large amount of money. Since that point our focus has mainly been on building our comms work in which we know the money is in the bank and there is an unlimitied amount of work for many years.

    The other issue is working out the changes I need to make to the structure of the company to allow the growth to be seamless (i know it never will be, but maybe).

    I haven’t had any business loans before, its purely been our own investment, Am i even wasting my time going to a bank with poor financials except for the last few months?.

    #1130127
    Breevree73
    Member
    • Total posts: 112
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    Hi Edgar

    I’d love to chat with you about your business – I run a small business consultancy here in Perth, with a specific interest in helping small businesses to grow into what the owner wants them to become.

    Please give me a call/msg when you have the opportunity. If you want to get a little more information about what I do, please visit my website.

    Many thanks.

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