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The Best Solution for a Growing HVAC Business

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As a content strategist, part of my role is to surf the web to find what our fans (and haters) are saying about CompanyCam. Lucky for me, CompanyCam has A LOT more of the former because our app solves a lot of problems for people in the trades.

On a recent sesh, I found this post from Temperature Difference, one of CompanyCam’s newest users:

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Click here to see the report. 🐶🐶

Apart from being a very nice message about CoCam, the post stood out to me for a few reasons:

  1. It tells a good story. The post has characters, problems, and a solution. 
  2. It gives a look into how they operate. They value their employees’ opinions as part of their decision-making process.
  3. It includes one of the best reports ever made in CompanyCam. Click the sample report in the post so you know what I’m talking about.

So after reading that post, I wanted to get them on the phone to learn more about their decision to sign up for CompanyCam. Owners Dustin and Trisha Thomas graciously agreed to let me lob questions at them for 30 minutes over Zoom.

The tl;dr on Temperature Difference

Temperature Difference is a full-service HVAC business located in Murray, Utah. While they’ve primarily focused on commercial projects in their first 15 years, Temperature Difference is quickly expanding the home service side of the business. They’ve grown to 15 employees, which includes their son, who is a lead foreman, and a daughter who works in the office.

I asked Temperature Difference to share some keys to their success operating within a trade that experiences a 20% business closure rate each year and a 70% failure rate in the first year. Dustin credited building trust with a handful of dedicated commercial clients from the beginning as the foundation for their long-term success: 

Some companies tend to lose sight of that… and start wanting to focus more on making more dollars, instead of taking care of their customers […] It may not get into your profit margins, necessarily, but you have longevity in your business.”

A Growing Need for a Solution

As Temperature Difference grew and they took on more jobs, they started looking for a solution to help keep everyone on the same page. 

Managing both areas and keeping up with what everybody’s doing day to day on their projects and… spending. It just got to be a lot to manage, and I needed an all-in-one central place where everybody could be on the same page,” Trisha said.

More crew members and job sites equal more chances for miscommunication and time spent in the truck. There were times when somebody would jump from one job to another and forget which tasks were left to complete or where they left a particular part.

All of those little things, they add up over time, and it becomes a problem,” Trisha added.

How It Started

Once Temperature Difference identified a need for software, they enlisted Zakk to help them find it. They tried out a handful of popular industry solutions but found that many of them didn’t fit their blueprint. And getting crew buy-in was tough.

I really wanted something that was quick and easy to navigate. Our guys go at a fast pace, and [when they used] a software that had a million tabs, or all these things to choose from, they would not do what we needed them to do in there,” Trisha said.

As a growing business, Temperature Difference didn’t have the capacity to completely overhaul their job site and office processes to fit with those apps. They were more interested in a solution that would improve their existing processes. So, after seeing one of CompanyCam’s Facebook ads, they decided to give it a try. 

I asked them what features ultimately brought them to demo and pick CompanyCam:

The task lists were huge, and then assigning that to people and then them having to check off and validate that they did that with photos. The accountability aspect was the huge thing,” Trisha said.

Dustin added, And it doesn’t have all the unnecessary distractions, from my point of view, on the software. I haven’t found an aspect of the software so far that we don’t utilize on a daily basis at least multiple times.”

How It’s Going

Soon after signing up for CompanyCam, Temperature Difference was able to catch and correct some issues that could have affected its bottom line.

I think in the first couple of weeks of actually implementing it, it actually maximized our ability to catch things that may not have gotten corrected, or as far as billing goes… missing out on payments is big,” Dustin said.

Trisha added, I was able to catch several items that I would have had no idea I needed to fill out because somebody didn’t turn in paperwork. But I saw their stuff in CompanyCam, and I was like, What is that?’”

Adoption by crew members has also gone more smoothly than the other apps they tried. Before they went live in the field, Trisha shared some of the training videos with employees so they could familiarize themselves with the app.

They all seemed to just easily go into using it. Nobody really had any hiccups,” Trisha said.

Adapting Features and Connecting Integrations

Temperature Difference found ways to use features in the app, like labels and to-do lists, to update some of their processes and ensure that the office and field stay on the same page. They’ve also integrated their Teamup calendars with CompanyCam.

It works really well so far. We’re still twisting and tuning with everything, but it’s all on the positive. It’s already making major steps forward in streamlining… and making it work with a small office staff,” Dustin said.

Their business also uses Quickbooks Online for invoices and billing. And shortly after our conversation, our product team released an update to our CompanyCam + Zapier functionality. Now users like Temperature Difference can easily set up automations between CompanyCam and Quickbooks or other software they use.

Fishing for More Compliments

As we wrapped up our chat, I asked Dustin and Trisha what they would tell another HVAC company or contractor about CompanyCam.

Trisha mentioned they have friends in the area that own a heating company, who they frequently work with:

I actually messaged their office manager and shared our experience because they’re a very similar-sized company, and… similar to us in the way they do things. I let them know this is probably something you should look into if you’re wanting the price, and the functionality, and the ease of use of it.”

Dustin told me the contractors he’s talked to are interested because they know they need to adopt digital processes, but they often default to signing up for software with more bells and whistles than they need:

I would just tell them to do your trial, and it would show itself in savings in time and dollars—and just hours in the day. We only have so many, and we have to maximize them no matter what we do.”

Shout out to Dustin and Trisha of Temperature Difference for taking the time to Zoom with me. I’m hoping to catch up with them a few months from now to see how everything’s going with CompanyCam, but it looks like things are already moo-ving along nicely.

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Christian is known round these parts as the silent wizard — whipping out editing, researching, and strategizing skills like it’s nobody’s biz. As a Content Strategist, he stays busy assisting our Product and Activation/​Retention teams with all their content needs — all while staying as quiet as possible. (Heaven forbid he’d talk too much.) 

After work, Christian can be found hanging out with his beautiful wife Ruth, playing catch with his dog Sunday, rewatching that one Indian reality TV episode he starred in (#famous), or making dumb vides on his fine. Go on, Christian. Share your work with the class.

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