Customer Service Helps SERVPRO Drive Sales
Disasters happen, notes Sue Steen, and “We can’t control mother nature,” but when it comes to responding to those events, that’s where SERVPRO and its network of cleanup and restoration franchisees shine.
“It’s really their desire to help people in their time of need,” says Steen, CEO of Gallatin, Tennessee-based SERVPRO, as she points out a motivating factor for owners who are trained not just in the technical aspects of dealing with storm, fire and water damage but also in the art of working with people throughout what can be their worst days.
“We’ve been working the past several years to get our franchisees to truly understand the importance of customer service,” says Steen, and it’s paying off with steady growth. “We’re beginning to see the fruits of those labors.”
SERVPRO crossed the $2 billion mark in systemwide sales for 2017 to come in at No. 62 on the Franchise Times Top 200+, our exclusive ranking of the 500 largest franchises. SERVPRO grew sales 13.5 percent for the year to lead the segment and rose four spots.
While SERVPRO made some training adjustments to help foster a strong customer service attitude, the active storm season was also a key factor in boosting sales for the year.
“Hurricanes Harvey and Irma really gave our franchise community an opportunity to respond,” says Steen. “Those storms probably added 5 percentage points of growth last year.”
The brand is also experiencing the benefits of expanded service offerings as SERVPRO adjusted its operating model about five years ago to add commercial cleaning to what had primarily been water restoration and residential disaster cleanup.
Read more Top 200+ coverage here and in the October issue of Franchise Times.