This section is designed to provide a Basic Business 101 Overview to those who are just starting out at running a contracting business. Many business owners are successful craftspeople who’ve never been taught how to run a profitable business. They are “learning as they go”, an expensive way to learn.
What we are doing in this short section is to ensure you are aware of the basics of running a contracting company before you use the MyOnlineToolbox platform.
For all contractors, regardless of your level of experience, we recommend a book that will take you every step of the way. In simple layman's language, it covers the business basics of running a construction company, whether you're a general or specialty contractor working in remodeling, new construction or commercial work. Just log into your MyOnlineToolbox account and send a support ticket asking to be guided to the website for the Contractor's Guide. Note: MyOnlineToolbox does not make money off the purchase of this book, BUT YOU WILL! And then you will have more reasons to continue to use MyOnlineToolbox to manage your growing company. A win-win-win for the contractor, the book's author and MyOnlineToolbox.
We've heard from some new users who are confused about the specific steps they should take to run a contracting business. If this doesn't apply to you, skip this page and jump to What Should I Do First to start using MyOnlineToolbox.
At the most basic level, all Jobs start with a Lead (whether the lead comes from an advertisement, word of mouth, repeat business, etc.).
Leads are then converted into an Estimate in order to get the customer's approval to start the work. A deposit may or may not be required in order to start the job.
Some companies issue Work Orders to their employees or subcontractors in order to do the work. Smaller companies sometimes just use the original approved Estimate as a Work Order.
As your company grows, a contractor should become efficient with their Scheduling in order to avoid conflicts and missed appointments.
Eventually the Job is completed and an Invoice is created informing the customer how much money is owed to you (minus any deposits given). There are times when a service provider may simply skip the Estimating process and just create an invoice. For example, a plumber may be on the road working on a scheduled Job, then a neighbor requests for the plumber to fix a leaky faucet. The plumber may just verbally quote a price, and then walk over to complete the job and get paid on the spot. Many steps from a traditional business process would be skipped, but the contractor may still wish to track the new customer and receipt of payment for a Job completed.
There are many ways to generate more Jobs. Among the best methods is to stay in contact with existing customers for future referrals which in turn should result in more Leads that result in more Estimates that results in more Approvals and Work Orders that result in more Invoices and more income. The cycle continues and becomes more complex. The great news is MyOnlineToolbox has a Basic Version for the smaller contractor and a Premium Version for the larger contractor and remodeler.
Now you are ready to start to run a contracting business by using MyOnlineToolbox.
Just follow our Getting Started Step-By-Step simple overview.
Remember to log in and send a Support Ticket asking about the Contracting Guide if you wish to read the best Contractor's Guide in the market.
Good luck with your contracting business!