Date: 11th March 2015
Here at Findlay and Co we like to share small business success stories, especially when they involve our clients. You may have seen such articles as Busy businesswomen taking on Christchurch challenges and Christchurch tradesmen take the plunge, where we highlighted clients who, despite the difficulties of running a business during the Christchurch rebuild, have managed to stay on top of their game.
Here we share a couple more stories from our trades clients who have rolled up their sleeves and are now seeing the results from their hard work.
Nine years ago Karen and Evelyn both made a big career move. Leaving their teaching jobs they downed their books and picked up paintbrushes to set up a painting business in Christchurch.
The company–Paint IQ Limited–is aptly named. Karen and Evelyn are a smart pair. Karen, who comes from a finance background, looks after the books while Evelyn, with strengths in painting and team leadership, is in charge on-site.
In the company’s early years their work was planned well in advance with structured timelines. After the earthquake everything changed. First there was a quiet time, then suddenly work flooded in from all directions—but it was less predictable and subject to change at short notice, making job flow, efficiency and quality harder to control. So, like many successful trade businesses in Christchurch, Paint IQ Limited has kept their team deliberately small. Evelyn is always close at hand to maintain quality control and staff productivity, and with fewer staff job flow is easier to manage.
“Xero has made a huge difference. Quoting and invoicing are far more streamlined.”
“I really like working with Wayne and Sonya. They recognise my finance background and understand I want more out of Xero than day to day record-keeping.
“It’s great to have Sonya on hand for quick questions without totting up fees.
“Wayne is great for talking to about methodology and process. He helps with analysis – are we putting enough away for tax? Should we increase or decrease staff? He’s also good at suggesting better ways of using Xero.
“The way Wayne interacts with us is everything we could ask for in an accountant.”
The owners of MR Painting Decorators have faced some challenges, but are on track for success! Originally from Brazil, Alex and Roberta had to learn a new language and culture first then tackle running their own business in New Zealand. A mighty task….
Seeing the opportunity, they relocated from Auckland to Christchurch in 2012 in the midst of the rebuild. And, like many in the construction industry in Christchurch over the last few years they have needed to carefully balance fluctuating work flow and the cash flow. Having very little business experience, Alex and Roberta took on the challenge but found it a very steep learning curve.
With a little help from Xero and the Findlay & Co team, Roberta is now a whizz at balancing the books and the road ahead looks bright for the business.
“We hardly knew anything when we first started out. Our original accountant didn’t even tell us we needed to put money aside for provisional tax.
I’m a Mum 24-7 and I don’t have a lot of time to spend on the business. But our lives changed when we met Findlay and Co.
The workshops Findlay and Co run have taught me a lot and have helped us network with other businesses.
Xero has been amazing, it’s especially good for beginners. It’s helped me gain control of the finances. I can now see all the incomings and outgoings in one place.
Kerry helps me with the day-to-day stuff and software questions. Wayne has helped us make strategic changes through business planning, and this has helped us to be more positive.
This year’s been good. Everything is on track now.”
Findlay and Co’s Christchurch team have found it rewarding to watch clients like Evelyn, Karen, Alex and Roberta implement great systems, to see them benefit from their hard work and see their businesses thrive. Sonya, Kerry and Wayne have enjoyed working with these teams and we’re chuffed the information from the workshops really helps people in their businesses.
We look forward to working with Paint IQ and MR Painting Decorators in the future and celebrating lots more small business success!