From man-in-a-van to $20mil projects, and calmer than ever

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Like many, Steve Campbell began his career as a trade business owner as a man-and-a-van. Getting work was never an issue, keeping his system fluent and organised was.

As the years went by, with the help of his wife Karen, the business grew and began to look very different. The number of employees grew, the fleet of vans grew and the size of the projects grew. Back then, growth of the business meant headaches, not high fives.

“I realised we needed structure, systems and support.” Steve Campbell, Managing Director

To help manage and systemise the business, Steve joined the Laser Group. All members of Laser are issued LaserPro Enterprise as a system for job management.

The original Man and a Van
The original Man and a Van

Realising the power of LaserPro Enterprise

Enter Jake, Steve and Karen’s son. A keen footballer and a keen tradie, he didn’t count on seriously injuring his knee to take him off the tools. Initially Jake wasn’t so keen on office work but Steve used the opportunity to finally have someone take a serious look at how LaserPro could be better used to benefit the business.

“Within 2 weeks Jake walked into the office, shut the door and said Dad, we gotta talk. We gotta change our business.” Steve

It was a sliding doors moment for Jake and his career. With his thorough understanding of the software Jake has gone on to become an integral part of the management team at Laser Plumbing & Electrical Lismore and a partner in the business.

The calmer path to growth

As the company climbed from an annual turnover of $2 million per year, then doubled, then tripled, then shifted gear again from $10 million to a projected $40 million dollar a year turnover, operations could easily risk getting out of control.

Steve says the rapid growth is a nice problem to have, but it’s still a problem. Luckily the power of LaserPro Enterprise was realised before things got out of hand.

“As we grow, we actually become calmer.” Steve

The 20 million dollar project

Jake had previously won work on large-scale projects such as the local hospital. It gave them the credibility required to tender for the likes of the Grafton Correctional Facility project, a $20 million project that would launch the business into a level of growth never before thought possible.

They won the project to install the in-ground infrastructure for electrical, hydraulics and communications. Smart project planning, rapid hiring and careful resource management was quickly required to facilitate the project.

Luckily LaserPro was embedded into the business culture. Jake says the reporting, the systems in place and the live data from site were vital for the project’s success.

“The system we have in place will be vital for the project’s success.” Jake Campbell, Director & Construction Manager

The ability to see the financial status of the project in real-time on a daily basis gives the team the confidence to roll full steam ahead with such a large-scale project.

Hire, train and get to site

The synergy between the Laser Group and simPRO has given Laser Plumbing & Electrical Lismore the resources required to get new staff trained and ready for the field. Thanks to simPRO’s training team, up to 6 managers at a time have had their LaserPro training and were ready to head to site within 2 weeks.

A entirely new business

As is usually the case with our successful Journey goers, staff are now empowered with the systems required to run with their role, taking the pressure off the management team.

“I used to lead from the front but now I lead from behind.” Steve

Steve, Karen and Jake can all take time away from the office to dedicate to their family. All the while, the business is running as it should, as profitable as ever and growing faster than they ever thought possible.