WHY ELECLOCAL? Rob Prior tells us...

"I was well aware that the introduction of the electrical safety, coupled with the shortage of Part P regulations in January 2005 to increase qualified electricians has made finding a fully qualified, reliable electrician very difficult. Inevitably this high demand offers good business prospects, which led me to look for opportunities within the electrical trade sector. I spoke to ElecLocal, and was immediately impressed with the potential to build my own company with all the business and marketing support of a national brand to build a rewarding and profitable business."

Originally a toolmaker, Rob enjoyed being self-employed and stayed in the industry for six years. However, as the industry slumped and work began to slow, Rob decided to change his career path and found a position in production control/manufacturing and purchasing within the specialised industry of gear box parts. Following redundancy in February 2006, Rob decided that it was time to get out of manufacturing and with the national skills shortage for qualified electricians coupled with a previous interest in being a franchisee, he began to look once more at franchise options. He came across Local Services during his investigation and decided to find out more about the process. 'Upon meeting their chief executive Steve Baker, I was very impressed with the company, their growth figures, the marketing and business support offered to franchisees and of course the excellent training provided by their City & Guilds' accredited training centres. I could really see the potential, both for their growth as a leading national franchise brand, and for the development of my own business as part of their ElecLocal brand.'

Rob had no professional electrical experience but says that this was not a problem due to ElecLocal's excellent training programme. 'The course took place over 12 weeks, and I found it really enjoyable, interesting and extremely challenging. The lecturers were all ex-professional electricians and by using their knowledge, skills and expertise, they made each lesson easy to understand and very useful. They were all very supportive and eager to teach everything they knew and with the benefit of plenty of practical hands-on experience I was able to develop an understanding of the possible dilemmas that I might encounter as an ElecLocal franchisee.' With an equal mix of theory and practical, Rob explained that 'the course was hard but extremely manageable, the classrooms were always open late at night if you wanted to practise something you had learnt which was really useful in helping me to successfully complete the course and gain my qualifications. I am proud to say that I now hold a City and Guilds 2377 Electrician Portable Appliance Testing, City and Guilds 2381 16th Edition Wiring Regulations, City and Guilds 2391 Inspection and testing of Electrician Insulations and a EAL Domestic Installations Level 2 (Part P).'

With ElecLocal strongly supporting the launch of his business, Rob started trading in August 2006. He instantly began to build up clients in both residential and commercial industries including Laura Ashley stores. 'I have totally exceeded my expectations of success and have already achieved a turnover in excess of £5,000 a month. Whilst I work very hard, I attribute much of my success to all the support and technical help provided by ElecLocal, which I believe to be second to none. They will arrange for another qualified franchisee to help on a job if you have a problem or need a helping hand.'

The future is bright for Rob and he is continuing to expand his clientele by focussing on small business owners, giving appliance testing and general electrical inspections to help build his franchise. Although Rob's business is very young, he is already looking to employ another person in 2007 and hopes that this growth will carry on through building a reliable reputation within the industry and providing customers with a dependable local service at a sensible price.

Rob enthuses 'I am thoroughly enjoying the challenge of working in such a customer orientated and reactive industry. I am constantly impressed by ElecLocal, my thoughts and opinions are never taken lightly and if I ever have a problem I am able to call them and they are happy to help and listen to my query and always endeavour to find the right answer. I would recommend starting a franchise to anyone. If you have a positive attitude and are willing to work hard then you will easily succeed within the industry with the support of ElecLocal.'

Rob is very passionate about his growing career and about ElecLocal and is grateful for all the support and help that he gets from the company, even giving him an allocation of leaflets to help generate business that he can deliver to potential customers.

'The success of the company is the corporate image, it sells itself.'