Increase your Earning Potential

A demonstration of Hydro-Dynamix's technology-driven cleaning service by the company founder was enough to convince Dave Rolfe and his friend Dave Deadman to become pilot franchisees for the company

Eight years after the launch of their West Kent Hydro-Dynamix franchise, co-franchise owners Dave Rolfe and Dave Deadman are enjoying a very satisfactory monthly turnover. As owners of one of the first Hydro-Dynamix franchises, the pair have been able to witness the franchise network grow and develop as their business has flourished through a combination of hard work and self sacrifice, with their social lives taking a back seat while they have focused on building up the business.

'Before I became a franchisee I worked as a fork lift operator in a Somerfield food warehouse with my friend Dave,' reflects Dave Rolfe. 'I became restless at work and when asked by my daughter's friend's father to watch a demonstration of a new cleaning business he was piloting, I did not think twice. It turned out the father was the Managing Director of the Hydro-Dynamix franchise and he wanted to see what I thought of the cleaning concept and if it was something I would consider investing in. My friend Dave and I went to his demonstration at a pub and were so impressed by the truck mount cleaning concept and the equipment that he used that we decided to invest not long after.'

Established in 1999, Hydro-Dynamix is one of the few cleaning companies on the market to cater for both commercial and domestic clients, increasing the earning potential of its franchise network.

Based around the powerful and efficient truck mount cleaning system, Hydro-Dynamix franchisees offer a wide range of services from carpet, upholstery and hard floor cleaning to exterior pressure washing and graffiti removal. Specialist services such as leather cleaning create a great opportunity for add-ons. Full flood and fire restoration services are also a part of the package including drying, dry steam cleaning, validated hygiene cleaning, fire & smoke damage cleaning, offsite cleaning/storage, asbestos testing, pack out service, mould abatement, PAT testing and leak detection.

Determined to provide its franchisee network with a steady stream of work, Hydro-Dynamix joined forces with two other companies within the sector earlier this year to offer a revolutionary concept in flood & fire restoration. Damage Mitigation Ltd (DAM-mit), is working with loss adjusters and insurance companies to provide a full restoration and repair service to properties affected by flood and fire damage. Hydro-Dynamix franchisees and technicans are crucial to the coordinated approach and help achieve very significant savings by focusing on restoration of building structures rather than rip-out and replacement. Not only is the company concept cost effective because damaged goods are restored rather than replaced, it is also environmentally friendly.

As the company caters for both the domestic and commercial markets, Hydro-Dynamix puts its franchisees on a training course to learn not only the basics of running the franchise but also door-to-door sales. 'I found the sales training very beneficial,' continues Dave Rolfe. 'I had no previous sales experience and with door-to-door sales I knew that getting the sales pitch right was crucial as you only get one shot.

'Eight years on, my sales skills have dramatically improved as I have learned on the job. Now, I focus mainly on sales while my business partner tackles the majority of the cleaning jobs. We have recently recruited an employee to help us with the increasing demand for our cleaning services in our territory.

'In terms of ongoing training and support, training is available both from head office and through third parties such as the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). This ensures we keep up-to-date with the different cleaning methods. Support-wise the company's IT department has helped improve my computer skills.

'The great thing about co-owning the Hydro-Dynamix franchise is that Dave and I are in control and make the decisions. Although neither of us had previous sales experience, I do think in retrospect anyone interested in looking to invest in a Hydro-Dynamix franchise would benefit from having sales experience as it will enable them to quickly establish their franchise in their territory.'

Over the last 18 months the pair have really started to reap the rewards of their hard work, with the majority of the cleaning jobs coming in now repeat business and recommendations. At present the two Daves have two vans operating within their territory and a third van is in the pipeline for the near future. 'While I would love to play a less active role in the day-to-day running of the business the fact we have managed to establish the client base and are now seeing repeat business means I am reluctant to,' explains Dave. 'I want to be able to monitor the quality of the service, ensuring we have repeat clients for many years to come.'

Interviewed by Jess Sturman