Every two weeks, FCNews seeks out flooring retailers across the country to offer their advice on hot topics of the day. This week we asked: What’s your strategy for finding new installers?
Here are their responses:
We try to find new installers by approaching our current installers. Most have friends that are also installers, so we offer them a bonus if their friends stay for a set amount of time. It does seem to help.
—Jim Mudd, Sam Kinnaird’s Flooring, Louisville, Ky.
We are trying to grow crew leaders inside our existing crews but that has become increasingly difficult because of the shortage and quality of entry-level workers. Our only success lately is hiring a quality crew who moved into our area from the Dallas Metroplex.
—Tony Fry, CarpetsPlus ColorTile Winnsboro, Winnsboro, Texas
Our greatest resource is the vocational technical schools. We are on several boards, participate in fundraisers, do mockups and demonstrations and build relationships with staff and students.
—Denise Fike, Fike Bros. Carpet One, Selinsgrove, Pa.
We avoid placing ads. This way, we’re not contacted by the problem installers that our competition won’t use any longer. We prefer to discover [prospects] who are vetted by our reps and other contacts in the building industry. We also visit ongoing flooring installations—new construction only—to inspect the workmanship and assess the individuals doing the work.
—John Bretzloff, Barefoot Flooring, Castle Hill, N.C.
We have been using word of mouth both through our current installers and through sundries supply houses. We’ve picked up a few installers that way.
—Mike Foulk, Foulk’s Flooring America, Meadville, Pa.