Let me tell you about Nick

Nick is a proud owner of a plumbing business in Canterbury; he employs three staff and wants more from his business but isn’t sure where to start. Nick has been in business for five years now so he’s seen some good times and challenging times. Providing a quality service and customer satisfaction are extremely important to Nick. He was earning an okay wage but knew there was room for improvement.


Like most business owners Nick was working long hours on the tools and in the office while trying to balance family and personal life. He was taking things on a day by day basis and didn’t really plan beyond his next job. He had a vision of what he wanted his business to be but didn’t know how to achieve it.

Office time took up at least one day a week, most evenings and some weekends. Nick liked to keep his customers happy so when times got busy he would often miss his office day all together which meant invoices would not be sent out for up to two weeks. When invoicing, Nick would often lose track of what materials were used and how much time was spent on the job leading to items and time being missed, negatively impacting cash flow.

How Ashton Wheelans Helped

In June 2018 Nick reached out to Ashton Wheelans. We sat down together and got to know Nick and his business; we learned his business goals, his strengths, what needed improvement, what opportunities existed and what might threaten his business growth and goals. Right off the bat we identified Nick’s internal processes weren’t as strong as they should be.

With our skills and knowledge of the trade industry we put in place a system that let Nick manage his scheduling, job costs and materials, and invoicing all from one app on his iPad. No longer would he have to muck around with employees job cards and manually pull materials prices from the suppliers invoices, he now had all this information in real time and at his fingertips in one place.

Once the current issues were taken care of we could shift our focus to the future. With Nick’s help we designed a plan to ensure he was no longer stumbling in the dark. We created a clear path for Nick to follow to ensure his business was growing into the business he dreamed of.

Before Ashton Wheelans

After Ashton Wheelans

Minimal personal time

Well balanced work and personal life

Losing a day a week to administration (Plus nights & weekends)

Increased productivity by 15% resulting in significant increase in profit with no nights or weekends

Missing time and materials from invoices

Accurate invoices reflecting all time and costs

Cash flow was problematic at times

Month on month net positive cash flow

Stumbling in the dark, hoping business was going in the right direction

Clear about what actions need to be taken to achieve business goals and growth. Feeling confident and excited about future business

At times it would take up to two weeks after job completion to get paid

Time between completion of job and payment receipt has decreased by an average of four days


Nick can now grab a coffee, jump in his van and create and send an invoice before he even leaves the site. He has up to date price lists from his suppliers and staff time is all tracked through the timesheet function in his new app. Information from his new app is transferred to his accounting software at the push of a button. As a result Nick now enjoys more time with his family, spending on average 1.5 hours less per day in the office. With no office day, productivity has increased by 15% resulting in his best performing quarter since starting business.

Looking forward, Nick is excited about his future business and he knows he’s heading in the right direction to achieve his goals. Nick is currently planning to employ an additional member of staff as his business expands and is looking at entering the commercial property market.

If you have big business goals like Nick or want a better work life balance simply email me sam.grice@ashtonwheelans.co.nz  and I’ll happily give you a quick call to discuss your situation.