Opportunity: Business & Commercial
IT’S ABOUT ATTITUDE
Paramount Services offers a solid and secure opportunity for all Bernie Campbell
aby boomer Bernie Campbell has never shied away from hard work. When the Wellington Paramount Services franchise became available in 2018, she reckoned she had what it took to make a proper go of it. At age 60, Bernie was ready to prove that she was still young enough to take up a challenge, seeing the business as her ticket to a successful retirement when the time came. Now, she says, ‘It was the best thing I ever did.’
Gail joined Paramount Services almost five years ago, bringing with her a background in the cleaning industry and in customer service. ‘I’m a “people person” and I love the personal contact that comes with my role as customer relationship manager (CRM). There’s a real family atmosphere within the franchise, with everyone helping each other succeed. At the same time, it’s all backed up by strong systems designed to make life easier for franchisees.
Taking over a business which already had a cleaning team of 15 people, Bernie has been joined by her former colleague Fiona and husband Peter as fellow shareholders. Fiona supervises the team, while Peter will be on board full-time from Christmas. ‘Our team understand the importance of consistently meeting our high standards, and knowing they are performing well gives me the most cause for satisfaction.’
‘Our point of difference is our people. Our franchisees are empowered to employ staff and grow their business. We encourage them to succeed, to look for constant service improvements and to work smarter, not harder. Above all, we want them to be happy!’
Being at the coalface, Gail knows the impact of Covid-19 on the business better than most. ‘Although there was an initial downturn during the lockdown – which was largely offset by the Government wage subsidy – business has since more or less returned to normal, and sales are actually on the increase,’ she says with satisfaction.
Paramount has provided commercial cleaning services to businesses, councils and government agencies for 40 years. Its 2,000 clients around the country are serviced by a network of franchisees, some of whom are owner-operators while others, like Bernie, manage larger teams. The franchise offers both full-time opportunities and part-time ones, which allow franchisees to start smaller and grow to the size they want. Investment starts from $15,600 +gst and full training is provided. For anyone concerned about the security of starting a new business in uncertain times, Paramount provides a turnover guarantee for 24 months. In addition, they bill the clients and collect the money, guaranteeing that franchisees will get paid each month. It’s a well-established business model that has seen the company named New Zealand’s Supreme Franchise System of the Year a remarkable three times in the last 12 years.
Making life easier for franchisees Bernie knew how successful Paramount franchisees could be from her previous role as the company’s head of operations. ‘I literally worked my way up from the bottom, which gave me a lot of inside knowledge,’ she smiles. ‘I also had experience in health and safety, QA (Quality Assurance), customer relations and staff training, so becoming a franchisee wasn’t daunting at all for me. But even if you start from scratch, Paramount has such good training and systems at all levels that making the change to self-employment can be surprisingly straightforward – I’ve seen lots of people do it.’ When Bernie needs advice herself, her ‘go-to’ person at Paramount’s local franchise support team is Gail Brown.
Pandemic’s silver lining
In fact, Covid-19 means that franchisees are in more demand than ever. Galvin Bartlett, Paramount’s founder, says that there’s nothing like a pandemic to focus client attention on hygiene and cleanliness, and Paramount is at the forefront of things like new misting technology to fight pathogens. ‘We also expect to see a change of business model from sanitising at night to a regular schedule during the day, particularly at cinemas, banks and shopping centres. In addition, many places will move from a once-aweek clean to a daily one. That’s going to mean more work, so we’ll need more franchisees all over the country. ‘That’s good news for anyone looking for a solid and secure business in a world plagued with redundancies, relocations and the forced rethinking of retirement plans.’
A stand-out opportunity Bernie Campbell says business is humming and she is already planning her next phase of expansion. ‘We’ve exceeded our expectations over the past 18 months, despite Covid-19, and there’s plenty more to come for anyone prepared to take up the challenge. ‘I have to say that to get the maximum success and satisfaction from a Paramount franchise, you do need a strong work ethic – I’ve seen that time and time again. Put in the hard yards to keep clients satisfied and their sites running smoothly, and it will pay off. I learned that from Galvin and the Paramount management team when I first joined, and that same high calibre of guidance and advice is still available to new franchisees coming on board. ‘If you have the attitude, determination and the work ethic to take a great opportunity and run with it, don’t hesitate – Paramount is a stand-out opportunity.’
Franchise New Zealand
Paramount Services www.paraserve.com Contact Dan Totty P 0-9-376 7850 M 021 925 504 email@example.com
Year 29 Issue 03