GuildQuality Customer Satisfaction Leaders, Part 3

by Kacey Larsen

We broke the sixty profiles into four parts featuring 15 companies in each. This is Part 3, featuring responses from Hubbard Roofing & Exteriors, Inc.; Hullco; Jabs Construction Inc.; Johnson County Siding & Window Co., Inc.; K Squared Builders, Inc.; Karin Ross Designs; KLAM Construction; Kliethermes Home & Remodeling, Inc.; Kotch’s Windows N More; Lakeside Exteriors, Inc.; Landis Architects/Builders; McBride Construction Inc.; Modern Exterior Solutions; Mr. Roofing, Inc.; and North Georgia Replacement Windows, Inc.

Each company was posed the same three questions, and we are featuring the full responses here online. [Some responses were edited for clarity and length].

  1. Problem resolution ranks highly as a driver of satisfaction. What steps do you take upfront to try to avoid having problems occur, and how do you train employees to handle such situations if/when they do arise?
  2. Quality of workmanship also ranks highly as a satisfaction driver. How do you ensure work is of the highest quality? And how do you convey workmanship to clients, especially when some of the work isn’t necessarily obvious and/or “pretty”?
  3. We know you are a customer satisfaction leader. Do your satisfied customers also help your ratings and reviews on sites like Google, Facebook, Yelp, HomeAdvisor, etc.? What is your company’s process for handling or managing such ratings/reviews?

Hubbard Roofing & Exteriors, Inc.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 100
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 100
Number of Jobs in 2018: 800
Type of Firm: Full-service Remodeler + Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: Sarah Hubbard and Kelly Bryden

  • Approach to problem resolution: We are very transparent with our quotes and have no hidden or additional costs. The quote you receive is the total the customer will pay at completion. If a problem occurs, the customers original point of contact (sales team) will work with the homeowner, and our employees are not engaged.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: Our warranty is a direct reflection of our workmanship. We also know that we would not still be in business if we did not have excellent workmanship. Roof replacements are not considered “pretty work,” but if your home is protected from the elements for the lifetime of your shingles we did an excellent job.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: We receive reviews on HomeStars, Google, Yelp and Facebook. When we receive a review, we send it to the team so they are aware of the job well done and satisfied customer. We also take the time to respond to each review.

Chattanooga, Tenn., & Knoxville, Tenn.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 96.51
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 96.46
Number of Jobs in 2018: 926
Type of Firm: Design/Build + Full-service Remodeler + Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: W. Matthew Hullander

  • Approach to problem resolution: We believe that doing the job right far outweighs just doing the job. We take whatever steps necessary to ensure that the job is done correctly, and will go back until we are certain it is and the customer is satisfied. Our culture throughout Hullco ensures this. We make sure to ask a lot of questions and hire the best employees.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: We have project managers for every project who observe and protect the process and make sure that our quality of work is maintained and consistent with every crew on every job.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: We love for customers to leave reviews on Facebook and Google and encourage it. We are pleased to say that most are positive, but in the few instances there is a problem, we address it immediately, ask how we can make it right and hope that they will change their review once we can.

Jabs Construction Inc.
Dumfries, Va.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 99
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 99.5
Number of Jobs in 2018: 213
Type of Firm: Design/Build + Full-service Remodeler

CEO: Christopher Jabs and Timothy Jabs

  • Approach to problem resolution: We have excellent communication with our clients before the job starts and daily while we are doing work. We feel a steady line of communication has always been key with preventing any issues. Also if an issue arises, we take care of it immediately.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: We are a company with over 40 years in business. The craftsmanship learned by all our employees comes from the highest quality of work that goes back a total of four generations in our family. Our experience in the area where we work and our Class A license gives our clients the assurance that our work is top-notch.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: After the project is complete, we will politely ask our customers if they are willing to complete our GuildQuality survey as well as Yelp, Facebook, Angie’s List, etc. Most people are more than happy to help us with multiple surveys.

Johnson County Siding & Window Co., Inc.
Olathe, Kan.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 100
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 100
Number of Jobs in 2018: 125
Type of Firm: Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: Bill Christie and Teresa Christie

  • Approach to problem resolution: Our company operates on the belief that communication within our organization and with our clients is the foundation of our success. We begin with a very detailed scope of work so the homeowner knows what work will be done and exactly what products will be installed. Taking these extra steps to include details in the written scope of work helps to eliminate misunderstandings and assure the client their expectations will be met. We train our employees to pay close attention to detail, ask clarifying questions and be active listeners. If an unexpected problem occurs, we quickly and honestly inform the customer, take ownership for any error and explain how the problem will be resolved.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: Our company goal is to maximize the value of the client’s investment and that starts with proper installation. Our installers are experienced craftsmen who are factory-trained to ensure the project is completed right the first time. In order to maintain the quality of workmanship, we provide ongoing training and education. Employees are also trained to maintain communication throughout the installation process so the client knows exactly what work is being done—whether it’s obvious work or not. Upon completion, the job is carefully inspected by the salesman and the homeowner to ensure the client is completely satisfied—always. We credit the quality and craftsmanship our labor force to a consistent result of happy, satisfied customers.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: The JOCO Siding & Window brand promises, “Complete customer satisfaction on every project. Always.” This promise is one of five we have scrolling on our website, and in order to make these claims, we better be measuring them. We have designated “reputation” and “online review” pages on our site, and we ask our customers to review us. Many of our customers will provide a GuildQuality review as well as another review on Google or other social media site. Our reviews are used as proof points for our website brand promises, in-home presentations, and on other social media and paid advertising. We strive to provide a level of customer service that makes our company a standout. The consolidated reviews help us gauge our performance and show us where we need to improve.

K Squared Builders, Inc.
Keymar, Md.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 99.31
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 100
Number of Jobs in 2018: 19
Type of Firm: Design/Build + Full-service Remodeler

CEO: Dale Kramer

  • Approach to problem resolution: Our client’s satisfaction is paramount on every project we do. We provide clear and precise specification in our contracts and go over them in detail with the clients prior to them signing. We try to set real/honest expectations as well as pointing out things they might not be aware of. When a problem does arise, we address it immediately and make sure all parties are in agreement with the solution. All employees are trained to “listen” for potential issues and are empowered to come up with solutions when possible on the spot.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: We take our motto, “The way you want it,” to heart. We look at “industry standards” at best as a general description and believe our workmanship is well beyond it. If work is not done right, it will be redone properly. If it is right but perhaps a client doesn’t understand what is acceptable, we will meet with them to educate and explain. For example, we recently had a client who did not understand that vinyl siding/trim is made to expand and contract and some gaps are necessary to allow this movement.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: We sometimes ask our clients to leave reviews on Google, Facebook and/or Houzz. We avoid all the other referral type of sites and do not intend to establish accounts with them. We’ve not had an issue with negative reviews, but if we did, we would reach out to them immediately and attempt to resolve whatever issue there was that caused it.

Karin Ross Designs
Lee’s Summit, Mo.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 100
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 100
Number of Jobs in 2018: 60
Type of Firm: Design/Build + Full-service Remodeler

CEO: Karin Ross

  • Approach to problem resolution: Preparation is everything. From early stage of the process, client goes through a “class” with us of what to expect and how to handle it emotionally. So if a problem occurs, client is prepared to start with, which makes things so much easier. Any employees we have are trained to stay calm and refer the client immediately to the owner. Karin is available right away to make sure she addresses the problem and has a solution.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: Training our lead guys over and over is a standard procedure for us. We believe that even the best guy with the best work needs to be reminded of some basic techniques every so often. Keeping the morale of the crews high is a big factor as well. If work is not done to the expectations, then it gets redone and no one likes to redo their work.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: We have clients leaving ratings on Google and Yelp. We don’t use HomeAdvisor as we think the leads are not “real.” We will ask our clients to leave a review for us. Some of our clients will do; others believe in the power of word-of-mouth, so they will organize a party in their new kitchen in which they will invite all their friends to show off.

KLAM Construction
Clackamas, Ore.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 99.44
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 98.78
Number of Jobs in 2018: 366
Type of Firm: Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: Abel Serrano

  • Approach to problem resolution: We maintain good communication with our customers and quickly address any issues that arise. Beginning with the initial phone call, we make it a point to communicate clearly to our customers what to expect and to answer their questions to their satisfaction. Each member of our team understands that providing excellent customer satisfaction is a priority, and they know how important their role is in making sure our customers are taken care of. When an issue does occur, we apply the guidelines of common sense, honesty and respect to quickly find a remedy.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: We pay great attention to detail beginning with the estimate, continuing with production and installation, on through to the final inspection. At the initial estimate, Abel takes pictures of the issues he sees and presents them to the customer. We provide a scope of work in our proposal, then take the time to educate our customer on why their home requires certain roof work. Production makes sure all the materials are delivered on time as ordered and communicates to the customer what to expect in the roofing process. Our roofing crews are trained to follow the manufacturers’ installation specifications for their products and are guided by the scope of work to guarantee each customer gets the roof they were promised. At the final inspection, Abel reviews the work with the customer and ensures they are satisfied with the results.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: Yes, our satisfied customers do help our ratings with their reviews on these and other sites. We respond as quickly as possible to customer comments, thereby letting them know that they are important to us and that we appreciate their feedback.

Kliethermes Home & Remodeling, Inc.
Columbia, Mo.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 96.67
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 95.83
Number of Jobs in 2018: 50
Type of Firm: Design/Build

CEO: Cale Kliethermes

  • Approach to problem resolution: The steps we take upfront to avoid having problems begin from the first meeting with the project coordinator and design team, [who] truly understand the client and their families’ needs, wants and desires for their home. The project coordinator sets realistic expectations on budget and timeframe. We use Buildertrend software to manage the remodeling schedule. We have a designated client page for each project where the homeowner can login anytime and see the current status of their project. Our KH&R project manager meets with the homeowner weekly to review the progress and forecast upcoming activity. We train all field and office staff in conflict resolution techniques, communication styles, IR Theory and problem-solving skills on an annual basis. Our trades and their employees have a clear understanding of behavior and quality expectations when working on a KH&R project.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: Reputation is the starting point for our company. We have been in business for over 42 years. To ensure work of the highest quality, each client has a team consisting of a project coordinator, designer and project manager. Each team member is responsible for educating and guiding the client through the remodel experience. During construction, the client and project manager meet weekly. At each phase of the project, a checklist is completed with the client before moving onto the next phase. Our staff and trades are trained that if you think it is good enough it isn’t, and what we do when no one is looking is more important than what you do in front of an audience.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: Our process for handling reviews begins at the first meeting and throughout the build process to ensure that our homeowners are receiving the Kliethermes experience in their remodel or new home build. We ask weekly for feedback on what we are doing and our client’s experience with our trade partners. Referrals are a large part of our future work, and we ask for [them] all through the process. After third-party surveying, we ask clients to review KH&R on one of our predetermined online sites, such as Google, Facebook, Houzz, Angie’s List, etc. We provide the link to the online site and a request for a review.

Kotch’s Windows N More
Howell, Mich.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 100
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 100
Number of Jobs in 2018: 103
Type of Firm: Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: Michael Kotch

  • Approach to problem resolution: Check and double check everything. If something comes up, converse with the customer and resolve it as quickly as possible.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: When speaking to a potential customer, you explain your installation process and hope they put their trust in you. But we use our reviews from GuildQuality and other media sources.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: We use those reviews from those sources on our website. We print them and place them in the hands of our potential customers.

Lakeside Exteriors, Inc.
Chesterfield, Mo.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 95.88
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 100
Number of Jobs in 2018: 87
Type of Firm: Design/Build + Full-service Remodeler + Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: Matt Merrifield and Dan Merrifield

  • Approach to problem resolution: All our jobs go through a preconstruction meeting, consisting of the homeowners, the design rep and the production manager. We discuss the job right after the sale to make sure the homeowner is comfortable [with] how we will proceed. We discuss where the material will be located as well as the dumpster and jobsite trailer. This meeting helps our communication as we prep for production.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: We have training seminars with the manufacturer rep to ensure installation techniques meet the manufacturer’s specifications. Also, we have manufacturer reps come on active jobs to verify our installation methods.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: We always ask our homeowners for reviews. The crew leader will ask at the end of the job to give us a review. Also, the design rep will be scheduled for a post-construction meeting. We will ask for a review at the time as well.

Landis Architects/Builders
Washington, D.C.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 94.71
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 97.22
Number of Jobs in 2018: 96
Type of Firm: Design/Build

CEO: Chris Landis and Ethan Landis

  • Approach to problem resolution: We have thorough processes and checklists in place that help us avoid missing critical information. Our team members also constantly communicate with each other and with the client. We also use Buildertrend, a cloud-based software, to keep the client updated with project photos and schedules. We tell clients there will be glitches during the renovation process, and it’s our response to these glitches that shows our level of service. When we bring issues to the attention of the client, we try to present them with solutions and options at the same time.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: During the design process, we explain the advantages of energy efficiency, durability, longevity and associated costs, so the client is very informed about the decision for every product that goes into their house and are choosing their preferred products and quality level with our recommendations. For example, we tell clients that spray foam insulation is our standard. It costs twice as much as batt insulation, but we believe it creates a tighter seal that can save them on heating and cooling costs. They can opt out of this if they choose.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: We have claimed or created all of our social media profiles, so we have control and receive notifications when a review has been posted. This allows us to react quickly to any reviews—both positive and negative. If we feel a negative review is not fair, we will reach out to the review site (Angie’s List, Yelp) to appeal. Our sales team meets with every client at the end of the project and uses a checklist to ask about customer satisfaction, sending a GuildQuality review and writing social media/online reviews. Once a client writes a review on GuildQuality, we ask them to post those same comments across various social media sites. In the note, we mention that just as they benefitted from reading reviews of our company potential clients will do the same.

McBride Construction Inc.
Petoskey, Mich.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 100
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 100
Number of Jobs in 2018: 69
Type of Firm: Full-service Remodeler

CEO: David McBride

  • Approach to problem resolution: Communication with our clients is key. Whether the client needs daily or weekly updates, our production manager and sales staff keep in constant contact. If a problem arises, we address it immediately with the client, and together we decide on the best possible solution for all parties. We also utilize a software [through which] the customer will receive daily updates, pictures and accomplishments from the lead carpenter. The customer [can] rest assured that his/her home is in good hands.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: We hire quality carpenters who enjoy their work and take pride in the customer projects they do every day. We have the “McBride Way” that holds our carpenters and sub-trades to a higher standard to ensure our customers receive the best job possible every time. Our production manager meets with our lead carpenters twice per week and also calls them daily to make sure the project is going well and quality is maintained.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: This is something our company is currently exploring. Fifty-seven percent of our projects are from repeat customers; 11 percent are referrals from existing customers; 10 percent are referrals from our sub-trades; and the remaining 22 percent are from our website, jobsite signs, internet and public involvement.

Modern Exterior Solutions
Bellevue, Wash.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 100
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 100
Number of Jobs in 2018: 35
Type of Firm: Full-service Remodeler + Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: Arbri Allaraj

  • Approach to problem resolution: Before the start of a new project, I ensure all planning has been completed. I order all the necessary materials and ensure that delivery will be on time and appropriate quantities. I inform all my employees of the time that they’re supposed to be on the jobsite as well as what is expected of the project. In the case a problem arises—such as when a customer is upset about something to do with the project—I let the customer talk and make sure I understand them, then I do my best to resolve the problem as efficiently as possible.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: I ensure that all my employees are trained well and have experience and expertise in different areas. I am very transparent with the customers; I show and walk them through the process of what we are doing. Even though sometimes the project is still in progress and does not look “pretty,” I have a blueprint design of what the final project will look like, and I [show] the customer this is the final blueprint. This gives them peace of mind, shows that I know what I am doing, and I have a vision for the outcome of the project.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: My customers always give me great reviews. I let my customers know that when they are satisfied with a project to write a review on Yelp or on Google about the company in order to help me in my business. We also use GuildQuality to do a survey.

Mr. Roofing, Inc.
South San Francisco, Calif.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 98.69
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 98.15
Number of Jobs in 2018: 200
Type of Firm: Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: Carlos Rodriguez

  • Approach to problem resolution: When a customer has a question, concern and/or compliment, we welcome all feedback because we can use that information to celebrate the things we are doing well and to train the things needed to improve. We run a consultative sales process that helps us assess our clients’ needs and set the proper expectations of the experience they will have with us. We perform a preconstruction meeting with our clients to refresh the details and confirm the agreed upon scope of work. During this meeting we explain staging, necessary access, expected completion dates and final payment collection. This meeting reiterates the expectations and helps us deliver as promised. We also send our project managers through the Certified Contractors Network Blue Collar Management program, where they are trained in best production practices, customer relations, paperwork completion, and even dispute resolution.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: All our production professionals are certified by the major manufacturers in the roofing and solar industry. We also have them complete NRCA and WSRCS training. This helps us install our systems correctly and meet the technical requirements for the long-term warranties by each manufacturer. We also have project managers follow a preconstruction meeting, a zero defects checklist per system we install, and a final walkthrough to ensure our client’s complete satisfaction. Most of our projects are inspected by the manufacturers when we register the long-term warranties. All of our projects are inspected by the city or town’s building department in which we are working. We perform safety tailgate sessions and bi-weekly safety meetings to help our production teammates work in a safe and healthy workplace and worksite. This helps us perform our work to the highest standards.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: We encourage our clients to share their experience and broadcast it in any platform they can. We want people to read about us and not just take our word for it. Whenever a client compliments us on a job well done we tell them not to keep it a secret. Share it, please!

North Georgia Replacement Windows, Inc.
Roswell, Ga.

GQ All-time Recommend Rate: 97.95
GQ 2018 Recommend Rate: 97.16
Number of Jobs in 2018: 800
Type of Firm: Home Improvement/Replacement

CEO: Ted Kirk and Jonathan Collum

  • Approach to problem resolution: North Georgia Replacement assigns a project manager (PM) to every job. The PM is responsible for measuring and working with our ordering department and crews to make sure the job goes smoothly from start to finish. The PM is empowered to make decisions, allocate resources and ultimately make our customer happy. When a problem does arise, we address it quickly with an “all hands on deck” approach. It is most important to take care of our customer first, then we can make improvements in our business and figure out the details of how to improve going forward.
  • Delivering quality workmanship: Quality of workmanship is often in the details of the job. North Georgia Replacement invests every year in training our installers and improving our processes. We work with the best product and material providers and building scientist in the country to make sure we are using the most advanced procedures and materials available. We encourage our prospective customers to actually visit jobs—completed or ongoing—in their area and compare this to any company in our market. If this happens, we know we’ll win nine out of 10 jobs.
  • Using and handling ratings and reviews: Our company carefully monitors our reviews and all of our GuildQuality surveys. We respond swiftly if a problem arises so it may never make it into the public domain. It is very rare we would receive a negative written review. If we do, we have a policy to own up to it. Acknowledge it, apologize and do everything we can to make it right. We receive reviews organically by providing exceptional service. Our reviews have always been plentiful and favorable.

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