4 Minute Read

Jessica DeNuzzio knows how a change in software can impact every area of a landscaping business—particularly its people. 

As chief administrative officer for Piscataqua Landscaping & Tree Service, the people aspect of software impacts her daily duties. DeNuzzio oversees the company’s administrative staff, human resources department, end-of-month closing and helps onboard and train staff members on Aspire business management software. 

“People are most important—our customers, but also our employees,” she says. DeNuzzio says that when it came to software, her company struggled with communicating information throughout the organization and understanding how they performed on jobs. 

DeNuzzio has been with Piscataqua since 2012. In that time, the company has used various methods to gather business data, including manually entering timesheets, taking leads, and communicating with clients. 

That hasn’t prevented the company from also trying an array of software programs to manage the business, and not always with positive results. “We dabbled with different software systems to go paperless—but none that successfully met our expectations,” she says. 

The journey to finding a better solution

Piscataqua is headquartered in Eliot, Maine, with a second location in New Hampshire. Booth Hemingway started the company in 1979 with a lawn mower, a pickup truck, and a barn. Today, the $18.6 million company has 160 employees. They provide landscape maintenance services, construction, irrigation, lighting, plant healthcare, tree pruning and removal, and snow and ice management for commercial and residential clients. 

The company used a different business management solution before Aspire. When Chenmark Capital Management acquired them in 2019, Chenmark collected feedback from each of the landscape companies they acquired in search of a more robust software system that would simplify the management of each operation. 

Piscataqua onboarded with Aspire in 2019. Here’s how Aspire paved the way for better processes and growth for the team.

Standardizing estimates, sales, and customer communication

The company’s prior software made it difficult to access and track information across departments. DeNuzzio says that Aspire has helped the company simplify and centralize information and helped the team standardize its processes, especially when preparing estimates.

“By standardizing estimating and templates, everybody can sell services based on the same data, kits, tools, and resources,” she says.

With a centralized system and a single source of truth for customer data, the team can quickly relay information to managers and clearly and efficiently document customer calls.

Accessibility to information

Previously, the Piscataqua team found it challenging to understand financial performance without assembling leaders in the company to review financial data.

“Prior to Aspire, not everyone had digital access to key information, such as clients' contact information, hours worked per service and gross margins,” DeNuzzio said. “Managers had to sit side-by-side to look at the data.”

Now, with end-to-end business management software, the company can focus more on building relationships with clients rather than time-consuming data entry and information gathering.

DeNuzzio says she can quickly review historical customer data and prior services within the system now.

“You don't have to search for information—it's there in Aspire,” she says.

Knowledge of job performance means better customer tracking

In addition to their challenges with finding and disseminating information, the company lacked insight into how teams were performing on jobs. 

“Aspire allows us to track materials and costs, and more importantly––costs for specific jobs or services,” she says. “Our project and account managers could truly see how we were doing in real time. That allows us to take steps forward, and it's quick and efficient.”

Managing open tickets was an area of concern for Piscataqua as well. “Now we can track those services, review what tickets are open, and see what still needs to be scheduled versus what should have been completed already,” DeNuzzio says. “Aspire allows us to view this information easily through reporting so we can be proactive and stay more organized.”

Within each customer profile, the Piscataqua team can dive into different areas—by services or by date ranges. Within a few minutes, “We can retrieve data and information for company leaders and present it in a way that's easy to understand and track how we're doing,” she says.

Better client experience

Because Aspire provides accessibility to information, DeNuzzio says that her team has improved customer service and provided detailed estimates aligned with clients’ needs and expectations. 

Now they can add pictures and notes inside work tickets and services, providing crew members with detailed and relevant information before they even set foot on the job site.

“It allows everybody to be successful, from crew level to management, all the way through our administrative staff and sales team as well,” DeNuzzio explains. “We can all work in one system that will help us excel and move forward and allow us to grow in ways that we haven't before.”

Profitable pricing and efficient invoicing 

DeNuzzio explains that the reliable data Aspire provides allows the Piscataqua sales team to determine accurate and profitable pricing. 

With Aspire, pricing is based on actual historical job data. “(Managers and the sales team) need access to this information to determine an accurate and competitive price,” she says. 

“On top of it all, invoicing is easier and more efficient with Aspire. Our administrators are able to invoice quickly which directly impacts our positive cash flow.”

Partnering with Aspire

Training and education are crucial to successfully implementing new business software and DeNuzzio served a key role in the implementation process. The company took a very hands-on approach and created an internal implementation team of employees.

 

Embracing new ways of operating is the key to finding success with the software, says DeNuzzio. “Not trying to fit old processes into Aspire, but rather adapting. That's part of growing and changing and being the best in the business—accepting change,” she explains.

DeNuzzio recommends companies answer the following questions as they consider software companies:

  • Do they provide the tools and resources for my company to be successful?
  • Is there good customer service and support?
  • Do they listen to my concerns?

DeNuzzio credits Aspire’s partnership with helping Piscataqua’s business. The team meets with Peggy Hughes, their Aspire customer success manager, every month to discuss new updates, improvements, and releases.  

“We’re able to build that relationship,” she explains. “She understands our company and what we're all about—and she gives us good tools and resources that we’re not currently using.” 

As Piscataqua looks for new ways to do things and be more efficient and competitive in the industry and this market, DeNuzzio says that Aspire has grown along with them. 

“They listen to their customers and take feedback,” she says. “We can see (that feedback) being implemented monthly and year after year, which helps us do our jobs better. It’s important to partner with a company that cares about its clients and helps them succeed.”

“Aspire is going to be a huge part of how we continue to grow throughout the next one to five years,” she says. “By working with the software and using it as a tool, it has taken us a long way from where we were in 2019.”


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