Twenty-two years ago, an enterprising Colorado University MBA student, Sam Johnson, started a small, part-time business to help support himself and his wife while he worked on his degree. By the time he graduated, he could see the potential of the business he’d created. Today, Johnson is the Founder and President of Pet Scoop, one of the largest pet waste management companies in the country, if not the world.
“Pet Scoop is exactly what is sounds like: we provide dog waste cleanup and removal from residential yards, dog parks, and commercial properties like apartments and HOAs,” he explains. “One of the biggest challenges of having a dog is cleaning up after it. That’s the one thing that nobody likes to do.”
Pet Scoop is based in Denver, Colorado, which Johnson describes as a “dog town.” The company serves clients from Fort Collins to Colorado Springs and currently has 40 dog-loving employees: 10 administrative staff and 30 full-time field workers.
“Everybody who works for us is passionate about dogs and pets,” says Johnson.
“I’ve heard that up to 45 percent of the people here in Denver actually have a dog, and Pet Scoop is capitalizing on that,” says Johnson.
The company is capitalizing, indeed. Pet Scoop’s clientele is growing rapidly, but along with that growth come challenges.
“One challenge we face is staffing, making sure that we’re keeping up with our growth and finding quality people who love pets,” says Johnson. “And the more staff and clients we have, the more our administrative needs increase.”
One of the tactics Johnson uses to attract high-quality, long-term employees is a generous benefits package.
“Good benefits are critical to enabling our employees to have long-term careers with us,” says Johnson. “A lot of our staff have been with us for 10, 15, even 20 years.”
Johnson’s recent decision to move to Zenefits has improved his ability to offer a robust benefits package and handle the administration and paperwork that goes along with that.
Find out how Sam Johnson is using the cost and time savings enabled by Zenefits to continue growing his business, and hear about the interesting reaction he gets when he explains what he does for a living in the #SmallBizSnapshots video below. Then keep reading to learn about the specifics of streamlining small-business HR with Zenefits.
Before the switch to Zenefits, Johnson had two separate brokers to handle the company’s health insurance and dental and vision plans. “We spent a lot more time on benefits under the traditional broker relationship.”
In the end, Johnson felt that Pet Scoop had outgrown the traditional broker model and he decided to make the switch.
“When Zenefits came along and offered a technology-based platform that would enable onboarding and self-administering for our employees, we were sold,” he says.
Pet Scoop is using Zenefits for onboarding and benefits administration, and the company is realizing both time and cost savings. Johnson estimates that he and his staff have reduced the time they spend on HR and benefits administration by up to 30 percent.
“We save so much time during open enrollment because our staff can complete their own applications online,” explains Johnson. “If they’re already in the system, all they have to do is make their benefits selections and submit. It’s been amazing for us to use this platform and save so much time.”
There’s also been a spike in the efficiency of onboarding new employees.
“We love the Zenefits onboarding feature,” he says. “When we hire a new employee, everything is done very efficiently. The new hire fills out the information online and doesn’t have to come into the office to complete all of the paperwork.”
With all of the time Johnson has gained by streamlining his HR processes, he’s able to focus more attention on other aspects of his business. In addition to the time saved, he’s enthusiastic about the impact his Zenefits solution is having on the bottom line.
“Zenefits is such an efficient platform that it does save us a lot of time, but more importantly it saves us a lot of money,” says Johnson. “I am at the point of not having to hire an HR manager because Zenefits does so many of the things that someone would do on a manual basis.”
Compliance is always an issue for growing small businesses, particularly in light of recent changes in U.S. healthcare law, and Zenefits is helping Johnson navigate that like a pro.
“The wealth of information that we can easily access online from Zenefits helps us make sure we’re following all of the rules,” he says.
Johnson also reports that his employees are very happy with the Zenefits platform. Even those who aren’t particularly tech savvy have come around because they now have instant access to all of their benefits information.
“I just had an employee tell me how great the Zenefits system is because she was able to log in and print out a new health insurance card after losing the original,” he recounts. “We wouldn’t have been able to do that in the past, we would have had to contact the insurance carrier to get a new card mailed out.”
As Johnson continues to innovate – his latest offering is dog poop DNA testing to catch scooping scofflaws – his business continues to grow. And he can be confident that Zenefits will be there to support that growth.
“Our goal is to make it a lot easier for our clients to enjoy their dogs, their time and their families, and Zenefits is helping us achieve that,” concludes Johnson.
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