Protecting profit: How to increase your revenue by 15%

Show Notes

On today’s episode of “The Building Code,” Zach and Charley are chatting with Timothy Wingate Jr., founder and president of G+F Business & Financial Consulting in West Palm Beach, Florida. Timothy gained firsthand knowledge of the construction industry from watching his dad run his own contracting business. He understands the challenges and now has a passion for helping construction companies find long-term sustainability, profitability and success.

Listen to the full episode to hear more about how to take control of your accounting processes and ensure long-term financial success for your construction business.

How is a construction accountant different than a traditional accountant?

“Construction accounting is a very specialized accounting. It’s just like nonprofit accounting and manufacturing accounting. It’s more managerial-type accounting, so you’re formulating the cost codes in a way that helps you read reports. We need to understand the lingo because there’s a lot of construction terms that are thrown around, and if you’re not familiar with those terms when you’re coding receipts and recording invoices, you’ll just be clueless. You wouldn’t be able to add value to the decisions builders have to make regarding their finances. When we read these reports, we need to make decisions based off what we’re reading. We say, ‘Hey, what type of business are you running? What are your goals? What numbers do you need to have at your fingertips to make decisions out in the field?’ Then build their accounting structure to support that. That’s what’s unique about construction accountants – we actually know how to put those reports together for you. Also, we know how to guide you and say, ‘This is the right tech stack you should have, and these are the things that should be integrated together for the construction business to flow properly.’”

What is the end goal when helping business owners get their financials on track?

“We want to increase a contractor’s revenue by 15% every year. There’s no magic to this. We’re trying to create a solid baseline, so we can trust the numbers and then we can start to use the numbers to make decisions. We can tweak the numbers because we now know what they are. It’s a lot of different things. Most companies I come on board with, they haven’t done a labor burden rate calculation for anyone. Some of them don’t even know where that is. And that’s one of the first things we do. We don’t know the true cost of the people that work here. So, that’s one of our starting points, and then just getting the books cleaned up – getting to where we can trust the numbers.”

To learn more about G+F Business & Financial Consulting and how it can help your business, head over to the company’s website.

You can also find Timothy and his team on social channels:

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Transcript

Zach Wojtowicz:

Hi everyone, it’s “The Building Code.” Zach Wojtowicz here.

Charley Burtwistle:

And I’m Charley Burtwistle.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Got a great episode today. It’s all about numbers, or is it?

Charley Burtwistle:

Oh, wow. What a teaser. Yes. Today, we have Timothy Wingate on, who is going to be talking to us a little bit about his company. What’s the name, Zach?

Zach Wojtowicz:

G+F Business & Financial Consulting.

Charley Burtwistle:

G+F Business & Financial Consulting. I asked Zach because this is once again one of Zach’s friends that he once again met on another trip, so I’ll be third wheeling this interview, but I’m excited to learn. I heard nothing but great things. I think that what I’m hoping to learn out of this interview because me being a podcast host is secretly just my Trojan Horse to talking to experts and learning constantly, is just how the accounting process fits into the scheduling application and your project management application. I know a lot of times people talk about cashflow in the construction business, and I think that a lot of times these types of things get overlooked. So, I’m going to be taking a ton of notes I’m sure throughout, but otherwise, yeah, I’m very excited.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Yeah, Timothy’s the man. You know when you meet people and you just connect right away and there’s an energy?

Charley Burtwistle:

Oh, like you and me?

Zach Wojtowicz:

Took a while for you and I to get there. See what I mean? Timothy and I connected immediately, we were talking shop. When I was working with customers as my job, and still get time to spend with customers, but not nearly what I used to, and I’d consult with them. We just started talking about, well, how do you handle this process? And what do you tell customers about this? And it’s just so great to have people like Timothy in our builder community. He’s an amazing, amazing human and owner of an accounting consulting business in construction where it’s a rare thing. There’s not all that many of them. So, I’ll stop gushing. It’s going to be hard. You’re going to know the chemistry right away. Let’s get him in here.

Hey, Timothy, welcome to “The Building Code.” It’s great to see you again. Charley’s picking up a theme in the most recent episodes that we know each other. There’s something there. As you know, I think you’re a fan of “The Building Code,” but it’s your first time on. So, welcome.

Timothy Wingate:

Thank you.

Zach Wojtowicz:

It’s great to have you.

Timothy Wingate:

Thank you.

Zach Wojtowicz:

How are you?

Timothy Wingate:

I’m doing well, brother. It’s good to be on a show that I’ve been a listener to for probably at least the last three years, so it’s just good to be on here and had a chance to meet you in person at the Coalition, so I’m excited. Just excited about what we’re going to talk about and just ready to get into it.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Well, before we go too far, we always like to give you an opportunity to talk about, we brought you on “The Building Code,” we talked a little bit about you in the intro, but give us your side. What do you do? What’s your play here with us bringing you on?

Timothy Wingate:

Yeah, so I always start off first, as you know from my presentation, first, I’m a husband to my wife of 13 years, and I’m also the father to three lovely boys. They’re 11, 6 and 5. No, I’m sorry, 7 and 5.

Zach Wojtowicz:

There you go. Your wife’s going to love that one. Come on. You can’t even get the kids’ age?

Timothy Wingate:

Exactly.

Zach Wojtowicz:

We were just talking about before, how fast time goes. I get it.

Timothy Wingate:

Oh, man. Too fast, too fast. So, that’s my motivation. That’s why I get up every morning and do what I do is for my family, for sure. Had my own accounting firm for seven years now. Started back in May 1st, 2016. Yep, I got that date right. And before that, prior to that, I was CFO/CEO of a nonprofit organization, ran that for about six years. And so, just really grew up in the construction industry because my dad is a builder, and he’s a general contractor, so he’s still building today. And so, we just really wanted to niche down to something and what better than construction? Since I knew it, I grew up in it.

Zach Wojtowicz:

I love it. Yeah, we got to connect on that down in the Arizona contractor summit. Let’s start there. I’m really interested in that influence of your dad and your career path. Did you love being on the job site or is it something you found later you just tried to get away from the family biz, and it just called you back? How did you continue in that construction vertical?

Timothy Wingate:

I tell you that I would like to paint the perfect picture and say, “Yeah, it was all roses and petals, and I just wanted to be in the construction industry all my life,” but that’s not true. Just like any dad, when we were kids, we didn’t have a choice. In the summer, you’re working in the sun in Florida humidity …

Zach Wojtowicz:

In Florida. You’re like, “You know what? I’m going to be an accountant. I can’t do this.”

Timothy Wingate:

Oh, man, don’t make me laugh too hard on here. But I found out quickly that I needed to be in the AC and so, I needed to do something that could keep my job in the AC, and I respected what dad did. He built a lot of great buildings, houses, taught me a lot in the field, but I wanted to actually stay away from construction. So, that’s why I didn’t even start the business niching down to construction, when I first started it.

Charley Burtwistle:

So, I think that’s what I’m interested in is the construction vertical that you’re talking about, is what’s the key differences between construction accountant as opposed to a traditional accountant, and what is the specialization that comes with being in the construction vertical?

Timothy Wingate:

Yeah, so number one, first of all, you can’t be just this traditional accountant with contractors. These guys are hard workers out in the field. They love working with people they trust. They want to build relationships. So, first, you have to be relatable, and you have to have some type of personality to be able to keep up with these guys and talk with them about their business. So, I had that naturally, as you can see, I’m not a natural bookworm accountant who’s monotone. No, I have personality because I grew up in that arena. And so, you need to understand the lingo because there’s a lot of construction terms that are thrown around all the time and if you’re not familiar with those terms when you’re coding receipts and recording invoices, you’ll just be clueless, and you wouldn’t be able to add value to the decisions they would have to make regarding their finances.

So, definitely knowing the lingo is another thing. And then, construction accounting is a very specialized accounting. It’s just like nonprofit accounting, manufacturing accounting and then you have construction accounting. Very specialized. It’s more managerial type accounting, so where you’re formulating the reports and cost codes in a way to help you read reports. Because when we read these reports, now we need to make decisions based off what we’re reading, but first we need to know how to put the report together. And so, that’s what a construction accountant does is say, “Hey, what type of business are you running? What are your goals? What numbers and things you need to have at your fingertips to make decisions out in the field?” And then we need to build your accounting structure to support that. And so, that’s what is unique about construction accountants, we actually know how to put those reports together for you. And also, we know how to guide you and say, “This is the right tech stack you should have, and these are the things that should be integrated together for the construction business to flow properly.”

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah, you’re speaking my language there, I’m a data scientist by trade. And a lot of times people will ask for certain reports or ask certain questions and the first question is like, “Well, do you have the data to even answer them?” And the more important question is, is the data set up properly to answer that? So, when you’re talking about setting up your cost codes properly and things of that nature of, okay, if you want to make decisions off of where we’re spending things or what things are happening, well step one is zooming out to the beginning and are we tracking it? Are we tracking it properly? So, I could definitely see the nuanced nature of if you don’t understand the construction, not even construction in accounting, but just construction processes process of like, okay, here’s where your manual labor is going to come into play. Here’s where your materials are going to come into play. Here are the suppliers you have to buy from and the subcontractors you have to work with. Here are things that you’re going to want to track to make … It’s so nuanced. Anyone coming in without construction knowledge would just be lost trying to do the accounting. Is that oversimplifying? It’s kind of all or nothing, there’s no gray area.

Timothy Wingate:

Yeah, you’re hitting it spot on. And sadly, the case is always, for the most part, these guys are starting their companies and usually they’re starting, like I said, they like people they trust, so they’re starting with a family member running the books, and this person has no idea how to structure the books in a way that makes sense for a construction company. But they’ve been doing it for years, and they’ve been hustling, and then you’ll see they really don’t have a good process on how they estimate jobs. Are we at estimating just because I walk in the building and I say, “Hey, yeah, I think this is about 1200 square feet, we’re going to just throw a number and say that’s what it is and I’m going to mark it up 40% because 40% should be enough profit on the job to take care of all my bills and do all those things.” So, there’s no concrete type of system or methodology that makes sense when they’re running the company. So, my heart goes out to those guys because they’re trying very hard to do the right thing, but they just need someone to come in and get them organized and just help them see these numbers so very plainly and simple. So yeah, you’re hitting on the money.

Zach Wojtowicz:

They don’t call it estimating for nothing. They just throw a number and hope it works out. It’s amazing how many people I’ve met that, they come to Buildertrend, and they’ve been in business for 20 years and they’re like, “Tell me about your estimating process.” Like, “Yeah, Jim’s just been running through the truck, and we’ve been making money. I don’t know, is that bad?” And I’m kind of like, “It could be better. We could probably improve that.”

Charley Burtwistle:

I remember, this was probably three or four years ago, Zach, you may remember, we launched a survey, and it was to Buildertrend customers and non-Buildertrend customers, but one of the questions is, do you understand the difference between markup and margin? And it was like 50-50 I think. It was insane. And you hit the nail on the head, Timothy, is it because it has worked, but people don’t know that it can work better, and I think that’s what Buildertrend’s trying to solve, and that’s what you’re trying to solve.

Zach Wojtowicz:

But what I’m picking up, you do the accounting side, but it sounds like you also, G+F Consulting, you’re also doing those types of other processes for your customers. So, with your experiences bringing on and saying, “This is the best way to estimate and then it ties to this,” and something I would love to get into as well is you asked a really profound question at the contractor summit about what’s more important, the schedule or the estimate. And I was like, “This is obvious,” and I was wrong. So, let’s start with, what service do you provide your customers? Then I want to get into that experience because it surprised me.

Timothy Wingate:

Yeah. So, I like to say if you’re looking for all the bells and whistles of what G+F can offer a construction company, we become the back office, we become that support team to the contractor. So, we’re handling all the books, we’re doing all the recording, we’re paying your subs, we’re paying your vendors, suppliers, we’re sending out invoices, all those things. Now, we’re working together, we can’t do it alone in the silo, but we work together. But primarily you’re inside of your project management software, in this case we always pitch Buildertrend, and then where we live is in all the other things. So, that’s how we like to establish the relationship, and it gets the guys out in the field or more into the role that they desire to be in, which is probably business development, going out, finding new business, doing all those types of things.

So, we consult on a number of things like, “Hey, what’s the best way to pay subs? How should we set up our bill pay process? How should we invoice? How should we train our staff?” That’s something that’s different because construction is big on safety. So, one thing that kills a construction company is they always talk about, “Hey, we can’t find guys, or we’re losing good workers and then we can’t find good workers.” Well, my answer to that is, “What type of training program do you have established?” Because if you were offering good training, the people won’t leave. And if you are offering good training, the people will want to come because they were like, “Man, I can get trained by the best. They have a great system.” And so, “Hey, what type of systems and technology do you have to train your staff, get them onboarded quickly into how we do things here at this construction company?” So, that’s always something that I’m preaching on and talking about all the time because training is what’s going to sustain your business, it’s what’s going to make it scalable.

So, that’s mainly what we do. And then of course we do all the accounting stuff. We close the books a month in, year in, and file your taxes. We can do tax resolution. We have done it for some guys we’ve onboarded who had some tax issues coming to us. We don’t enjoy doing it because it’s a very lengthy process.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Who loves dealing with the IRS? Either Florida or the federal IRS.

Timothy Wingate:

Yeah. I got a case that’s been going on for five years.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Oh my god, that is …

Timothy Wingate:

So, just feel my pain.

Zach Wojtowicz:

We need more people like you, Timothy. That’s sainthood.

Timothy Wingate:

So, that’s what we do in a nutshell and how we serve a construction company. We become the back office.

Zach Wojtowicz:

That’s amazing. So, let’s get into, so at the Contractor Coalition that Charley was not in attendance for, you asked the question, what’s more critical for construction to have, to a bunch of contractors who run construction companies, the schedule or the estimate? And Charley, what do you think the answer is?

Charley Burtwistle:

Wow. Well, you’re kind of …

Zach Wojtowicz:

First game on the spot, I think on “The Building Code.”

Charley Burtwistle:

You’re putting me on the spot here. Yeah, maybe we start doing … Maybe this can be a segment or something like that, is like, “Let’s ask Charley construction questions and see what he comes up with.”

Zach Wojtowicz:

Out of nowhere.

Timothy Wingate:

There we go.

Charley Burtwistle:

I’ll give an answer and then if I’m wrong, it will spark …

Zach Wojtowicz:

We will replace you as host, finally.

Charley Burtwistle:

Oh, I was going to say it’ll spark good content, and we’ll grow our viewership.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Oh, awkward.

Charley Burtwistle:

I guess in my mind, I would think that the estimate would be more important because you would need to build your schedule off of what you’d established in the estimate. If you don’t know what you’re purchasing or how much you’re purchasing it for, or how much you’re invoicing or how much you’re going to make, until you get that figured out, you can’t really start to build your schedule. Now, I could be completely wrong, but that’s my answer.

Timothy Wingate:

All right. Guess what, Charley? You fit in the, what? 90%.

Zach Wojtowicz:

89% percent. And me too, I was like, “Tim, this is obvious.” And the way he proposed it was like, it didn’t feel like a trick question, and then when you were like … It’s the schedule, according to Timothy, and I was like, “Wow, okay.” That makes Buildertrend look better.

Timothy Wingate:

So, let’s think about this. Because these are questions that I always pose to my father, and he will give me answers and explain to me the reason why because he has done some nice projects, this commercial and residential. And so, when we talk about estimating, so let’s talk about it in contrast to scheduling. So, I get estimating wrong, but I get scheduling perfect. So, what can happen in that case? I can finish a job on time and then I can make the money that my estimate told me I would make, whether I lost money or not, whether I did a good job estimating or not.

So, I didn’t make the profit margin that I set out to make because I estimated something improperly, so I forgot a whole building that we had to build, but I still finish it on time. I’m going to lose money, but now I’m probably never going to make that mistake again. I’m going to get that right the next time. But if I don’t get a hold of scheduling, so let’s say I’ve estimated something perfectly, but then I really suck at scheduling. So, when my schedule gets thrown off, no matter how great of a job I’ve done in estimating, I’m going to lose money. Why? Because now something that was planned to take three months, took six months, and then now, I had to pay my staff six months’ worth of pay versus three months’ worth of pay, because guess what? They’re still coming to work every day.

And then, oh, I forgot to order materials, the right amount of materials. So, now my guys came to work ready thinking that, “Hey Tim, you were supposed to have all the materials,” so now, I got to give them some odd jobs. Maybe, “I’m just going to have you guys work at the shop today,” or, “I’m going to have you clean up the site today.” So, that’s, what? Throwing away money. You just throwing it away. So, now when you get to the end of this project, you’ve lost so much money, you’re so behind, that on the next project, you’re hoping that you can make enough money to make up for this three-month loss because of bad scheduling. And so, scheduling is the most important thing. You have to get that right. You have to know.

And what’s the problem, with human nature, scheduling requires you to be proactive. And so, what? I have to sit down, I have to plan, I have to think about who’s going to be coming on the job? Are we going to have three trays at the site at one time or are we going to have two trays at the site? Are they going to overlap? Are they going to be in each other’s way? Are we going to have the guys come in and start this part? Can we get concrete on this day? If concrete can’t come on this day, what can we do instead and get something going, so we continue to move the project along? It requires you to be so proactive that that’s when you become a great project manager, and you’re running a great company.

And it’s the same thing, in an accounting world, if we can get the construction guys to actually submit purchase orders, oh man, our life just became easy. You know what I mean? Now, we can get numbers and data quickly and make these adjustments as needed because they sent a purchase order, but when we have all these, “Where did this Home Depot receipt come from?” And it’s 10 of them, and now, what is it for? Is it for lumber? Oh man, no, they actually bought lumber, electrical, drywall and everything on one receipt. Now, you just made my life a headache. So, that’s the type of thing that we want to get ahead of, and so, scheduling allows you to do that. Being proactive with purchase orders allows accounting to get ahead of schedule. So, it’s just a lot of different things, so scheduling is the most important thing out of those two.

Charley Burtwistle:

There you go.

Timothy Wingate:

In my opinion.

Charley Burtwistle:

Well, hopefully I still have a job on the podcast after this. Actually, what we’re going to do is when we get done with this, I’ll go ahead, and I’ll re-record my answer, and we’ll insert that in there.

Zach Wojtowicz:

John doesn’t like you that much.

Charley Burtwistle:

But on a serious note, we always try not to make this podcast too salesy for Buildertrend, but the pain points you’re describing sounds like the pain points Buildertrend is trying to solve, right?

Zach Wojtowicz:

Well, that’s what really struck me the first time I heard it, I was kind of like, when you think about it, that’s probably what has got us here, Buildertrend because that was what the backstory, Buildertrend, for our listeners, it’s kind of fun, it started as a scheduling tool that we accidentally fell into at the request, it’s this lore of how Buildertrend started in the basement of our three founders’ parents, that it was a scheduling tool.

Charley Burtwistle:

And they made it for one of their buddies that was working a job and needed something like that.

Zach Wojtowicz:

And that’s why everything connects to the schedule in Buildertrend, is because it is the true … I spent so much time in my own job thinking about the value of the software is the financials because at the back end, it’s the office. Really, sometimes the basics and really the schedule is a mini supply chain, that if you don’t have right, we saw it with the macroeconomics, it caused total disruption in the economy. It’s like in a business, it’s the same thing. It’s smaller scale, but it’s the same thing. Things aren’t happening, there’s a breakdown, there’s now a delay and you’re just behind constantly, and it’s really hard to get back on track.

Timothy Wingate:

It’s logistics, and that’s why we have Amazon. You know what I mean? I don’t know. They perfected the logistics process, and so, that’s why we can get next day shipping on a lot of different things. Logistics is so important in any company. How do we get from one point to the other, quickly as possible and efficient as possible?

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah. I’m blown away by your …

Zach Wojtowicz:

Imagine an accounting episode turning into a project management episode.

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah, no kidding.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Flipping the script. This is why both of us are going to get taken off “The Building Code.”

Charley Burtwistle:

Oh, what are you talking about?

Zach Wojtowicz:

I’m kidding. I’m kidding.

Charley Burtwistle:

I think this is gold. I think it is actually funny, a large majority of employees … Not a large majority, but I’ll say a large majority, a lot of people, employees at Buildertrend, actually listen to the podcasts here, and I feel like they’re really going to like this one because you’re preaching what a lot of us believe about the value of the software and stuff.

Zach Wojtowicz:

I was saving this content for the pod. I didn’t spread this around too much, Timothy. I wanted it to come from you because they’d be like, “Zach, you’re making it up.”

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah. It’s like, no, see, this is what we’ve been telling you.

Timothy Wingate:

Oh God, thank you.

Zach Wojtowicz:

My guy told me. Timothy told me.

Charley Burtwistle:

Zach’s going to record this and bring it into our next meeting when we’re talking about prioritization of the product. He’s like, “No. See. Click the play button there.”

Timothy Wingate:

There you go.

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah. So, when Zach gets promoted again, you better request some compensation there for helping him.

Timothy Wingate:

Ah, no. Me and Zach are good. We had such a good time in Arizona.

Charley Burtwistle:

Oh, did you Timothy? Gosh.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Love it.

Charley Burtwistle:

I’m starting to think that you two set this up, away.

Zach Wojtowicz:

I maybe had some …

Charley Burtwistle:

I’ve heard three different, “Charley’s off the podcast,” jokes. “Charley should have been in Arizona.”

Zach Wojtowicz:

There may or may not be emails, honestly.

Charley Burtwistle:

Getting back to it, Timothy, I think what I’m curious in is obviously you’re very, very knowledgeable and passionate. At what stage do you typically come in with the clients that you’re working with? Is it people that are trying to set things up from scratch, people that have been around for 20 years and finally realize that things could be done a little easier? Do people already have processes? Are they trying to establish processes? Or is it all over the place?

Timothy Wingate:

No, no, no. It’s not all over the place. It’s not. Usually, what we’ve found out to be a good fit for us is someone who’s figured out how to reach that million dollars. You know what I mean? I’ve got it. I got to this point. But sometimes they’re at that million dollar mark, but they’re just stressed out. They’re working 68-hour weeks. They’re just stressed out. They don’t know their numbers. They like, “Man, I just hustled. I just got to this point because of hard work. And I don’t have systems. My guys don’t use a time clock. I’m still writing checks. People still coming to pick up checks from me. I just need someone in my corner who knows this part of the business better than I do.” And that’s where we seem to be best fit.

I always say, there’s a southern little thing, somebody who just sick and tired of being sick and tired. I’m just fed up because if I don’t figure this out, I don’t know if I’m going to even run this construction company anymore. I may sell it. I may do something different because I’m starting not to like it or love it like I used to when I got into it. So, some of these guys, they’ve been in it for five years, something. I got a client recently who came on board and he was in it for 20 years, and he was like, “Man, Tim.” And when I say recently, he’d been with me for a year, so now his business looks totally different than a year ago.

And actually, we have this thing where we say we want to increase a contractor’s revenue by 15% every year. Well, this guy here, actually, he’s on his way to double it. And there’s no magic to this. I always tell people, too, when they come on board like, “Hey, we don’t have a magic wand where we can change the business in three months. If it took you 20 years to get to this point, or if you got 20 years of unresolved whatever, it’s going to take some time.” And usually, that timeframe is somewhere around six to nine months before they start to see the light. Where it’s like, “Oh, I can actually see where this is going.” Because lot of it is just onboarding. It’s me telling you, “Hey, now I want you to do things like this, so now you have to get in the rhythm of doing things like that.”

And then, we’re trying to create this baseline. That’s the whole point. We’re trying to create a solid baseline, so we can say we at least trust the numbers and now, we can start to use the numbers to make decisions. We can tweak the numbers because we now know what they are. So, it’s a lot of different things. Some guys, most companies I come on board with, they haven’t done a labor burden rate calculation for nobody. Some of them don’t even know where that is. And so, that’s one of the first things that we do like, “Hey, we need to do a labor burden calculation for every person that works here.” We didn’t know the true cost of the person that works here. And so, that’s one of our starting points and just getting the books cleaned up, just getting where we can trust the numbers.

Zach Wojtowicz:

I love it, and I think you make a great point overall, you can go pretty far with processes that are rough, but to be great, you have to have it really refined. I’ve been using this a lot in my own department lately. It’s like our CS team is great, and then to be great though, we got to do everything dialed in. And I joke about Kobe Bryant. Played basketball his whole life. Until the day he died, he was in the gym every morning, shooting free throws, things he’d been doing since he was born to do. And LeBron, and I know it’s an NBA reference and everything, but it’s like that’s what it takes to be great. And that’s like construction companies or any business, it’s no different. You have to pay attention to the details, they have to be thought through. And a lot of times it’s not asking for major changes, it’s refinement that are subtle that then doubles or triples your revenue. It’s worth it.

Timothy Wingate:

Yeah, it is. It’s just because you didn’t know that you were losing money over here because you didn’t have a true number of what that cost was. So it’s like, “Oh man, I was spending $50,000 on meals?” I’m being ridiculous, but that’s what the revelation is when you get organized, it’s like, “Man, I didn’t know I was spending that much.” I used me to tell me I took $70,000 out of my business as distributions? I don’t even know what I did with that. So, it’s just those simple revelations being brought up in our meetings and talked about. They’re like, “Man, I got to do things different.” And sometimes they don’t even understand like, “Oh, I’m an S corporation, but I don’t pay myself a salary.” Oh, well now you’re taking everything in distribution. Now, you just called yourself a $15,000 tax bill because you took everything as a distribution and the business lost money. You had no basis. So, it’s just all these different little small tweaks and so, it’s just getting them to make those adjustments that automatically just turns into revenue. It’s not rocket science.

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah. I think, this was one of Zach and I’s first episodes, but we had Russ Stephens on, and he gave one of the greatest quotes ever. He works for another consulting company, he’s like, “A lot of the reason that builders don’t want to go to consultants or advisors is because they’re scared they’re going to find out there was an easier way, and they spent the last 20 years giving up $15,000 here or there or going through all the labor or working 80-hour weeks.” And it’s almost like a refusal to believe that, “Oh, I could have been doing this, and I’ve spent this much time not doing that.” So, that’s why we like having people like you on here is to get out to our listeners like, even if you think you have it all intact, at least take the time to look into things like this and be aware of what’s out there. Be aware of what the resources are. Get in contact with people like you, Timothy. Come to Buildertrend University, talk to your other builders, go to a cool Contractor Coalition if you get an invite.

There are resources out there, and Buildertrend, internally, we fall into this trap all the time. It’s like we think that we’re the only ones in the world, the only tech company ever that has faced this one problem. It’s like, no, we’re not. Every tech company in the entire world, there’s millions of people trying to solve the same exact things we are. So, swallow your pride and figure out what they’re doing and learn from each other and seek out help where you need it.

Timothy Wingate:

That’s it.

Charley Burtwistle:

So, if that’s resonating with one of our listeners, what would you advise their next steps to be? Do you have a website they can go out to, resources they can get ahold of, or what would you suggest?

Timothy Wingate:

Yeah, so definitely, you can reach out to us. You can either go to our website, either gplusf.com, which is one domain, or our other domain, which may be easier to remember, construction.accountant.

Charley Burtwistle:

Wow.

Timothy Wingate:

Construction …

Charley Burtwistle:

Great URL. How’d you get that one?

Timothy Wingate:

.accountant. So, that’s the best way to reach us.

Charley Burtwistle:

Awesome. We’ll link both of those in the shownotes.

Timothy Wingate:

And of course we have social media, we’re on LinkedIn and Instagram and Facebook too. But I don’t manage those pages, so don’t make inquiries there, definitely go to the website for sure to make an inquiry.

Charley Burtwistle:

construction.accountant is the easiest website name to remember ever so nice job to your branding team there.

Timothy Wingate:

Thank you.

Charley Burtwistle:

We’ll link all the socials and websites in the shownotes for people listening. They can go out there.

Timothy Wingate:

Perfect.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Well, it was a pleasure having you on, and I know personal invite to have you back on. We covered a lot. We got into accounting. And then I was like actually … But it was great catching up with you, Timothy, and really appreciate you, and thanks for joining “The Building Code.”

Timothy Wingate:

Same here, man. It was a dream come true for me, to be on “The Building Code,” to be a part of such an awesome brand, awesome software. Buildertrend is something that we preach to all of our clients, and we want them to get on because the integration with QBO is like the best. I actually, oh no, I don’t want to do that. But yeah, so I would just say this, Buildertrend has the best integration with QuickBooks Online, hands down, and that’s why we love it, and that’s why I want all my clients on it. So, I enjoyed being here. Had a good time. I hope we shared a couple laughs, Charley, we’ll see you at the next Coalition Summit, hopefully.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Are you going? Are you going to be there?

Timothy Wingate:

Yes, I think I will be there. I talked to Brad and Brad, he … Actually, no, Brad told me after the one in Arizona, it’s like, “Tim, we got to have you out in September, the one in Austin.” So, I’m sure that his team will be reaching out to me and then we’ll be making that happen.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Love it. I’ll be there, too.

Timothy Wingate:

Okay. Cool.

Charley Burtwistle:

Have fun guys. Zoom. Give me a FaceTime, we’ll catch up.

Zach Wojtowicz:

We had too much fun on this episode.

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah, I was going to say, we’re still recording, so we’ll wrap it up here. Timothy, thank you so much. An absolute pleasure. Nice to meet you.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Thanks, Timothy.

Timothy Wingate:

Pleasure to meet you, Charley.

Zach Wojtowicz:

I said in the intro that Timothy and I were going to connect instantly, and by God, did we deliver?

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah, you guys had a really cruel …

Zach Wojtowicz:

That was a lot of fun.

Charley Burtwistle:

Gang up on Charley bit.

Zach Wojtowicz:

My favorite. Yeah, sometimes it goes around.

Charley Burtwistle:

I hate Timothy. Yeah, kidding. That was incredible. Yeah, I’ll say this. I was messaging Zach on the side during that interview. I’m like, “What do we have to do to hire Timothy? What is the lump sum of cash that we have to throw in his face?” He’s talking about all his other advisory positions and stuff like that. But he was incredible. I think listening to an expert and a true professional, in the definition of the word and just the way he exudes himself, really connected a lot of the dots for me, and I would say validated a lot of the assumptions that we have at Buildertrend around what we’re building for and what the pain point we’re trying to solve is.

I think a lot of times we beat ourselves up and look at these edge cases and think, oh, we need to do this and this and this and this. There’s a million things that Buildertrend could do. But the schedule, like you said, is the backbone of our software, and you can tie all your financials to it. And that alone, listening to Timothy talk, is a game changer. So, it was cool. It was a perfect interview to have on a Friday afternoon before a long weekend. I’m just in a great mood about what we’ve done so far and also just fired up about what we have the opportunity to do because this is such a big opportunity in this space.

Zach Wojtowicz:

I totally agree. It took a long time for me to connect those dots. It’s not super clear. And you think construction, you don’t think business operations, and the chain of events, even use the word logistics. You just kind of think like, oh, they build houses. Yeah, you got to buy stuff. And even when I was a newer customer success coach, at the time, that isn’t really apparent. So, that’s why I love talking to people who live it, grew up in it, and then now are in the profession because there is a nuance and there is an excellence, and there is a path to get there.

And so, hopefully if you’re listening and you look at where you’re at, you see … We didn’t talk about this either, but there are professionals that can do this that you can trust and are a lot more affordable than having to hire someone or consulting to do it. There are these operations all over the United States, probably in your backyard, that can take some of that administrative pieces that you’re maybe struggling with, give you advice. And some of what we’ve talked about in other episodes, it’s an investment, there’s no doubt, but what you get …

Charley Burtwistle:

Oh yeah.

Zach Wojtowicz:

On the other side is totally worth it.

Charley Burtwistle:

Well, you heard him say in the interview, he’s like, if you want an actual number of how much it’s worth, they on average raise companies’ revenues 15%.

Zach Wojtowicz:

And I’m sure he’s got clients with more. It’s amazing what partnership can really do, that’s what’s exciting is construction’s all about partnership.

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah, more money and easier.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Where’s the …

Charley Burtwistle:

And less work.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Yeah. Sounds like a no-brainer to me.

Charley Burtwistle:

And they have the coolest website in the entire world, construction.accounting.

Zach Wojtowicz:

I know. I almost wanted to be like, how did you get that?

Charley Burtwistle:

That’s what I was thinking too. That’d be like me having… Ah, I wonder if this exists. Can I get a charley.burtwistle website? My kind of homepage.

Zach Wojtowicz:

Assuming you’re going to be a business?

Charley Burtwistle:

A lifestyle blog, I’d say. Some sort of online journal like, today on “The Building Code,” Timothy and Zach teamed up on me and made me feel bad about not being able to go on cool trips for the world to see.

Zach Wojtowicz:

For the record, we love each other. Okay?

Charley Burtwistle:

Yeah. You and Timothy do. I’m getting a little jealous. We better end it here. As always, thank you so much for tuning in. If you would be so kind to like, review and subscribe, it does help Zach and I keep our jobs, so I appreciate that. Otherwise, until next time, I’m Charley Burtwistle.

Zach Wojtowicz:

I’m Zach Wojtowicz.

Timothy Wingate headshot

Timothy Wingate Jr. | G+F Business & Financial Consulting


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