Missouri Landscaper Streamlines Operations with Business Management Software

Focusing less on administrative tasks and more on growing his business

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The Toro Company

Successfully owning and operating a lawn maintenance and landscaping businesses is no walk in the park. In fact, without the right tools and resources, it can be downright chaotic. Modern problems like equipment tracking, the need for enhanced customer communications and connecting crews require modern solutions, yet our research shows that 57% of contractors still use paper logbooks to manage their work.

As a business grows, small headaches can turn into big problems. Many professional landscapers are finding that business management software can help address one of their biggest problems they face: organization and efficiency. The intent is to allow contractors to focus less on administrative tasks and more on growing their business.

Cameron Duncan, owner of GrassMaster Lawn Service in Poplar Bluff, Missouri has found that Toro’s Horizon360 business software has done just that for his business.

"Horizon360 makes our life so much easier,” says Cameron Duncan, owner of GrassMaster Lawn Service in Poplar Bluff, Missouri. “It allows us to stay on schedule, focus on getting the job done, and see how efficient we're running each day.”

Fortunately, he didn't need to be tech-savvy to master the Horizon360 dashboard. A vertical sidebar on the left houses the main navigation and made it easy to locate the schedule, create a new job, or import invoices into Quickbooks Online.

Duncan says to create a new job, users can simply follow the prompts, then drag and drop the job straight into the calendar and it’s on the schedule. The affected crew is notified in real-time when the job is added or if any change is made, meaning no other actions are required to relay the message.

“We no longer have to scramble to figure out what jobs were completed and what needs to be done next,” he says. “All we have to do is open the app, check the schedule for the day, and get to work."

Meaningful data

Horizon360 serves up analytics that can help make businesses more efficient based on route scheduling, better equipment, pricing structures and more. The software integrates with QuickBooks Online, allowing businesses to sync their customer, employee, and expense data with the click of a button. 

"Once all of the data is gathered, it's easy to see where we need to improve efficiency,” Duncan says. “Maybe we stopped at the gas station too many times between jobs, there was a better route we should have taken, or we back-tracked too many times. We can tell when we used the wrong mower for the job or veered off-schedule by stopping by a friend’s house. Horizon360 makes it easy to see where we need to improve by analyzing the data.”

Making decisions based on data instead of emotion guarantees real improvement, whether that's reflected in higher employee retention or increased profit margins.

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"Our favorite feature of the Horizon360 app is the ability to track our equipment in real-time and clock in and out of job sites automatically,” Duncan explains. “It allows us to see how long our equipment is sitting, how long it is working, and how long we are spending between job sites."

Implementing a tracking device is easy and will show exactly when and how long equipment is used for and how long the crew is on a specific job. No matter the equipment brand, business owners can track every piece of machinery if it has a standard 12-volt battery.

On the move

Everything is more convenient when it can be accessed from your phone. Managers and crew leads can install Toro’s Horizon360 app on their mobile devices as an easy way to keep their day organized. Via the mobile app, they always have instance access to the schedule changes and field notes.

Once a job is finished, crew leads can add proof-of-service photos and job notes, both of which can then be directly added to the invoice.

"Horizon360 keeps track of jobs that have been completed and automatically turns them into an invoice waiting for our approval,” says Duncan. “Once approved, we can send them to QuickBooks Online and receive payment from our customers. We no longer have to go back through notes to see if we need to send an invoice for a job completed weeks ago. Horizon360 already has that invoice waiting for our approval. That feature alone saves us a lot of time and allows us to focus on growing the business.”

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