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BigChange, the leading workforce management technology company for the service and transport sectors, announces today that Martin Port, founder and CEO, is to move into a new role as chairman. Richard Warley, who joined the business as chairman at the start of 2021 will become the driving force of the business as CEO.

The move is announced as BigChange prepares for the next phase of its development. The business, which has achieved nine years of consistent growth, is preparing to expand rapidly across multiple international markets and is building out the next generation of its technology platform.

BigChange’s field service management technology is the core workflow tool for businesses employing field service technicians and operators. BigChange’s tools provide job scheduling, customer invoicing and payments automation, mobile workforce management, and client engagement. The Company’s platform serves 1,600 small to enterprise clients spanning more than 20 industries, from plant hire to drainage and waste, social housing to food service. Clients include Sunbelt Rentals, Silentnight, Recycling Lives, HSS and EDF.

Martin Port, founder and chairman, says:

I couldn’t be more confident that Richard is the ideal person to take on the day-to-day running of the business. He is passionate about BigChange, he’s taken the time to get to know our people and our culture, and he has an extraordinary depth of experience running billion-pound companies. It is our hope that, together, we can help BigChange to reach this milestone – unicorn status – in just a few years. We currently employ over 200 people around the world, and we hope to take that figure to 500 people. 

This is a really exciting time for both me and for BigChange. I feel as though I have had a promotion and relish the prospect of a new challenge. My ambitions for BigChange have only intensified over the last few years and I know that, with Richard by my side, we have the best chance of executing our plan to become the leading mobile workforce management platform in every market we target around the world.”

Richard Warley, CEO of BigChange, says:

Martin has built a really special company that combines great technology with a very big heart and an absolute focus on making the world a better place for its customers and the people who work here. I’m excited about the scale of the opportunity out there for BigChange – both in terms of the size of addressable market and the breadth of technological solutions we can bring our customers. 

Martin is an evangelist for the business and a great strategic thinker. My role is about taking this business to the next level and ensuring that we preserve all that is brilliant about BigChange’s culture while evolving into a much larger entity. I am going to continue to develop JobWatch’s functionality and relevance to the market, all while maintaining our focus on customer success and excellent service.” 

BigChange has experienced 50% average year-over-year revenue growth since inception. In 2020, BigChange was recognised for its outstanding contribution to innovation when it was awarded the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise, one of the highest official honors for companies in the UK. It boasts a Net Promoter Score of 84.8 – a rating that denotes world class customer service. It has also been ranked among the UK’s top employers, receiving two stars in the Sunday Times “Best Companies To Work For.” 

Nobby Stiles wasn’t a man naturally cut out for football. His son John told this month’s Motivational Monday that he was half-blind, stood at 5-foot-5, and was 9 stone wet through. 

Even his name wasn’t right. After meeting Manchester United coach Jimmy Murphy, he was told:

“You can’t be a tough-tackling midfielder with a name like Norbert”.

That’s how we came to know him as Nobby. 

And yet Stiles is one of only three Englishmen to have won both the World Cup and the European Cup.

John Stiles joined the BigChange team to tell the story of his father, the 1966 England midfielder who died in 2020 with advanced dementia, which his family links to years of heading the ball.

John said: 

“All of us have obstacles in life and my dad had plenty, what he did have going for him was a fantastic sense of humour. He was always enthusiastic, and he was never beaten.” 

Nobby was largely on the bench at United from 1960 to 1963. Five years later, he’d have a World Cup, European Cup and League Title to his name. It all came from not giving up. 

Nobby was so short-sighted that when he forgot his contact lenses for his first under-23 game for England he tried to take out Scottish striker Charlie Cooke but kicked Billy Bremner instead. John recalled:

“After that, whenever they’d play together, they’d kick seven different shades out of each other.”

It was Nobby’s first step towards the 1966 World Cup. He played every minute for England – from media criticism after a crunching tackle against France, the violent game against Argentina (which finished with a chair through the dressing-room window), to the iconic image of him dancing with the Jules Rimet trophy in one hand and his false teeth in the other. 

But there was a greater importance to John’s visit. Nobby passed away while suffering from advanced dementia in October 2020. He was one of many ex-players who suffered brain injuries after a long career in football – an “epidemic of dementia from heading the ball” as John put it.

Since its inception in 2020, John and his family have been ambassadors for Head for Change, a charity pushing for better protection of brain health in sport, and supporting ex-players. 

John was joined by the charity’s co-founder Dr Judith Gates. She said that:

“Players like Nobby formed the foundation of the modern game but didn’t get modern-day compensation.” 

Her own experience of supporting her husband and ex-Middlesbrough player Bill Gates (who suffers with chronic traumatic encephalopathy), motivated her to be part of the solution. 

The instant impact Head for Change has had in setting up support groups, educating, 

and funding groundbreaking research has shown the popularity of the cause. 

Thanks go to the BigChange audience, who raised £1000 for Head for Change, and our speakers John and Judith. You can watch the full discussion here. 

Next month, we welcome former English Netball head coach, Tracey Neville MBE. She guided the women’s national team to Commonwealth Gold in 2018 and will be joined by Leeds community-action charity CATCH. We hope to see you then.

You can register here.

For mobile workers, compliance checks happen daily. They need to show simply and clearly that they are sticking to industry safety measures, the law, customer requirements, and company best practices. 

The BigChange platform is designed with this in mind, and the tips below will help compliance checks run smoothly.

Mandatory Questions

When setting up worksheets to be completed on-site, simply tick the ‘Mandatory’ box next to any essential questions.

Where you need your mobile workers to complete a check before they start working, if you have one or more mandatory questions, you can set the ‘Completion time for resource’ on the worksheet to ‘Before starting the job’. This requires mobile workers to answer those crucial questions before they can get started on their job.

It’s just one way to keep your employees safe and ensure compliance checks are made on-site. 

Worksheets

Conditional Branching

This makes sure the right questions get asked and don’t get in the way of work. 

It allows you to set up worksheets so that questions are only shown if they need to be, which is important because irrelevant questions cause frustration and waste time in the field. 

Conditional branching has multiple uses. For example, if a frontline worker reports that a certain hazard is present, it can automatically prompt follow ups about the nature of the hazard, and give tailored guidance. If the hazard is not present, the additional questions are not shown. 

Or on a feedback form a customer rating of 1-4 could prompt more questions about why the customer was dissatisfied, while a rating of 8+ could prompt them to leave a brief, written review. 

We hope these tips make compliance easier with BigChange. We’ll be back again soon with more ways to get the most from the system.

BlueSnap to support BigChange Pay, enabling customers to accept a wide range of payment methods and manage the entirety of jobs through the BigChange platform

BigChange, the revolutionary mobile workforce management platform, today announced that it is working with BlueSnap, the global online payments technology company, to provide a comprehensive payment capability to field service companies around the world.

By integrating BlueSnap’s technology into BigChange’s software, the company’s 1,600 customers worldwide will be able to streamline their payment processes and improve their user experience by offering a wide range of fast, convenient payment options through the platform.

The new BigChange Pay service will support a wide range of payment methods, including cards, mobile wallets such as Apple Pay and Google Pay, and account-based payments. BlueSnap will ensure that BigChange customers worldwide can accept payment through the company’s platform, while protecting them with integrated fraud detection and chargeback management functionality.

BigChange Pay will provide detailed reporting and support automated payment reconciliation with jobs and invoices to further reduce the administrative burden on back-office teams.

Martin Port, BigChange founder and CEO commented:

Fast, efficient payment is the best reward for a job well done, and BigChange Pay will help businesses grow stronger by making it easy to deliver an amazing payment experience to their customers and get paid quicker.”

BigChange Pay means entire jobs – from quotation and job creation to service delivery, invoicing, and now payment – can all be managed within the BigChange system. That end-to-end approach enables exceptional customer service, complete control and more efficient, agile operations.”

Ralph Dangelmaier, BlueSnap CEO added:

BlueSnap is thrilled to be partnering with BigChange to offer their customers global embedded payments with BigChange Pay. With our white labeled solution, BlueSnap enables BigChange to deliver a seamless customer experience with auto-onboarding for global businesses who want to offer a localised payment experience and have greater visibility into their payment program with a merchant managed portal.”

At BigChange, keeping customer data secure is a priority. Our ISO 27001 accreditation and independent security testing regime is testament to that commitment. 

However, you also play an important role in maintaining security by keeping passwords secure. With BigChange, your data is encrypted both in transit and at rest, but using the same password for other accounts or responding to phishing emails can put you at risk. 

BigChange’s 2-Step Verification (2SV) – a security feature that requires two pieces of information to authenticate you when logging in – offers another level of protection for your account and data.

While the first piece of information is your username and password, the second is an extra credential that only you will have access to, a dynamically changing pin sent to your phone via the Google Authenticator App. You can even get the authenticator for many smart watches in addition to your phone. It makes sure that even if your password is compromised, your account remains protected.

Extra security layer

We are encouraging all BigChange customers to enable 2SV in the ‘Admin’ panel of ‘My Settings’, on the BigChange system. Hit the ‘Create’ button, and you’ll be shown a QR code that you can scan to set up 2SV. 

For more tips on security, check out our Information Security Report which lays out the best ways to keep your data safe with BigChange.

Magicman, the company that repairs almost any hard surface ‘back to new’, has transformed its nationwide repairs services with a 5-in-1 system from BigChange

Providing a single cloud-platform for CRM, job scheduling, mobile app, vehicle tracking and management reporting, BigChange provides Magicman with real-time 24/7 visibility of operations, improved control, customer service and productivity.

Established for over 25 years, Magicman has built a reputation as the go-to company for hard surface repairs having developed techniques for the complete repair/restoration of anything from ceramics to wood, stone and acrylic surfaces. Magicman’s innovations and craftsmanship have led to a resurgence in ‘repair don’t replace’. Enabling domestic customers, insurers, construction companies and cruise ship operators to save up to 80 percent against the cost of replacement.

Over the years Magicman has used various CRM and booking systems. It has been a struggle to find a system that integrates with other systems and fully meets their needs. However, after a number of years the company became frustrated with progress and took a fresh look at commercial offerings.

Discovering BigChange was a complete revelation according to Niall Pollard, Head of Magicman Insurance Services:

“With BigChange we had at last found a system that could be adapted to meet our needs and with worksheets and reports that we could easily customise ourselves. The fact that it was easy to use was also a big bonus as we knew there would be resistance to change from the previous system that had been used for many years”.

BigChange is used as a complete end-to-end solution for the business, integrating with Sage for accounts. Magicman services both business and domestic customers and there is a growing insurance division; an area where BigChange has been particularly useful due to stringent operational and reporting requirements. 

Magicman has a large fleet with multi skilled technicians working remotely across the UK delivering a fast-response service. Work can include almost anything from cracked sanitary ware, chipped or burnt worktops, damaged UPVC window frames, damaged stonework to high quality refurbishment within international cruise ships all around the world. In addition to indistinguishable repairs, there are savings on cost, customer disruption and of course landfill when avoiding the replacement of damaged items.

Jobs are booked into the BigChange CRM and then scheduled to the nearest available technician who receive the worksheets on their mobile phones. Using the BigChange app, technicians have a handy tool that replaces all previous paperwork, providing navigation to site, risk assessments and job sheets supported with before and after photographs to show work completion. 

The biggest benefits for Magicman come from the visibility that BigChange provides, allowing management and customer service teams to see where technicians are, the real-time status of each job and the ability to easily book in new work from a well categorised outstanding work system.

Niall Pollard commented:

“With BigChange we are much more efficient.  In the office we have been able to re-deploy 2 or 3 staff by eliminating paperwork and the insurance team is saving several days’ work a month providing monthly reports and real time data to insurers with a single click, it’s still early days and there are many more useful features we have yet to use. BigChange is however a key to productivity and our efficiency has certainly improved, wasting a lot less time now.”

Repair service magicman deploys bigchange

What do you do when you want to solve an impossible problem? Give it to an entrepreneur.

The people who create businesses from nothing know how to overcome every barrier and think of a way through every challenge.

That’s why the global small business community needs to turn its attention to the climate crisis.

We have eight years – just eight years – to radically change humanity’s impact on the planet before the planet enters climate change catastrophe

It would be easy to read something like that and feel paralysed. Feel like there’s no point trying. Not the entrepreneur.

The business owner instead thinks of the small, incremental changes they can make to turn the tide.

At BigChange, we are committed to saving the planet and helping all of our customers do the same. We are saving more than 5,000 trees from the papermill each year through our technology. We are helping customers to radically cut their carbon emissions by having fewer vehicles on the road and operating more efficiently. 

Today, we have 40,000 users on our platform. This community can take the lead on sustainability, to go further and faster, well beyond simply going paperless, cutting carbon and minimising waste. They are delivering so much more impact than BigChange could accomplish on its own, amplifying the environmental benefits in all that we create, and creating a halo effect by educating their peers and industries on how to operate more sustainably. 

We work with some of the pioneers in the field of sustainability. Fleetsolve, which provides renewable energy solutions to help clients reduce carbon emissions, is now one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of biofuel Combined Heat and Power. Recycling Lives provides a total waste management service which supports the circular economy and increases the volumes being recycled. Smart metering company Providor empowers people and businesses to make better decisions about when and how they use energy. Companies like these prove that it’s possible to truly consider people, profit and planet in the creation of phenomenally successful models.  

It’s impossible to ignore the facts anymore. Canada is burning. Germany is flooded . Glaciers are melting. Rising sea levels threaten our seaside towns. Crops across the world are failing. I’m not trying to scare you. I know that these things can be hard to read. I’m just trying to explain why sustainability is now an absolute focus, both for me personally and for the company.  

When I started writing this blog, I wondered if it was a mistake. Who am I to tell anyone to do better? We aren’t perfect. But no company is perfect. We shouldn’t let that stop us. Let’s just make sure that every decision we make, every action we take, from this point onwards, creates less of a negative impact in the world and – ideally – generates environmental benefits instead. Every action – any action – is better than doing nothing. It will take 40 years for the impact of emissions today to be felt. Even if we miraculously fixed everything this year, we’ll still have to endure 40 years of climate change before things start to get better. It’s a sobering thought but one that should galvanize us all. 

I’m looking at you, my fellow founders and leaders. We are at the helm, and it is our responsibility to lead our organisations and set the example for others. We don’t have years to change course. We must be nimble now and make decisions today that we execute tomorrow. Let’s use that to the planet’s advantage. We all need to play our part in saving the world. Let’s start today.

Home services company SES Home Services is undertaking a business-wide digital transformation project using mobile workforce management technology from BigChange.

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UK technology company secures contracts worth £12.5 million for revolutionary mobile workforce management platform in the first half of 2021

BigChange, the revolutionary mobile workforce management platform, today announced that it has attracted 170 new customers and signed more than £12.5 million worth of contracts in the first six months of 2021.

BigChange revealed that 1,600 organisations worldwide are now using its software to manage their field operations in real-time, streamline activities and boost business performance. New customers include T&M Plant Hire, JBC Industrial Services, Countyclean Environmental Services and Environ Property Services.

More than a quarter of the company’s existing customers purchased additional licences to support their own business growth in the past six months.

BigChange has accelerated its expansion plans this year following a £75 million investment from private equity firm Great Hill Partners in February. It has appointed a new Chairman with experience running leading technology companies in Europe, Japan and North America, and hired 40 new employees, including a new Chief Marketing Officer to drive its expansion plans.

The company also embarked on an ambitious innovation programme to enhance its core Software-as-a-Service platform with new data, automation and payments capabilities.

Martin Port, BigChange founder and CEO, comments:

“Businesses grow stronger when they run on BigChange. We succeed by helping our customers succeed, win more work, increase the capacity of their teams and turn their customer experience into a competitive advantage. We’ve enjoyed a stellar start to 2021 and could increase revenues by up to 50 percent this year.”

BigChange half-year results: Supporting the UK’s post-crisis recovery

Last month, the CBI revealed that Britain’s hard-working companies are powering an extraordinary recovery, taking the economy to pre-pandemic levels by the end of the year. https://www.theguardian.com/business/2021/jun/18/cbi-predicts-uks-economic-recovery-will-accelerate-into-autumn BigChange is among the businesses that are supporting this recovery, creating new jobs at an incredible rate, winning business both at home and abroad, and creating sustainable revenues that will help the nation bounce back from the crisis. It is with absolute pride that I announce our half-year results.

People power

We have grown our team to more than 200 people over the last six months. These brilliant new colleagues are part of our sustained investment in BigChange’s growth as we continue to build out our capabilities and win new business from customers large and small. In the second half of this year, we will welcome even more new faces. We are also currently building out our C-suite, bringing in top talent from across the industry to help support our growth ambitions.

Going for growth

During the last six months, BigChange signed more than £12.5m-worth of new contracts. I would like to take this opportunity to welcome all 170 of our new customers – thanks for choosing BigChange. We now have 1,600 customers in total, with 40,000 users now relying on our technology. What an incredible result from the team! And we’re not done yet. We believe we will surpass 400 new customers by the year-end. Based on our performance so far this year, this means we are on track to increase revenues by as much as 50pc across 2021.

Loyalty and customer success

It’s wonderful to welcome so many new customers into the fold but, at BigChange, we never let new business distract us from the important job of cherishing and supporting our existing customer base. This is why I am so pleased that our repeat orders are exceptionally high, with more than 400 customers increasing their licence base in the past six months. I am also delighted that we have improved our Net Promoter Score. At 84.8, this NPS shows that BigChange offers world-class service to customers. If you would like to find out more about how BigChange keeps customers happy and helps them to thrive, please read our new customer testimonials – https://www.bigchange.com/why-bigchange/case-studies/.

Our commitment to innovation

Regular readers of this blog will know that earlier this year I pledged to focus on innovation and the creation of a pipeline of new product features to empower and supercharge the global mobile workforce. We are making good on that promise, releasing several new features in the coming months. Customers will be able to unleash the power of their data through our data-as-a-service offering, we will also offer customers large and small access to best-in-class business insights and analytics through our eagerly awaited PowerBI reporting built in the BigChange platform. And we have upped the automation factor in BigChange Pay to take on even more of the grunt work when taking payments. As always, all our R&D is focused on helping our customers to grow and become more efficient. If there’s something you want us to add to the platform, tell us! We have created an ideas portal to allow anyone to suggest updates or new features. Check it out here: https://www.bigchange.com/good-idea-for-improving-bigchange-tech-make-it-a-reality-with-the-ideas-portal/

Have you graduated from the BigChange University?

I am over the moon that so many of our customers have attended the BigChange University over the past six months. In total, our sessions saw more than 2,500 attendees. We created the University as a place where students can learn how to get the most out of the platform and find out about new and exciting functionality. We continue to improve and update our modules to offer real, tangible value, so if you haven’t had a look yet, then book your session today: https://www.bigchange.com/bigchange-university/

Doing our bit for charity

As a business, BigChange is committed to giving back, both to our local community and to charitable organisations that are making a big difference to people’s lives across the world. Last year, we decided to link our Motivational Monday series – our monthly events that welcome inspirational speakers – with charitable giving. This has been hugely successful and over the last six months, we have welcomed the likes of: Janet Street-Porter, the journalist and media personality; Kevin Sinfield OBE – or Sir Kev – the rugby player and campaigner; Tracey Neville MBE, the netball star who played for and coached the England team; and Benjamin Mee, who bought and reopened Dartmoor Zoo. Among the charities that the series has supported are: Living Potential Farm, which offers work experience to those with learning difficulties and disabilities; men’s mental health charity Andy’s Man Club; PhysCap, which works to improve the quality of life of children suffering from severe physical disabilities; Homeless Street Angels, which helps those sleeping on the street of Leeds; the community action charity CATCH, and veterans’ charity Help for Heroes.

It’s a privilege to be at the helm of a business that is creating so much positive momentum for the economy – and for our customers and community. Huge congratulations to the team for a job well done. 

Electrical contractor MEDLEC has seen a 40 percent improvement in worker productivity since introducing a mobile workforce management system from BigChange.

The 5 in 1 system has allowed MEDLEC to completely eliminate paper by equipping field engineers with mobile devices linked to vehicle trackers giving the company real-time 24/7 visibility of the status of all jobs.

MEDLEC is a fast-growing multi-discipline electrical contractor covering the South of England. Although MEDLEC works in all sectors, they specialise in retail, hospitality and leisure, operating across a variety of facilities and sites. Working closely with prominent companies such as Mitchells and Butlers – whose headline brands include All Bar One, Miller and Carter, Harvester, O’Neil’s and Toby Carvery – MEDLEC also work for Everyman Media and famous Michelin Star restaurants.

“BigChange really has transformed the way we work, having replaced all the paperwork our engineers and admin staff had to process, therefore making our working day more productive”

Christian Tonna, Managing Director of MEDLEC.

“The system has put an end to laborious paperwork and data entry, and as jobs come in they are instantly available to our engineers. It means we can be more reactive and efficient with our time, therefore around 40 percent more productive, allowing us to take on more work with the same resources.”

BigChange is an all-in-one platform CRM, job scheduling, mobile app and vehicle tracking and management reporting solution, and it manages all of MEDLEC’s stringent compliance requirements. As part of a seamless end-to-end business solution, MEDLEC has taken advantage of full integration with their Xero accounting software with a new API interface that gives improved management insight into financial performance.  MEDLEC first implemented BigChange in 2018.

MEDLEC offers a rapid response service, so being informed and in control is crucial to delivering good customer service.  BigChange means that the company is better equipped to deliver that service and now achieves a 92 percent first-time fix rate across 120 jobs a day.  It also ensures there is complete transparency across operations. Clients are kept informed instantly, receiving ETA updates and completed job sheets that include time-stamped and geo-located photographs captured on the engineers’ tablet.

Tonna commented:

“BigChange gives us complete visibility, and we can access everything we need anywhere, at any time. It’s really the ultimate management tool and enables us to deliver an exceptional level of service at the same time as making us a lot more efficient. This is an advantage for both the client and us and we couldn’t be happier.”

MEDLEC also discovered an added bonus from being a BigChange customer, and that was the BigChange Network that connects other BigChange users across the country. Through the network MEDLEC recently connected with SES Homecare, a major provider of plumbing and heating services also headquartered in Surrey.    

Tonna explains:

“Thanks to the BigChange Network, we are now the recommended SES Homecare contractor for electrical services, which has been fantastic to offer our services and the best thing is our engineers use exactly the same BigChange platform, so for SES, it is completely seamless with reports being received in exactly the same way as reports from their own engineers.”

MEDLEC Van

When I woke up this morning, the world looked different. Brighter. Full of promise. Why? Because the night before, England had pulled off a triumphant defeat of Germany in the Euros.

It’s amazing how a win like that can change the way you feel about life. When that first goal went in, I forgot all my worries. When England scored the second goal, it felt like even the stresses of the pandemic were melting away. 

This is why politicians love a football championship. They distract the nation from what’s going on in Westminster. Matt Hancock and Boris have been booted off the front pages by England’s victory. 

In the first century CE, the poet Juvenal wrote that Roman emperors would use “bread and circuses” to keep the people distracted. Our modern-day emperors use the footie. But I digress… 

England’s win got me thinking about the impact of success. When you’re winning, you feel on top of the world. All you need is one thing to go right, and suddenly your whole outlook is different. But successes can also be distracting – they can take one’s eye off the next win, the next big goal. 

I have run a few businesses in my life and I have seen it time and time again. In one of my past companies, I noticed this phenomenon at play in the sales team. A person would have a bad run, then get one sale in and feel like they were on easy street again. It was great to see them find success but also worrying that that success meant they stopped trying. 

I’m conscious that as a founder, CEO and chief visionary, I must always be on the hunt for the next big achievement. The next milestone. Life doesn’t stop because you get a win. Of course, it’s important to stop and reflect on what we have done but, after a brief pause, it’s on to the next thing. 

When Great Hill Partners invested in BigChange earlier this year, that was a big win for me. That was my own personal Euros moment. All my life I’ve wanted to grow a business to a valuation of £100m, and I’d done it. It felt pretty good. But the next day, I had to think about the next goal – the journey to a £1bn valuation. 

I hope that England’s players are similarly focused on the next big win. We play Ukraine next, and it’s still a long old road to the final. I gave myself the whole of Wednesday to appreciate the England win but now my mind is on the next match. 

Are you hungry for your next success? Tell me what you want to achieve in the comments below and I’ll help keep you accountable.

After-care specialist A&S Contractors has turned to the latest technology to improve the management of its nationwide workforce operation. 

The roll out of a 5 in 1 BigChange mobile resource management system, which sees 65 technicians equipped with rugged tablets, is boosting customer service and efficiencies on site with productivity gains of 20 percent.         

Established just 7 years A&S Contractors has become a leading player in the fast-growing market for new build after-care.  The company works with the major house builders, such as Taylor Wimpey, Countryside, Bellway, Vistry and McCarthy & Stone.  A&S employ multi-skilled and specialist trade teams to work alongside the customer service and construction departments, carrying out NHBC remedial claims, assisting with high volume build programmes, remedial repairs and providing a technical report facility.

Providing a single cloud-platform for CRM, job scheduling, mobile app, vehicle tracking and customer portal, BigChange provides A&S with real-time 24/7 visibility of operations, improved control, customer service and productivity. BigChange, which replaces a previous workforce management system, also links seamlessly with Sage accounts.

Sean Coldrick, Managing Director at A&S Contractors stated:

“Delivering an exceptional service and best value is our mission and we need a system that would support that.”

“More than anything we chose BigChange because the system was clearly backed up by real people; a team of professionals that have since proven to be invaluable in the roll-out of the system.”

A&S employs 65 mobile technicians able to deal with mechanical, electrical, gas, assisting their technicians covering all other building trades. The company sets itself apart in the market by being able to provide a turnkey operation.

With a head office near Chester, the company has expanded from the North West to the North East and to the Midlands, recently opening a new office and national training centre in Market Drayton.  BigChange is having most impact on the mobile workforce and fleet operations, improving job scheduling, resource allocation, health and safety and productivity, as well as reducing mileage.

Using the BigChange mobile app, engineers manage all work on-site aided by on-screen workflows to ensure all the correct procedures are followed and information recorded.  It is completely paperless and job cards are completed with accompanying on-site photographs, generating contra-charge reports at the click of a button. BigChange also has fully integrated vehicle tracking, providing time and location data, routing, customer ETA alerts and driver performance reporting.

A&S is very enthusiastic about the BigChange customer portal facility, that will allow its customers to book jobs and access all information on their jobs.  The system is also being used to overhaul stock management, with real-time stock control and replenishment enabling increased stock on vans and the ordering of parts and materials by engineers via their tablets, again increasing on-site productivity.  

Coldrick continued:

“BigChange has allowed us to really streamline our mobile operations.  Technicians are now much more self-sufficient; journeys to the depot are rare, first fix rates are improved and there are fewer wasted hours.  We are already seeing workforce productivity up by around 20 percent.”

“We know we are at the forefront of the new build after-care industry and we see BigChange as an important partner.  Like us they have a forward vision and ambition to grow; that fits very much with our own ambitions.”

Working alongside their customer base, A&S has developed technical innovations such as special glue bond procedures to resolve microcracking, and the bespoke on-site fabrication of retrofit cavity trays.  The innovations not only improve remedial work but also provide long-term solutions to provide best value for clients and their customers. The implementation of the new mobile technology has been the obvious next step.

A&S Newbuild Aftercare employee driving a branded van

This is it. Employers across the UK are gearing up to welcome some – if not all – of their employees back to the office. Freedom Day, albeit delayed, is now fast approaching.

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Facilities maintenance service company Clearground is using workforce management technology from BigChange to improve health and safety across its nationwide operation. Specialising in waste management, commercial window cleaning and drainage services, Clearground is using the cloud-based, 5-in-1 solution to ensure the safety of operatives with automated, dynamic risk assessments.

BigChange is also helping Clearground identify potential issues at customer sites with intelligent incident analysis, comparing callout rates between similar sites and reviewing historical and current activity.  

“Safety and compliance are key to the welfare of our staff and customers and also to the success of our company, in fact, it’s one of the reasons we selected BigChange. The ability to create customised, dynamic risk assessments and make their completion on-site mandatory goes beyond other systems we looked at. It is more than just a box ticking exercise; it means our operatives really must consider the environment in which they are working and understand what risks that may pose.”

Claire Piercy, General Manager at Wirral-based Clearground.

She continued:

“BigChange also helps us look after our staff and customers in other ways, the driver behaviour alerts allow us to identify driving styles that may lead to problems which, when combined with the scoring system, allows us to performance manage drivers to ensure safe working practices. From a customer care perspective, we can monitor the number and type of incidents in relation to agreed KPIs and work with clients to prevent future occurrences.”

From its inception in 2003, Clearground has expanded its operation and now works with organisations such as global student accommodation provider Campus Living Villages, residential rent developers Watkins Jones Plc and premium bar operators Revolution Bars Group. Working across the UK, Clearground provides facilities maintenance services including high-level access window cleaning, industry compliant kitchen extractor fan cleaning as well as industrial and high-pressure cleaning.   

Clearground selected BigChange to replace disconnected systems used for timesheet logging, purchase order tracking and basic workforce management. A single-platform CRM, Job Scheduling, Mobile App, Vehicle Tracking and Online Portal, BigChange has already eliminated repetition of data entry between systems, reducing back-office resource and minimising the potential for errors, and has eliminated virtually all paperwork used in the management of the mobile workforce.

Clearground is also using the BigChange platform to schedule routine maintenance jobs and ad-hoc callouts, manage staff holidays, absences and sickness and provide automatic alerts for out-of-hours vehicle use or toll-road driving. Available from any internet-connected device, BigChange gives total visibility of the sales process, from initial enquiry, through quotation to invoicing, something Clearground plans to build on with pipeline analysis and automated marketing campaigns.

Piercy concluded:

“One of the major differences between BigChange and other suppliers is they listen and then they respond, and, like us, BigChange is a progressive company, so I am confident that as we continue to grow, they will grow with us.”

Clearground cleaning windows

As every tech founder knows, it is almost impossible to create a new piece of software that is capable of supporting hundreds of thousands of users from day one. It’s just not commercially viable. Instead, we have to iterate as we grow, building in more functionality and developing our capabilities.

Back in 2013, when I launched my mobile workforce management platform, BigChange, I could only dream that today we would have 1,600 fantastic customers across the globe and that our technology would be used by 60,000 people. I had ambitions to build a £100m company back then, for sure, but I didn’t know whether I’d reach that milestone – let alone aim even higher.

Right now, we are on a journey that will see BigChange become a leader in every market we operate in across the world. We are currently live across several countries in Europe, and we are expanding New Zealand in Australia and the US. Over the next few years, I hope to reach a valuation of a billion pounds.

This is why right now, at BigChange, we are in the process of a major digital transformation. We want to future-proof our technology platform for this next phase of growth. This is a really exciting time, as we are laying the foundations for the next 10 years and beyond. This is going to involve some really big changes and improvements but we are doubling the size of our development team to help expedite all this work. We have called this endeavour Project Transform.

We are following in the footsteps of tech behemoths like Amazon, Microsoft and Google, who have always maintained a laser focus on innovation and made bold moves to ensure their technology is the best it can be. Over the years, I’ve seen these companies iterate, fail fast, and move on. Some have stumbled but they have always pulled through and emerged more resilient.

As a leader, I embrace change because it means we are constantly striving for more and better. Change can be challenging but those challenges are always constructive, helping to make us leaner and smarter in all we do. I look forward to showing my customers the fruits of our labours in due course, as we put all our plans into motion.

Sometimes, a bold decision today can alter the course of a company’s future. I feel like this is one of those moments for BigChange. Here’s to the next chapter.

BigChange lets you automatically send worksheets to customers and save emails in your Notes at the push of a button. Read on to find out how.

The BigChange platform is designed to meet the needs of your business. An important part of that is automating repetitive, manual tasks, so you are free to focus on what matters most. 

Automate Customer Feedback and Confirmation

For example, if you’re looking to get feedback or confirmation from customers, you don’t need to spend copious amounts of time chasing them up over the phone or email. 

By using the ‘Third Party Worksheet’ feature, you can set an email to be automatically triggered by a Note or Job activity. 

This can be useful in a few ways:

  • When you create a job activity, automatically send a worksheet to the customer for confirmation of job details, and include a list of additional services they may need. 
  • When you complete a job activity, automatically send over a survey about how you performed. 

If it’s important to receive confirmation before you start a job, you can prevent work being scheduled until this document has been completed. 

Automatically Link Emails to Contacts Notes

Our next tip is to use the BigChange Outlook add-in to automatically link emails to your Contacts Notes.

The add-in icon is displayed on the ribbon at the top of Outlook, and allows you to seamlessly attach selected emails to your Contacts Notes. You can do this from your desktop Outlook app and Outlook Online. 

If your contacts email you, you can add the email easily to an open Note, or create a new one. 

If previous emails from the same contact have been saved, the add-in will automatically display the relevant Note. It can also recognise the email address and suggest Notes that might be relevant. 

This helps you share information across your organisation quickly, and to store the information where you need it, in one place.

This video has more information on installing the add-in for individual machines and via Office 365 administration. 

We hope these two tips help you save time in BigChange. We’ll be back again soon with more advice.

Best Companies has officially recognised BigChange as an ‘Outstanding Company to Work For’, granting the business a coveted two-star accreditation. 

BigChange has been ranked in the UK’s Top 50 Technology Companies to Work For (39th) and The 75 Best Companies to Work For in Yorkshire and The Humber (51st).

It joins the likes of Intuit QuickBooks on the Technology list, which celebrates companies with outstanding employee engagement. 

“Here at BigChange, we’ve made it our mission to build an inclusive company full of talented, engaged people. That is fundamentally the right thing to do and it also makes us more successful. I’m incredibly proud that our employee engagement has been recognised as Outstanding. It shows how far we’ve come towards achieving our mission. And it shows what a strong position we’re in for a future of exciting growth driven by excellent people.”

Martin Port, Founder and CEO

BigChange was recognised for its Motivational Monday speakers, the way staff are encouraged to speak up through the BigVoice committee, and the achievement of a Queen’s Award for Enterprise. 

Best Companies works with some of the world’s best-known organisations to measure, improve and recognise staff engagement in the workplace.

“One moment I was talking to my friend. The next second I was on the ground in more pain than I’ve ever felt. I’d been blown up. I woke up every morning knowing there was a one in eight chance. That day, I was the one.”

JJ Chalmers has lived an extraordinary life, but much of the story he told for June’s Motivational Monday revolved around a single, terrible moment. One Tuesday afternoon, during routine patrol in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan, he was caught in the blast of an IED. 

It was a pivotal moment. In a second, his active career in the forces was cut short; he was now on a different track – one that would lead to Invictus Games gold, a new career in broadcasting and even a stint on Strictly Come Dancing

However, it wasn’t a smooth or simple transition. JJ’s story is one of constant determination in the face of great odds, but it isn’t a lonely one. 

Far from the caricature of a grizzled military vet, JJ was beaming as he told of the strong support network that helped him face down every challenge: during his service, during his recovery and during his transition into the world of broadcasting. 

This theme – making connections with others to bring out the best in yourself – begins with JJ joining the Royal Marines. 

“I was raised in a house where service was held in high regard. I always wanted to be part of something bigger than myself. I wanted to be one of the good guys.

JJ entered basic training:

“They issue you with a lot: boots, hat, a rifle, but more than any of that, they make you realise that you have the attributes of a Royal Marine inside of you. It’s just about bringing that out. They make you cold, wet and miserable. They take you to where you think your limit is and push you further. You quickly learn that hard work and determination can get you much further than you think is possible. It was like a sea change in my head. I realised any challenge which lay ahead of me could be solved with will, cunning and the application of my skills.”

After graduating from training, JJ was sent to serve in Afghanistan. His unit was stationed in ‘the green zone’, a lush, fertile area in the south-east of the country that extends out from the Helmand river. 

It was an area riddled with IEDs:

“They’re designed to kill, and they’re completely indiscriminate. It could be a British soldier, but it’s much more likely to be a civilian.”

JJ’s squad was sent to investigate a suspected bomb-making site, to shut down IED production in the area.

JJ said:

“It would be the most catastrophic place I ever visited”

After the bomb went off JJ recalled that:

“It was absolute pandemonium. We’d been taught to give ourselves first aid, but my right arm was almost gone and the fingers that remained on my left hand were barely hanging on. There was nothing I could do for myself.” 

JJ received first aid from a fellow soldier. He recalls how he was told:

JJ that’s all I can do. I have to deal with the other lads now. Keep shouting, let us know you’re with us.”

He continues:

“I knew the helicopter would take 25 minutes and I knew there was a 98% chance of survival if I got on it. So I had to grin and bear it. I’d never known pain like it but I knew I needed to get on and getting on was all I could do.”

Despite not knowing the full extent of his injuries, JJ was relieved to be going home. He was put into an induced coma and transferred to the trauma unit of Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. 

“You put broken men and women in at one end, and hopefully get superheroes out the other. I needed to start again like a child. I was physically broken, and in a tough place mentally. Those demons start speaking to you at that point. When they did, I realised I had two choices. Giving up and feeling sorry for myself, laying in the hospital bed and accepting I had a miserable existence. Or I could do what I was told and listen to the doctors, nurses and physios who were putting me back together.”

JJ returned to that moment in Afghanistan

“When I was lying there, I heard ‘I’ve done all I can for you, I need to go for the others’.”

But there weren’t any others in the beds around me. 

“Two of our friends and our Afghan interpreter had died in the blast. They were snuffed out in an instant. That’s when I knew I didn’t have a choice. They weren’t given one, why should I be? The only option was to move forward and get better.”

As he went through recovery, JJ regained his independence. He started cycling with the use of a recumbent bicycle, saying.

“I re-learnt the benefits of exercise. I felt a reason to push myself again. But there was a huge part missing, the part the Marines gave me, sharing that experience with a team”.

In 2014, JJ took part in the first Invictus Games. He captained the men’s trike team, in a race that would prove pivotal in his recovery. He says:

“I was there for gold, or so I thought. It was an individual race but we could work together to position better. After 40 minutes all three of us were well placed for the sprint finish, but when it came time to leave the others I couldn’t do it. We’d worked as a team in that race and at every point during our recovery. Why did I deserve gold any more than them? We could only come through and finish together. We crossed the finish line hand-in-hand. I knew then that I wasn’t alone. That I could achieve anything with the help of others.”

That image of JJ and his teammates, crossing together, defined the first Invictus Games. All three were awarded gold and JJ was later interviewed by Jonathan Edwards. 

“I knew on the Monday after, I didn’t want to be an athlete,”

he says:

“When I spoke to Jonathan, I said ‘The next time we talk, I want to be sat in your chair. How do I do that?’”

That marked the start of a broadcasting career that’s gone from strength to strength. JJ was a presenter at the Rio Paralympics, got involved in the D-Day Memorial coverage and had just wrapped up broadcasting from the Leeds triathlon the day before his talk. 

JJ finished with some advice for listeners about staying positive post-pandemic:

“My recovery will never be complete. But my support network looks after me. When you’re at the end of a pointy spear, it’s the people behind you that power you. Whether you’re going onto the battlefield, onto the bike, or on air.”

He continued:

“I encourage people to take little victories and learn from little slip-ups. In the last year I was able to look at the circumstances imposed on us and wonder ‘How do I make the best of these?’”

He finished by saying:

“Keep on going. Keep on smiling. We’ll all get there together.”

JJ was joined by Trevor Fudger from Help for Heroes, the charity providing lifelong recovery support to service personnel who have been wounded or injured in the line of duty. He mentioned how the work they do can send an ex service person down a new path where they still get meaning and purpose outside of service. Thanks to our donors, the BigChange network raised £630 for their cause.

Next month, we’ll hear from John Stiles, the former professional footballer, son of 1966 World Cup-winner Nobby Stiles and campaigner raising awareness of dementia in football. Our charity partner will be Head for Change, for whom John is an ambassador. We hope to see you again then.

Fleet Dynamic, a commercial vehicle rental and leasing company, is using the latest mobile workforce management technology from BigChange to transform their fleet management.

Providing complete automation across the entire hire and leasing lifecycle, the cloud-based, 5-in-1 solution from BigChange has helped Fleet Dynamic switch to paperless working. BigChange has also contributed to a 30 percent improvement in workshop efficiency as well as a reduction in lost charges and operating costs. 

“Before BigChange, all parts of the process, from hire request through to delivery ticket, were paper-based. We couldn’t attach additional information such as photographs, essential information including vehicle or customer details were often not captured and retrieving data to resolve queries was difficult, now, with BigChange, every time a customer account is touched, a digital record of the interaction is made, and every time a vehicle is sent out its every movement is recorded. This has helped us become paperless, which was timely in view of the pandemic as we wanted to eliminate the handling of paperwork to minimise the risk posed by the virus.”

Terry Stockwell, Sales and Marketing Director, Fleet Dynamic

With headquarters in Wigan, Fleet Dynamic was established in 2009 with the aim of providing customers with a one-stop solution for all their vehicle requirements. A comprehensive vehicle rental and leasing service includes cars, vans and a full range of specialist vehicles, for example 4 x4 double cab pickups and seven-seater welfare vehicles. The company also provides a range of interior and exterior corporate signage and Health & Safety signs as well as a ply lining business for bespoke vehicle interiors. Fleet Dynamic is a multi-award winning company and includes Manchester City Council amongst its client base. 

Using the single-platform CRM, Job Scheduling, Mobile App, Vehicle Tracking and Online Portal from BigChange has enabled Fleet Dynamic to remove paper forms and reports from its hire and lease operation. Hire requests, delivery tickets, on-hire and off-hire details are all digitally recorded by drivers using mobile devices or office-based staff using PCs. This information is then available, 24/7, from any internet-enabled device giving management total visibility of the mobile operation. Fleet Dynamic also uses the BigChange asset tracking system to provide additional intelligence and security for its corporate account customers.

Stockwell continued:

“The capture and sharing of intelligence means we can effectively manage the fleet, monitoring downtime and forward planning for servicing and MOT events. This has contributed to more efficient use of workshop time with savings of around 30 percent. Additional savings have been achieved as a result of a reduction in missed recharges and the fact we no longer have to pay for specialist software, such as an HR platform, as BigChange does it all.”

Fleet Dynamic Fleet

Richard Warley, BigChange’s new Chairman, has revealed that, of the many positions he’s held in his career, “the one that I am the most excited about, based on all of the companies I’ve seen, all of the experiences that I’ve had, is BigChange.”

(more…)

Mike Profit, a technology leader with extensive field service management experience, joins BigChange as a non-executive director to help guide its product and expansion strategies. BigChange, the revolutionary mobile workforce management platform, today announced the appointment of Mike Profit as a non-executive director. Mike will provide strategic guidance to BigChange’s product and operational activities, and advise the company as it expands into new markets.

Based in Princeton, New Jersey, Mike brings more than 25 years of product and technology leadership experience gained at US-headquartered startups and blue-chip companies to BigChange’s board. He was part of the leadership team that built WorkWave, a market-leading field service management software provider, prior to its acquisition by IFS in 2017.

Mike’s appointment follows those of Richard Warley as Chairman and Nick Gregory as Chief Marketing Officer at BigChange, and a £100 million investment in the company by Great Hill Partners to drive innovation and expansion into new sectors and territories.

“BigChange has established itself as a market leader for SME customers in several key sectors and is perfectly poised to expand in the UK and internationally. I am honoured to join BigChange’s board and be part of its innovation and growth strategies.”

Mike Profit, Non-Executive Director, BigChange

“It’s fantastic to appoint someone of Mike’s stature to BigChange’s management team. His experience building field service management and Software-as-a-Service businesses is hugely valuable for informing our technology strategy and  achieving our global ambitions.”

Martin Port, BigChange Founder & CEO

1,500 organisations across a wide range of sectors use BigChange’s field service management platform for job scheduling, customer invoicing and payments automation, mobile workforce management and customer engagement. Customers include Sunbelt Rentals, Silentnight, Recycling Lives, HSS and EDF.

BigChange, the revolutionary mobile workforce management platform, is celebrating the delivery of an HGV driver training simulator at the Industrial Training Centre (ITC) in Lusaka that will help meet growing demand for professional driver training in Zambia.

BigChange is one of four organisations from the transport and logistics sector to have supported Transaid’s efforts to provide a professional simulator in Zambia, enabling new HGV drivers to spend additional hours behind the wheel in the safety of the classroom. It has worked alongside Clipper Logistics, Malcolm Group and XPO to help supply the simulator, supporting the initiative with donations of cash and expertise.

“BigChange is passionate about safety and sustainability. We are delighted to support Transaid and partners from across the transport and logistics sector in this incredibly worthwhile and potentially life saving endeavour. ”

Martin Port, BigChange Founder & CEO

“We are hugely grateful to BigChange, Clipper Logistics, Malcolm Group and XPO for securing the simulator and working with the talented team at ITC to ensure it was installed in Lusaka. It’s an amazing resource; and we’re confident it will help drive standards of training at ITC even higher, alongside the existing classroom, workshop and practical on-road teaching.”

Caroline Barber, CEO, Transaid

Please visit Transaid’s website for more details about the partnership to provide the HGV driver training simulator for the ITC in Lusaka, Zambia.

Veriflo, a clean water and leakage management business, has experienced significant business expansion underpinned by mobile workforce management technology from BigChange. Operating across London and the South-East and West, Veriflo provides planned works, emergency response and risk management services for organisations such as Thames Water and Morrison Utility Services. As the business has expanded so has its use of the 5-in-1 cloud-based BigChange solution, with reactive planning and scheduling tools, real-time vehicle tracking and alerts for routine jobs and health and safety checks.

“We used to manage and communicate with our workforce using emails, messages and telephone calls. However, as our operation has expanded so have our requirements and BigChange has been a vital part of our business growth.”  

Kirsty Scott, Director of Kent-based Veriflo

Operating a team of project and admin support, together with planned and emergency response field teams and project managers, Veriflo operates a 24-hour operation providing specialist clean water asset services including mains isolations, reservoir outages and asset investigations. Veriflo also supports civil engineering and water companies with disinfection services, hydraulic reports, and network risk assessments.

Veriflo uses BigChange across its mobile operation. An end-to-end, cloud-based solution, BigChange replaces paperwork and synchronises in real-time with centralised management software. Providing a single platform CRM, Job Scheduling, Mobile App, Tracking and Customer Portal, the BigChange solution is helping Veriflo plan routine jobs and emergency call outs, in real-time, and with complete visibility for both office and field-based staff. 

“The role of BigChange within our business has been vital, without it we would not be able to plan as effectively, and the ongoing expansion of the business would have been a logistical nightmare. BigChange just fits with our people and the way we work, and it continues to adapt to our growing and changing requirements.”  

BigChange also supports other aspects of Veriflo’s mobile operation with real-time GPS tracking for monitoring engineer’s driving hours and current locations, alerts for routine equipment testing and calibration and reminders for weekly vehicle checks. Veriflo has even used the BigChange mobile app to create a Health Check-in for all staff to ensure they are fit to work, complete with a checklist to make sure they have all the tools and equipment they need. This functionality has proved especially useful during the Coronavirus pandemic with technicians able to report symptoms and request additional safety equipment as needed.

Scott concluded:

“BigChange support is first-class. The RoadCrew team are quick to respond and there is always the sense that nothing is too much trouble.”

Veriflo Offices

Whenever I see a company offering different levels of customer service based on the size of spend, I feel incredibly frustrated.

How are businesses getting away with it? If you are a customer, you are a customer, end of. You have paid your money and the service should come wrapped around that purchase, regardless how much you spend each year or how many licences you hold. Platinum, silver or straw packages? No thank you. 

At BigChange – and in all of my previous companies – I have always treated every single one of my customers with the same attention and devotion. Here’s why: 

Small becomes big

If there’s one thing I’ve learned over half a century in business, it’s that if you support companies while they are small, they will remember you when they get big. If you treat a customer with 10 employees as though they don’t matter, as soon as they can take their business elsewhere, they will. Instead, we have seen many smaller companies – some micro businesses – flourish in partnership with BigChange, doubling or even tripling in size. Their success is our success and we can’t do enough to help them. 

It makes you smarter

Yes, you may have to invest more time and money into your customer service function but you will also be more innovative and effective. At BigChange, we have created a whole online knowledge bank full of useful guides and videos for our customers of all sizes, so that they know just where they can get an easy solution. We also realised that many of our customers often don’t have time to play with our technology and really experience the full functionality. So, we created the BigChange University, where we take them through a different feature each session. Customers don’t have to try and figure anything out in the evenings or weekends. Instead, they have a whole hour blocked out in their diary dedicated to getting to grips with the platform. It’s been incredibly successful, with thousands of attendees. And while it took forethought and planning to get the university up and running, it’s also an invaluable way to get insight from our customers and inform future product development.  

Innovation in all its forms

And on that point about innovation, smaller companies often really push boundaries when it comes to finding new and better ways of working. Keeping our ties with the ‘S’ end of SME means we are constantly seeing new trends, new industry needs, and new solutions. Working in partnership with smaller companies means we can get in at the ground floor, creating the features and products they need to tackle these challenges as they grow. We also learn so much from our enterprise clients, especially how to roll out efficiencies at scale. Working with businesses at both ends of the spectrum means that we can cherrypick best-practice across the whole ecosystem and apply it to our technology.  

It’s the right thing to do

We live in an age where it is no longer acceptable to behave unethically in business. It has been huge gratifying to see this shift, and to know that our values and commitment to customer service make us one of the good guys. Over the course of my career, I have kept in touch with many happy customers from both big companies and small – only to have them join my businesses or become customers again in new roles or ventures. In business, as in life, you get out what you put in. By treating people fairly, with respect, and always giving your all to help them when they need you, you create a social currency that is absolutely priceless.

BigChange ambassador Kevin Keegan OBE has many great memories of Elland Road from his career playing for and managing top-flight football teams.

In May 2021, he returned to the home of Leeds United FC for an online event sharing the leadership lessons he learnt from the beautiful game with BigChange customers.

Stuart Dodsley, Head of Commercial at Leeds United, gave Kevin and BigChange CEO Martin Port a tour of the iconic stadium. (During the tour) Kevin told tales from the tunnel, reflected on stand-out games and discussed his time playing for, and against, the formidable Don Revie.

Read the video transcript below

Kevin Keegan OBE (KK): When I come here it makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up because of so many great memories. 

When you looked at the Leeds side, it was just full of international class players. I always used to think, you know, this is going to be the toughest game of the season. Whether it was Reaney, Cooper, Yorath, they were all such good players. 

[In the tunnel] I was always looking to see where Norman was, and whether he’d got big studs on, ready to sort me out. 

Stuart Dodsley (SD): Did you come out together or separately? 

KK: We came out separately in those days, so we didn’t have that confrontation luckily. 

Martin Port (MP): [Pointing to pitch-side advertising boards] Our advert appears, I think at three minutes thirty. Does it put the players off you think? 

KK: I don’t think that one does, but there is one where the dog runs around – you think ‘there’s a dog run on the pitch’. 

SD: So you’ve got your Leeds United Roll of Honour here. Perhaps the disappointing thing is it’s down to you some of this! 

KK: This was my first year, 70-71, and this is when I got sent off with Billy Bremner. So just take that out of there [pointing to ‘1974 FA Charity Shield’], we’ll just cover that up. 

[Pitch-side] That’s the biggest difference. We’d never play on a pitch like this even at the start of the season. 

SD: Elland Road here, fans are close to the pitch, they create their own unique atmosphere. There’s a reason England chose here to come, to play before the last World Cup. 

KK: Most grounds you come out the middle, there’s a couple you come out the corners, but Leeds is off-centre isn’t it. 

[In the dressing room] The whole squad would’ve fitted in here. The whole training squad when Don Revie was manager. [To Stuart] Is this the home one then? I bet the away one isn’t as good?

SD: No it’s a bit tighter (Both laugh). 

KK: My dad used to come and watch me when I played at Leeds because he only lived up the road at Doncaster. 

The thing that really gets me is if I start to look at the names on the stands. Don Revie, who was my manager with England, he was the biggest enemy in the world when we played Leeds. But when I got to know him, one of the really great people I met in my life. 

You know, the scouts from Leeds came to watch me play and I thought ‘Wow, that would be some move for me, because obviously I’m from Doncaster, I’m a yorkshireman, but it never happened. So I had to play against them, which was fantastic. 

[Pointing to the 60s period on the Honour Roll] Don Revie was here wasn’t he when they were just a fantastic side. That’s the sort of standard they’re trying to live up to now right. 

In the next 10 years it could be Leeds, Liverpool, you know, as dominant forces in the country. 

MP: You made our youth enjoyable. 

KK: What even scoring the goals against Leeds? You seen how many goals I scored against Leeds? (laughs)

MP: No, Bremmner and Keegan in our garden, it was the best. 

KK: Who was Bremmner? MP: Not me. (Both laugh).

BigChange ambassador Kevin Keegan OBE returned to Elland Road, home of Leeds United FC, to share tales from his time playing top flight football and the leadership lessons he learnt playing and managing the beautiful game.

He joined BigChange founder and CEO Martin Port, and Leeds United’s Head of Commercial Stuart Dodsley to discuss how his experience could help business leaders to build back stronger post-Covid. 

Together, they talked through their experiences of motivating people when times were tough, embracing diversity to build stronger teams and how they stayed agile to grow during uncertainty. 

Read the Video Transcript

Kevin Keegan OBE (KK): If there’s one thing that’s come out of it for me, it’s that if you ever think that football can manage without supporters, just look at what we’ve seen over the last year, where we’ve had stadiums empty and the football isn’t as good. The demand on the players is normally from the crowd. But you’ve got to build from within and that’s what I did at Newcastle. I started to look at everybody, demand more from them, because everyone’s got a little bit more in them than they believe. I honestly think that.

Stuart Dodsley (SD): It’s all about the manager and how he brings them together and generating that culture of success.

KK: Sometimes it needs people to just drag it out of them and give them the confidence. 

Don Revie was my manager with England, he was the biggest enemy in the world when played Leeds. But when I got to know him, one of the really great people I met in my life.

Martin Port (MP): Obviously you need a vision, and then bringing together a great group of people.

KK: Sometimes if it’s coming from a voice that’s been there and done it, they take a bit more notice. We often played with a team of 11 players, every one of them from either France, Ghana, it could be Romania, I never had a problem between two players because of where they were from, or what their beliefs were. That guy next to you, you need him. 

When you looked at the Leeds side, I always used to think ‘this is going to be the toughest game of the season’, whether with Reaney, Cooper, Yorath, they were all just such good players. 

SD: Thankfully, now we’ve got stable, fantastic ownership that develops an ethos and a culture of success. And then when you bring in new people into your culture, they can adapt into that culture, and bring their values and cultures in. But then you keep your business ethos, at the core of it.

MP:   

We want people to have that hunger, our sole mission is customer success. We’re absolutely passionate to make sure our customers get the best out of what we’re providing them. And you know, they rely on us.

KK:   

Don Revie was here, wasn’t it, when I mean, they were just a fantastic side and that’s the sort of standards they’re trying to live up to now, isn’t it? 

KK: You’re looking for leaders, that’s the key in football and that’s the key in any business. And they say “look, this is the way it is at this club” and when new guys come in then to a club that’s run properly, they straight away, from day one, know what the rules are. 

They don’t need a piece of paper saying what they are, they’re told by the senior players “we don’t do that here.” You get your players to run it for you, if they’re running it for you, and they care that much about it, then you can trust them to do all the other things on a football field.

KK: It’s this year, it’s a bit like business, you know, it’s not good saying “in five years time, we’ll turn a profit,” you know, you need to find out how you can turn that profit as quickly as possible. Because, you know, you might not get the five years.

MP: When things aren’t going well, and business is a roller coaster, it can be really difficult. You have to be prepared to take those risks, because that’s what an entrepreneur does. What an entrepreneur is, is a risk taker. 

KK: You’ve got to go in and say “right how do I sort this out,” you know, “how can I get the best out of this group of players? And what do we need to make us better?” And that’s what businesses do. You’re taking on guys who can do that job and take this company to another level, because they’ve got the expertise that you don’t have.

MP: If somebody says “it can’t be done”, I’m going to smash that wall down. KK: Well, that’s what’s fantastic about the guys we’ve got on Zoom here from the different companies. Basically, it’s the same as football, they’ve been confronted with this massive problem and instead of saying “wow, you know, what do we do now?” [its] “what can we do and where can we gain from that?” And I think that is what makes us as a nation, not just talking about football here, but as a nation we’ve, yes, we can take the blows but we bounce back from them.

Without a visionary at the helm, a business cannot succeed. It may have the best product in the world and the best team in place but without somebody in the hot seat driving the strategy and setting goals, it will stagnate and ultimately fail.

You’ve probably heard it said 100 times but it bears repeating: if a business isn’t growing, it’s going backwards. 

I was reminded of this yesterday when I watched a video with Simon Sinek, the leadership expert and author https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nN9hIg-_Mhw. He said, “I don’t like the term CEO. Everyone else in the C-suite has their job in their title. CFO. CMO. COO. CTO. We know exactly what you do. It’s in the title. What’s the CEO? What does an Executive Officer do? It’s not a well-defined title. We need to change the title to Chief Vision Officer. Someone who owns the vision.” 

I have always found that describing myself as “Founder and CEO of BigChange” never truly explained my role here. Yes, I started the business but anyone can start a business. You just fill out a form in Companies House and – hey presto! – you have a company. Yes, I’m the CEO – but, as Simon so deftly put it, what does a Chief Executive actually do? 

The thing that sets me apart is that when I launched the business eight years ago, I had a vision for where this business could go. Crucially, I understand our customer: what they want, what they need, and what they expect from a technology partner. When I’m talking to a customer, sometimes I even know what they are going to say before they open their mouth. That’s how embedded in this industry I am. I have total empathy with the people in the market we are trying to serve. 

This customer intimacy helps me to create goals for the business that are ambitious yet actionable. I know that my customers aren’t asking for anything complicated. They just want reliable technology that makes their business more efficient and lets them grow sustainably, year after year. They don’t mind paying for the product, as long as it does what they need it to. That is my great strength. 

I am the visionary driving BigChange forward to meet each new milestone. Yes, I have a brilliant team that comes to work and executes every single day. They do their jobs far better than I ever could – I am humbled by the talent we have in this company. But no one else can do exactly what I do. When I say that I want to make BigChange the market leader in every territory that we operate in, I say it knowing exactly how we’ll get there. I don’t have my head down, trying to get to next month’s target or hit next year’s numbers. I’m thinking five years – even 10 years – into the future. That’s my job and the role of the visionary. 

My relentless focus on the customer means that when I say I want to be the market leader, I don’t just mean the de facto leader because of the number of users and businesses on our books, I mean the leader in terms of the positive impact we make on our customers’ success. Growth for growth’s sake is not the goal. It’s about the transformative effect BigChange can have on the whole ecosystem – the companies run by people who are not so different from me. They want to grow, they want to provide stable livelihoods for their employees, they want to solve a problem well and do it better than anyone else in their industry. I am my own target customer. I know how to humanise our technology so it’s not baffling or overwhelming.  

I know that I am doing my job well because of the customer testimonials that come in each and every day. “Our business wouldn’t survive without BigChange.” “We couldn’t grow without BigChange.” Without my vision for this business, and the values I have put in place to underpin that vision, there’s no way we could be creating this kind of impact.  

I’m not saying all this to blow my own trumpet. I’m saying this because there is a big difference between a visionary and an operative. As Simon says in his video, the two mindsets complement each other. They cannot succeed without each other. What is a visionary leader without a great Chief Financial Officer or a skilled Chief Technology Officer? They would have vision and nothing else. But the operative simply cannot do the job of the visionary. They have their heads down while we leaders have our heads up, and our gaze focused at a point on the far distant horizon.  

So this is why I am changing my job title. From today onwards, I’m no longer Founder and CEO. I’m the Founder, CEO and Chief Vision Officer. 

Jardak Services is using the latest mobile workforce management technology to improve visibility and reporting for its property support services team working with organisations such as Savills, Wickes and Tarmac.

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When Boris announced that the UK would begin its slow emergence from lockdown this summer, I had hoped to bring the whole team together for a big party to thank them for their extraordinary hard work and resilience over the past year and a half.

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Introducing a new space for you to suggest and share ideas about how to improve the BigChange system 

BigChange has always aimed to understand the day-to-day challenges faced by mobile workforces, and to develop the solutions that help. 

It knows that mobile workers using the system in the field every day have a great understanding of where improvements can be made. 

The BigChange Ideas Portal is the latest way of letting users get those suggestions heard. 

Users can find the Portal by clicking on ‘Suggestion’ in the Roadcrew tab of the BigChange system. Once there, you can sort ideas by Trending, Most popular or New – or suggest an idea of your own. 

To make a suggestion, just click ‘Add a new idea’. 

Try to explain your development suggestion as clearly and concisely as possible. Other users will need to easily see the benefit to them for your idea to gain traction. To help, we have shared a template: 

As a [your role], I want to [the problem that you face], so I can [the benefit you hope to achieve].

The Portal includes a voting feature, so you can boost awareness of the ideas you feel would help most. You can also subscribe to an idea you want to stay updated on. 

For example, BigChange chose the most popular idea – “Make different job types show as different colours in the schedule” – to develop, and informed users when it was implemented earlier this month. 

Product Director Jonathan Isaacs said:

“For BigChange, it allows us to make better-informed decisions and pursue developments that matter most to our users, for customers, it lets them know their ideas are being heard and acted on. Users can give input on what they would like to see from BigChange, and crucially, receive notifications that let them know we’re listening.”

“For 21 years, I’ve been living with depression. For 15 of those, I didn’t even know,” said former professional footballer Clarke Carlisle at the start of this month’s Motivational Monday. 

Clarke is a former top-level footballer, straight-A GCSE student, defender for England Under-21s, and chairman of the Professional Footballers Association. He is also a survivor of five suicide attempts – and he has devoted his post-playing years to helping others thrive and avoid the darkness that at times enveloped him.

His story is one of transforming your life by having the courage to ask for help. 

Two pieces of advice for people who think they’re suffering – or think they know someone who is – shone through. 

Clarke Said:

“Do you think about your thinking? Thoughts aren’t facts, they’re intrusive, they come in, and then it’s up to you how you connect with it. And think about if you need to share it. Men aren’t great communicators, but for 15 years my actions were screaming for support, before judging someone’s behaviours, think ‘is there something this person needs help with and can I help?” 

Clarke stressed the importance of talking about mental health and breaking down stigmas – drawing on his personal experience of burying your depression. 

His issues in facing up to his mental health started with a stoic, disciplinarian father and a mother with a stiff upper lip,

“What goes on behind this front door stays behind this front door,”

Clarke recalls them saying. 

As a member of an interracial family in 70s Britain, he was told early and often that,

“You have to be better than everyone else, to be seen as equal to everyone else.” 

He took this advice to heart, leaving school as a straight-A student and landing a spot in the Blackpool first-team at 16. 

A poor debut left him questioning if he was good enough, but scoring a 91st-minute winner in his first home match suggested he was.  

After several successful seasons, multiple man-of-the-match awards, and a call up for the England Under-21’s, a serious injury put him out for the season and left his footballing future at risk. That’s when the depression crept in. 

A lack of awareness about depression meant Clarke tackled the symptoms of his illness instead of the real issue. Even after the first of his five suicide attempts.

“My depression would manifest in crazy outbursts, binging and dangerous behaviour. At first I thought it was the drink, so I went to rehab. Afterwards, I was still staying in bed for 2-3 days, dodging work and family. I thought I was an idiot who couldn’t make responsible decisions.” 

That wasn’t true. Clarke became Chair of the PFA in 2010, became the first footballer to appear on Question Time, and commentated on the 2014 World Cup Finals. 

“Despite that every two or three months I was exploding into these behaviours. Anytime I felt my career was threatened, or my identity was questioned, my brain automatically connected it to that first suicide attempt. These behaviours were the uneducated mind trying to cope by oblivion and avoidance.”

Throughout his successful career, Clarke was often caught up by these dark thoughts. “It became my truth,” he said. “Because I didn’t share it with anyone it went round and round my head.”

Clarke was diagnosed with recurring, complex depressive disorder. This was the first step in understanding his illness and starting to heal. His wife Carrie joined Clarke to talk about how mental health affects the whole family, and about their shared recovery journey. 

“Clarke had been in that pit of despair for 20 years,” Carrie said:

“He’d climb out occasionally but it would suck him back in because he didn’t change his behaviours, change his beliefs, and he didn’t get professional guidance.” 

In 2017, Clarke went into psychiatric care. Carrie remembers how,

“it took him only 23 days, resting, eating, being diagnosed by professionals and treated properly for him to be well enough to come home”.

Understanding his illness, speaking out about his problems and finding help from the right professionals all helped Clarke’s recovery. He urged anyone who felt similar to do the same. 

His message couldn’t come at a more pressing time. He said:

“Not all depression is trauma-based,” he said. “We’re only just learning about how it can be passed through genes, but it can even come about after a period of sustained stress and pressure. How long is that period? Six weeks. And we’ve spent the last 15 months in a pandemic.”

Clarke and Carrie were joined by Leon McQuade from Andy’s Man Club, a mental-health charity dedicated to getting men talking about their problems. He cited the terrible statistic that every two hours a man takes his life in the UK, but said how change is coming as more men speak up honestly about their experiences. 

The charity runs 50 clubs across the UK, creating safe, attentive spaces for men to open up about their struggles. Its awareness campaign epitomises the biggest takeaway from this month’s Motivational Monday – ‘It’s OK to talk’. 

Next month we’ll be joined by the TV presenter and Invictus Games medallist JJ Chalmers. Our charity partner will be Help for Heroes, of which JJ is a patron. we hope you can join us then, you can register here: http://bigchan.ge/MM-JJ-Chalmers.

McNally EV, installers of electric vehicle charging points is using mobile workforce management technology from BigChange to power paperless working and reduce unnecessary mileage.

From lead management through to job completion reporting and invoicing, the cloud-based, 5-in-1 solution, provides a single source for all information needed to run the mobile workforce. Accessible from any internet-enabled device, BigChange is improving efficiency, boosting customer service and reducing the environmental impact of the business.

“We are committed to making the world greener by providing the infrastructure to encourage and make accessible the use of electric vehicles, and BigChange is helping us on our journey, using BigChange, we don’t need to produce unnecessary paper copies of work schedules and job completion reports and our installers and engineers are able to access relevant client records and technical documents, including photographs, through the mobile app. This makes them more efficient and is contributing to a reduction in mileage.” 

Nicky McNally, Managing Director of McNally EV.

McNally EV is a Yorkshire-based, family run business which has been specialising in the installation of both commercial and home electric vehicle chargers for more than 10 years. Working independently and with national partners including the Shell group, McNally EV has installed over 9,000 electric vehicle charging points across the UK and is committed to improving EV infrastructure for all drivers.

“We trialled a number of systems but BigChange is the solution that consistently works well for us, the BigChange CRM functionality allows us to keep track of customers past, present and future, meaning our customer interactions are always informed and up to date. Our engineers can also check and allocate stock remotely, which leads to further gains in efficiency and is improving communication within the business.”

McNally EV uses the single platform CRM, Job Scheduling, Mobile App, Tracking and Customer Portal from BigChange to support all aspects of its business. Engineers working in the field can access work schedules, client records and stock levels whilst back-office staff and management have complete visibility of the mobile operation 24/7 from any location, allowing them to react to changing circumstances and keep customers informed.

“Being cloud-based is also an important factor for us, as an essential business, we needed to operate as normal throughout the recent lockdowns, and BigChange allowed us to maintain business as usual. BigChange is also extremely adaptable to the needs of our business, allowing flexibility in the way things are organised.” 

McNally Van Fleet

The AFI Group, specialists in powered access equipment, is boosting the productivity of its nationwide team of engineers and drivers with workforce management technology from BigChange.

The cloud-based, 5-in-1 solution enables AFI to build custom workflows underpinned by job-specific documentation, contributing to a reduction in engineer call-outs. Improved planning and visibility have already boosted driver productivity by 30 percent and AFI is looking forward to further benefits as it introduces BigChange to other parts of its business.

“Working at height is a professional skill and as such it requires professional equipment, expertise and knowledge and BigChange supports that, with BigChange, we build our own workflows which means we only ask relevant questions and perform applicable tests; for example, if we are inspecting an electric machine why check fuel levels? It sounds obvious, but every question that doesn’t need to be asked or test that doesn’t need to be undertaken is time, and therefore money, saved.”

Chris Jowett, Group IT Director at AFI Group Services

Jowett Continued:

“This also leads to quicker fixes for our customers, we are only six-months into using BigChange for our engineers and we have completely re-written our breakdown workflows. As a result, we have seen a significant increase in the number of faults that can be fixed over the phone, meaning a customer can be back up and running, in a matter of minutes, without waiting for a site visit.”

AFI provide high-quality powered access machine hire and sales, industry-accredited training and health and safety courses to ensure that anyone working at height is doing it safely and professionally. From only three UK depots and 270 machines in 2002, AFI has expanded to 20 locations in the UK and six in the Middle East. AFI now has a fleet of more than 6,000 powered access machines, a team of 200 plus engineers, drivers and operators and provides training for more than 30,000 people each year.

AFI introduced BigChange to replace an existing workforce management system. By providing a single platform, CRM, Job Scheduling, Mobile App, Vehicle Tracking and Online Portal, BigChange has combined a range of functionality that AFI used to access from disparate systems. Planning for operators and engineers is now undertaken for the whole of the UK from central offices and management have complete, real-time visibility of every vehicle. AFI is also transitioning other aspects of transport management to BigChange, including PMI (Preventative Maintenance Inspection) scheduling, MOT and tax reminders and DVSA checks.

BigChange also powers a seamless, paperless flow of intelligence with improved access to and sharing of equipment or site-specific documentation using the mobile app whilst automatically generated alerts keep customers informed when a machine has been delivered, serviced or repaired and is ready for use. 

Jowett concluded:

“The support we receive from BigChange is second to none, we have a dedicated account manager who truly understands our business and has helped us get the maximum return on our investment which is really helpful as new functionality is released every two weeks!”

AFI Group Office shot

Four months ago, Joe Biden was inaugurated, becoming the 46th President of the United States. At the same time, I was preparing to announce an American triumph of my own. 100 days ago, the US investor Great Hill Partners came on board, pledging both capital and expertise to help BigChange supercharge growth and reach new markets around the world.

It is said that the first 100 days of a presidency sets the tone for the entire term in office. So how has BigChange fared since the formation of its new partnership? 

Here are the highlights: 

Still the best company to work for

Few accolades mean as much to me as the Best Companies 2 star award. It recognises outstanding employee engagement, and has become the absolute industry standard. Achieving this accolade again means the world to all of us on the management team here. We know that BigChange would be nowhere without the extraordinary team who go the extra mile every single day, so I am proud and humbled that they love working here.

We’re on a mission

One of our first tasks after the investment by Great Hill Partners (GHP) was to review our purpose and mission. A lot of time and energy went into this process as it lays the foundation for the next phase of our growth. Some of our values and mission have remained constant since the beginning: to make our customers more successful, to raise the bar every day. But we have also put a renewed focus on sustainability. Our platform helps customers to slash their carbon emissions, reducing paperwork dramatically and helping drivers spend much less time on the road. This is now written large in our purpose, alongside new and important values such as building an inclusive and diverse company. 

Gearing up

A few weeks ago, I posted about how OKRs contributed to Google’s runaway success https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/goal-setting-strategy-took-google-1trillion-martin-port . Objectives and Key Results is a tried-and-tested management methodology for measuring and monitoring your company’s progress when you have big and exciting goals in sight. I’m glad to say that our OKR strategy is now up and running. We are now on a growth journey that I believe will take us from a valuation of £100m to £1bn. OKRs will be a vital part of this strategy, keeping us all engaged and focused on the next milestone. 

Wider share ownership

I’m passionate about employee ownership. I believe it is the best way to create and maintain an engaged, passionate team. GHP believed in my vision to make every colleague here a shareholder or have a loyalty bonus. Right now, every member of the team who joined before February is part of these schemes, and is right here with me on this growth journey, knowing they will share in our successes. It’s an exhilarating time for us all. 

A few new faces

The pandemic may have made hiring a little more complicated but our brilliant HR team and managers have successfully brought on 30 brilliant new starters over the past three months. And we‘re still hiring! We have also made some senior appointments that give us a real edge in this marketplace. People like our new chairman Richard Warley and new chief marketing officer Nick Gregory will help us dramatically accelerate our growth over the coming years. 

Investing in the next phase

So, how has GHP’s investment been deployed? The big focus is on Product Development and we have earmarked £5m to spend on innovation across our whole technology stack. The team here are already working on new features – I hope to be able to share more on that soon. We are also now officially on the acquisition trail and are actively looking for complementary companies in the US and in Europe too.   

Giving back

One of the best things about success is that it gives you the ability to help others. Ever since the launch of BigChange, we have consistently supported great charities and causes – this was true of my last business too. So, we haven’t let the excitement of the last 100 days distract us from giving, and we have helped four charities during that time, including the mental health charity Mind and Friends of Alfie Martin, which supports the neonatal units at St James Hospital and Leeds General Infirmary.  

Writing this has given me a chance to reflect on what we have achieved in a short period of time. I really do hope that the past 100 days define our new partnership with GHP; I can’t wait to see what the future has in store. 

How are you feeling? No, really. If you’re being completely honest, where are you on a scale of one to 10?

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Nic Hamilton, le pilote automobile britannique qui a vaincu la paralysie cérébrale pour participer au championnat britannique de voitures de tourisme Kwik Fit (BTCC), partage son histoire avec des milliers de jeunes dans des écoles du nord de l’Angleterre pour les aider à développer de nouvelles compétences et une expérience positive. mentalité.

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ABird Power Solutions, qui fait partie de HSS Hire, a utilisé le temps d’arrêt forcé COVID pour transformer la gestion de ses opérations mobiles.

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Back in 2017, a young man arrived at the BigChange office in Leeds to give a Motivational Monday talk.

He wowed the team here with his story. Born with cerebral palsy, his parents were told he would never walk. But, even as a young boy, he displayed the resilience that marks him out as an exceptional human being. He went to a school for the able-bodied, and worked hard every day to manage his condition so that he could walk alongside his peers. 

When he got to secondary school, he had to carry a heavy school bag, and found himself struggling to keep up with classmates who ran between lessons, so he decided to try a wheelchair. 

Four years later, the muscles in his legs had wasted away and he was no longer able to walk. But he refused to give up. He taught himself to walk all over again, putting himself through a gruelling regime of stretches and exercises. I can’t imagine how difficult it must have been to stay inside stretching at break times while his friends had fun and chatted outside.  

All of this alone is enough to showcase this man’s indomitable spirit. But his story didn’t end there. 

Nic Hamilton has gone on to follow his brother Lewis into the world of racing. He has never let his condition stand in his way, and has competed in some of the industry’s most prestigious events, including the Renault Clio Cup series. He has to work harder than any other driver in the sport – a simple acceleration or use of the brake can cause him immense discomfort. “I think of myself as a Paralympian competing in the Olympics,” he once told me. “There is no one else like me in this sport, doing what I’m doing.” 

That chance meeting, four years ago, was the beginning of an amazing relationship between Nic and BigChange. I am proud to say Nic is now an ambassador for the business, and still engages with the team here on topics like resilience and the power of never giving up. He also goes out into the community and talks about our shared values: our commitment to road safety, the importance of building an inclusive society, and our passion for making a big change in the world. 

I wanted to talk about Nic today because I think that his story has never been more relevant and important. Many young people are feeling disenfranchised as a result of the global health crisis. Nic is an example of what can be achieved when you keep the faith and never give up. He wasn’t born into privilege: both he and Lewis are self-made men, who have worked hard to get where they are today. At BigChange, we prize that spirit and determination very highly.  

As a CEO, I think about the purpose behind this business every single day. I know that when people meet Nic, and hear about his extraordinary life, they will know exactly what we stand for as a company. As a Board Member of Business In The Community, I was delighted when Nic agreed to give a talk for the charity at a school in Bradford, in partnership with the Prince’s Trust. The kids were blown away by his strength, authenticity and humour.  

Nic has all the qualities I admire. At BigChange, we want to support the doers, give equal opportunities to all, reward hard work, consistently strive to be at the top of our game, and try and make the world a better and fairer place any way that we can. 

We recently pledged to continue supporting Nic’s career and upcoming races; it has been thrilling to see him compete in recent years. It has been an absolute privilege to be involved in his journey in some small way, and to watch his career unfold. I know that great things lie in store for Nic and I just wanted to express my gratitude to him for a wonderful partnership. Thanks, Nic. You are the best. 

Spring apporte une nouvelle vie à BigChange University, avec une nouvelle session sur la santé et la sécurité et des modules renommés – pour trouver le contenu que vous souhaitez améliorer plus facilement.

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The formidable broadcaster, journalist and Loose Women panellist Janet Street-Porter shares the lessons from her career on Motivational Monday (and drops in a few mantras along the way). 

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Saviez-vous que le système BigChange vous permet de personnaliser votre page de destination? tandis que si vous utilisez un système téléphonique basé sur le Web, comme RingCentral, vous pouvez voir qui vous appelle et trouver des liens vers des fonctions courantes dans le système BigChange. Lisez la suite pour savoir comment.

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BigChange is commited to tree planting initiatives this year to celebrate earth day 2021

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Back in 2016, we entered a new industrial era: the digital revolution. Two years later, the buzz was all around the next technological trend – the big data revolution. Now, it’s all about smart data, machine learning, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things: the seamless communication between systems and the execution of data insight. 

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BigChange, the revolutionary mobile workforce management platform, today announced that it has appointed Richard Warley as its new Chairman. The appointment follows a £100 million investment in BigChange by private equity firm Great Hill Partners to drive innovation, product development and expansion into new sectors and territories.

Richard brings almost 30 years of experience in investment banking, private equity and operational leadership roles at leading technology companies across Europe, Japan and North America to BigChange. He will support BigChange’s leadership team as the company accelerates its expansion plans in the UK and internationally.

Richard Warley comments:

“BigChange is an amazing company with a clear mission and purpose to drive growth and sustainability for its customers and community. It has already transformed the way that over 1,500 organisations manage their mobile workforces with its revolutionary technology platform that streamlines processes, eliminates unnecessary work and reduces the carbon footprint of mobile workforces.”

“With its significant new equity backing, BigChange is poised to accelerate investment in its platform, as well as international expansion. I am very excited to support BigChange’s visionary CEO, Martin Port, and the leadership team in realising the company’s purpose.”

Martin Port, BigChange founder and CEO, comments:

“Richard has a wealth of experience and expertise gained leading successful businesses internationally, and his advice and guidance will be invaluable to us as we look to take our transformative workforce management platform to more sectors, across a wider geography.”

BigChange’s field service management platform is used by 1,500 organisations in a wide range of sectors for job scheduling, customer invoicing and payments automation, mobile workforce management and client engagement. Clients include Sunbelt Rentals, Silentnight, Recycling Lives, HSS and EDF.

Have you heard the story about the guy who cleaned floors at Microsoft? He landed some share options, and then retired a multi-millionaire a decade later. Stories like that, showing the way that truly great companies reward the contribution of loyal employees, have always resonated with me.

I have been passionate about employee ownership for years. For me, giving your team a stake in the business is the ultimate way to grow faster, deliver a better service, and maintain an incredible company culture. The “John Lewis” model hit headlines after the financial crisis, when the government was trying to encourage the private sector to embrace a more inclusive stakeholder model. At that time, BigChange had already created its own employee ownership scheme.

Over the years, the scheme has grown and grown. Initially, just the management team had a slice of the company. Now, all my longstanding colleagues have a stake in the business, either through shares or via our “exit bonus” scheme. The minimum stake is worth £5,000 and I intend to deliver a 10x return on that investment within the next three to five years.

A lot of the team received an exit bonus during our last round of fundraising. This was a huge boost to morale when the UK was in the grip of lockdown and pandemic uncertainty. One colleague made 30x his investment when Great Hill Partners came on board. It makes me so proud to be able to reward everyone’s hard work, positivity and brilliant ideas, using our success to create holiday funds, home deposits and nest eggs for my incredible colleagues.

As an entrepreneur running a fast-growth business, you have to stay focused on three things: the hiring and retention of talent; the preservation of company culture; and innovation in all its forms across the business. When you have an engaged and incentivised workforce, these three things become that much easier to achieve. I hope that everyone who works at BigChange sees that everything they do to contribute to the company’s success ultimately translates into real value for them, way beyond their monthly pay cheque.

According to McKinsey, the global consultancy, creating an engaged company culture improves performance by between 30% and 79%[1]. I am biased, but I definitely feel like the team here performs at a consistently high level. I am in awe of the talent I see at BigChange every day. Here, no one suffers from tunnel vision. Teams help other teams across the business because their wins are to everyone’s benefit.

Employee-owned businesses also typically do much better than their peers during times of crisis. Research by Cass business school found that during the last recession, employee-owned businesses had a higher rate of sales growth and job creation than companies in conventional ownership[2]. A government paper also found that businesses which offer employee ownership are also much better at long-term thinking, making decisions for the enduring health of the company and avoiding short-termism[3].

It is my ambition to follow in the footsteps of technology greats like Microsoft, helping to give true financial independence to the people who drive our growth and prosperity. And we are well on our way. In the two months since we received investment from our new backers, BigChange’s £100m valuation is up by 10%. All credit to GHP who understood and supported our employee ownership structure from day one.

I now own 23% of the business, and GHP owns over 60%, the balance is owned by the BigChange team. If we hit £1bn in enterprise value, some of these people will become very wealthy indeed. In 10 years’ time, I hope to have created many millionaires. We all work hard here at BigChange but we all do it because we’re more than just a faceless organisation; we’re a family. We’re a team. We’re all united by the same common goals and dreams. That makes us unstoppable.

Millane Contract Services is using BigChange mobile workforce technology to bolster workforce health and safety. The cloud-based, 5-in-1-system BigChange is being used to monitor driver behaviour, complete on-site risk assessments and ensure the company’s maintenance engineers are free from COVID symptoms and ready for work.

The BigChange system is also helping the multi-discipline building, roofing and maintenance company automate communications between staff, management and customers, which in turn is boosting job completion rates, speeding invoicing and improving cashflow across the Essex-based business.

Stephen Rickwood, Maintenance Manager at Millane Contract Services commented:

“Driven by the Board, we initially looked at BigChange last year.”

“At the time trade was impacted by the lockdown, as many of our customers are in the retail and hospitality sectors, so in a way that gave us breathing space to look at better ways of working and what’s important to our business.”

Rickwood continued:

“The main drivers for implementing BigChange were workforce wellbeing and business preparedness.”

“BigChange will help us ensure our workforce is happy, safe and well, and that our business is as ready as it can be for whatever the future throws at us as we return to the new normal.”

A family run business headquartered in Basildon, Essex, Millane offers a national service, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. The maintenance division, comprising a nationwide team of field-based service engineers supported by contract managers and a dedicated helpdesk team, provides both planned and reactive maintenance for brands such as Pizza Express, The Range, Cosy Club and The Entertainer.  

BigChange provides a single platform CRM, Job Scheduling, Mobile App, Vehicle Tracking and Online Portal. Using the system, Millane has introduced a range of ‘start of shift’ checks for each remote worker ensuring they are ready to work and free of COVID symptoms. Vehicle and equipment checks are also in place and BigChange is being used by management to improve driver behaviour with alerts for idling, speeding and harsh braking, for example. The BigChange mobile app, can also be used to prompt engineers to complete on-site risk assessments and access previously completed method statements.

Rickwood concluded:

“Although our initial focus was our workforce and ensuring the business was ready to bounce back after lockdown, we know BigChange has so much more to offer.”

“We are excited to explore the full potential of BigChange and build on the processes and benefits already in place.”

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