RF Installations LLC
For some companies, working primarily with a single client could eventually lead to income issues. For RF Installations LLC (RFI), however, the economic model has allowed the company to become a leader in the installation services industry.
“We’re a residential remodeling company,” says Ronnie Norman, COO of RFI. “The majority of our business is with one client, The Home Depot [Home Depot], and we have about 1,100 stores across the country. We basically handle the out-of-store customer experience for Home Depot.”
Norman goes on to explain RFI’s unique business model. “Let’s say that you go in and want a new door,” he says. “You go into Home Depot, buy the front door and one of my guys comes out to measure it. We then submit the order to Home Depot, they sell you the door and we go out to your home to install the product. We do about 300,000 transactions per year.”
Currently RFI services 30 states, spanning from New Jersey to San Diego and from the Florida Panhandle to Seattle. The company continues to fulfill nationwide transactions, which requires an extensive team of internal managers and external contractors.
“We have approximately 2,500 contractors across the country,” he says. “And then our company has about 65 employees, many of whom are based at the company’s headquarters in Texas. We also do some direct-to-consumer business, but Home Depot really is our main client.”
Having been founded in 2006, RFI has already appreciated an explosion of success, and it may all be the byproduct of Norman’s focus on fixing up residences.
Working in conjunction with Home Depot attracts specific types of clientele for RFI: medium income families, real estate managers and banks. Therefore, the company’s projects typically revolve around residential homes or apartment buildings.
“We do have some commercial projects, but it’s mainly geared toward residential dwellings,” says Norman. “Our commercial side would be an apartment building or a group of townhomes. For example, a commercial aspect would be doing some HUD renovations on an apartment complex, or refitting make-readies for a real estate company.”
Another example of a typical residential project would involve, say, a bank needing a bank-owned house cleaned and renovated to pass HUD. “So we’ll go in there to do minor electrical work, plumbing, maybe replace kitchen cabinets or light fixtures or fencing, do some landscaping – whatever it may be, we do it,” continues Norman.
On the other hand, the team also tackles untypical residential projects. “We did a kitchen remodel for someone who bought land on a mountain, and the owner literally cut out a giant rock and we installed kitchens into that,” says Norman with a laugh. “It was certainly unique.”
Including both typical and untypical projects, Norman says that 85 percent of the company’s business involves residential renovations. “The majority of it, though, is just very common, middle-aged family home renovations,” he adds, wanting to make clear that a kitchen-in-a-stone-in-a-mountain project does not fall into the company’s lap all that often.
Catering to Customers
Norman attributes experiencing so much growth within five years to the company’s focus on customer satisfaction, both for Home Depot and the end-user.
“Home Depot is our customer,” says Norman, “but Misses Thompson, the end-user in the house, is equally important. We have to take them both into consideration.”
The company’s deliberate attention to the end-user experience culminated itself in 2010, when RFI earned a place among the top 20 positions on the Top 500 Remodelers of 2010 list. “We’ve drilled that focus down through all the members of our team,” says Norman. “It’s central to our company.”
It’s so central, in fact, that RFI is frequently going outside the company’s client base to help in-need individuals – specifically veterans. “We’re always involved with renovating veteran homes,” says Norman. “There is always a veteran somewhere that we’ll go in and replace things for them and refit their house.”
The Final Question
It is evident that RFI has defined itself as a growing business within an equally growing industry. The company has both the infrastructure and the individuals necessary to maintain the steady growth into the future.
“We’re happy that property values have gone up and are still going up,” says Norman. “They’re consistently climbing and people are happy, so I see us continuing to grow, and looking into diversifying into direct-to-consumer lines. We also want to offer more to customers and expand our business-to-business relationships.”
In other words, Norman wants to continue along the lines of success that have brought the company into the industrial limelight. With a reputation such as that of RF Installations LLC, the path shouldn’t be too difficult to tread.
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