Vulcan Fire Systems, Inc. is a family owned business that has been serving several states since its inception in 1984. Over the past 10 years we have begun to grow and expand beyond the standard small business culture. With the opening of a branch office out of state, increased sales and doubling the number of employees we needed help "getting our hands around" the substantial growth. After a few years of keeping the status quo, we decided to have an outside source take a look at the company as a whole. And, what an eye opening exercise it has turned out to be. We have just completed "phase 1" of our project with Cogent Analytics, LLC with our consultant. Through the course of the five weeks, we have substantially altered the culture of out company. Many things have been accomplished in this short amount of time and implementation of "work elements" have been continuous throughout the process. There have been so many areas for improvement, that may seem basic, or understood, on the surface, that were not being done from top to bottom, that we have to take a month off just to get everyone up to speed. The processes have covered every facet of the corporate structure, including, but not limited to, estimating, installation process, servicing accounts, human resources and the basic company hierarchy. All of the items were being implemented in some form or fashion, but without checks and balances to guarantee the continued success of our business. Now we have everything in writing, every employee knows what is expected of him or her, and has a direct person to report to, from installation technicians to myself, the President. There is no question in my mind that if continued progress is made towards the outlines and functions put in place during Phase 1, our company will be substantially better off many years down the road, and that doesn't even include the gains we will see in the 2nd phase of the project. I believe we will continue to grow and prosper. We were a financially solid profitable company at the beginning of the project, and I can't wait to see where we stand after a year of implementation. The future is looking brighter.....
251 N Main StWinston Salem, NC 27101
1001 Reynolds BlvdWinston Salem, NC 27105
"Allstar Fire Protection, Inc. is a locally owned and operated fire protection company in the Nashville Tn. Market. We have been in business since April of 1991. Founded by Glenn Harris and Mark HIllis to provide fire sprinkler installation and services while maintaining an eye towards their Christian values. They have operated the business admirably for many years with many successful projects under their belts. No wanting to see the company and loyal employees left behind as Mark and Glenn retire from the day to day operation of the company, Mark and Glenn began their exit strategy and implementing their succession plan for the company. Casey Milhorn was named CEO and 1/3 owner very recently, along with the hiring of Shannon Day, CFO. With the new management team in place, and eye towards growth, there was a real need for some assistance and guidance. We were approached by Cogent some time before this and were skeptical of having someone come in and provide consulting services to us on how to run our business. We could not see the value in this service. We could not have been more wrong. Working with John Moscicki from Cogent has been a pleasure, and most of all, a real eye opener for us. Thanks to John, we now have a plan in place to optimize our resources we currently have, and know what steps we should take next. And even more importantly, we know which ones to focus on first, second, third, etc. I cannot think of one aspect of our company that has not benefited from John's guidance and Cogent's services that were provided. If asked whether or not we would do it all over again, my answer would be a very resounding YES! The only regret is why we did not do this sooner. Our thanks and gratitude go out to John and the Cogent team on helping us become the company that we should be, and this is only the beginning of the process for us. We are extremely excited to see what fruits come of the seed that was planted by John and his team."
"We recently worked with Ted Zellers and have been very pleased with both the process and the outcomes. Southland Manufacturing is a custom metal fabricator primarily servicing the construction industry. For almost 20 years, we have focused on servicing the customer by providing quality services under tight deadlines. Meeting those obligations left me little time to focus on the important backroom functions of my own company and to be honest; I’ve been running the company by the “seat of the pants” method for a long time. I know how to cut and shape metal into complex shapes but no one ever showed me how to run a business. Our records were a mess. Our accounting was a mess. The office was a mess. And I was stressed out from trying to keep everything running. And then Ted started working with us. He jumped right in- taking charge of the backend process and he quickly convinced me that if we made some changes in the way the business operates, we could improve Southland’s profitability and my effectiveness as a manager in short order. Ted has made many changes but the key points for me are: The value of collecting and using our operational information- creating what Ted calls our “information Backbone”. The value of an “Enter Once, Use Many Times” philosophy- capturing key information early in the process and using that information multiple times in multiple ways. The value of my time (and that of our estimating team) and why that time should be focused on the jobs only I (we) can do- grow the business, solve customer problems and make certain our people have the resources they need to do their jobs. The value of planning for outcomes- especially managing our cash flow (rather than reacting) and building profit into our pricing. It has been an interesting journey and I am glad I made the investment in both time and money. I will be staying connected with Ted to monitor our progress going forward."
Marlene, Kevin and I are the owners of Carolina Services of the Triad, Inc., a commercial contract cleaning company located in Kernersville, NC. We have been in business since 1995. Through the years we have continued to grow our business. Recently the growth has increases substantially and we started to notice some growing pains. We decided to hire Cogent Analytics to help us with our gorwing pains by implementing systems and procedures so that our company can continue to grow and thrive. Cogent paired us with mar Yovanovich. Working with him over the last two weeks has been a great benefit to our company. He has helped us have a proactive view of our cash flow and a set schedule for when checks will be written. Marc has also helped us to understand the difference between cash management and cash flow. I can see this system being used for many years to come. Marc has also take the time to critique our sales pitch and pricing procedures. We now realize that our pricing sheets were missing some very important business elements. Adding these items into the cost of each job only increased their price a small amount and allows us to reduce our overhead rate. We are very excited about the changes and suggestions that we forsee happeing with our company with Marc's continued help. CST highly recomment the consulting expertise of Cogetn Analytics and are extremely excited about our continued relationship with them as we expand over the state and into the southern region.
TOURtech is at a tipping point it its growth. We had focused on revenue growth to establish ourselves in the marketplace, but found ourselves wondering where all the money was going. We had ideas, we made guesses and like many small businesses, hoped there would be money left over. The tools we have been provided with will eliminate that guesswork and allow us to know. We had outgrown our previous pricing structure but were unsure how to change it. Cogent introduced us to the concept of profit engineering allowing us to develop our new pricing structure based on costs and pre-determined profit. They provided us the tools we need to make sure that we are on track now and in the future. This new point of view and collection of tools will help TOURtech become more profitable and allow me to worry less about uncertainties. I was not expecting this to be a pleasant or even worthwhile experience and this sentiment was shared across other key members of my team. I can tell you, without exception, that the entire staff is eager to apply the lessons we have learned and implement the tools we have been given. I really did not expect total buy in, but that's what we have achieved. I attribute that to Cogent's ability to breakthrough the idea that "my business is unique" and show (not just tell) how applying basci business principles can improve ANY business.
We engaged the services of Cogent Analytics, LLC to determine the best organization for our company’s continued growth and success. Your team, from the initial sales call through the analysis discovery process and the arrival of the consultant was very professional. The discover process uncovered many things that I had been thinking about and some that surprised me. Your consultant has been working with us for several weeks and has developed and implemented numerous job descriptions, proposals, budgets, handbooks, worksheets and other documents for our use and also helped us to develop a strategic plan and an incentive program that rewards our employees for outstanding performance. Along the way he uncovered some areas where we were being inefficient, eliminated a lot of risk exposure, and also generated some interest income and demonstrated how we can bid a smaller margin on some projects. We would like to thank your company for your help. We look forward to a long and extended relationship with you, as you help us to fine-tune our operations further.
I have been too busy to spend too much with your consultant but now that he is leaving I don’t want him to go. What we asked you to do is in place. Prophesy is communicating with QuickBooks and we have QuickBooks accounting. I have learned to post payments and deposits and make transfers for fuel deposits, Tchecks, and wiring fees; I generate the A/R aging report and A/P aging report and pay the settlements and enter and pay the payroll and other bills. I know that I will cal Marc four times a day and he has told me that he will accept my calls, four times a day and I can continue learning at my own speed. Some things he has to repeat many times and some not so many. I have a manual on how to do things, but sometimes it may be easier to call because he can teach me again or for the first time. I have not learned what to do when I buy a truck because i didn’t buy one while Marc was here, but I know it’s in the manual, or a phone call away. I’m happy with the work. I’m happy it’s finished. I’m planning your return.
The people at Cogent Analytics are experts at business. Hiring Cogent Analytics to help us was great decision for us, and a decision I would make again in a heartbeat. The project director assigned to us brought a wealth of experience, knowledge, and the best practices to our organization. Cogent has a 2-to-1 return on investment within 6 months guarantee that was easily met. Cogent has helped us with over 26 aspects of business. Of those 26, the top three areas for me were financial training, management training, and organizational structure. I believe Cogent has brightened the future of our company. Cogent’s project director was very professional and a pleasure to work with. He kept the project on schedule, provided smart, objective solutions, and made the implementation completely painless. He worked independently with the people he needed to, coordinated with the outside contractors on our behalf, and helped us make strategic moves that helped us reduce costs and increase productivity.
It is with pleasure to write and share our experience over the past several months working with Mr. Chuck Blume. Chuck has provided a lot of great information in regards to managing and leading our employees in the right direction to benefit the business as a whole. He has made excellent procedure and company policy changes and has put in place new ideas, motivation, and structure for our company.He has also do a great professional job working with our mgt team. He has been patient with everyone and has gone above & beyond to work around our everyday busy schedules. The spreadsheets provided by Chuck has proven to be extremely beneficial and will be used on a daily, weekly and monthly basis in order to keep our business on track. Overall, everyone here is satisfies with the consulting of Chuck and will definitely use the resources provided in order to grow our business faster and more efficiently. I would recommend Cogent Analytics & Chuck Blume with highest regards to any company.
"Cogent Analytics has been educating and implementing different ideas that will assist East Carolina Metal Treating Inc with reaching goals that I have set for the company. I'm confident that East Caroline Metal Treating is going to be a better company with the changes we will be implementing. I feel strongly that working with Cogent is going to make our business more profitable. I believe the goals I set will be achieved which will be an asset for every employee. ECMT Inc.has had the distinct pleasure of working with a representative of Cogent Analytics, for the last ten weeks. Each task was performed with professional aptitude and expertise. The representative is resourceful, creative and solution-oriented person. He was frequently able to come up with new and innovative approaches to the necessary projects to meet our company’s needs. We have been able to rely on this company’s performance as the work is completed thoroughly, promptly and with the utmost integrity."