As an HVAC contractor, you have probably heard coworkers and industry professionals talk about VRF systems. But do you know how they work and the benefits they can provide to a job? While it may be a common term that gets brought up in the world of contractors and builders, more often than not, there are many misconceptions surrounding this technology that are mentioned as well. Since VRF systems haven’t been around as long as your typical HVAC unit, we thought it was time to bust the myths and get the cold hard facts about VRF systems to help you discover how you, and your customers might benefit from this state-of-the-art HVAC system. Read more
A new development can transform an area. It can bring new life to a city and rebuild a community that was once forgotten and overlooked. With the City Centre project in Ithaca, New York, they expect nothing less. Built near the densest part of downtown Ithaca, the space once housed a bank and a few offices. But with a vision in mind, the goal of the project is to transform the building into mixed-use development with housing, businesses, and entertainment space. The new building will provide a gateway to developing space within the city, allowing residents and guests walking access to areas where they live, work, and play. Read more
As an HVAC professional, it’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest cooling technology available, especially when it comes to products like R410a. R410a has largely taken the place of hydrofluorocarbons in residential HVAC systems since the phasedown began of R22 and other similar high-global-warming refrigerants. Indeed, R410a has become the residential HVAC industry standard. However, when R410a prices increased due to a shortage, it made waves in the industry. Contractors and HVAC professionals were left wondering, what happens next? Read more
Bill Joplin’s Air Conditioning and Heating had been typing sales proposals for over 35 years. Finally in 2016, they decided to implement a digital sales platform that was used exclusively by the sales team as it was too complicated for their technicians. With nearly 40 technicians in the field, this meant a lot of missed sales opportunities.
Then they tried OnCall Air…
“The technicians back in the past would only quote one system, they just had their invoice. OnCall Air now gives them the ability to build a good, better, best proposal. It takes two seconds more to put in two more systems,” says Chuck Warner, Sales Manager who has been working for Joplin’s for 18 years.
Chuck first heard about OnCall Air through CE and decided to switch after seeing how easy to use and customizable the application was, and the amount of detailed information they could now provide their customers. “Our customers love the way in which we present proposals now mainly because of the amount of information that they get and their understanding of the systems they are buying,” says Chuck. “Now we feel very confident that customers know what they are getting and this just makes our job easier and minimizes confusion.”
Managing Sales Efficiently and Saving Time
With so many technicians in the field, keeping up with the operations especially during the summer months can be challenging. OnCall Air helps Joplin’s save precious time thanks to its CE Connector capability that integrates into CE’s e-commerce platform and provides all product, pricing and inventory availability information. It also allows them to change their pricing on the fly and have different pricing profiles.
“My favorite feature of OnCall Air is the ability to have different pricing profiles as the sales manager. Having that ability to change the price of anything at any time, really helps me keep the pricing fluid, because here in Texas we have a big difference in how busy it is in the summer versus the winter. OnCall Air makes this very, very simple with the click of a button”.
Seeing the Results
Joplin’s conversion rates have significantly improved since they started using the platform. The ability to email customers their proposals when they leave the house and track their interactions with it has contributed to this. “A lot of times you don’t have the decision makers at the same time so emailing the proposals has been a huge advantage. Customers can look at proposals anytime, anywhere, just like they are shopping on Amazon. I have had approvals come in at 2 o’clock in the morning on a Sunday,” Chuck remembers.
Getting Support from OnCall Air’s Success Team
With the support of the OnCall Air team, Bill Joplin’s Heating and Air was able to get the system up and running and unify its sales process within a couple of weeks. “The team at OnCall Air really reflects our company and our values. We always put our customers first. And I have to say that there’s not very many times I go, ‘You know what? That’s a company just like ours.’”
Want to learn more how OnCall Air can power your sales? Book a demo now!
Disastrous Hurricane Spurs New Life for CE Employee
CE Warehouse/Counter Associate Joseph Melendez didn’t change jobs. But he transferred from his homeland – where it’s almost always hot and sunny – to a place where weather changes all the time.
Melendez was working in CE’s Caguas, Puerto Rico branch when Hurricane Maria hit Sept. 20, 2017.
“It was like a nuclear bomb,” says Melendez. “I lost almost everything I had.”
From the Miami area, CE donated water, food, generators and supplies. The company also set up a GoFundMe account to aid employees and family members.
But the necessities of life remained difficult to obtain, including gas, food and medical care, Melendez recalls. He was without power for seven months.
Connecting with Rochester: A Perfect Fit
Through the CE job portal, Melendez found out about a job opening in Rochester, NY – more than 1,800 miles away — and pursued it.
He interviewed and communicated with the hiring team over Skype.
“He could see Rochester in the snow, and we could see Puerto Rico in the dark,” says Tim Kropf, sales center manager in Rochester.
With Melendez’s direct CE experience and technical skills working for his father’s HVAC business, Melendez “seemed like a perfect fit,” says Ed Bersani, Upstate New York area branch manager.
“I could see the fight,” says Kropf. “It’s a hard transition to pack your life up and go. You know you’re going to have a good, dedicated worker.”
Plus, he’s a “super awesome guy,” Kropf adds.
Bersani credits CE HR Specialist Cheryl Smith with making the match happen. She connected with CE colleagues in Florida and worked through numerous obstacles, he says. “If it wasn’t for Cheryl recognizing and pursuing this talent, we would have never found Joseph.”
A Helping Hand
With a little help from some new friends, Melendez settled in Rochester in April 2018.
“When you have good people around, it makes it better,” he says. “I don’t think I could find someone better than Tim,” Melendez says.
Kropf connected Melendez with a leasing agent who helped find an apartment within walking distance of the branch.
Several colleagues also helped fill a U-Haul truck with household goods to get Melendez started in his new life: used furniture, a TV, dishes and other staples.
Store associate Mike Sirianni and former CE employee Jake Bertani, who now works for Carrier/UTC, contributed.
The Rochester team also involved Melendez in family gatherings, introduced him to friends and helped drive him wherever he needed until he could get his own car.
“It’s an example of young people sharing what they had with someone who had less,” says Bersani.
In June, thanks to CE tickets from Pittsburgh Sales Manager Rich Patsy, Melendez was able to see his favorite pro baseball team play.
He treated his father and brother — who were visiting from Puerto Rico — to “great seats” at a Pittsburgh Pirates game.
Forecast: A Bright CE Future
Bersani foresees a bright future for Melendez at CE.
“He has a good head on his shoulders – and the customers all love him,” says Bersani. He sees the potential for Melendez to eventually manage his own branch.
For now, he is working in the warehouse while training to staff the counter. And he looks forward to settling down in Rochester.
“I like this area,” he says, sharing his plans to buy a home here.
Kropf kiddingly reminds Melendez of the reality of a Rochester winter: “Talk to him in a few weeks when the white stuff shows up,” he quips.
But a snowstorm is nothing compared to a hurricane.
As you know, a variable speed heat pump works by adjusting the speed of the fan motor to ensure proper airflow throughout the home. Variable speed heat pumps are an incredible way to balance the temperature and humidity in the home, but they are only effective if all of the settings are correct. So, if your customer is complaining of a slow blower motor, your first step is to check the settings. Read more
In the HVAC industry, professionals need access to the proper tools to get the job done efficiently, easily, and accurately. Look no further than Uniweld, a reputable brand that offers top-quality, US-made tools that a contractor can rely on not just today at the job site, but for years down the road. With items like the latest brazing kits, manifolds, and vacuum pumps, Uniweld manufactures products with the environment, community, and its customers in mind. Read more
At CE, we pride ourselves on our expansive collection of digital tools formulated to make our customers’ businesses run more efficiently. Territory manager Chad DeGreif plays a vital role in expanding contractors’ use of this technology. Chad is a veteran in the HVAC field, so he has witnessed first-hand how advances in digital technology have shaped the industry in recent years.
These advancements can seem daunting for our customers. Chad assists them by taking the time to thoroughly explain our tools so they can reap the most benefit. He “points out all the benefits of the platform. No longer do [customers] have to sit on hold to order parts or equipment or have to wait for me to call them back and put the order in. With all the benefits—warranty, AHRI system builder, online ordering—it’s not hard to sell them on the digital tools.” Not only do these platforms save his customers time when conducting business, it also allows Chad to focus on expanding and nurturing his own customer base.
Chad leads the pack among his regional peers with the highest percentage of his customers using ecommerce for their ordering needs. By explaining the benefits over merely phoning in orders, Chad is successfully bringing customers into the digital realm of the HVAC industry. Chad notes that, “Once they get the hang of it, they love it. If you can get them to look at it, they will use it.” By identifying the vast benefits and time-saving nature of our digital platforms to his own customers, Chad has built a blueprint to boost digital adoption for years to come.
Most renovations take a year or two to complete. They include a lot of moving parts that all need to align in order to move forward. So, when Florida’s Director of Engineered Systems Support and VRF Products, Dave Lucas, was presented with the opportunity, he was understandably skeptical. The renovation had to be completed in under eight months and required providing an HVAC system for a 10-story office building that was being turned into a 190-room hotel. But after gathering all the information, Dave, the CE team, and the general contractor partner in Florida moved forward with the job. Read more
CE Mid-Atlantic’s Ductless General Manager, Jeff Gresock developed a great program for 2018 to bring awareness to DLS and VRF products. He wanted to motivate both outside and internal sales staff to actively promote the Carrier brand. The incentive program created is a reward based incentive based on % of growth with a minimum qualifier. For the month of September I am happy to announce we had our first winner from the Digital Customer Care team, Christina Benedict! Christina has been working with a customer John from Modern Refrigeration since April of this year in hopes of enhancing his Digital Experience with CE. In doing so she has learned more about his business and kept him up to date with Ductless Promos, Price Changes, and Ductless Bundles. John has now switched to CE as his main supplier for all Ductless equipment and continues to be more engaged with all of our digital tools. Christina has provided A6 customer service and John was quoted saying “because of Christina and her reaching out to me on an consistent basis, I have been purchasing more from CE. She provided great customer service and continues to keep me updated on any promotions that will help me grow my business.” Way to go, Christina!