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Gator Gypsum

Our Internal Customers

By | Blog

The sales cycle is fairly basic. A customer comes into town and is not familiar with the current suppliers. They talk to local contractors and get a couple of names and make some calls. Depending on their needs, a salesperson may come out to talk to them. Quotations are done and the customer makes a decision to do business with the company that they feel the most comfortable with.

Behind the scenes there is a tremendous amount of activity. Our purchasing team is constantly monitoring the market to make sure that we are buying the correct quantity at the right time. We use nationwide buying power to assure our clients get the best pricing and value.

Our accounts receivable department is checking pricing on orders to make sure that it matches quotes within our system. They are monitoring credit limits and adjusting them to meet job requirements.

Our accounts payable team is taking advantage of quick pay terms to guarantee lower transactional costs. It is extremely important to Gator Gypsum that our vendors see us as a financial partner and that our bills are paid in such a way to keep this relationship intact.

Our warehouse staff keep our products organized in a way that gets our customers in and out of the yard quickly. We understand that often we are the first and last stop on the way to a job. Our warehouse is laid out in a way that keeps traffic flowing and allows for optimal time savings.

Our delivery teams drive the newest and most efficient trucks with the latest GPS technology. If there is a traffic issue on the way to a job we can easily reroute and let the customer know of any changes in the ETA. Our local branch and safety managers check any site that could present delivery challenges (power lines, trees, etc.) and communicate these issues to the customers in order to prevent delivery delays.

Anyone who answers the phone at our yard should either be able to answer any question that you have or find the correct person to answer the question. We have an extensive amount of experience at all seven Gator Gypsum yards and we pride ourselves on quick and correct responses.

Our counter personnel serve as a resource to our entire customer base. No amount of classroom training could ever replicate customer contact and that is the knowledge base that our counter sales has. There are probably not very many questions that they have not been asked.

While the sales process is straightforward, there is critical infrastructure in place that makes the process flow seamlessly. All support personnel are the fuel that makes Gator Gypsum run. We appreciate your business and do all that we can to assure that every contact with our company is professional and beneficial.

$5.00 Foot Long

By | Blog

I’m fairly certain that anyone who has exposure to any type of media is familiar with the $5 Foot Long. This is Subway’s war cry and provides the company with a great amount of revenue. Promotions are done by the corporation, but recently franchisees have revolted. Their objection arises from the claim that they do not make much money off of a $5 foot long. The story offers some insight into our economy.

Franchisees claim that their expenses break down as follows: sandwich ingredients, labor, electricity, gas, royalties, credit card transaction fees, and rent push their cost to well above $4.00.

How many times have you walked into a retail store and wondered how they can get away with selling a widget that probably cost them a penny for over a dollar? These numbers are particularly relevant in the drywall industry. Company A and B sell the same sheet of drywall for $1 and $1.25, respectively. Logic tells us that company A should get our business.

But let’s dig a little deeper. Company A’s trucks are 15 years old and constantly in need of service. Company A’s employees have no experience and have had no safety training. Company A has no drug screening requirement and their turnover is the highest in town.

Company B insists on having the newest and most efficient equipment. Company B has constant training, holds regular drug screenings, has employees that have been with the company for over 35 years, and has a passion for giving back to the community.

On a 1,000 board job that 25-cent price difference is $250. To some, that’s enough of a reason to do business with Company A. However, if Company A’s broken-down truck causes 10 drywall company employees to stand around for 4 hours ($15/hour x 10 workers x 4 hours =$600), that lower price does not represent a savings – and may in fact end up being the more expensive option.

In addition to being a drywall distributor, Gator Gypsum is a service provider. These services are the best in the industry because of the additional expenses that we incur. Providing good service costs a little more, but as shown in the example above, good service has value that’s not always reflected on the price tag.

Think of it this way: we could greatly reduce the cost of a sandwich by having a robot make it on a street corner … but that sandwich is not particularly appealing.

 

Thanksgiving

By | Blog

We have a tradition at our house that once we sit down for the Thanksgiving meal, we go around the table and talk about the things we are truly thankful for. I’ve thought about this often and would like to do the same for my Gator Gypsum family.

I’m thankful that the economy continues to provide opportunities for us and for our customers. A boom in the residential and commercial construction markets keep our trucks, employees and customers extremely busy. I’m also thankful to work for a company that sees value in the continual education and training of its workforce. New products and ideas are brought into the workforce daily, and Gator Gypsum strives to stay on top of any technology that will make our operation run smoothly.

I’m thankful that my company puts the safety of its employees and customers as priority number one. Our weekly safety meetings reinforce ideas that we use every day to make sure our employees end each workday safely. I’m thankful to come to a job in the morning staffed by a team that truly cares about the success of our fellow workers and clients. And finally, I’m thankful that my company encourages the growth and development of all of its employees.

When your expectations of an employer are exceeded on a daily basis, everybody wins. Happy workers translate to highly dedicated employees who enjoy going above and beyond for their customers. At Gator Gypsum Thanksgiving is not a November thing, but rather a 24/7 365 thing.

Open For Business

By | Blog

In the midst of casual conversation at a recent business mixer, I was asked what I do. After my explanation, a remark was made that I was lucky that I didn’t have to deal with the public. I didn’t understand. It turned out that my questioner incorrectly assumed that Gator Gypsum is a wholesale-only company with a large minimum order.

It is true, we do have a minimum order. All transactions have to be at least a penny. Aside from that, our business is for whomever needs our service.

I heard a story one time about a local nut and bolt house that had a $500 minimum. A customer came in and bought some large bolts and washers and the total was over $3000. Once he got back to his shop, he discovered that he had forgotten the nuts and headed back. The nuts needed for the job were just a little over $200 and the company would not budge on the minimum, despite the fact that the customer had spent six times that amount a couple of hours earlier. Needless to say, I gained a great customer that day.

For all of you who don’t know, we are open to the public and glad to help in any way that we can. Our product offering is broad, including but not limited to: drywall, joint compound, hand tools, power tools, safety equipment, fire stop and acoustical ceilings. This company was born in Tampa and exists only thanks to the loyalty of the small businessman, who many companies create rules to avoid. We treat every customer with respect, because regardless of the amount of money they spend, they are trusting us with a critical part of their project.

Gator Gypsum welcomes do-it-yourselfers and weekend warriors searching for tools and building supplies in Tampa, Ocala, Orlando, Gainesville, Clearwater, Lakeland and Sarasota. At all of our Central Florida yards, you’ll find building materials, supplies and tools priced competitively with “big box” stores, along with some things that you don’t typically find at those places: true customer service and expert advice on products and installation. If you’ve never visited one of our yards, we invite you to stop by soon. We’d love to meet you and show you what real service looks like!