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A Day In The Life of Franchisee’s Duncan & David Sands

Ever wondered exactly what our Countrywide Signs operators get up to on a day-to-day basis? Well, Duncan and David Sands, owners of Countrywide Signs Bedford and Stevenage, were only too happy to share. Read on to be introduced to a day in the life of a Countrywide Signs franchisee.

Father and son team, Duncan and David, joined the network earlier this year.

These, friendly ‘board guys’, thought the same as most people… that ‘for sale’ and ‘to let’ signs just appear! They came across the Countrywide Signs ‘man in a van’- style franchise back in 2020 when looking at franchise opportunities.

As it turned out… they quickly learnt that there’s more to sign board erecting than they first thought. They were pleasantly surprised!

In David’s words. here’s what a typical day looks like for them travelling around Bedford and Stevenage as they erect residential and commercial property boards.

A ‘Day in the Life’ Actually Starts the Day Before

Our day planning starts the evening before. We review all open jobs on the Countrywide Signs Business Management System (BMS). Our territory roughly covers Bedford, north up to St Neots, south down to Stevenage and east to Royston – plus there’s everywhere in between. There are many miles to cover. We therefore split the territory into manageable bitesize areas. We decide where we’ll be operating the night before. We’ll review based on our agent’s requests and needs, then determine our route using our route planning software.

As well as erecting and removing the signs, a number of job requests added to our online order system, are for bespoke slips to be added. These are identified and we fire up our printer to create the slips ready for the next day. These tend to be directional arrows and specialist references to promote the properties further.

Day in the Life of a Franchisee, planning for the day

The Day Starts

At Countrywide Signs Bedford & Stevenage the morning begins in our warehouse where we pick all boards, slips and posts required for the day. These are then assembled in the warehouse and loaded into the van ready to start our journey.

Once on the road, we leave our warehouse which is based in Milton Keynes and drive to our first job.

Each agent will have a different set of needs and a different service agreement. The day will often include both residential and commercial installations. Some agents will be signed up to either our full stock rental service, our part stock management service or our movement only service. There’s a lot to juggle and manage, but we’re well versed in the process thanks to our training.

The Countrywide Signs approach has been developed and refined since the business was established over 20 years ago. We’ve been trained to be organised, knowledgeable and methodical from day one.

Assess Positioning, Promotion and Safety

Once we have located the first property, we will survey the property and unless specific instructions are provided, we discuss and agree on the best placement for the board. This decision is always based on what we think will be best for both the agent’s brand and for the promotion of the property. The agent’s priority is always our priority.

We will of course only install a board where we know it is safe and where a board will remain standing until no longer required. We also take into consideration local council guidelines and legal requirements for safety of the sign and the general public. Luckily the online order system also allows agents to add specific instructions for jobs if there is a preferred placement for installation of the signage.

We carry out the installation determined by signage style. This could be a flag sign, t-board or maybe a v-board, for example. We review the result and take a photo which is uploaded for our agent’s reference. We take great pride in our professional approach and want to ensure that our agents are happy with the installation. A photo is the easiest and quickest proof of our standards.

Day in the Life of a Franchisee, erecting property signs

On to the Next Board Installation

It’s then on to the next job… and the next one… You get the drift.

We complete and confirm each job while still at the property, so we are always running a live system. Agents know within just a few minutes once we have completed a job. This is something else we are proud of as it isn’t the industry standard for our competitors. We go above and beyond and want to make sure we stand out for all the right reasons.

Feedback from our agents is so important. Whether it’s via the BMS, by email, telephone call or in the form of a Google Review. We value feedback as part of our mission for continuous improvement. We want to keep exceeding customer expectations.

The Day isn’t Over When We Complete Our Job List

Once all jobs are complete it’s time to head home ready to review the workload for the following day and get up to date on admin and invoicing. Then we enjoy the evening ahead.

It’s all in a day in the life of a Countrywide Signs ‘Property Signage Expert.

So, you’ve heard it first from two of our operators who have excelled in providing exceptional service to their residential and commercial customers. Would you like to learn more about becoming a Countrywide Signs franchisee? Get in touch today to arrange to talk to our franchise experts.