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3 Dads with a Dream: 300% Growth and Doubling Their Team in 12 Months

Creating a plumbing business for the next generation

May 1, 2024

Beyond Plumbing Services owners Everyone had that moment during the pandemic. A moment when they realized everything had changed. A moment when they felt the dark clouds of insecurity gather above their heads.

Over a few drinks, three regular Aussie Dads, Danny Edwards, Dean Leary and Rick Ogge, confronted their own thoughts on the impact on their lives and work and decided they could be better off doing their own thing.

After a brief few weeks of mulling these ideas over, they decided to give it a go and start their own business. We recently interviewed co-owner Rick Ogge about their journey so far.

Building More Than Pipes: A Plumbing Business With a Purpose

With years of collective experience in various sectors of the plumbing industry and a good understanding of customer needs, they were off to a good start. Yet, even from the very beginning, these new business owners were thinking of a business that had value beyond products and services.

Of course, after examining the risks and opportunities, they had already decided their own business would be a good option to ensure they had control over providing for and protecting their families and children. This wasn’t about becoming millionaires, but paying the bills, and having some fun along the way.

The boys have been purposeful in a goal to remember who they are—three average Aussie dads—and to never lose sight of this, no matter how much the business and the team expand.

Considering their experience with the personal and industry impacts of the pandemic on mental health, they also decided to donate a percentage of profits to support mental health programs.

From Bricks and Mortar to Online Success

The major players in plumbing supplies in Australia have bricks and mortar business models. Right from the start, they also decided to be an eCommerce business, delivering products all over Australia from a single warehouse location. They recognised that whilst some more traditional plumbers preferred to drop in and pick up their supplies, the current and next generation of plumbers were happy to purchase online.

Beyond Plumbing Services customers

Another collective agreement between the three owners was that they wanted to hit the ground running, with a professional online presence - not something underdone or thrown together. This motivated a search for the right platform and although they thought they might be too small for Salesforce at the beginning, they knew the wisdom of investing ahead of their needs.

Business Manager, Rick Ogge says, “In Melbourne, if you go to a cafe and have a bad coffee, you never go back to that cafe. And it’s a bit the same as you want your website to be. it must be a really good experience and user friendly.

“If it’s hard to use, if it’s clunky, if you put an order in and then it doesn’t come through as a proper invoice or whatever else, it is a bit of a turnoff for any consumer.

“My advice to other eCommerce businesses would be just to make the investment from the start so that you’re perceived as a professional outfit.”

Unclogging the Revenue Stream: Salesforce & StoreConnect

Whilst an option to have a friend build a website was also on the cards, a referral from their Salesforce partner to StoreConnect, showed the guys that this platform, built on Salesforce, was a superior option. They researched other platforms but immediately felt a connection with the StoreConnect team and their highly personal customer service.

“We found that every hypothetical question we asked in regards to what we wanted for our business ‘Could we do this? Can it do that?’ The answer was either ‘yes it already has this function’ or ‘this function doesn’t currently exist but we could definitely make it happen’…We have been able to work with StoreConnect to make whatever we need happen.”

This gelled with what they were keen to establish with their own customers. In line with that, they have already had positive experiences where issues have been resolved within hours, even on a Sunday evening, reinforcing their initial thoughts and decision to go with Salesforce and StoreConnect.

As Rick explains “we feel important and the team at StoreConnect really delivers exceptional and personal support.”

He added “we also love the fact that we are on a journey together and as new functionality is added to StoreConnect we can expand our services and service to our own customers.”

A Solution That Thought and Acted Like They Did

Rick explained that whilst Salesforce and StoreConnect were their initial choice and as a result they lack personal experience of the pains that many SMBs go through with integration and multiple system issues, they are delighted with their choice which continues to be reinforced with expanding functionality, and with every successful client transaction.

“With deciding to go with the best CRM on the market in Salesforce, followed by an eCommerce platform in StoreConnect that, out of the box, suited what we needed, this allowed our initial customers to have a seamless experience from registration, to purchase, to invoicing.”

Beyond Plumbing Services growth stat

Beyond Plumbing Supplies is showing that a great business isn’t just about products and services. It is also about having a strong purpose from the beginning. A purpose to support young families, a purpose to be in control of your own destiny, a purpose to have fun whilst delivering a great service to clients.

Since launching their business and website, Beyond Plumbing Supplies has already developed a strong reputation in their industry for being great to deal with, and their name and approach are often afforded strong support on plumbing industry discussion groups. Whilst Rick braces himself for negative feedback every time he sees someone ask about whether Beyond is a good supplier, he is almost always delighted that brand support is so strong.

Stories of late afternoon orders being delivered the next morning interstate are already becoming legend, although Rick explains this is more about the ‘stars’ and delivery times aligning than any drive to be known for instant delivery.

Beyond Plumbing Services double-size team With several thousand plumbers already bringing their custom to Beyond, the boys have their sights on continuing to grow. But they are also keeping their feet well planted on the ground, as they want to ensure their business model and systems and service are watertight before they push for more growth. This is a refreshing change from hearing about growth at all costs and a litany of customer complaints that are common in growing eCommerce startups.

We reckon the trio will be happier with a million smiles than a million dollar valuation.

Rick Ogge at Salesforce World Tour 24 In a presentation at the Salesforce World Tour Sydney this year, Rick mentioned, “After getting onboarded with Salesforce, we had a demo from StoreConnect and it blew us away that we could have our eCommerce platform powered by our preferred CRM and have one place to go to run our business.”

Speaking of transactions, another great example of their care for the industry is that every customer gets treated the same way, no matter how big they are. This means a pricing model that doesn’t penalize the small operator nor favor the big plumbing businesses. A fair go is a very Australian approach to business.

Returning to their original purpose of supporting their families, the boys have not missed one school concert, one presentation day, or one school pick-up in their time running Beyond Plumbing Supplies. They have each other’s backs and often in the early afternoon, the kids will visit and build cardboard castles out in the warehouse.

Beyond Plumbing Services stat

Something tells us, the boys will stay true to their purpose, their care for customers and will achieve great success along the way.

We’re happy that StoreConnect is helping them deliver on their promises to industry, family and the community, whilst still having some fun along the way.