Trying to Grow Your RMR? Learn from an Integrator Who Did it Right.
We talk to a lot of integrators who want to build out their recurring revenue business but need guidance on where to start. When Louis Boulgarides bought Ollivier Corporation in 2015, the company had no recurring revenue, no service contracts and no managed services customers of any kind. Today his business includes $50,000 in RMR and growing, covering more than 400 doors and 40 buildings.
Recently we sat down with Louis to learn how he did it, and what advice he’d give other integrators looking to build their own RMR businesses.
Brivo: What were your initial goals for Ollivier Corporation when you bought it in 2015? How did increasing RMR fit into achieving your goals?
Louis: In 2015, the goal was to grow the company to $10 million and create $2 million of recurring revenue at the same time. We knew that this growth could not be achieved with only service plans, and that other products and services were going to be needed to hit these targets. I also wanted to build a recurring revenue base in order to stabilize the company, make the company less susceptible to an economic downturn, and make revenue less volatile.
Brivo: What staffing changes did you have to make to build your RMR business?
Louis: To support the effort, I hired immediately a Director of Managed Services, and a Program Manager. These roles were critical to the success of the program.
Brivo: What major operational changes did you and Charles make to support your desire to grow RMR?
Louis: Initially, we had to begin by creating the program. That meant creating a team and an ecosystem to support the effort, training staff, and updating contracts and marketing information to support the effort. I also had to put together a commission structure to encourage the salespeople to sell RMR.
Having a program director and a program manager allowed the salespeople to focus on opportunities without getting bogged down in the details of the construction of the plan and proposal to support the client.
Brivo: What were the biggest obstacles you had to overcome to increase RMR?
Louis: Our biggest challenge on our road to growing recurring revenue was the manufacturers. We were told multiple times that certain products could do certain things only to find out during the sales cycle, and sometime after deployment, that they could not do what we were promised.
Brivo: Why did you choose to partner with Brivo to build your RMR business?
Louis: While we had multiple partners, and prospective partners, that did not deliver on their promises, Brivo was rock solid. Our account representative was super responsive and extremely knowledgeable. Brivo fit our small-business needs perfectly and was simple to install and support.
Brivo: What advice would you give a fellow security business owner who wanted to transition from a transactional to a subscription-based business model?
Louis: Making the transition takes commitment. Working an RMR pipeline can be a much longer sales cycle than traditional install deals, and the immediate dollars may not be as large. I would recommend that a company have someone be the champion of the program and support the sales team in putting together deals. Never sell or deploy a product unless it has been thoroughly vetted. Make sure you have a compensation program for your salespeople that incentivizes them to sell RMR.
Do you have questions about how to build your RMR business? Join us for a Q&A webinar with Louis Boulgarides and his director of managed services, Charles Denney, on June 25th at 1pm ET.