Looking back, creating an A/E/C start-up during the brutal recession of the early 2000’s sounds like the worst timing imaginable. Seems like a great way to lose everything, a great way to regret chasing a dream, a great way to move back in with your parents. What it doesn’t sound like is the beginning of a success story that defies all logic and luck, and proves that three people with a big dream can actually become more profitable than they ever imagined. Here goes Ampirical’s incredible story.
Let’s get this straight: Ampirical isn’t just successful—it is nationally recognized and shattering predictions by growing over 2,000% in revenue in the last 7 years.
Ampirical went from a 3-employee start-up to being in the Top 25 of Engineering on Inc. Magazine’s Top 500|5000 fastest growing private companies in just 7 years. And they can actually pinpoint why.
Ampirical, By the Numbers
- Staff growth over 7 years = from 3 employees to 77
- Percentage staff growth = 2,466%
- Engineering revenue in 2006 = $391,000
- Engineering revenue in 2012 = $9,375,000
- Revenue growth = 2,297%
OK, seriously—a comma? Who has a comma in their growth percentage? What exactly is Ampirical doing that makes them so amazing?
First of all, their engineering, architectural and surveying work is heralded as a benchmark in the industry, and companies from all over the country seek them out for it. No cutting corners there!
Second, they prioritize beautifully and their office efficiency is off the charts; so they’re running at maximum billable hours at all times. For those office management tasks, they credit BillQuick for speeding up their cash flow and helping them “spoil” their regular clients. Here’s how it breaks down:
1. Speed Up Cash Flow
Pamela Flucke, CPA and Controller at Ampirical, explains, “BillQuick sped up the invoicing process immensely because all the required information for our workflow is kept in one spot. Previously, we kept time and expense entries in QuickBooks, and we had to sync time. Now we’ve eliminated that step entirely. It’s a lot more user-friendly. For example, with QuickBooks, we could only manage to create and send 20-25 invoices a month. Now we’re able to do 100+ invoices a month. It’s grown by leaps and bounds. So, as a result our cash flow has improved due to faster cycle time. We typically email instead of manual mail and that saves time too.”
2. Manage Budgets Better
Knowing where you stand with regards to the budget is easy when you can automate reporting, Flucke explains. “Project managers are running reports in BillQuick and having them delivered to their email every Monday morning, so instead of having to manually check how many hours they’ve spent so far and how many they have left in their budget, they just know. They’re also starting to manage their employee’s utilization levels with that. They don’t have to think about it—it’s one less thing since it’s automatically generated.”
3. Keep Clients Coming Back
When asked if it helps her juggle clients easier, Pamela laughs, “Yes! And each one wants to see something different on the invoice. We’ve up to 20 custom invoices; we’re very accommodating to clients in that way—we like to spoil them. Most of them are repeat clients.”
Here’s How They Made All That Money
While the rest of their staff grew 60% from 2010-2012 and the number of invoices, time sheets and reports grew exponentially, they didn’t have to expand their admin staff. They only added more engineers and specialists to provide even better services; as a result, their revenue skyrocketed without adding overhead for non-billable staff.