You may know that Executive Vice President Kim Lochridge is one of ETS’ stellar performers, with national recognition as a cost segregation and R&D tax credit expert. But did you know that Kim is so solutions-driven, she’s formulated three significant initiatives to make ETS a better company? She’s always on the lookout for ways to improve business processes in our organization.
This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who knows Kim. A born entrepreneur since the age of 17, she’s created and run many businesses and is a real estate investor. When she joined ETS 13 years ago, there were only five or six other employees. She’s been instrumental in ETS’ growth.
First, two years ago, Kim noticed an opportunity in the way clients paid us. We let them pay us via credit card—and our credit card fees paid by ETS were racking up expenses of about $400,000 a year. Then she heard from a client about a company called QuickFee that specialized in online payments. Because QuickFee helped to set up where the client paid these fees instead of ETS, this naturally forced more clients to take advantage of the free ACH option.
“For a $10,000 setup fee, they made it possible for clients to pay us via either the ACH system or e-check,” she said. “Now we’re saving over $400,000 a year in unnecessary costs.”
Daniel Plant, VP and the head of ETS’ Marketing Department, noted that the $400,000 in annual cost savings is being plowed back into ETS to help to finance its national expansion and create more jobs. “Thank you, Kim!” he said.
Company Mentorship Program
Second, after fixing ETS’ payment problem, she devised a new initiative—she created a mentoring program in the firm where senior sales executives train their administrative assistants how to handle routine cost segregation and R&D tax credit data entry work, freeing up the executives to pursue sales. She started with her personal admin, Pam Pudlo, and she’s been amazed by the degree to which Pam has picked up on the essentials of ETS’ core business. Now Pam is teaching other admins how to do the same. Pam did so well she was promoted to oversee all the administrative assistants.
“I couldn’t have done this without Pam,” Kim said.
But that’s not all! For her third initiative, Kim noticed the unending bombardment of emails that was plaguing her team, with everyone replying to all and stuffing inboxes, so she created a group email account for her team, so team members could communicate with each other directly. She’s recommending that other Engineered Advisory executives do the same to cut down on confusing email barrages. The plan is to have these new email addresses implemented after the 4/15 tax deadlines.
With her innate entrepreneurial spirit, Kim continues to be a fountain of ideas designed to upgrade the Engineered Advisory family of companies. We could all do well to use our personal creativity and ingenuity to find new ways to improve EA. She’s certainly shown us how it should be done.
Hats off to Kim, and Kim, keep up the great work!