Roofing's Next Generation: 2020 Edition

Crew Conductor | Q&A with Harrison Hodges

Atlas Roofing
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Harrison Hodges, co-owner of Hodges Brothers Roofing in Orlando, FL, loves to get his hands dirty and works as many jobs as he can. Demanding integrity and quality control, he manages his crews like an orchestra to ensure that every job is done right.

Q. When did you begin adapting technology into your business?
A: We began incorporating more tech initially with aerial measurements. This allowed us to give customers quicker estimates and cut down on material waste. Additionally, we started to send customers shingle boards via email and showcase the different colors on our website/social media.

Q. What measures did you take to ensure your roofing business could remain operational during COVID-19?
A: The most important step we took as a company to remain [operational] throughout quarantine was the fact that we prepare in times of harvest for times of famine. Every small-business owner knows that there are slow times and it is important to prepare financially to keep their employees working and paid. We treat our employees like family and, aside from their financial well-being, we implemented PPE to ensure their safety on the job. In fact, the PPE Atlas sent us was put to good use.

Q. How have you used technology to maintain employee morale during COVID-19?
A: We have initiated contactless estimating and really showcased our work recently by building up our social media presence. This keeps both our clients and employees engaged, as they know their product is out there to be appreciated. And the more clients we reach with social media advertising, the more positive work flow they have.

Q. Where was your last vacation? Was it hard to disconnect from your phone, computer, etc.?
A: My last vacation was to Vegas for the McGregor fight and then off to ski in Park City, UT. It is nearly impossible to fully disconnect and that's because I have such a personal investment in my company and employees. It is a blessing and a curse, but, thankfully, with today's world, it is easy to still feel connected so far away.

Q. Where do you see your roofing business in 10 years? How do you think/hope technology will evolve between now and then?
A: I believe as my generation ages and begins to actually own more houses, they will search for skilled labor more and more on the web. Word of mouth will always be a primary source for work, but, in our opinion, a large volume of future business will be captured by captivating clients online. My goal for the future is to continue offering more options to do business [virtually] — via document [and other digital] uploads and FTP files — and putting word-of-mouth [recommendations] online [and] on apps, for more than just [our customers’] friends and families to see.

Q. What’s your favorite thing about your job?
A: My favorite part of the job is managing the crews like an orchestra. They are an extension of me and the integrity I demand for the product we offer. The most important part of my job is quality control and that is best served first hand. I enjoy working as many jobs as I can, getting my hands dirty and ensuring a job well done, in person.

Q. If you hadn’t become a professional contractor, what do you think you’d be doing instead?
A: I would be trading stocks on the floor of Wall Street, pushing my way through the ocean of traders and enjoying a career where a/c was involved.

Q. What are you passionate about — personally and professionally?
A: I am passionate about my faith, family and CrossFit. I love staying fit and try to work out every day, even after a long one on the roof. As I get older, I have also developed an affinity for golf. Travel is another desire of mine and I cannot wait to see more of the world by travelling abroad.

Q. What are some of your hobbies?
A: [Hobby-wise], I enjoy fitness, movies, travel, trying new places to eat and weekend getaways.