e-Commerce Management Case Study: How hiring remotely helped this online store cut overhead

Eunan McKenna, the owner of Love Furniture, is one of the many satisfied Hubstaff clients who use time tracking to achieve greater efficiency. McKenna used Hubstaff to monitor performance indicators, manage his remote workers and grow his online team. He was kind enough to share his experience in e-commerce management with us. Read the highlights of his interview to learn more about how time tracking software can help you build a distributed team and use it to cut costs.

About the Company

 

LoveFurniture Logo | e-Commerce Management Case Study

Love Furniture is an online e-commerce store that has a selection of more than 8’ooo products on their website for customers to browse and order online at their convenience. The family-owned business aims to provide quality furniture products, and they’ve made waves in the furniture retail industry. The business model eliminates the need for queues, has lower overhead since they are completely virtual, and even offers free delivery within Ireland.

Their remote team handles customer support, content creation, sales and post-sales service. Some focus more on logistics, distribution and coordinating with customers for pickups. Other employees follow up for reviews, take care of marketing, SEO, social media and pay-per-click advertising.

Love Furniture currently employs four full-time employees, two part-time employees, and works with two freelance marketers. They use Hubstaff to track time remotely and monitor performance indicators to ensure maximum efficiency.

The Problem

We’ve been using virtual assistants for more than 3 years, and in the beginning it was 100 percent based on trust. I assigned tasks and received a bill for the work without any way of knowing whether my VAs were tracking time accurately. I tried a lot of time tracking tools before finding Hubstaff and had to deal with draining manual procedures and clunky software. On the pure trust arrangement, I wondered about the validity of the invoices almost every time I received one.

It wasn’t so much about the money, but the worry that someone was cheating us and getting away with it consistently. There was no way to know exactly how much work was being done, no way of justifying how busy the virtual employees were, and there was a lack of trust and security.

Before Hubstaff, we used Worksnaps but found it hard to use. I also tried a keylogging company that was on the verge of bankruptcy, which didn’t work out. Even when I began using Hubstaff, I still caught some employees trying to game the system, but the combination of activity tracking, app monitoring, Internet monitoring, and randomized screenshots allowed me to quickly identify dishonest employees.

The Solution

Transitioning Love Furniture to Hubstaff was a gradual process that made a big difference. I use the screenshots to see if work is actually being done and monitor the activity levels to keep track of productivity. The activity breakdown between mouse movement and keystrokes is useful for catching any employees who try to hack the system. Plus, I can use Hubstaff’s reports to quickly generate invoices in a few clicks.

As a business owner and a leader of a distributed team, I find a lot of value in being certain of the actual work being done. Hubstaff helps me in that with the time tracking and employee monitoring tools.

The Big Wins

"The decision to go with a remote setup helped us recruit people who can do more complex work". Eunan McKenna, Owner @LoveFurniture | e-Commerce Management Case Study

Most other businesses in the furniture industry don’t use remote workers, even though the virtual setup helps save on overhead costs. It can be incredibly draining to manage remote workers, but Hubstaff is one of the few tools out there that helps immensely. Without Hubstaff, it would be impossible to have a virtual staff.

Without Hubstaff, it would be impossible to have virtual staff -Eunan McKenna, Owner @LoveFurniture Click To Tweet

Hubstaff and the decision to go with a remote setup helped us recruit people who can do more complex work, produce better content, drive more traffic to the website and merit a higher hourly rate. Without time tracking tools, the hourly budget could easily be wasted on unproductive employees. Hubstaff helps save Love Furniture time, energy and money.

Before time tracking software, I didn’t employ many full-time virtual employees. Hubstaff helped me improve my e-commerce management abilities and expand my team to four full-time employees, two part-time, and two contractors. Having the right time tracking and monitoring tool allowed us to grow our team, which in turn grew the amount of products and aftersales offered, our ability to give support, and as a result the overall business.

Why Would You Recommend Hubstaff?

For time tracking with reassurance. If you recruit someone, you want to know that you’re getting what you pay for. When you get past two or three virtual people, you can’t talk to everybody who’s on your remote team every day. Hubstaff’s time tracking with screenshots gives us a better security that we’re getting quality work back for our money.

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