last updated 22/06/2022
On Site, On Point
last updated 22/06/2022
PeopleCare’s first franchisee launches mobile workplace health monitoring at the perfect time
Graham Macdonald is eager to get started as the country’s first PeopleCare franchisee. Even as we talk, Hayley Taipari, PeopleCare’s Business Development Manager, is waiting to take Graham to pick up his brand new company vehicle.
And this isn’t just any vehicle: it’s a workplace health monitoring mobile clinic, custom-fitted with leading-edge testing and diagnostic technology for hearing, vision, lung function and hand/arm vibration. PeopleCare takes occupational health testing and analysis to the industrial workplace – and it’s a massive opportunity.
Franchisees don’t need healthcare experience – just an empathy with people. Graham is a qualified graphic designer with experience in sales and marketing. Working in Australia for many years, he produced health and safety induction videos and other material for mines. Returning to New Zealand, he looked for a good opportunity in the Bay of Plenty, and that’s when he found PeopleCare.
Lots of advantages
‘It’s a business which ticked many boxes for me,’ explains Graham. ‘No lease or rent to pay, because you can run it from home. No waiting for clients to come to you – you go to them. Flexible hours for balancing work, family and leisure, and an opportunity to use my sales and marketing skills in an industry I know a bit about. Above all, it’s a fast-growing market backed by Government legislation.’
Graham continues, ‘From what I’m learning, workplace health and safety in New Zealand currently lags behind Australia but is in catch-up mode, especially for such high-risk industries as forestry, agriculture, residential and commercial construction, heavy engineering, port operations, painting and electrical work … the list goes on and on. For PeopleCare franchisees, this translates into almost limitless opportunity.’
Saving time, money and health
As Ian Kebbell, the founder of PeopleCare explains, ‘New Zealand employers have statutory obligations for annual workplace health and safety monitoring of various kinds, but a lot of businesses operate in areas where testing isn’t easily available so their staff need time off to comply. That creates a “productivity disincentive“ for employers to support regular testing. By bringing the PeopleCare mobile clinic to site, time off is reduced to a far more acceptable 20 minutes or so per employee. It saves businesses time and money, and helps them take better care of their people.’
When Graham first met with Ian and his team, he was impressed. Company-owned mobile clinics in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch have proven the concept with substantial portfolios of recurring work, while the system itself was developed by Franchize Consultants – one of the most respected names in franchising. The investment of around $200,000 +gst includes the mobile clinic which, as Ian notes, can be financed as an asset thereby reducing the capital required considerably.
And Graham says there was one more factor that made it the right opportunity at the right time. ‘Covid-19 has made many employers far more appreciative of staff health and wellbeing. I visited numerous sites with PeopleCare’s trainer/technician Niki Lambert, and saw that not only were people thrilled to get the check-up so easily and for free – it also reflected positively on their employers, who were happy to pay for the convenience of having the service on site. I see the growth and income potential of PeopleCare taking me a long way.’
No health background needed
While Ian is a former Wellington Free Ambulance paramedic as well as a successful businessman, Niki Lambert brings clinical laboratory qualifications and skills to the franchise.
‘As the first member of the franchisee support team, I’ve been involved in writing manuals and training programmes as well as managing software updates for testing and diagnostic equipment,’ Niki explains. ‘I’m also hands-on as the prime testing technician. For anyone with an empathy and interest in people this is a rare opportunity. Don’t worry about not having a background in health, wellbeing and occupational health – our internal and external training will quickly have you up to speed.
‘I find testing hugely rewarding, with regular feedback from employees on how much they appreciate their boss doing this for them. When there is a result that indicates an actual or potential health issue, our on-staff occupational health practitioner analyses and recommends mitigation actions.’
It’s going to be huge
Hayley Taipari says it’s easy to understand why the existing mobile workplace clinics are so busy. Her enthusiasm for the benefits of PeopleCare is infectious.
‘I’m part of the support package for all new franchisees and will be helping Graham launch in the Bay of Plenty. It’s my job to show employers just how simple and cost-effective PeopleCare is for them. There may be some initial reluctance, but I’ve yet to hear a complaint once we have started work – in fact, most clients quickly sign up for next year. Once New Zealand picks up on PeopleCare, it’s going to be huge.
‘Now’s the time to contact Ian – and take PeopleCare to your region.’
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