President, Arkadia Pest Control
“It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made as far as growing the business”
Arkadia Pest Control
“Having the industry-specific (benchmarking) metrics is key when you’re making big decisions.”
How PCO Bookkeepers Has Helped Arkadia Pest Control Manage Growing Pains
Mark Constantino is grateful that his company, Arkadia Pest Control, continues to grow at 30 percent or more per year. But he acknowledges that such rapid expansion can be stressful. “When it was just me on the road 10 years ago, it was a lot easier to manage everything,” says the founder of the Randolph, N.J.-based company that focuses on the eco-friendly segment of the market.
Because of these growing pains, Mark is always on the lookout for smart moves he can make to get an advantage. One of those moves, he says, was hiring PCO Bookkeepers about eight years ago.
PCO Bookkeepers works with more than 300 pest control and lawn care companies across the U.S. to provide accounting, bookkeeping and CFO services; tax preparation and planning; and accounts payable management. PCO Bookkeepers also provides in-depth monthly benchmarking reports that compare clients to other firms in the industry.
Mark first met PCO Bookkeepers Managing Member Dan Gordon at a roundtable discussion at a New Jersey Pest Management Association meeting.
“We struck up a conversation, and he started showing me some numbers and how to track industry-specific information,” Mark recalls. “I was like, ‘Wow, I should really be on top of this stuff.’”
Soon after signing on as a PCO Bookkeepers client, Mark learned that working with the firm was about more than financial statements and monthly reports. Dan and the entire PCO Bookkeepers team have served as a sounding board for many of the major decisions Arkadia has made over the years, making recommendations that have helped Arkadia get to where it is today.
“It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made as far as growing the business,” Mark says.
Prior to going with PCO Bookkeepers, Arkadia had a local accountant. “I would ask (pest) industry-specific questions that she wouldn’t have the answers to,” Mark says. “When I met Dan I thought, ‘Wow, he knows the industry inside and out. I need this type of service because they understand the jargon and the industry.’”
For example, thanks to PCO Bookkeepers the team at Arkadia better understands the “rule of 23” – a popular pest control industry composite metric.
In additional to detailed financial statements, Mark gets a report outlining his company’s key performance indicators on a monthly basis in a format that benchmarks them against the rest of the pest control industry. These reports allow Mark to analyze details like whether his advertising budget is out of whack, whether he’s spending too much on materials and how he’s doing on labor.
“Every decision you make, if it’s eating into your bottom line, you have to rethink those decisions,” he says. PCO Bookkeepers is there to answer Mark’s questions and guide him along the way.
“I’ll reach out to Brian Post or Joe Sanford, and they’re always quick to respond to my questions, such as how much to pay a new technician, should we purchase a new service vehicle this year, are we spending too much on gas, how’s our routing this year?” he says. “As fast as Arkadia is growing, it’s good to be able to ask these questions to your accountants.”
PCO Bookkeepers also stepped in to help Arkadia navigate the murky Paycheck Protection Program loan process last year during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic chaos.
“That was huge,” Mark recalls. “It was a crazy process. I bugged them a lot, but they were patient and helped me with all my questions.”