Native Land Design was founded in 2001 in Cedar Park, Texas. As a leader in commercial landscaping services, they are strongly committed to both the environment and clients in the Office, Retail, Industrial and Community Management sectors.
In 2001, at the age of 23, Ben Collinsworth started Native Land Design in Austin, Texas. After six years of residential and commercial construction, the company shifted to focus on commercial maintenance.
The pivot was a success. In 2009, Inc. Magazine named Native Land Design one of the Fastest Growing Private Companies in America. The company now employees 250 people in peak season and exceeds 15 million in annual sales. They cover Austin, Houston and the McAllen area.
In 2015, Native Land Design became one of the first 30 companies to adopt Aspire’s business management software system.
“Aspire’s real-time analytics allows us to make better decisions, to bid better and to stay on top of labor costs. All of this contributes to making us more profitable…this is the biggest, most exciting benefit we get from the software. Every year we’ve been on Aspire, we’ve made more money.”
– Ben Collinsworth, Founder and CEO, Native Land Design
“Right off the bat, our people were up and running on the software because of the Aspire implementation process.” said Collinsworth.
This allowed the company to align front-line employees, sales and operations like never before. If a crewmember updated a work order, the account manager was notified. Similarly, the CTO could generate reports on outstanding estimates to encourage account managers to follow up. This “real-time” transparency allowed the company to align goals, which led to increased productivity.
The back office scrapped their outdated spreadsheets and standardized everything from bidding to billing. For the first time, they organized all contracts in a single repository, tracked expenses in real time, and standardized labor rates and markups across all work orders. Not only did this lead to a more consistent gross margin for the company—it freed up employees to concentrate on insurance, safety and other issues that had been on the back burner.
Before long, the benefits trickled down to the customers. Armed with real-time information on the progress of each job, account managers could follow up more quickly and thoroughly, and clients felt better informed. Up-sells increased. Client retention rose – this was critical.
Above all, Aspire helped the Native Land Design team increase net profits every year. “The analytics allow us to make better decisions and stay more on top of labor costs. All of this contributes to making us more profitable. Every year we’ve been on Aspire, we’ve made more money.”
Native Land Design achieved record-breaking growth and by 2017, the company had made the prestigious Top 100 list of Fastest Growing Aggie-Owned Businesses in the World for a third time.
By 2018, Native Land Design was being courted by several larger companies. In February 2019, they met with Yellowstone Landscape, one of the country’s largest commercial landscaping firms. One of the first questions Collinsworth asked was whether Yellowstone was using Aspire. When he learned they were in the process of implementing it, he knew it was a good fit.
“The benefits we’ve seen from Aspire have been so game-changing that I was unwilling to consider a buyer who wasn’t on the same page. The fact that Yellowstone used Aspire was part of why we wanted to work with them.”
Collinsworth saw that his company was about to grow from 4 branches to being part of a 34-branch company. With Aspire as the common language, he was confident that scaling would succeed.
Over the next five years, Collinsworth, who is still a part-owner, wants his company to become the go-to commercial landscaping company in all major Texas markets. As the company grows, he intends to apply the Aspire best practices he’s discovered at Native Land Design to every branch.
“I want to be able to show up to any branch and, within five minutes of looking at the dashboard, understand our job performance, potential enhancements and job costs. Aspire is crucial to achieving that vision.”