John Rivers never set out to create the most successful BBQ chain in Florida. 4 Rivers Smokehouse began in 2004 with the launch of the “Barbecue Ministry” - a cookout fundraiser to support a local family whose young daughter was battling cancer. This event sparked a passion for supporting the local community and in 2009 the first restaurant opened with a line around the corner.
Today, 4 Rivers Smokehouse operates 15 locations across the state of Florida and is as committed as ever to serving the people in their communities and the employees.
Photo Credit: 4 Rivers Smokehouse
- Jeff Palermo, Operating Partner at 4 Rivers Smokehouse
While having full-time staff dedicated to facilities was working to a degree, the overhead required wasn’t putting the business in the best position to scale.
“We needed to implement a process around maintenance across locations,” said Jeff. “What inevitably happened was stores just communicated directly with individuals and the structure was tossed out the window.”
4 Rivers had been operating with an internal R&M team for 11 years, but Jeff realized that there was an opportunity to bring in a technology-driven solution, without losing that critical human touch that was so important to the company.
In the past, he’d considered other facility management software tools, but every option felt complicated and impersonal. And at the end of the day, with a CMMS system or maintenance management system, his staff would still be responsible for inputting and managing their data and the entire repairs and maintenance process on their own.
When 86 Repairs was featured in an industry newsletter highlighting the unique offering of blending the benefits of technology and data and hands-on service, Jeff saw that he could simplify the repairs and maintenance process and work hand-in-hand with experts in the field - real people who would answer his team’s calls and manage the process for his team.
The 86 Repairs solution would give him so much more than a fancy dashboard.
Partnering with 86 Repairs would provide him actionable insights based on 4 Rivers equipment data and allow him to work with an extension of his internal team to handle R&M without the excessive overhead.
Since signing on six months ago, general managers feel more confident knowing that they don’t have to know the ins and outs of repairs & maintenance.
They just have to know the 86 Repairs number. When a service incident occurs, the team can text 86 Repairs and know that it’s handled.
When an incident is identified, a team member from 4 Rivers can communicate directly with a community manager at 86 Repairs in real-time, receive a fair quote for any necessary repairs, and get a technician dispatched to the restaurant without doing any of the legwork.
Jeff’s first taste of that responsiveness came through his interaction with Chris, an 86 Repairs team member who helped manage the repair of critical equipment in a closed restaurant in Atlanta. Chris went above and beyond to provide consistent communication and that personal, human touch that made Jeff and the 4 Rivers team feel that they were being cared for in their time of need.
“Every interaction with the 86 Repairs team has been the same. Communication is tight, everyone is responsive. This is just how 86 Repairs operates.”