In this exclusive Q&A, we learn more about AtWork Group and its commitment to being “AtWork For You” from its President and COO, Jason Leverant.
Franchise Chatter (FC): Jason, can you share a little about your background? How did you get involved in the staffing industry?
Jason Leverant (JL): My entry into staffing is similar to many who enter this industry, I truly fell into it. I was working as a Marketing Manager for a sporting goods company, Dunlop Sports Group, and found myself in a position that I needed to find a new job. The timing couldn’t have been worse for me – my wife and I had just had our first son – so I was doing everything I could to find my next job.
My wife suggested that I talk to a headhunter since they had helped my father find jobs in the past. Not knowing the difference, I ended up visiting a number of staffing firms. Every staffing company I visited let me know that they didn’t have any marketing positions available, but two firms asked me if I’d consider working for them in the branch. I interviewed with both firms and received job offers from both companies on the same day! It appeared that being in the staffing industry was where I was meant to be.
I ended up joining Randstad in 2005 and the rest is history! I joined AtWork Group in 2007 and have served as its President/COO since 2012.
FC: Can you tell us more about AtWork Group?
JL: AtWork Group is a national franchisor of staffing services. We live by our mission statement, to be “AtWork For You” for our franchise owners, our clients, and our employees. This hardcore focus on service has helped position us as the leader in staffing franchising and drives the industry-leading growth of our branch locations across the country.
AtWork Group was founded by John D. Hall, Jr. in 1986, and we have been franchising since 1992. The entire leadership team is committed to our service-focused mission statement and the AtWork “family” has been in stellar growth mode for the last eight years because of it!
FC: How many locations does AtWork Group currently have?
JL: We currently have 75 locations in 27 states.
FC: How has the AtWork Group brand evolved from its founding to where it is today?
JL: John Hall allowed me to “take the reins” in 2012 and has given me the opportunity to truly focus on the evolution and development of AtWork Group. We started as a small staffing company primarily servicing Southeastern markets, to a national staffing franchise opportunity offering cutting-edge solutions to our talent and clients.
We live by our mission, to be AtWork For You, which includes taking a hard look at EVERYTHING we do with a goal of improvement. That constant focus on getting better helps define who we are and how we approach franchising and staffing.
FC: What services do you offer?
JL: AtWork Group and its three programs, AtWork Personnel, AtWork Medical, and AtWork Search, offer service-focused, specialized solutions to meet the needs of our clients and talent.
FC: Could you describe the “AtWork for You” motto and how it shapes your brand?
JL: “AtWork For You” is a service-focused mindset that we take into account as we build the AtWork system. John Hall had a motto, we never lived by the thought “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Instead he challenged all of us “If it’s not broken, you’re not looking hard enough! Fix it anyways!” This mindset has helped us review everything we do and live in a constant state of improvement.
Additionally, we all recognize that as a franchisor in the staffing industry, we are service providers. Our success is derived directly from the service we offer to our franchise owners. That AtWork For You mindset has helped put that into perspective and truly elevated the level of service we provide to each owner.
FC: What are AtWork Group’s plans for growth over the next few years and long term?
JL: We have a goal for the franchise system of 15 percent year-over-year growth. This is five times industry forecasts, but is consistent with the level of growth we have experienced over the last five to seven years. If we can maintain this pace of growth for the next 10 years, we will see an overall revenue of $1 billion.
FC: What else differentiates AtWork Group from other recruiting and staffing businesses?
JL: Our primary differentiators are:
- Local ownership and its inherent impact on the quality of service provided by the branch location;
- Proven/validated service levels; and
- National support from the corporate office. AtWork Group corporate provides our locally-owned branches with cutting-edge solutions, processes, practices, technology, etc.
FC: What’s the typical investment to open an AtWork Group location?
JL: The total initial investment for a franchise ranges from $154,000 to $214,500.
FC: What makes AtWork Group an attractive opportunity for potential franchisees?
JL: The staffing industry as a whole has experienced tremendous growth, and is continuing to show a positive outlook for 2019 and beyond. This fact, coupled with our award-winning franchise opportunity, sets up our new franchisees with a highly successful opportunity from the very start. The relatively low cost-to-entry, the potential to generate cash flow quickly, and the very high potential upside from one location prove that the staffing industry with AtWork can be extremely attractive.
FC: How can people learn more about AtWork Group and its franchising opportunities?