The roofs we live under today are a far cry from the straw-thatched roofs of the mid eighteenth century. Often equipped now with durable material and smart technology, the modern-day roof is fit more than ever for its intended purpose. That is, safety and protection for us, our families, our belongings, and everything else that builds a home. “Everyone needs one,” says Jake Ackerman, Founder and CEO of RoofTek. “With ninety-nine percent of the population living with a roof over their heads, we see roofing as one of those basic human needs.”
RoofTek is a Utah-based roofing contractor and franchisor selling franchises across the United States. One of the highest rated roofers in the nation, RoofTek’s success stems from their total commitment to quality and a dedication to always deliver the best value in the industry. Over the years the RoofTek team has completed thousands of rooftop installations, from affordable re-roofs to complex solar installations. It is RoofTek, therefore, who have quite literally put a roof over much of the country’s heads.
It was Jake’s love of nature that led him into the roofing business and ultimately to the founding of RoofTek. “I love the amazing wonder that our planet is,” says Jake, “and we as inhabitants are burning fossil fuels and consuming a lot.” Intrigued by the great potential in harnessing energy from the sun, Jake joined a solar company as a sales advisor in an attempt to further understand that potential. A few months later and equipped with the skills he needed to effect real change, Jake founded RoofTek. From then on it was full speed ahead into roofing, with solar naturally remaining a big part of the business. RoofTek have established themselves as trusted solar experts, leading the way in planning, engineering and installing utility grade solar systems.
“If there’s tech on your roof, it’s RoofTek,” is how Jake puts it. This idea of tech on your roof is embedded into the RoofTek name, and it doesn;t stop with solar. As well as commercial and residential roofing and solar paneling, RoofTek are now in the business of Permanent Holiday Light installations. Invisible by day, these lights tie right into the metal on the soffit and fascia of the roof where they stay all year round. These lights can then be controlled through an app on your smartphone that allows you to choose colors, pattern and animation, all using LED light technology. It is this kind of innovative technology that is elevating the industry to new heights, and it’s RoofTek who are leading the way in installing it.
When you peel back the curtains of the industry it is the expert quality roofers who are out there getting the work done, and Jake gives us an insight into how those relationships are managed within the company. “While we see ourselves being in the roofing business,” Jake says, “we also know that we are in the people business, the onboarding business, the business of creating a track where people can be successful. I wake up everyday and think: how do I build on and further improve that success track?” RoofTek have yielded tremendous success from investing in employees and subcontractor relationships, enlisting good people in the cause and providing them with mentorship at every turn. They provide fair pay and health benefits that workers may not have found elsewhere, providing them with the tools they need to “level up and change their lives.” RoofTek ensure that every estimator, project manager and lead installer that arrives at your door is a Field Certified roofer, with a fully-trained team who adhere strictly to RoofTek installation guidelines. “All of the crew leads have access to our computer management software where they can read notes, take pictures, make notes and follow directions.” This high level of communication and consistency across the board is what sets RoofTek apart as roofing contractors, ensuring always that customer experience, accountability and quality is at the core of what they do.
“RoofTek have yielded tremendous success from investing in employees and subcontractor relationships, enlisting good people in the cause and providing them with mentorship at every turn.”
Jake believes that “if there are strengths there are strengths of leadership, if there are weaknesses there are weaknesses of leadership.” As RoofTek continues to grow and develop their team, they do so with a heavy focus on leadership. It is this leadership that has seen the company yield huge results when it comes to growth. “If you want to grow as a business,” Jake says, “you’ve got to grow as a leader.” Jake, who has always been an entrepreneur, has grown as a leader within RoofTek to land at a place where he truly sees himself as a CEO. “As I grow and the leadership team grows and we learn how to deliver that success track – that’s really what I think has made the biggest difference in our growth.”
The growth that Jake speaks of is in both scale and revenue, and it has been a significant uptick since RoofTek first came to life. The first year in business saw a turnover of $4.5 million, a figure that doubled in the following year to $9 million, thus setting a trend that was indicative of how the next few years would play out. During this period of growth RoofTek added reroofing and repair services to the business, as well as spray-on products that help extend the life of a roof and most recently, franchising. “In our first year of franchising we’ve sold ten units and we’re in the process of getting them up and operational.” Just last year, as a result of such growth and new opportunities, RoofTek finished up on $31 million in revenue. “It’s gratifying when a plan comes together,” Jake says when speaking about some of RoofTek’s growth milestones. “You decide where you want to be, you task your team, create clarity and roles, and then later you get to sit in a quarterly meeting and say hey, we did it!”
While RoofTek has experienced exceptional growth in recent years, they are only scratching the surface of what can be achieved, and certainly what they plan to achieve within the industry. In talking about the company’s vision Jake refers to RoofTek’s North Star. “What gets us out of bed besides the paycheck?” he asks. The roofing industry in North America does not yet have a unified, go-to brand when it comes to all things roofing. In this, Jake sees an opportunity to become to roofing what Kleenex is to tissue or what Levi’s is to jeans: a household name. “So if someone’s got something going on with their roof, we want them to say without hesitation, I’m gonna call RoofTek.” Sometimes it just makes sense to, pardon the pun, put everything under the one roof. This streamlining of services is happening in so many other industries, and so when it comes to roofing an ambitious and forward-thinking Jake asks the question, why not us?
Jake’s high hopes for the future of RoofTek is reflective of his positive outlook on the roofing industry as a whole. In speaking on this he calls to mind a saying: there’s only so much land out there and god’s not making any more of it. With the population growing in density and land becoming scarcer, we need to start thinking of roofs as assets and figure out how to maximize them to our advantage. “The industry is going in an exciting direction and I’m excited to be one of the people that’s trying to figure out how best to utilize that asset up there,” Jake says. The thing that was once a straw-thatched layer of weak protection is now a powerful force for change, and in order to put that change into practice we need companies like RoofTek in the driver’s seat. “A roof is not a liability you have to deal with every twenty-five years,” Jake offers in his closing thoughts. “If we can find a better way to use them by making them last longer, harnessing the power of the sun, or spending some time in sanctuary up there, we can use them to improve our quality of life. The world is our acorn. It’s just about finding the right people to help make it all happen.”