Founded in March 2011 by Tshilidzi Ramulifho, Vhudihawe Cleaning Solutions (VCS) places emphasis on creating a tailor-made cleaning service based on the client’s needs and the full range of services on offer in the commercial and industrial sectors.
“We are striving to become an industry leader in green cleaning and to do this, the business is governed by 5 principles: honesty, competence, consistency, value for money and customer satisfaction,” says Tshilidzi. “I have always had an entrepreneurial flair, but starting VCS was a case of serendipity – a happy accident!” she says. “The fact remains that I grabbed the opportunity when it came along and have never looked back. It’s been and still is tough, but I love every minute of it.”
Based in Gauteng, Tshilidzi employs 3 full time staff members, with 8 part time employees, depending on the contracts she has at any given time. Employees are given regular training to ensure they have the right expertise. “My biggest challenge is proving to potential clients that I am capable of delivering a great service, despite the company being so young,” Tshilidzi reflects. “I’m trying to get more long term contracts by building a strong track record with the clients I have now.”
Her sales technique is about offering her clients three benefits of working with VCS; making money, saving money and saving time. “We do all this without compromising on the quality of the services we offer. Our equipment, environmentally friendly chemicals and consumables are carefully selected from reputable suppliers to ensure the best quality at a reasonable cost.”
Having taken part in the MEDO Foundation Business Skills Programme and the Supplier Development Programme, she says it helped her be more positive and strengthened her commitment to growing the business. “The knowledge I acquired was tremendous. Meeting the trainers from different industries and networking with other like-minded people was a mind-opener. MEDO forced me to step out of my comfort zone and helped me to broaden my avenues.”
Together with Tshilidzi’s vision of growing VCS into an established brand by building a strong client base of repeat customers, she is keen to assist her community by employing more people. This goal is well on its way to being achieved, as part of the Supplier Development Programme was the opportunity to present her business to a number of potential clients. “Being an entrepreneur is tough. You need character, strength, wisdom, perseverance and a lot of support from your family,” she says. “But hard work definitely pays off in the end. Don’t sit and wait for a Government tender!”
She remembers some hard lessons learnt along the way. “Once I quoted for a job without visiting the site, because it was too far. I under-quoted and it cost me a lot of money. The lesson: Always go to site and do a proper inspection no matter how far the area is or how urgent the quote is required. And always be present when your team is on site.” Tshilidzi concluded by saying that by holding firm that her success is based on sound and ethical business principles, she is on the cusp of great things to come.