Laundryheap: 5x increase in applicant volume and 3x increase in recruiter productivity
Laundryheap is a laundry and dry cleaning company that delivers to customers’ doorsteps in as little as 24 hours. Founded in 2014 in London, the company operates in 11 countries across Europe and Southeast Asia.
In 2022, Laundryheap acquired Laundrapp, becoming the leader in the laundry delivery service market. The company partners with local laundromats, and to use the service, customers can simply submit a request via the app and have their clothes picked up, cleaned, and delivered to their home within 24 hours. In addition, they have a strong focus on sustainability. Laundryheap is investing in the largest fleet of electric delivery vehicles, offering customers the ability to recycle hangers and reuse laundry bags, working with cleaning partners who use environmentally friendly detergents and they are currently a leader in operational laundry sustainability.
Discovering a solution to growth challenges
In 2014, Deyan Dimitrov and Mayur Bommai founded Laundryheap. They anticipated a slow start, with only one partner driver completing a couple of orders per day. But within the first few weeks it multiplied quickly, and within months, there were full scale operations covering the whole of London. The co-founders recognized an empty space in the market and needed to find a way to source and onboard partner drivers fast. Their manual processes wouldn’t be enough to keep up with demand.
Before Fountain adaptation, Laundryheap’s manual hiring processes weren’t only inefficient, but they were also largely ineffective. Because candidates are often balancing multiple jobs and schedules, founders would call applicants at different times of the day just hoping an applicant would pick up the phone.
After a few years of hiring partner drivers using these manual hiring processes, the team began to struggle to meet increasing demand. Laundryheap knew that it was time to seek out a hiring solution when they had no choice but to limit incoming orders because of the limited number of available partner drivers. They started searching for an applicant tracking system (ATS) to streamline hiring and enable scalability to meet their growing demand. When Bommai discovered the automation capabilities of Fountain and the potential it offered to free up time for the recruitment team, he was eager to learn more.
“Fountain gives our recruitment team the bandwidth to invest in personalized one-on-one onboarding sessions with our partner drivers,” said Bommai. “This lets us set them up for success from day one.”
Scaling hiring rapidly with a small recruitment team
When Laundryheap partnered with Fountain to improve hiring, the startup was able to process applicants at higher volumes and at faster speeds, without having to increase the team headcount. First, they set up a workflow that could automate many of the processes recruiters had to do manually, such as capturing applicant data and scheduling interviews.
Creating auto rules has allowed the Laundryheap team to focus only on the candidates who meet all qualifications, contributing to the three times improvement in recruiter productivity the company has seen with Fountain. Their workflows send quality candidates right to the recruiters’ inboxes so the team can concentrate on delivering the best experience to the candidates who are a great fit. One example of an auto rule is when terminated partner drivers reapply for a position, but Laundryheap has a rule set up to have an extra layer of verification if they are still eligible to partner again based on previous information.
Empowering candidates to schedule an interview time that works best for them has drastically reduced the back-and-forth between the recruiting team and candidates. Candidates can also cancel or reschedule interviews from their end, simplifying the hiring process even further and allowing the Laundryheap team to onboard high volumes of candidates quickly. In total, the Laundryheap team has seen a 50% decrease in time-to-hire.
One of the major problems Laundryheap faced before Fountain was the inability to find enough qualified candidates to meet the demand of their growing business. But with Fountain, they’re able to post to multiple external job boards without leaving the platform, resulting in a massive increase in top-of-funnel applicants and increasing their application-to-onboarding rate to 17%.
“With Fountain, we began to receive nearly five times more applications than we were accustomed to,” said Bommai. “We were able to easily manage this massive boost in applicant volume using Fountain’s filtration capabilities, which use automation to qualify candidates and reject applications that don’t meet role criteria. Before Fountain, this qualification process was painfully slow and was manually managed using phone calls and spreadsheets.”
Delivering personalized customer experiences at scale with automation
Fountain enabled Laundryheap to combine automation with personalization to deliver an excellent candidate experience that sets each applicant up for success. One feature the Laundryheap team values is Fountain’s SMS functionality, which allows recruiters to send personalized and automated text messages to candidates throughout the hiring process.
Laundry and dry cleaning customers tend to have different expectations than customers of other delivery services as it involves handling personal items: There is face-to-face interaction, and the items they ask to be serviced are often valuable to the customer. Therefore, Laundryheap wanted to ensure their partner driver selection process included the appropriate qualification steps to onboard the right caliber.
For example, Laundryheap uses a filter to move forward applicants who are proficient in the primary language of the country where the job will take place: “The partner driver role requires them to be able to communicate effectively with customers to provide the best service,” said Bommai. “With Fountain, we are able to filter out any candidates who do not meet that requirement.”
Setting their partner drivers up for success not only helps them but also helps Laundryheap deliver on their value of excellent customer service. One way Laundryheap ensures their partner drivers are prepared for the role is by enrolling them in a comprehensive onboarding program. During this time,Partner drivers learn how to manage the types of tasks they’ll be faced with every day, from communicating with customers to remembering hangers and laundry bags for each delivery.
In addition to delivering the best applicant and customer experience, Laundryheap’s small recruitment team is responsible for processing approximately 9,000 applications per year. Before Fountain, the process was completely manual, but with Fountain, they’ve been able to maintain the size of their team while also scaling their business.
“Fountain quickly started paying us back,” said Bommai. “When it was just a few of us and we had double the partner drivers, we didn’t have to increase the team. Then when we had three times the hiring, we also didn’t have to increase the team. Without Fountain, the team would have had to be four or five times larger than our current team.”
“Sometimes the candidate may forget about an interview, which is quite possible because partner drivers have their own busy schedules,” said Bommai. “With Fountain, we can always follow up with SMS on the days they’re supposed to come. There are automatic rule engines we can put in place.”
“We require a large funnel of applications to minimize natural attrition of partner drivers,” Bommai said. “Yet managing the applications manually was preventing us from scaling and moving as quickly as we would like to.”
Fast and seamless expansion into global markets
During the COVID-19 pandemic, as many other businesses, Laundryheap too saw a decrease in demand in their primary locations, so they decided to use the downtime to launch Laundryheap in new countries. With Fountain, they were able to expand to these new markets without needing to have boots on the ground.
Some countries, like Singapore, were completely new territory for Laundryheap, but with the help of Fountain, they were able to partner with facilities and partner drivers in this new geography, all without ever stepping foot in the country.
“These are opportunities we got because of platforms like Fountain,” said Bommai.
International expansion was fast and easy thanks to Fountain’s customizability, which enabled Laundryheap to post openings and use language that aligned with the country’s labor regulations. Fountain’s document-signing capabilities allowed Laundryheap to make fast changes to legal documents depending on the country.
Scaling to meet demand at any speed
The ability to automate for scalability and speed is what has helped Laundryheap reach their current level of success. Bommai believes their emergence as the market leader in the on demand laundry and drycleaning service is a result of Fountain’s ability to source and onboard partner drivers quickly, enabling them to meet demand while also investing time and energy into them to deliver a quality customer experience.
When they acquired Laundrapp in 2022, they absorbed Laundrapp’s customer base, which resulted in an immediate increase in demand. This would have been a massive challenge if it wasn’t for the flexibility of Fountain, which made it incredibly easy for them to dial up their hiring efficiency and volume to meet any level of demand.
“I think for every part of the business, you need these scalability tools,” said Bommai. “Otherwise you’ll have a bottleneck, and then the things can come crashing down.”
Laundryheap continues to use Fountain to enable their team to meet market demand and scale their growth.