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Bellhops come to UConn

By Jessica Griffin
On February 24, 2014

A new moving service is coming to Storrs and is expected to create over a hundred new jobs on campus. Bellhops, a college-based moving company specializing in helping college students move, will be setting up a new location here at UConn, adding another location to over 100 other towns nationwide. Specializing in small and medium scale local moving, Bellhops is expecting to find business in the bustling college town of Storrs. Part of their purpose is not only to help college students move in and out of dorms and apartments, but also to employ primarily college students in the process.

The company was originally founded by two college students, Stephen Vlahos and Cameron Doody, in Auburn, Alabama. The founders were interested in entrepreneurship and found a largely untapped market: college movers. The company opened operations in 2011, and by 2012 they had business in 8 college towns. Today, they operate in 116 towns nationwide and the newest one is at Storrs. Tom McDougall, in charge of hiring new employees at the UConn branch, calls it "a new type of business". 

Marketing director Tripp Stanford says the company hopes to hire close to a hundred students at UConn

"The idea is to find a bunch of people who want to work on campus and those who pull through and want more jobs will claim them off the job board," Stanford said. 

The company is based on success due to motivation: the more the employee wants to work, the more shifts they can pick up from the "job board." The job board is where all moving jobs are posted and employees take them on a first come first serve basis. Because of this system, about 20% of employees, the most motivated ones, do the majority of the jobs. 

Bellhops began hiring UConn students on February 1st and they are still actively looking to hire at this point in order to have a solid employee base by the time May, moving-out season, comes around. Interestingly enough, despite the current job market, one difficulty of opening a new branch of Bellhops is getting new employees. 

"The guys up at headquarters always say, only about 10% of the people you talk to are going to be interested in working," Tom McDougall, of the UConn branch, said.

There are several benefits to working for Bellhops. The company asks customers for reviews of the attitude and efficiency of the student helping them move. These reviews are recorded by the company specific to each worker. If a previous worker asks Bellhops for a reference, the company can cite these good reviews to help the student secure their next job. Also, McDougall says that one of the best things about working at Bellhops is that if you work at the UConn branch, you can later work at another branch if one is present in your hometown. In conclusion, McDougall calls it, "an all-around awesome college job."

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