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Meet Mike Glanz of HireAHelper

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mike Glanz.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Mike. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I grew up a true San Diegan, surfing and skateboarding in between school and water polo practice. I started HireAHelper in 2007, about six months after graduating from Cal Baptist University, where I studied web design and development. During my senior year, I had two jobs. On the weekends I loaded and unloaded moving trucks with my Co-Founder, Pete Johnson. And during the week, I worked full-time as a software developer.

Essentially, I married the two jobs together by building a marketplace that enables people to find and hire hourly movers that will load and unload a rented moving truck, portable moving container, or a storage locker. By self-managing the movers and the transportation, people can save big on their relocation costs.

We call it “hybrid moving” because it’s part full-service and part D.I.Y. A full-service move normally costing $2,600 could be done for $800 using the hybrid approach. Today, we have 2,000 service providers in all 50 states and we conduct about 65,000 “hybrid moving” jobs each year.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
We’ve certainly faced some challenges over the years. In 2008, shortly following the launch of the company, HireAHelper was sued by UHaul for using the term “moving help” in its marketing materials. UHaul had trademarked the term and wanted to punish HireAHelper for infringement.

The lawsuit dragged out for 36 months, putting a very serious financial strain on the company and turning my life completely upside down. HireAHelper would eventually “win” in its defense of the suit, but not before it took a $250,000 financial toll on the company.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with HireAHelper – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
HireAHelper is an online marketplace for movers, providing both commercial and residential customers with the additional help they need to complete their relocation project. Using HireAHelper, people can find hourly movers that are local to them – and that can do all the heavy lifting associated with loading and unloading a rented moving truck or storage container. We call this the “Hybrid Move” because it’s half D.I.Y. move and half full-service move.

It combines the best of both worlds: the affordable parts of the D.I.Y. move and the convenience of the full-service move. All a customer has to do is enter their move date and their zip code where they need the help and they can instantly see local movers who are available on that day to help them. They can then compare prices and reviews, credentials, equipment, etc. and decide which mover is right for their needs and their budget, and then book them online in less than 5 minutes. We also have our own in-house customer service team to make sure all moves are going smoothly.

Being a marketplace, we really have two customers: the people who are moving, and the helpers that help those people move. So on the flip side, HireAHelper is a platform to help small labor-only moving companies run their business and get moving jobs. We’re constantly launching new features to their accounts to help them run their business easier and to make their jobs go smoother. We’ve also launched our Movers Academy section, which is a free resource to help train their crew members to be the best in the business.

Moving is expensive and it’s usually a miserable experience – so we’ve tried to address these problems with the launch of HireAHelper. For a few hundred dollars, consumers can now hire local moving professionals who will load and unload a rental truck or moving container. By foregoing the full-service move, which literally costs thousands of dollars, consumers can save significantly. And best of all, you don’t have to ask your friends to help you move.

Most people also appreciate retaining possession of their items throughout their moving process. There are a lot of bad actors in the full-service moving industry, and some people just aren’t comfortable letting someone drive off with all of their belongings.

HireAHelper not only helps provide the movers, but also the piece of mind that you’re in control of your possessions at all times.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
We will continue to work to grow the business and enhance the service by constantly improving site features and functionality. We’re also looking forward to playing a larger role in the local community.

Over the last few years, around Thanksgiving, we’ve hosted a Thanksgiving dinner for the Syrian refugee families looking to settle in the San Diego area. It’s been an incredibly rewarding experience and we’re looking forward to keeping the tradition alive this year, and in the years to come.

Also, we’re a very passionate sponsor of the International Justice Mission (IJM), Promise Child, and a safe house in Thailand called Supporting Heart – all organizations dedicated to ending child slavery and assisting child refugees by providing them with shelter, education, and basic medical needs. We’re looking forward to lending our continued support to these wonderful and important organizations.

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