Uber-like moving company Bellhops has grown so much in the Minneapolis market, it says it needs more movers to help it through its busy summer season.
Operating in nearly 90 cities across the country, Bellhops connects college students to small- and medium-scale moving and lifting jobs that cost customers an average of about $160. The company hopes to field 150 applications from Twin Cities area college students to keep up with growing demand.
“Thanks to mushrooming demand, we must drastically increase the number of ‘bellhops’ we have in the field. It’s that simple,” said Matt Patterson, Bellhops’ chief operating officer, in a statement.
Bellhops originated at Auburn University in Alabama as a service that helped parents move their children into college dorms. In 2013, the company grew to provide residential and commercial services.
Bellhops service has been available in the Twin Cities since 2013. Last year, Bellhops’ local market number of moves grew by 300 percent compared to the year before. Minneapolis is among the top 25 best-performing markets for the company.
David Martin, Bellhops’ communications director, attributed a lot of the company’s local growth to its campus director, Tyler Seaberg, who plays on the basketball team at Macalester College. Martin said Seaberg’s recruits included other athletes.
“Once we had a labor force, Minneapolis is a big enough place where moves are happening every day,” Seaberg said.
After completing successful moves, Bellhops started to develop connections with apartment landlords and other customers who recommended them to others, Seaberg said.
Peak moving season typically lasts June through August, which often coincides with students’ summer break.
Potential customers book a move online or over the phone and then local bellhops are notified via a smartphone application to claim the job on a first-come, first-served basis. Bellhops service is between “booking a traditional moving company and asking your friends for help,” Martin said. At this time, truck rentals aren’t available in the Minneapolis market.
Bellhops are paid between $13 and $15 per hour. They have to be at least 18 years old and current college students. Bellhops does background checks on all employees, who also are regularly rated by their fellow workers as well as customers. Applicant acceptance rate has been about 50 percent, the company said.