Reader’s Choice: Services winner and finalists

BANK

Stockman Bank

It’s hard to think of an institution that is more fundamentally Montanan than Stockman Bank. It has served Montana for nearly 70 years. “We are a fourth generation, Montana family-owned bank” the company says. But its popularity does not rest only on being from home. It is truly a full-service bank. “We offer one-stop banking for every member of your family, from savings accounts for kids, home loans for first-time buyers, small business loans, to insurance and wealth management services.”

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What makes you stand out from the competition?

1) Our employees for sure. Our employees sincerely care about our customers and being Montana owned and operated allows them to fully take care of each and every customer.

2) We only bank in Montana. Therefore we are only focused on Montana. So our friends and neighbors really are banking with a Montana Bank.

What brings customers back to your business?

Stockman Bank has a great reputation across the state in every community that we serve. Our customers know they are our priority and will be treated well.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

We are approaching our 70th Anniversary in 2023 and will be celebrating 70 years of service to our neighbors across the state next year.

What makes your business a good place to work?

Our culture. Our employees have a voice, opportunity for career growth and the ability to make decisions.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

A smile, someone that knows their name, and great personal service.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

It’s awesome – especially for our employees. They are the reason Stockman Bank was voted the Best of the Best.

What are you most proud of?

We are most proud of the fact that Stockman Bank is a true, Montana community bank. We live and breathe Billings and we truly support and promote our neighbors.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

Our dedicated employees. Customer service is not a cliché at Stockman Bank. It’s the real deal. Every customer is important.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

We give back to our community through financial donations and countless volunteer hours. We strive to make a difference and believe there is more than one way to have a positive impact.

How do you build trust with clients (or patients, customers)?

It’s about one-on-one relationships. Our clients quickly find out that our talented bankers are knowledgeable, responsive, and consistently work hard to exceed expectations.

Fun fact about your business?

We are Montana’s largest, privately held, family-owned bank with 35 statewide locations and six located in the Billings area to better serve our customers.  

  • First Interstate Bank, 730 Main St.
  • Western Security Bank, 2812 1st Ave. N

BUSINESS PROMOTIONAL PRODUCTS

Graphic Imprints

This is a new category for the Readers’ Choice award. Who knows how many years Graphic Imprints would have won the award in previous years? This company’s success is based on a succinct motto: “Do what you say you are going to do, when you say you are going to do it, in the way you said you were going to do it.” That’s the way to build client trust.

What makes you stand out from the competition?

We do 90% of our business in-house.

What brings customers back to your business?

In any business there are errors. We pride ourselves on making sure we fix those errors no matter what the cost.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

We can produce over 2,000 hats in one day.

What makes your business a good place to work?

The culture here is family. We laugh, we cry and we smile together.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

The friends and relationships we make every year with every order.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

A unique experience. All of our customers are handled in a very personal way and will always be assured a special experience and a great product.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

This is the first year for our category and we are super honored and blessed to have received the first award for this category.

What are you most proud of?

At least 90% of our business are return customers. We are very proud of that.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

“Consistency” – Great Customer Service means doing it all the time (Not just when you feel like it). “Exceeds the needs” – Wowing the customer, not just giving them satisfaction. “The customer” – Great Customer Service treats the customer as an individual, rather than as a group or company.

What makes your business popular?

We carry more than 5,834 different products and we do 90% of everything in house.

Fun fact about your business?

Combined, we have more than 188 years of experience. 

  • Econo Print, 3211 1st Ave. N
  • ML Schuman Co Promotional Products and Apparel, 715 Grand Ave.

COMPUTER REPAIR STORE

Billings tech Guys

Want to stay in business for eight years, or 100? Be the first name people mention when someone asks them, where should I go?

“Trust is built over time with our customers,” says Billings Tech Guys. “It helps having a big community presence and many new customers are coming to us because of a referral. Once you have received a service with us, you realize that we are very knowledgeable and easy to work with.

What makes you stand out from the competition?

Billings Tech Guys is 100% local. We started over eight years ago focusing on providing superior technical services to the Billings community. We know the community and love working with everyone. We have a well-trained team of technicians that can help you on-site and in-store for all your tech needs.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

Customers may not know of all the services we offer. We specialize in Business IT Managed Services and Computer Repair, but we have a portfolio of services, web design and social media marketing, home theater and tv wall mounting, smart home, iPhone repair and drone and 3D tours. Many customers are pleasantly surprised when they walk in the store to see the wide selection of products and brands we carry such as Dell, Microsoft, Samsung, Netgear, Ubiquiti, Google, Ring, Sonos and many more!

What makes your business a good place to work?

We have built a great team over the years. Everyone is very knowledgeable and enjoys working with both customers and technology. We cultivate a fun and exciting environment where we are always learning new technology while keeping a light and fun atmosphere.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

We treat all our customers as family. When customers walk through the door here at Billings Tech Guys, they can expect an employee ready to help them with great knowledge and the utmost care for the customer. We find it very important to start every customer encounter with a smile! 

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

It means the world to our team to be voted Best of the Best the last 4 years in a row. We strive to be the best with all the services we offer, and our team works hard to achieve it. Being voted Billings Best validates all the hard work our team has put in and are thankful to be part of such a great community.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

First, making sure your own employees are happy and that they are coming to work enjoying their job. If they are excited to come to work with the mindset of making all customers have a better day, your customer service will be top notch. 

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

One of the many ways our company gives back to the community is during our “donations for a cause” month. Every January, Billings Tech Guys donates $1 per recycled or donated electronic device to a local charity. The last couple years we were proud to donate to Tumbleweed here in town, a very worthy donation. We are also partnering with Family Service to provide a Fresh Start Computer Program. The program provides students with a computer and teaches those in need the basic computer skills.

What makes your business popular?

Being a local business with a great team, we continually help repeat customers that reach out to us for one issue or upgrade, which then will lead to another service in the future. People enjoy being able to come to one spot for ALL their tech needs. We are very knowledgeable in all areas of technology. We love being able to help our customers!

  • Rimrock Computer Company, 2320 Zoo Dr. D
  • Tesla’s Cellular Repair and Wholesale, 111 S 24th St W Unit 2 5

CREDIT UNION

Montana Health Federal Credit Union

Montana Health FCU is chartered specifically to serve those who work in health care. “We specialize in helping serve the financial needs of this group of exceptional people,” the company says. It is surely a testament to its popularity that it should win first place in our city-wide readers’ poll even though it directly serves only a segment of the city’s population. Montana Health FCU obviously has won the loyalty of a great number of its potential members. As they say, “we are a small, tight-knit group with a very clear mission.”

What brings customers back to your business?

We offer the latest in banking technology and still have that small credit union feel.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

Montana Health is chartered to serve health care workers throughout all of Montana, northern Wyoming and parts of North Dakota.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

We serve the whole state, but we secretly know that Billings has the best health care workers anywhere.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

Someone to say hello to them by their first name.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

There are some amazing credit unions in Billings that provide incredible service. It means a lot to receive this honor when we consider how wonderful all the other credit unions in town are.

What are you most proud of?

A staff that truly cares about the financial lives of our members.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

A mixture of low and high tech. We have provided all the electronic services our members have asked for, including our new super fancy ITM’s at our 27th Street office. But we still spend a lot of time talking with our members on the phone or face-to-face in the lobby.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?:

We donate a lot of time and money to the foundations of our employer organizations. Our signature donation is our Philanthropy Card – a debit card that donates interchange income back to hospital foundations – and has a picture on the front designed by the hospital foundations.

How do you build trust with clients (or patients, customers)?

We speak plainly about finances, not with jargon. We also meet members where they are — the healthcare community in Billings is a large group with very diverse financial needs. We try to guide people wherever they are at on their financial journey.

What makes your business popular?

Two things: 1. We really do provide truly personalized services; and 2. We give back a lot to the healthcare community.

Fun fact about your business?

A precursor to our credit union (which we absorbed in the 1970’s) was in business in Billings as early as the 1950’s. Billings has had a healthcare focused credit union for almost 70 years.

  • Altana Federal Credit Union, 219 N 25th St.
  • Valley Credit Union, 207 N Broadway

CUSTOM FRAMING STORE

The Frame Hut & Gallery

Over 50 years in business

Don’t let the fact that The Frame Hut has won the readers’ choice award for the best custom framing store blind you to the additional fact that The Frame Hut is much more. As explained by the company: “We are much more than just a custom framing business. We offer a variety of works by regional artists, artisan jewelry, home décor, and much much more. From hand-made greeting cards, leather journals to great small gift ideas, our Gallery has a variety of price points to make it affordable for all to enjoy along with complimentary gift wrapping for Christmas and birthdays and personal gifts upon request.”

What brings customers back to your business?

Our customers have expressed to our employees what a relaxing atmosphere we have at The Frame Hut & Gallery. They comment on our large variety of styles of art, diverse gifts, and most importantly the friendly and prompt service they received. Each and every customer is very important to us and we do our best to make their time here enjoyable.

What makes your business a good place to work?

It gives a person the ability to be challenged to use their artistic and creative design abilities as you just never know what project you’ll be working on next. From sports memorabilia, sentimental findings, children’s art, to museum artifacts, there is an endless variety of what one can frame. We also enjoy what we do and together craft a great supportive team.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

Store owner Helen Tolliver says, “We have such a wonderful community and so, having grown up here in Billings, it makes having this business even more rewarding.” One of the best facets is showcasing talented artist’s work from the community and seeing how much it is appreciated. Our community also is local-centric in that they support “shop local”, which supports our artists as well.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

When a client comes through our doors, they can expect exceptional Montana and regional artwork, friendly service and a peaceful atmosphere. The Frame Hut & Gallery is a place not only to receive quality custom framing but a tranquil Art Gallery setting that one can experience the talent of our artists. Art truly is food for the soul.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

It is an amazing accomplishment as we work hard to be the voted Best of the Best. This award is a great encouragement to our team as we see how crucial it is to keep taking pride in and keep putting the best into each project whether large or small. Every piece receives expertise and quality work with that special finishing touch. It’s such an honor to work with our customer’s treasures and we appreciate their trust. This is the 13th year in a row to have received the Reader’s Choice Award for Best Custom Framer. We at The Gallery consider it an absolute honor to have been chosen. Our passion is to create a quality frame design that will stand the test of time and it is with deep gratitude and thankfulness to have the opportunity to serve Montana in that regard.

What are you most proud of?

Through creativity, we are most proud our enduring designs through individual creativity. Whether it’s to create with the parent and design a heartfelt project of a child’s special drawing for a loved one, or a certificate of accomplishments achieved by a customer or someone close to them, we are framing treasures. It is an honor to frame these pieces that will capture those memories of happiness for years to come.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

We do our best through listening, encouraging, caring, and offering expertise and kindness each step of the way to achieve what our customer desires for their piece. We design personal art on a daily basis for others through their choices on custom framing designs and home accent pieces. The ability to listen to a customer is key. We believe in a firm foundation of quality customer service and it is of the utmost importance. We not only want to meet expectations but exceed them and that is what we truly take joy in.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

The local community has been a great supporter of the arts. We feel it’s very important to show support for local causes such as Ronald McDonald House. We have also supported the Billings Clinic Classic, Family Service, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Big Brother, Big Sister, Saints, Huntley Project FFA, and other fundraising causes as well.

How do you build trust with clients (or patients, customers)?

We listen to our customers and do our best to meet their needs and provide a quality product they will be proud to display. We try to give sound advice and follow through in a timely manner to produce the Best Of The Best.

Fun fact about your business?

From our family business to your family, we are all about relationships. It’s from the years of being here in Billings that you get to know parents along with their children. It’s not unusual to have three generations shopping together with us at one time. Sometimes our customers tell us of past memories of shopping here with family members. The gallery is a family or friend bonding place, like that certain baked cookie fragrance connected to good memories with family and friends.

  • Hobby Lobby, 2425 Central Ave.
  • Rimrock Art & Frame, 1070 S 24th St. W.

ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR

4-OHM-6 Electric

When your business brings you inside your customers’ homes, first impressions are everything.

That’s why the employees of 4-Ohm-6 will always arrive at your home well-dressed and ready to work.

“With our business it is not so much walking through our doors as much as it is us walking through the customer’s doors,” says owner and master electrician Brandt Myers. “Whether it’s a place of business or residence, we will always be in logoed gear, clean dressed with a smile and greeting, ready to work.”

What makes you stand out from the competition?

Being a smaller business, you get the same face time after time showing up to do the work. We like to build a relationship with our customer base. When you call us, you talk directly to the owner of the company.

What brings customers back to your business?

The relationship that we build with our customers brings back those same customers or the referrals from those customers. We pay attention to detail and try to give the customer exactly what they are wanting.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

Some of our customers might not know about all the electrical services that we offer. We range in the smallest of service calls such as changing a fixture or outlet to remodels, new residential, shops, lighting retrofits, new or remodel commercial and light industrial.

What do you love most about having your business in this community?

Seeing the same customers and/or their referrals time and time again. Being able to go around the community and recognize customers that want to say hello and catch up. Driving through the community and seeing different projects or buildings and businesses that we helped grow or build inside our community.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

A bit unbelievable at first. Being so new of a business and being voted Best of Billings so quickly is amazing. It takes a lot of work and time away from family to start and then try to grow that business. It means a lot to see that hard work pays off. It makes us want to strive to stay on top and keep bettering ourselves and our service to our customers and the community.

What are you most proud of?

I’m most proud of my family, my wife Danielle and our two young kids. They have backed me and the business every step of the way. They understand the long days and weekends and try to help every way they can. I also take pride when I drive by a business, house, etc. and say, “Hey look, I wired that.”

What’s your secret to good customer service?

We do our best to make the customer feel like they are getting exactly what they want and help explain the process to them. We stay personable throughout the whole process and try to communicate with the customer as best as we can.

How do you build trust with customers?

We build trust by showing up on time and giving the customer what they want. We try to return calls, emails, etc. as soon as we can to help communicate with our customers and keep them up to date throughout the whole project.

  • Action Electric, Inc., 1010 Central Ave #4
  • Yellowstone Electric, 1919 4th Ave N

INSURANCE COMPANY

Stockman Insurance

stockmaninsurance.stockmanbank.com

Stockman Insurance is dedicated to serving the local community. The company takes pride in working with customers to design the right insurance package. “Our customers know they will be working with local Montana staff who understand their unique insurance needs,” the company says.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

We have been in Billings since 2008. We live and reside in Billings. We have partnered with some of the top rated insurance carriers in the nation which allows us to offer the most comprehensive coverage at the most competitive price.

What makes your business a good place to work?

Stockman leadership knows our employees are key to the company’s success. We are proud to be a part of the Stockman Brand.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

Billings is a very business friendly and progressive community. We are proud and thankful to be a participating member of this community. It is known as the Magic City for a reason.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

A friendly, smiling, well-versed professional that will assist you in your insurance needs.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

For the community to recognize our commitment in providing exceptional customer service along with being the preferred insurance professional is a great honor. We appreciate knowing our commitment to Billings and the community is recognized.

What are you most proud of?

Our staff demonstrates on a daily basis the commitment to building trust and favorable relationships with our customers and community members.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

Our customers are our neighbors, our friends and our family. We understand their insurance needs and appreciate their trust in us.  

Fun fact about your business?

Stockman Insurance is located in 14 locations across the state.

  • Conver & Winchell Insurance – Sara Mclean, 2500 Grand Ave. Unit S
  • State Farm Insurance, 2500 Grand Ave. M

MORTGAGE LENDER

Mann Mortgage

billings.mannmortgage.com

This may sound old-fashioned, but it sure has worked for Mann Mortgage, who has been in business for more than three decades now.

“We built our trust one customer at a time,” the company says. “Every customer is important, and we understand that this is not just a loan but a home that will help families build financial security, a base to raise a family, and a happy place where you can live, laugh and learn.”

What makes you stand out from the competition?

Mann Mortgage is a family-owned company that emphasizes honesty, integrity, and community. Since founding in 1989, we’ve been committed to helping borrowers find the best loan and fulfill the dream of home ownership. The support and recognition from everyone as prior Reader’s Choice Winners is a testament of what we do and makes us stand out. Mann Mortgage was also named a #1 Top Workplace in Montana by Lee Enterprises, #12 Best Place to Work in 2020 and 2021 by Outside Magazine, and a 2021 Top Mortgage Lender by Scotsman Guide. Mann Mortgage has thrived for more than 30 years because it’s the lender people choose after shopping around.

What brings customers back to your business?

Friendly and courteous service while also providing great loan products and knowledge. Our clients know we work hard in helping them live the American dream of home ownership.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

It surprises people to know that Mann Mortgage is one of the largest lenders in the state. We are located in over 22 states, 55 branch locations and over 500 employees. Mann Mortgage Billings was one of the first branches when the company started in 1989.

What makes your business a good place to work?

At Mann Mortgage, an employee is more than a number – they are a person who is treated as a valued team member and empowered to be part of the customer’s experience regardless of their job focus. Mann Mortgage is purposeful in creating opportunities to make team members feel like family. Team members are encouraged to provide feedback and ideas, drive efficiency, and recommend changes that improve doing business. We offer rewarding and challenging career opportunities, competitive pay, bonus incentives, a wide array of benefits, and a generous paid time off plan.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

Although we are a relatively large company, our focus is at the community level. We are vested in the community we live in and love helping our friends and neighbors with their home lending needs.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

A friendly expert that will take care of their lending needs. We are local and we have a philosophy of providing straight talk to our customers and affiliate partners.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

It is really an honor. Mann Mortgage has received many awards and it’s good to know that our hard work and efforts are recognized in Billings as consecutive winners the past two years.

What are you most proud of?

The employees at Mann Mortgage from the top down. It takes a great staff and support to provide a high level of service to our clients.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

We provide a high level of service by listening to our client’s needs and then utilizing our knowledge of the mortgage industry to assist them with their needs.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

Revenue generated locally stays in the community. Whether participating on a local board, financially supporting Shriners, Camp Patriot, and other local charitable organizations, we make the conscious decision to support the community.

What makes your business popular?

In addition to offering federal and nationwide lending programs, our licensed home lenders are experts in state and local loan programs too. We take time to get to know each borrower, review their current financial situation, talk about their long-term aspirations, and select the loan program that best helps them achieve their goals.

Fun fact about your business?

Our branch used to be Bob Tomkins Art Gallery. We modified some work spaces, but kept the original brick walls when we renovated. Bob’s painting studio is now a large office and Bob has been a featured artist for some of the Billings Art Walks we have participated in. We love being one of the local business located on Montana Avenue and think its one of the most vibrant blocks downtown.

  • Stockman Bank, 402 N Broadway
  • Universal Lending Home Loans, 2646 Grand Ave #2

MOVING COMPANY

Montana Muscle Movers

When you put “muscle” in your name, people are going to check out your “guns” when they see you. Apparently, people are happy with what they see in the staff at Montana Muscle Movers. Of course, it takes more than strength to make a good mover. Fair dealing, attention to client needs and careful handling of possessions are also important. Montana Muscle Movers fits the bill, according to our readers.

What makes you stand out from the competition?

We tailor our services to meet the needs of our customers. We don’t simply state an hourly rate and rush clients off the phone. We approach each job with the attention it requires to meet our clients needs.

What brings customers back to your business?

We are completely transparent in our process, from estimates to invoicing you know exactly what to expect and that we stand by our work.

What makes your business a good place to work?

Attitude is a reflection of leadership; our staff holds themselves and us as business owners to a high standard. We offer flexibility in scheduling and try and meet our staff where they are at, personal development and goal setting are encouraged, and we will help our team accomplish whatever they are willing to work for and tailor a professional goal plan to achieve it.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

That we are recognized as a leader in our industry within this community. Winning against our peers is a high honor.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

We are committed to giving back a portion of profits. Some seasons are smaller donations than others; as funds allow but we are dedicated to supporting the community that supports us. Most recently we were a sponsor for the new Landons Legacy Field; a baseball field equipped for children with disabilities. We just finished our “Adopt a Teacher” initiative where we randomly select local teachers and purchase all the supplies on their classroom amazon wish list until the budgets gone- its a blast.

What makes your business popular?

We keep it fun. Music, jokes, and a lighthearted atmosphere is what you can expect when you hire Muscle Movers. And as the name implies, we bring a lot of strength to the job to get it done as quickly as possible.

  • Aaron’s Back Company, 6917 King Ave. W
  • Two Men and a Truck, 1375 4th Ave. N STE F

PET BOARDING FACILITY

Bark Park

“We are a very controlled & very structured daycare. Dogs attend our facility to play, but more importantly to learn.”

Bark Park offers a lot more than just dog boarding. The facility is not only large enough to accommodate large indoor and outdoor spaces for pets, but they also give pets a routine to play, learn and socialize. That makes your furry friends want to come back day after day. 

This makes Bark Park an important part of the Billings area and, especially, Billings’ “dog loving community.”

What makes you stand out from the competition?

We have 2,000 square feet of fully turfed outdoor space for all the dogs to enjoy every day. We also have 5,000 square feet of climate controlled indoor space we use to escape our very unpredictable Montana weather. We are a very controlled & very structured daycare. Dogs attend our facility to play, but more importantly to learn.

What brings customers back to your business?

The level of service and care that we provide. Pet owners experience this first hand and it’s very clear that each dog walking through our door is happy and wants to be here. There is no faking that.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

Bark Park is Native American owned and operated. I, Rusty, am an enrolled member of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe.

What makes your business a good place to work?

The whole environment we’ve created is just very positive and healthy. I have a close relationship with each employee and treat them as I would family. I want my staff to feel like they can count on me inside and outside of work if needed.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

The Billings community itself, and more specifically, the dog loving community of Billings is amazing. Everyone expresses so much support it makes it very easy to continue working so hard at what we do.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

You can expect to meet someone who will truly care for your dog as if it is their own. We make it a point to share as many details as we can about your dog’s day with us. Even the small things.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

It means more than you can imagine. To have people support and believe in our vision for Bark Park helps push us to improve every single day. I can’t even explain how much it means to me personally and also to my employees who share my vision.

What are you most proud of?

Our staff 100%. It can be very exhausting working with animals, but they have done a great job handling any and all tasks they are given. I could not do it without them.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

Honestly, just being a genuinely good person. We have great relationships with not just the dogs, but also each pet parent. We truly are a pack. My mother raised me to be kind to others, and help when I can. I live by that and have been blessed enough to have employees who share those qualities.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

We’ve been fortunate enough to make small contributions to local businesses in town. We have plans to get involved with more community events soon.

How do you build trust with clients (or patients, customers)?

By being very honest and transparent. That combined with our level of experience helps assure our pet parents that their fur kids are in the best hands.

What makes your business popular?

Fun fact about your business?

Our logo is a real dog. Her name is Pepper and she comes to daycare about twice a week.

PET BOARDING FACILITY — FINALIST

There’s a reason it’s not called Big Sky Pet Kennel. They don’t have kennels, or crates. And the entire business, including its indoor and outdoor play areas are spotless. 

It really is a pet resort.

What makes you stand out from the competition?

Our amazing one-of-a-kind facility. Indoor and outdoor play areas, our facility is environmentally monitored and controlled with a focus on cleanliness and the health and well-being of your pet. We have private rooms, no crates or kennels for your pet to enjoy.

What brings customers back to your business?

Our outstanding care and the personalized service that we provide each customer and their pets.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

We are a family owned business with over 20 years of experience in the pet care industry.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

A clean facility with a friendly face to greet them and their pets.

  • Paws & Claws, 3206 Conrad Rd.

PET GROOMER

Dee-O-Gee

“At Dee-O-Gee, we pride ourselves on sourcing, vetting and studying every product we offer … making sure they are safe and healthy for your pet, so you don’t have to.” 

For most of the four years Dee-O-Gee has been open in Billings, they’ve graced the Best of the Best for pet stores and grooming. They’ve gone the extra mile to help families care for the health and well-being of their pets, whether through grooming, training or nutrition. 

As a result, the locally-owned store provides a uniquely qualified and friendly place to take care of your four-legged family members. 

What makes you stand out from the competition?

Dee-O-Gee is truly Billings’ BEST source for pet supplies, dog grooming and dog daycare. We are the only business to get all 3 of those things in the same place.

What brings customers back to your business?

At Dee-O-Gee, we pride ourselves on sourcing, vetting and studying every product we offer … making sure they are safe and healthy for your pet, so you don’t have to.

Not only do the pets love their experience at Dee-O-Gee, so do the ‘two-legged shoppers’ … they find unique and locally sourced products.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

We have certified Pet Dieticians on staff. Do you have questions about your dog or cat’s nutrition? We can help … and, we are very thorough.

There are lots of pet food and supplements options in our world today, not all of them are good. We will help you sift through all of the information and make the best choice for your pet.

What makes your business a good place to work?

Culture, culture, culture. We love pets and we support our fellow staff members.

We also offer free animal handling courses and pet dietician training for all staff members.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

A smiling face. A pleasurable shopping experience for you and your pet. A well stocked sales floor (minimal out of stocks). A nice seasonally-appropriate entry table with current specials and fun ideas to engage your pup.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

Dee-O-Gee has been voted Best of the Best for “Best Pet Store” and “Best Pet Groomer” for 3+ years. We are SO proud of our staff and very happy to be the hub for the local dog community in the Yellowstone Valley.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

We host numerous adoption events for local animal shelters each year, as well as dog/cat food drives for shelters.

We also support local little leagues and youth sports.

How do you build trust with clients (or patients, customers)?

At Dee-O-Gee, we pride ourselves on sourcing, vetting and studying every product we offer … making sure they are safe and healthy for your pet, so you don’t have to.

What makes your business popular?

Would you rather browse the isles at a big box store, just hoping an employee asks you if you need anything?

PLUMBING SERVICE

4H Plumbing Heating and Cooling

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

Due to 4H Plumbing’s high demand for work outside of the Plumbing scope, we have just recently launched a new branch, 4H Management Services. In the process of doing all our normal scope of work, there are times that we may have to cut a hole in sheet rock to access the plumbing, or the plumbing may have damaged other parts of our customers’ homes, such as subfloors. When we show up and fix the problem, we get queries into whether we know someone that can help them with these problems, and so we decided to keep with our usual quality of work and provide our customers with the solutions they need by forming this new division so that we can see our projects from beginning to end to guarantee the customer gets exactly what they want.

What makes your business a good place to work?

The best quality of being with the 4H Plumbing team is that we treat our employees like family. We care about what happens inside and outside of work when it comes to our employees’ lives, and we make sure to take care of our employees as completely as we can. We also trust our employees as liaisons to our customers to make sure they customer is happy and well taken care of. When one of our employees’ steps into a customer home they become the customer’s personal plumber, and we never stand in the way of our employees in their quest to fulfill all customer needs.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

The best part of Billings is just how down to Earth everybody is in this town. Once we have established with our customers and show them that we have what it takes to treat their homes and properties just like they were our own the community of Billings displays their loyalty and kindness. If it wasn’t for our customers, 4H Plumbing would have never been able to read the Readers’ Choice Award three times in a row! We appreciate and thank every one of our customers for this opportunity and look forward to continuing this amazing relationship with them.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

The first thing customers will recognize on getting to know us is the wealth of knowledge that we have at our disposal. 4H Plumbing is a service plumbing only shop, and due to this we have witnessed most situations that a customer may find themselves in. When plumbing fails in a household it comes with worry and fear due to the damage that the system may cause or may have already caused to the home, and the first thing customers will notice when we pull into the drive is a sense of relief that they are dealing with a company that is more than capable of fixing the issue the right way, and for an affordable price.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

To be voted the best means acceptance within the community. 4H Plumbing isn’t just a company in the city of Billings, but rather a company that is part of the community. This award really is a sort of depth gauge to know that we are doing everything right, and we appreciate the feedback that we receive from this award.

What are you most proud of?

What 4H Plumbing is most proud of is how fast the community of Billings has accepted us and how that has enabled us to grow quickly to be capable of providing the services this community needs. When 4H Plumbing started just four years ago we never expected this level of growth, acceptance, and establishment within the community. We feel as though it is a badge of pride to be able to accomplish what we have in just these four short years.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

The secret to good customer service really is as simple as listening to what the customer wants and following through to not only make sure the job is done right but also that the customer is happy with the results. 4H Plumbing realizes that every property that we are given the opportunity to work on means something special to someone and we treat the opportunities with respect. The customer may not know all the working details on the road to the final result of the project, but they definitely know what they want as a final result, and they will tell you if you take the time to listen and apply your skills to their vision, which makes a very happy customer in the end.

How do you build trust with clients (or patients, customers)?

4H Plumbing builds trust with our clients by running a very transparent operation. All our invoices are listed in detail with complete parts breakdowns as well as labor tallies. One of the main reasons 4H Plumbing was created was to put focus on accountability to the customer. It is the customers’ money that pays for the work, and they should be allowed to see where every dollar is going in the process of the work. We also give out free estimates if the work goes over a certain price point so that there is no sticker shock in the process of the job. Our customers know exactly what they are getting every time.

What makes your business popular?

4H Plumbing believes in the relationship between the client and the tech who shows up onsite. Once a technician establishes with a customer, we try to keep that specific tech on that account, so the customer knows which tech they are getting. Due to this approach, our technicians often develop personal relationships with their customers, which leads to those customers informing their friends of our company. This positive and strong word of mouth is what has grown our company and made it popular in the community.

PLUMBING SERVICE –  (FINALIST)

It’s not really a mystery how businesses can grow and thrive for decades: treat every customer like you want them back, along with the next generation of customers, and the next.

That’s how Brown Plumbing and Heating has lasted 37 years.

What makes you stand out from the competition?

Brown Plumbing is dedicated to the highest quality of Plumbing and Drain Services delivered with Professionalism, Integrity, and Honesty.

What brings customers back to your business?

Customers come back to Brown’s because they know we stand by our work.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

Brown Plumbing & Heating enjoys giving back to the community through free giveaways on Facebook, sponsoring a softball team as well as donations to community based organizations and causes.

What makes your business a good place to work?

Brown Plumbing & Heating is an amazing place to work because the owners truly appreciate all the employees’ hard work and show that appreciation in so many ways. We are a family and we all truly care about each other.Or, would you rather have a shopping experience that is full of smiles, knowledge and fun?

  • Precision Plumbing, 304 S 25th St.

TAX PREPARATION SERVICE

Colleen Black – Colleen Black & Company

What makes you stand out from the competition?

As a tax preparation office we stand out for many of the reasons stated above PLUS we offer the highest quality of service you can get in this region. Many of our preparers are licensed – meaning CPA’s or EA’s – who can represent you before the IRS if necessary. We like to keep our clients on the “straight and narrow”. We don’t want our clients getting “love” letters from the IRS any more than they want to get them. It’s always best to know the law and report accurate information. There have been occasions that I remind my clients that I have to sign their return too!

What brings customers back to your business?

I think that customers come back to the business because we provide a great service for a fair price. We provide a private setting with personalized individual service to clients

It’s a funny phenomenon sometimes, once you learn about a client’s personal financial information you develop a much deeper relationship with that person and should know about EVERYTHING in their life. We feel like a counselor to clients. I’ve had big, burly men come into my office and share personal information about their personal relationship and begin crying…. it really is quite a compliment to think that we are trustworthy enough to share so deeply.

Much of the time that relationship is enough to come back – it is uncomfortable to share our own financial information with someone else. So, to think of changing is like changing a doctor – Uncomfortable! Many times we develop friendships with our clients and it is fun to have our clients come back year after year to see how kids have grown and keep up with what is going on in the family.

What’s something your customers may not know about your business?

Something that my customers may not know about my business is that I have started to transition out of my business. I’m (Colleen) not going anywhere! I just decided to take my own advice. It is important for any successful business transition to have plenty of “lead time”. 10 years is perfect. Given that, I have sold some of my stock in my company to three of my most trusted employees. I am still an owner but will now get help running the business and can look forward to a long and prosperous future for the business. A good thing for customers to know is that we are not changing a thing. We will continue to operate as we have for the past several years.

What makes your business a good place to work?

Colleen Black & Co is a great place to work! It’s not only because of the benefit package but because you are seen as a person. Every person matters here. We DO have a generous full benefit package, which Colleen prides herself on. Family is first and time off is encouraged for all employees. Having balance in your life is as important to Colleen as it should be to each employee. It has been said that some employees have been able to use Colleen’s personal Florida Condo as a benefit!

A part of the package includes some personal extra’s like surprise gift cards to places that you like. (Surprise) Specialized and specific gifts are a budgeted line item to help employees “find” that balance.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

I was fortunate enough to have grown up in Billings. I had an idyllic childhood, went to school, met my husband and landed here. I always thought that I would leave but am so fortunate to still call Billings my home. Billings has become a little “big” town. We can trust our neighbors and love our co-workers and it’s okay. We have all of the benefits of a big city in Billings with the arts, clubs and social activities that already go on. If we want more it’s easy to hop on a plane and go experience those things in larger communities. Then it’s nice to come home to Billings.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

Customers will be greeted with a friendly hello when they walk through my office doors. We have a talented and experienced team of professionals that are available to help them, but above all else, they are nice. Everyone who works here is nice! Weird, huh? We have NO DRAMA in the office – everyone likes and respects each other. There’s a good vibe.

A client might be surprised when they walk through the doors. The inside of the building looks NOTHING like the outside. There’s a kid room – it’s a cool place – all painted neat and was done with intention. You’ve GOT to check it out. The rest of the office is a very comfortable “living room”-type setting. We have a nice warm fire burning during tax season. If you make it in on the “right” day you’ll even get a fresh-baked chocolate chip cookie!

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

Oh my goodness – to be voted Best of the Best in my community, by my community residents is such a HUGE compliment. I don’t take it lightly. It makes me want to work harder… for my clients, my staff AND the community. This sets the bar high and makes me want to go out and get it again next year! I want to live up to the expectations of the community – I can’t even hardly believe it. Thank you Thank you Thank you – emoji emoji emoji!

What are you most proud of?

I am most proud of the fact that I could have started a company that has endured and provided for so many families by providing jobs with the very best benefits around.

Secondly, I am proud of the work that my non-profit, DreamPackers, has done for the community of Billings.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

I don’t think that I have a secret to good customer service. There really is no secret to good customer service in my opinion. It just IS what it IS. Good service IS good service. Period. I don’t claim that I am always good at it but I strive to always do better.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

I have a non-profit, DreamPackers, Inc. It was established in 2004 and began with 9 kids who lived at the Women and Family Shelter downtown. We provide personalized back packs to underserved kids who need them. This year we filled more than 150 – happily!

How do you build trust with clients (or patients, customers)?

Building trust with clients in our industry comes fast because of the type of work we do. Having confidence and training in the current tax law isn’t something that you can fake. Offering to do more or know more is an easy way to build trust in clients. I always tell my team that anyone can prepare a tax return from the information provided .. to do it right, however is optimal. Knowing what is missing is key.

What makes your business popular?

I don’t know what makes my business popular. I think that by having a big sign on a busy street helps. Doing good work is our best advertising, though. I didn’t even have a sign for the first year that I was in business…. it was still busy.

Fun fact about your business?

We enjoy “Football Friday’s” at the office.

Colleen hired a psychic, intuitive counselor, medium, to come into the office for a group reading.

  • MicroBooks LLC, 405 E Main St.
  • Woods Accounting, 1030 S 24th St. W.

VETERINARY SERVICE

Best Friends Animal Hospital

Your pets are like family, so when they go to the doctor they should be treated like family, too.

“We take pride in treating our patients exactly the same as our own family members,” says Best Friends Animal Hospital. “ In doing so we show compassion, respect and always looking to strive for perfection.

What makes you stand out from the competition?

Best Friends Animal Hospital is a service-oriented hospital, dedicated to providing the highest quality boarding, medical, and surgical care. 

What brings customers back to your business?

We are people who genuinely care, and this is amplified by our client service.

What makes your business a good place to work?

Teamwork and a Friendly atmosphere with respect and initiative to always do our best.

What do you enjoy most about having your business in this community?

Billings is an amazing place to live and work. So many things to do, see and enjoy.

What can customers expect when they walk through your doors?

Caring and compassionate staff.

What does it mean to be voted Best of the Best?

We take pride in our ability to serve the Billings area, and are very thankful for all of our clients and the opportunity to keep their best friends by their sides to love and cherish.

What are you most proud of?

The continual efforts from all our staff to rise above the crazy world we live in to provide the upmost care to our patients, in times of short-staffed or High volumes.

What’s your secret to good customer service?

Treat everyone the way you would like to be treated, or Exceed that thought.

What are some of the things you do to give back to the community (charity work, donations, etc.)?

Our doctors and staff have volunteered at the Yellowstone Valley Shelter, donated to Inside Voice, and coached baseball.

How do you build trust with clients (or patients, customers)?

By exceeding their expectations and providing answers to their pet’s health.

What makes your business popular?

We serve the community when others are closed.

  • Animal Hospital, 1110 Main St.
  • Shiloh Veterinary Hospital, 345 S Shiloh Rd.

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