Poolwerx Franchisee Leads in Male-Dominated Industry

Melanie Earles Dominates Male-Led Industry with PoolWerx

Franchisee Melanie Earles Overcame Gender Disparity to Build a Thriving Pool Franchise

When Melanie Earles made the leap from Poolwerx customer to Poolwerx franchisee, she was— and still is — a novelty in pool services. Men outnumber women more than seven to one in the pool maintenance industry; men shoulder 88% of the jobs and women handle 12%, according to Zippia.com. And the Poolwerx pool and spa maintenance brand embraces its female franchisees right along with the men, Earles says: “We’re one big family.”

Poolwerx franchisee Melanie Earles
Poolwerx franchisee Melanie Earles

A New Industry

The career change was a dramatic one for Earles, who previously did high-tech work in health care. Covid scuttled her usual sales visits, giving Earles more family time, which she enjoyed. She also had time to rethink her life goals. As she considered alternatives, Earles saw a glaring need in Haslet, her hometown northwest of Dallas-Fort Worth. Pools are expensive, and proper care keeps equipment functioning properly and the water hygienic, but the only nearby pool supplies store was dissatisfying. She’d be brushed aside in favor of male customers when she needed help, Earles says.

So she instead drove nearly a half-hour to Poolwerx North Richland Hills. “It became my go-to pool store, [providing] excellent customer service and pool knowledge.”

If you follow the Poolwerx blueprint, you’ll succeed.

Serving the Community

Earles ultimately saw Poolwerx as a way to serve her community and her family. “I realized that it was the best way for me to get into the pool business without reinventing the wheel,” Earles says. The cost of a Poolwerx franchise was doable for our family — “we aren’t millionaires” — and the support was incredible, she says. “If you follow the Poolwerx blueprint, you’ll succeed. I knew it was the right franchise for my husband and me to invest in.” Her Poolwerx opened in May 2021.

Like all Poolwerx franchises, Earles’ unit offers mobile services plus a store. Trucks are dispatched for emergency repairs, preventive maintenance, installation and upkeep of pool filters, pool cleaning, spa repair, lighting, and even training homeowners to do their own routine. At every Poolwerx store, “we talk to customers to guide them to a solution for their pools,” Earles says. Unlike many stores selling pool supplies, she says, the knowledgeable Poolwerx staff is well-trained to give helpful advice and solve problems.

“I’ve enjoyed a warm welcome with my customers, even the guys,” Earles says. “I never felt like they looked at me like I didn’t know what I was talking about. That’s been great. Everyone at Poolwerx treats me as an equal” with the male franchisees. Part of that respect may arise from Earles’ hands-on approach. “I clean pools, cut pipes and do it all by myself if I have to,” she says.

A Family Affair

Melanie Earles Dominates Male-Led Industry with PoolWerx

The franchise has been a family affair for Earles and her teenage daughters (above), both of whom have been active in the business. The “family support [and] support from the Poolwerx team allows my woman-owned business to thrive. I’m excited about the future.” Right now, she focuses on growing her Haslet franchise, but soon Earles hopes to add a second unit to her portfolio.

Franchise Information

Poolwerx seeks additional franchise partners and hopes to have 125 or more stores operating in the United Statesby the end of 2028. In particular, Poolwerx aims to award franchises in Georgia, Minnesota, North Carolina, Texas (especially in Austin, Houston and San Antonio) and Wisconsin.

For more information about the Poolwerx franchise, visit https://poolwerxfranchising.com/.

Why Choose the Poolwerx Franchise?

  • A franchise can open within months, with the owner able to launch his or her mobile service before opening a store.
  • The investment starts at $135,000.
  • Average unit sales exceed $2.1 million annually.
  • Poolwerx franchisees benefit from multiple revenue streams (with much of the revenue recurring): maintenance, cleaning and servicing of residential and commercial pools and spas, along with retail sales.
  • The pool school boot camp at the Dallas training site is comprehensive, with a retail store, fully equipped pool for hands-on training, and a business academy.
  • An intensive 12-month mentoring program helps franchisees open and build their businesses.
  • It’s Amazon-resistant.
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Mary Vinnedge is an award-winning journalist who has served as editor in chief, managing editor and senior editor at national and regional publications, including SUCCESS and Design NJ magazines. She also held reporting and editing roles at The Dallas Morning News and Charlotte Observer newspapers.

Before Mary began covering franchise news and trends as a staff writer for FranchiseWire and Franchise Consultant Magazine, she developed articles on topics ranging from lifestyle, education, health and science to home projects, horticulture, gardening, interior design and architecture. These articles included her reporting on academic news at her alma mater, Texas A&M University, when Mary worked in the marketing department of the Texas A&M Foundation. She continues to be a news junkie and subscribes to several publications.

Today Mary and her husband are empty nesters living on Galveston Island near Houston. The couple’s blended family – scattered around the United States – includes five children, four grandchildren and two very spoiled, very barky miniature schnauzer rescues.
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