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View Full Version : How do other you pay your help??


oxfordlawn
07-03-2011, 02:14 AM
I am expanding fairly quickly and just bought another mower and a larger trailer...time to go go. I have a helper who I pay by the hour but feel he could/should be more productive, if given the right scenario of money compensation for working quicker type of deal. My question is how do others pay their helpers out here?
I am considering giving a certain amount per lawn since most yards are pretty much the same size in our working area. for example if I am paying $9 per hour, but change to $3 per yard, we can easily do 4-5 yards in an hour and be gone if we both hustle. In a long run I feel the hustle and go theory would cost me about the same as per hour---but just be done in a shorter time frame. Basically more work in a shorter time, he gets the same pay, I can grab more lawns and he can make more $$. (and me too)

Did that all make sense :)

PLS-Tx
07-03-2011, 03:20 AM
Our guys get paid by the hour.

punt66
07-03-2011, 06:13 AM
I am expanding fairly quickly and just bought another mower and a larger trailer...time to go go. I have a helper who I pay by the hour but feel he could/should be more productive, if given the right scenario of money compensation for working quicker type of deal. My question is how do others pay their helpers out here?
I am considering giving a certain amount per lawn since most yards are pretty much the same size in our working area. for example if I am paying $9 per hour, but change to $3 per yard, we can easily do 4-5 yards in an hour and be gone if we both hustle. In a long run I feel the hustle and go theory would cost me about the same as per hour---but just be done in a shorter time frame. Basically more work in a shorter time, he gets the same pay, I can grab more lawns and he can make more $$. (and me too)

Did that all make sense :)

how about you leave it by the hour and expect more results?

93Chevy
07-03-2011, 08:15 AM
Keep it simple. Pay by the hour, but sit down with your employee and show/tell him exactly what is expected. Have guidelines and rules and follow them.

Patriot Services
07-03-2011, 08:22 AM
Paying piecemeal can get you into IRS trouble. Paying more and expecting more usually doesn't work either. Its like rewarding poor behavior. Some people can't be motivated by money or any incentive for that matter.
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alanauer
07-03-2011, 08:26 AM
I'd suggest base pay plus a discretionary bonus for fast but careful quality work.

oxfordlawn
07-03-2011, 09:35 AM
thanks for sharing your thoughts...never really gaave the whole IRS situation any thought...guess its best to just leave hourly pay alone. Thats why I like these forums...Thanks again.

Jeremiah Dyke
07-03-2011, 06:45 PM
I've been asking myself the same question. I’ve got to the point where I need to hire someone for about a day a week. I tried family members but I feel like I should pay them more than the productivity their giving me. The thing I hate about hourly work is the downtime and transition time between lawns. Many of my yards are 5-10 miles apart and couple that with breaks, etc, I feel like I’m overpaying. I assume this is what every seasoned pro on here already knows. I’ve thought about per lawn but it seems like it works better on large lawns.

oxfordlawn
07-04-2011, 12:38 AM
yeah I hear you and its the non working time thats eating me up inside too. The time to fuel up in the mornings and get coffees, restringing trimmers and then pissing and then dilly dallying around the truck, moving trailers and cars, changing edger blades at a slow rate...these are the things I see and kill me. But I understand I am the owner and expect and would like everyone to work 110% all the time, but know thats not going to happen. So this is where I was wondering about the per yard pay, and this would take some stress off me in the slow morning fuelings or sleepy guy days. I wish I could just clone another me that would work for free :)

4 seasons lawn&land
07-04-2011, 01:11 AM
I have figured expenses for a 10 hour work day into 7 billable hours if that helps at all. Besides that, tell the help how things need to work. Im paying 15/hr for lawns and 20/hr for landscaping... Im in NY, anyone else paying as much? I dont think you are going to get the same effort out of people for less money. At least in NY.

HPSInc
07-04-2011, 12:49 PM
i pay between 15-20 an hour for my help as well. guys arent going to bust their asses around here for 9 an hour. i only have help on big jobs. little jobs i do solo for now. so even if i pay out 180 bucks to my helper on a big job i usually made 700 or so myself and left all the backbreaking work to them

dgw
07-04-2011, 01:01 PM
I've been asking myself the same question. I’ve got to the point where I need to hire someone for about a day a week. I tried family members but I feel like I should pay them more than the productivity their giving me. The thing I hate about hourly work is the downtime and transition time between lawns. Many of my yards are 5-10 miles apart and couple that with breaks, etc, I feel like I’m overpaying. I assume this is what every seasoned pro on here already knows. I’ve thought about per lawn but it seems like it works better on large lawns.

so you think they should have to drive around on your not so tight route on their own time?

if i were paid by the lawn i would work accordingly , driving to fast from lawn to lawn in a company truck, blowing through lawns with little thought of the quality


and like someone said , it is illegal

alanauer
07-04-2011, 01:22 PM
Some guys charge with two prices, on-the-books and off. Same with paying help.

93Chevy
07-04-2011, 03:41 PM
so you think they should have to drive around on your not so tight route on their own time?

if i were paid by the lawn i would work accordingly , driving to fast from lawn to lawn in a company truck, blowing through lawns with little thought of the quality


and like someone said , it is illegal

Yeah, I'd rather be hourly no doubt.

dgw
07-04-2011, 03:46 PM
It's only illegal if they're not making minimum wage. You can pay however you want so long as the minimum wage and OT requirements are met.

so are they not on the clock during drive time? do they get workmans comp if they are in an accident ?

what about at the shop, are they technically on the clock there?

sounds pretty iffy to me

93Chevy
07-04-2011, 03:50 PM
so are they not on the clock during drive time? do they get workmans comp if they are in an accident ?

what about at the shop, are they technically on the clock there?

sounds pretty iffy to me

It's basically like paying commission-only salaries.

dgw
07-04-2011, 03:53 PM
It's basically like paying commission-only salaries.

so to do this you would probably have to show a minimum wage salary plus time and a half, then any lawn earnings over that would be payable as a bonus?

4 seasons lawn&land
07-04-2011, 04:30 PM
geeze you guys can complicate the crap out of things

dgw
07-04-2011, 04:32 PM
geeze you guys can complicate the crap out of things

just curios on the legality of paying a non sub contractor like this is all


i pay hourly with time and a half for ot

vencops
07-04-2011, 09:11 PM
And this is only the people who air these kinds of questions (these type threads).

I wonder sometimes why so many people get bent out of shape at "illegals". My bet is a LARGE percentage of LCO's are paying their employees, illegally. The really bad part is....they know it, and they think it's acceptable.