Contract Labor - Pros/Cons

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by James, Mar 10, 2000.

  1. James

    James LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    I just purchased 20 MTD Toro 22" self propelled commercial mowers last month. So far I have lined up 110 accounts for an average of $26.50 a lawn. Found more than enough HS kids who want to mow and make a % of each lawn they cut. Bonuses to the "over achievers" including referals and customer satisfaction. Each mower is bonded for the cost of the mower and insured. Hired one field supervisor to oversee the action.
     
  2. Stonehenge

    Stonehenge LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 1,277

    Very bold move. I applaud the cajones it's got to take to try that. How do you measure customer satisfaction for bonuses? Also, do you tie customer satisfaction to their percentage (ie. if they do a poor job and get complaints, do you dock them)?<p>Can you tell I'm curious? One more thing...What kind of paperwork do you have to do so your state sees them as independent contractors, and not employees?
     
  3. cjcland

    cjcland LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 278

    i would like to know how you got 110 yards thats incredable, please let me know i am seeking to add another 30 thats all<p>----------<br>CJC Landscape Management<br>Winter Haven, Florida
     
  4. James

    James LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    Stonehenge, the commision is based on the field supervisors and the customers feedback. The contract for my operators was written by an attorney and includes provisions for &quot;poor&quot; work, conduct,etc. Each operator makes a base rate but must meet the field supervisors minimum approval to continue contracting.
     
  5. James

    James LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    cjcland, I went door to door in a middle to high income residential. I explained my plan and drafted a flyer that explained the plan in detail. The kids that I contracted got about 40% of them for me so they will be making &quot;extra&quot;. I'm getting lots of calls asking for more info as well and I hope to turn those into customers. It helps to have a good supply of HS kids eager to make money for the summer.
     
  6. James wrote:<p>&gt;I just purchased 20 MTD Toro 22&quot; self propelled commercial mowers last month. So far I have lined up 110 accounts for an average of $26.50 a lawn. <p>What almost $3k gross per cycle ($75k yearly<br>gross at 25 cycles) you could<br>have bought some &quot;real' lawnmowers. A two<br>man crew sould be able to handle those<br>110 small accounts with the right equipment.
     
  7. Charles

    Charles Moderator Staff Member
    Posts: 7,950

    What do the Kids need you for? They could just hand out flyers themselves or run and ad in the paper. Buy themselves a little push mower. And keep all the money. Like I use to do back in school. This what they must mean when they say our schools are &quot;dumming down&quot; :)
     
  8. James

    James LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    Charles,The kids needed someone to &quot;front&quot; the money for the mowers and basically do the front and back end customer service part. All of them liked the &quot;no-hassle-show-me-where-to-mow&quot; approach<p>Lawrence, I'm sure you are right about a good two man crew. The one thing my service provides is earned money to these kids for the summer. The 110 accounts was accomplished in two weeks time. Referals and bonuses make this attractive to this labor pool.
     
  9. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,969

    Really good idea, James. I'd like to live in your area where you can count on HS kids doing real work! Is each operator given a machine; and who transports them, or are jobs compact enuf that each can operate near his home? <p>----------<br>Jim<br>North central Indiana<p>
     
  10. James

    James LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    GroundKprs, Each one is responsible for their own transportation. All but three live in the areas that I signed up. As a side note the field supervisor also checks the condition of the mowers on a regular basis to ensure proper care of &quot;their&quot; machine.
     

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