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Hours of operation?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Commander, Apr 14, 2002.

  1. Commander

    Commander Banned
    Posts: 116

    Hi. I was wondering what are the hours that all of you hold? I have in the past not held any official work hours. My policy has been "if shot has to be done, we/I work". My guys in the past have not had a problem with that. I have been all for doing the 10 - 12 hour days and I personally am no stranger to 16 - 18 hour days. The most I make my employees work though is 12 hours in a day. I have been getting people lately and they do not want to work. I got 2 people last week and they only wanted to work from 7:00 until 4:00. Today I got some people who wanted to work from 7:00 till 2:00. What the heck is up with that? I want to get stuff done if it is still light outside. Do any of you have this problem with guys not wanting to work?
  2. AK Lawn

    AK Lawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 186

    In AK my company is open from 7am to 10 pm, my nusiness hours were held from 6-8pm from bus. question and returning phone calls, this was until i hired a full time bookkeeper that handles calls all day, as far as mowing the guys show up at 7:30 get together, bull$hit, and are out by 8am, and work between 8-10 hour days , last year over time killed me, so 8-10 hour max, they were working 14-16hour days, but as you stated being the owner i see much different hours if there is $hit to be done then i have to do it, any hour of the day, but it is nice havigna office away from home this season there for when i go home for bed no phone ringing at 11pm
    AK Lawn
  3. 2 man crew

    2 man crew LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 403

    "Yuppies Kids"

    It's a new disease you know.

    So I try to keep everyone around 40 hours unless they want to work more. which is never.
  4. Commander

    Commander Banned
    Posts: 116

    These aren't American's though. These are migrant workers.
  5. Sean Adams

    Sean Adams LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,597

    Being in the northeast, it is probably not easy for you to have set hours of operation. In another post I read, someone made a very good point (although obvious, still good). In this business competing with mother nature is part of the game. When doing business in parts of the country where you only have 7-9 months where you can really thrive, you have to extend yourself, which also means attempting to extend your employees. This is not always easy or fun. Labor is a very ongoing issue that this industry will probably always have to deal with. I don't know anything about your business, but I think you should check into the COMPASS System. In a nutshell, it is a management training system that shows you how to get more productivity (and more profit) out of your operation and employees in less time. It teaches you how to avoid overtime and have your employees so motivated to work quickly and profitably (while still maintaining quality standards), that anyone working over 40 hours in a week is practically nonexistent. Check into at www.compasssystem.com.

    Sean Adams
  6. MikeLT1Z28

    MikeLT1Z28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,732

    i'm a solo operator and will work if there is a need and daylight hours. my customers can call me pretty much any time. no set hours. maybe if i had a crew it'd be different.. one day maybe...
  7. A person I know who works H2B laborers says they get upset if they DON'T get overtime. He says they want 60-70 hrs per week or more! They say they didn't come this far to sit around.
    Your workers must have other jobs too.

    Personally I work daylight hours. Yesterday I didn't even get started until 2:00 because of rain.
    Quit in the middle of the day? I don't think so!

    I feel I'm dictated too enough by weather, equipment problems and customer demands. The clock and the calendar have to go. I don't even wear a watch.

    Of course I'm just a solo operator with one helper. Nothing like your operation. But I may be a lot like your competitors.

  8. LawnLad

    LawnLad LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 738

    David - I think you're right about immigrant labor.

    It's a catch-22. On one hand we don't want to work overtime due to cost - and for that matter, many of our American or Americanized workers don't want to put in over 50 hours a week. This is one reason we work Mon through Friday, 7:30 until typically 5:30 or 6:00 pm at the latest.

    However, to consider H2-B which we are, I'm going to have to figure out a way to run a Saturday crew to keep those guys happy with the hours. Which means that our overhead costs will increase with overtime. I'll have to figure it into my equation for recovering costs.

    Our schedule - monday through Friday. The guys are much more productive on Monday since they have a day of rest. Before, working Mon thru Sat, they'd only have one day to run all their personal errands - it wasn't much of a life. Our landscape season runs about March 1 throuhg Dec 15, weather pending. Our snow season runs November 1 through April 15 - so we've got 3 months of overlap - we could have a 8 month season, but usually over 9 months a year is expected/normal.
  9. TGCummings

    TGCummings LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 773

    My hours are basically 7:30-5:30 M-F. My field hours are 8-5 or when my daily list is complete, whichever comes first. I leave a half hour on either side for loading and daily prep and maintenance.

    I'm usually in the office for an hour or two after dinner, and take calls until 8 PM or so, depending on particular level of exhaustion that day.

    Ideally, these hours will be divided up into 3 full days in the field (M-W), 1 half day in the field (TH), and a day in a half (TH-FR) for catch up, equipment maintenance, and additional service jobs (trimming, hauling, etc.) when I have those lined up. Weekends will always stay free for family/fun time. This system has been working out very well and keeps me, of late, looking forward to getting started again every Monday. :)

    I work year around on lawn care out here, so that allows me more flexibility...
  10. You mean they have no legal papers to work in the USA?

    No visa, no H2B, no SS number?

    By law employees are required to work the hours of operation "you" the employer set.

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