employee vehicle responsibility

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by steelcity, Jun 29, 2003.

  1. steelcity

    steelcity LawnSite Member
    from Ontario
    Messages: 45

    hello everyone. i wanted to post a question on how to encourage employees to be responsible with their trucks that they run for your company. everyday i see trucks that are run for companies with dents all over them. In some cases owners just accept the fact that employees will damage them or they just do not care. I however do not want to give an employee a new truck and have it come back dented or scratched after a day of work and now the truck looks 5 or more years old. How do you ensure that your employees take the initiative and interest in keeping their trucks dent and scratch free for as long as possible? i am interested in keeping a clean image for the company as first impressions are important when you pull up to a clients home, or can be key in getting new business in the neighbourhood you are in. this assumes the high level of service is there already.

    thanks sorry for the long post!
  2. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Messages: 8,745

    not matter what but in this profession you are going to get scratches and dents here and there. The only true way to protect the truck from abuse and misuse is have your employees sign a policy. All of our employees before they work must sign a policy handbook. If covers anywhere from appearance, vacation, sexual harassment, damage of equipment, etc. I would highly suggest you do the same
  3. ProLandscapes

    ProLandscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 185

    Tiedman would you like to sell me a copy of yours so I can use it as a guideline for mine?

  4. Gr grass n Hi tides

    Gr grass n Hi tides LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,020

    Do a search for ideas on the subject on this site too. If memory serves, LGF has had a few good ones, and I think jimlewis as well.
  5. Rustic Goat

    Rustic Goat LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,194

    What Tiedman said, plus;

    There is pride in ownership, no, I don't mean sell them the truck, but give them the same concept.
    Does each crew always drive the same truck, is there an appointed driver for each crew?
    Do you have even a cursory equipment inspection either at the end or beginning of the day?
    Ever thought about a weekly or monthly 'contest' for the best kept or cleanest rig, truck, trailer, and all equipment.

    What I'm saying is let each person know that you care about such things, the good people will catch on, those that don't will always have a pocket full of excuses and you can weed them out.
    It has to be more than 'these are the rules, and you will follow them'.
    Hook up with a restaurant that will deal with you on some dinner certificates. The crew can go to dinner, or each take their spouse. Be creative, find a way to 'give' them something that will cost you very little.
    Boost that morale and you'll get more than you ever possible.
  6. hunter

    hunter LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 254

  7. Heron Cove PM

    Heron Cove PM LawnSite Member
    Messages: 216

    If your crews have dedicated formans who are the drivers and in charge of the truck and your budget will allow for a slight pay adjustment (basically a raise), you may want to look at a safety bonus program. First, decide what percentage of their pay to increase by; 2%, 3%, 5%, etc... of weekly or monthly gross income. Or maybe you just want to come up with a lump sum. Take that amount and add it to their pay. As long as that employee is responsible with all said tasks, they get their safety bonus each predetermined pay period. If at any given time, any of the parameters you set are not met, (say there were any preventable accidents during said pay period) the employee looses the safety bonus for a determined amount of time.

    Now you set up all the parameters concerning what is covered by this agreement. It can cover all your vehicles, equipment, even damage to your customer's property; whatever you choose. If you feel the employee messed up, take away the bonus. Keep in mind to be fair; there are going to "BE" some accidents that are "NOT"preventable; However, if someone is breaking or tearing up things because of neglect or abuse, then take there bonus for that period of time.

    Over time you will be surprised how this will work when an employee realizes how much money they can lose or gain because of a simple screw up and not paying attention.

    Another thing that works for the traffic side of things is the stickers on the back of the truck. I am sure you have seen those signs or stickers on the backs of trucks that says "How's my driving" or "Compliments or Complaints call..." If you've seen the ones with an 800 number and what looks like a vehicle tracking code, these are actually done by an outside company. Going with these programs will ACTUALLY REDUCE your insurance.

    One last thing, keep in mind, people respond extremely well to positive reassurance. If they do a good job everyday, tell them, thank them, let them know.
    Good luck,
  8. Potchkins

    Potchkins LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 570


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