How do you handle scheduling with more customers

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by South Hills Lawns, Jan 14, 2020.

  1. South Hills Lawns

    South Hills Lawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    Currently hover around 12 customers. I'm wanting to go full time potentially this season.

    How do you guys handle rain delays? Say I get 40 clients and mow 10 a day 4 days a week. If it rains a few days out of that week and I get pushed into cutting on the weekend to make up for it, are you cutting your Monday and Tuesdays guys with only a 2-4 day break in between?

    I can't seem to get a grip on how to take account for all of that if I were to double or triple my clientele.
     
  2. hal

    hal LawnSite Silver Member
    from Georgia
    Messages: 2,139

    It all depends on where your location is. Do you get alot of rain? If you have an extra day for rain days, that is really good. If you know it is going to rain on Tuesday, add more to Monday and Wednesday and Thursday.
     
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  3. OP
    OP
    South Hills Lawns

    South Hills Lawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    If I were to setup a schedule for Mon - Thur Mowing, say 10 clients a day.

    If it were to rain Mon tues wed would I just start my Monday clients on Thursday Tuesday guys on Friday and so on. By the time Monday rolls around their getting cut again...do people usually throw flak at that?

    Im in Pittsburgh BTW.

    Basically how are you guys keeping track of everyone and when they get cut. i feel as though if I had 30+ clients I would lose track
     
  4. CCangler

    CCangler LawnSite Member
    from MA
    Messages: 10

    Worst I ever ran into was +4 a couple times and never had any you’re jipping me complaints, the guys actually got a fair bit of tips on those weeks since people understood they were out until the dark to catch up.

    However 90% of our mow accounts had been with us 5 years plus. Especially since you’re looking at growing so will have a lot of new accounts a courtesy email saying you’re catching up to have everyone cut that week and explaining the schedule doesn’t rotate outside of that week because of a rain delay wouldn’t be the worst idea.

    It seems that would take care of your scheduling question as well since they’ll stay the same or are you looking for just in general how to organize a full route?
     
  5. OP
    OP
    South Hills Lawns

    South Hills Lawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    That pretty much was what I was wondering. I will tell people that I will cut 4x a month and worse case scenario I would have a couple days in between cuts.

    I’m going to put my best customers on Friday and work my way back up the week for general scheduling. Probably 10-12 hour days trying to take sun mon off for maintenance and paperwork.
     
  6. hal

    hal LawnSite Silver Member
    from Georgia
    Messages: 2,139

    With new and existing customers always explain "depending on weather" upfront. We bill for the month, 4 visits, that way there are 5 visits a couple times a year, we are all year around, and there be a couple of light visits do to weather and other circumstances.
     
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  7. JMK26

    JMK26 LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Missouri
    Messages: 13,542

    Pretty much that....but You stay out on Thursday and Friday as late as you can so the weekend isn't all work. Just had 4-5 days off...2 long days shouldn't be a problem.

    Never had an issue. People tend to understand and know they're still getting 4 a month...there's no extra cuts to get money. 4 cuts are 4 cuts whether they're 3 days apart or 7.

    Scheduling software. I'm solo and Jobber works well for what I need. I have everyone scheduled. When I finish a lawn I get on their app and mark it complete and it's complete. At the end of the month I click batch invoice and it invoices everyone...I click email and it emails the invoices. 2-3 click and Done.
     
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  8. prezek

    prezek LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 680

    In 15 years, I’ve had 3 straight rain days once. It’s rare you get completely rained out back to back days...get out earlier. Work til dark. Plan ahead as mentioned. If it’s going to rain on Tuesday, cut as many of them as you can on Monday, rest on Wednesday. Push a little Wednesday to Thursday, etc...many times if they’re calling for rain by 9 or 10am or something, around here, I RARELY pass another company. Blows my mind. We get thru as much as we can. If it’s dry when it begins to rain, you should be able to mow thru some light rain for a good while...unless they are huge properties, 40 shouldn’t overwhelm a solo op.
     
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  9. Jake the grass guy

    Jake the grass guy LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 407

    i was at around 18 or so customers last year.. i think ill be starting at around 12-13 this season. im planning on getting to 30 weekly customers this year. I work a full time job 3 days a week so that left me with 4 days to complete my work. Usually a day and a half would be plenty of time. this past year was a very wet spring and had 1 time i literally didnt get to my yards for 2 weeks.. talking with your customers is key. after it gets overgrown typically the customers arent worried if you do another early cut to catch back up and make everything look nice and clean again.
     
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