Ideas for Foreman accountability on equipment

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by cleancutccl, Oct 13, 2008.

  1. cleancutccl

    cleancutccl LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 698

    This year I put a new foreman on a mowing crew. Great guy gets the job done and does a good job, however, I have never had so much broken equipment ever. Its always little things until today, bent the wheel arm on our stander!!!! Asked him how it happened, had no idea, hadn't noticed it, wtf!!! Anyways, what are some ideas that you do to hold your foreman and employees accountable for negligent damage or loss to equipment. I need to get something put in the employee handbook, because I've had it, people just don't seem to respect other people's stuff anymore.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Kennedy Landscaping

    Kennedy Landscaping LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,597

    Make them sign something saying they will pay for it providing it happened because they mistreated the equipment or abused it. If it is something that probably happened from every day normal use I would probably say no big deal. But if they run into a tree and bend some thing because they weren't using common sense then they would probably pay for it. Make sure to get it in writing and make them sign a contract though.
    Just My 02
    Good Luck With Your Situation
  3. P.Services

    P.Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,319

    yeah he didnt notice.... right.... what a lier get rid of him. how could you not notice, he or some one on your crew hit something hard or they are doing wheelies.
  4. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,699

    Legally there isn't anything you can do. You can not deduct losses from an employee's paycheck no matter where the losses come from. Contracts do not superceed law. I once turned a Cat D-30 22 ton dump truck over in a sand and gravel mine I worked at. No biggie. They stood it back up, took it to the shop and fixed it. Back to work.

    What you can do is write up an employee handbook and make it a terminatable offense.

    You can also deduct the cost of repairs from your taxes.
  5. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 7,051

    I think you should go back to working by yourself. That way when YOU mess something up, you only have yourself to blame.
  6. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 7,051

    It's amazing how many guys on here that hire crews to do the work complain about their employees breaking stuff and how "they" should have to pay. It just doesn't work that way.
    After reading a TON of posts in the last year, I've found that Richard Martin seems to know what he is talking about. Whatever you do, I wouldn't back charge the employee or you could find yourself in a world of a mess with the labor board. It could very well cost you MORE money then whatever it is your trying to get from the employee.

    STI LAWN LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    Go back to working for yourself? ummm don't think your going to get ahead that way.

    My current business (besides lawn care) is aborculture and accidents are part of everyday life. What I have done that seems to work well is 3 things. One is I sit down with guys after an accident or screw up and I explian how much money it will cost and what a headache they have caused me. Then as the bills come from the screw up I show each one to them. Reminds them that it just does not go away.
    2nd I give each crew a bonus at the beginning of the year and I deduct from it to pay for foolish mistakes.
    3rd Make examples of people. Sometimes you have to shoot a hostage to make piont.

    DLAWNS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,780

    I give my guys small bonuses each week if warranted. If we get a ton of work done and they did the little extras like staying late, coming in early, or just working their a** off they will get some extra money. If they were late and a little lazier, or broke stuff they don't get the extra money. We all have off days or even off weeks and I understand that but the more money they make me the more I'm willing to dish out.
  9. cpel2004

    cpel2004 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,415

    What about an employee training program, use incentives.
  10. Frontier-Lawn

    Frontier-Lawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,955

    just demote hime to regular mow boy and promote another person to his old job

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