tracking numbers

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by peacedog, Aug 27, 2001.

  1. peacedog

    peacedog LawnSite Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 19

    For those that track production numbers:
    1) What kind of numbers do you track? (mileage, time, product, etc.)
    2) How often do you track them? (daily, weekly, monthly)
    3) Do you have a log sheet? Is it daily, weekly?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. cp

    cp LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 263

    Not to sound to generic but I track pretty much everything.

    I am on my first year so I need the info to help me budget for next year.

    I also use Quickbooks Pro and this program helps me keep up with a lot of items, prices, tax related areas, etc..

    I keep a running calendar/diary if you will to help me see trends and for next years planning.
  3. eslawns

    eslawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 712

    Anybody who doesn't track these numbers has no idea where they are and are not making their money.

    I track the time for each clien't job, how many people worked on each job if I had help. I also track how much time I spend shopping for parts, equipment or office supplies. I track time spent on repairs and maintenance for each machine.

    For schedulef work, it's tracked daily as it gets completed. For the rest, I have a chart in my office and use my stopwatch to keep track. At the end of the year, it goes on a spreadsheet.

    If you don't know where you are spending (and particularly wasting) your time, you are not able to plan for growth, and when you make quotes on new work, you might as well throw at a dartboard to get your figures.
  4. lawnman_scott

    lawnman_scott LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,547

    EZ, i track nothing, so whos money am i making then? Do you really use a stopwatch to track things?? Isnt that a little overkill. I track how long it takes for a crew to do the days lawns, and keep track of who are doing them, thats about it. I dont track each lawn sepperatly, too many variables, like trimmer running out of string, going to get gas, or anything like that. Makes more seence to me to watch where you spend your money. I will spend whatever time it takes to shop for parts, that cant change, i only go to one place for that, so it takes as long as it takes, and thats the way it is.
  5. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,712

    ESLawns is right on.

    If or when you grow, little mistakes become big mistakes. You also learn where your profits and losses are. The object is to duplicate the successes with ease and cut the mistakes to zero.

    Profits can be planned and projected and should not be whats left over.

    Yes, tracking the non production time is important too. If adn when growth occurs someone will have to fill your shoes and do some of these things. How would one know what that cost will be and how to spread it over production hours as overhead recovery without that knowledge?

    Still not important? Try this. Go to work for someone and get paid for your field time only. Then when you get the production work done you can punch out your time card and do the maintenance on the equipment, run and get parts, fill out paper work and help your boss send bills and do estimates for FREE. That's what most people are doing.
  6. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,712

    Stop watch, measuring wheel and well kept records are IMPORTANT tools of the trade. I don't settle for 2nd best or average. I NEED money too much to mess around half way.

    No I don't time eveything all the time but I've times them enough to know how long a task should take based on condtions and quantity to be done.
  7. Guido

    Guido LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,087

    Keep good records of equipment costs so you can narrow down how much it costs you to run it mer hour or sq. ft., etc.

    It will help with calculating overhead and you being able to offer very competitive bids based on accurate #'s and not just blind guesses.

    Good Luck!

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