Uniform Dilemma

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by nherweck, Feb 12, 2006.

  1. nherweck

    nherweck LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 326

    I've been thinking about upgrading on my uniforms this year, but I'm having trouble choosing what I want. I like Aramark; as they pick up, clean, drop off, repair, replace, and basically keep the uniforms in top-condition. BUT..there is a pretty nice price tag dragging along with them. It would be 22.50/week which will include enough for three people for my business. If I keep them for 35 weeks to make sure I have them for clean-ups and all mowing season..it will cost a total of 787.50. With that much money, I could purchase 22 REAL nice shirts or a combo of shirts, hats, jackets, and pants! I don't think I can see myself spending that much money this year on uniform rentals. What do you guys do? With my uniforms from last year, they have to be replaced (needs my money.....) every time they get a rip in them. OR...needing replaced after a stain (more of my money...) or having to purchase new ones as the older ones were faded... (and yet again...MORE of my money...). I'm kind of 50/50 on these two choices (rental or purchase)...so I'm wanting all of your's comments...so hit it! THANKS!:)
  2. cleancutccl

    cleancutccl LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 698

    just go with t-shirts. I give out 1 hat, 1 hooded sweatshirt, and 10 t-shirts to start the year. I replace them when I see that they look horrible and can't be cleaned up. Find a good screen print company around you and get them from them. for 800 bucks you can get a lot of tshirts.
  3. kc2006

    kc2006 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    How much did you end up spending last year with all the repairs and replacements?

    So your looking at roughly 260 dollars per guy for uniforms a year (if theres 3). If you break it down like that, its not horrible, but its still alot.

    Around here, T-shirts silk screened can be had for 8 bucks after your set up fee (for me its 60 for set up fee). Pants can be had at sams club cheap, or look online. For 260 I could probably put together 8-10 shirts and pants, a couple silk screen jackets or hooded sweatshirts, and a few hats.

    Weigh the options, you know how much it cost you last year, just compare.
  4. newz7151

    newz7151 LawnSite Silver Member
    from Tejas
    Messages: 2,419

    Or, if the cost of renting seems so steep to you.. Add a uniform fee onto your employees. Say.. half and half with them. If they balk at this, require them to purchase their own uniforms that you delegate and mandate that they be kept in pristine condition. Really.. if you've got 3 employees and want to do it right, renting uniforms from a company that includes the repair and replacement costs is the way to go. Especially in the LC business where who knows how many times a worker might snag on something and rip a shirt.
  5. nherweck

    nherweck LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 326

    For myself last year I spent about 250-300 in new shirts ALONE as there were MANY times I had to clear areas of LOTS of garbage (tons of trees, shrubs, old fencing, etc.), so I'm still wondering, hah. I found a few people on ebay that'll sell 24 polos with left chest embroidering for less than 200 with shipping and all. That would satisfy us easily. But the fact that they get torn so easily...I'd probably be better off ordering 36-48. SOO>...I'm still fighting between the rental or the purchase options...
  6. nobagger

    nobagger LawnSite Gold Member
    from Pa
    Messages: 3,065

    T-shirts for me. They, to me are a lot cooler in the summer months and a lot cheaper in price. If any of my guys want sweatshirts or hoodies they pay what I pay for them. Plus I like the fact that you can get anything you want printed on them. I paid about $11.00 per shirt front and back printing. And as far as pants or shorts, it's kakie or don't show up!
  7. nherweck

    nherweck LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 326

    OK, I've heard t-shirts are used quite a bit...so what do you guys use? T-shirts that are silkscreened? Or polos that are embroidered? I like the polos for landscaping jobs or when I'm dealing with clients face to face. But I LOVE t-shirts for their flexibility, and the fact they are so light and breathe so well.
  8. MMLawn

    MMLawn LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,569

    I have used Aramark and now use Cintas and it is a great deal. You're only looking at $7 or so per week and you can't even wash/clean and replace clothes for that small sum. However you probably don't realize it but in your case the decision has probably already been made for you by default because: At only 16 you won't be able to sign the legally binding business service contract Aramark (and the others such as Cintas) requires for service. They also require the uniforms to be delivered to a licensed stand alone business address and will not deliver to a home address and as I suspect you work out of your parents home that would also apply.
  9. nobagger

    nobagger LawnSite Gold Member
    from Pa
    Messages: 3,065

    Both, I have a great looking logo that is silkscreened front and back and if I am just doing estimates I have a few embroidered polo shirts and clean shorts or long pants. In the spring and fall I wear long sleeve mock turtle necks with the logos silkscreened front and back. I really like the mock turtle necks, I think they look sharp. Which ever way you go make sure you leave a few in your drawers that stay nice and clean, there are times where you can't help wearing a t shirt to give an estimate if your in the field mowing and some one calls and its on your way to another stop.
  10. nherweck

    nherweck LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 326

    Yes, I live with my parents and operate out of the house. I'm looking around for a small plot of land that I can purchase this summer and have a dedicated business address/storage center next year. So...next year that part shouldn't be a problem. Do you know if both Aramark and Cintas require a dedicated business address? Also like you said, you can't really clean or replace clothing at that cost, that is what was attracting me to Aramark. Thanks for your imput!!

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