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Hired help

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by C.C.snow, Aug 29, 2012.

  1. C.C.snow

    C.C.snow Junior Member
    from Wyoming
    Messages: 1

    We have been in the snow business for a few years now. We have done well and have now encountered a new challenge. We have equipment that sits all winter because I don't have enough hired help to run it. I would like to have the equipment making money.

    I read on here where many people go from having 1-4 summer employees to 20+ in the winter. Where do people find people who want to work part time and can afford to do so? Do most people pay a retainer or base fee no matter if it snows? We have per push accounts here primarily. It seems to me, one could not afford to commit to the part time position in the event it does not snow. Really, even if it does snow, how can one afford to feed their family and save for the future by plowing during X number of snow events?

    In short, other companies are obviously doing this and I would appreciate any feedback regarding this issue.

  2. Hambrick & Co.

    Hambrick & Co. PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,350

    A lot of companies use the "employement forum" here on plow site to locate subs in their area. Anyone working in the snow industry knows that it is unpredicatable so they should be aware of what they're getting them selves into. I havent heard of too many companies offering retainers regardless of whether or not it snows. I could be wrong tho.

    In my opinoin there are plenty of people that want to work. Why should you loose money if you're not making money.

    Best of luck to you.

  3. born2farm

    born2farm 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,310

    You are running into the same problem that me as well as a lot of other companies on here have ran in to. The best source of workers I have found is look towards the construction trades. A lot of them are laid off in the winter. This is the same for say roofers ect. Sources I have used are other farmers as they are pretty slow in the winter and are usually very good running equipment and working on thing. I also have a guy that seal coats in the summer and is slow in the winter. Also look at landscape companies that don't do much snow. They usually have extra employees come winter.
  4. snocrete

    snocrete Banned
    Messages: 2,862

    Most of my "extra" winter help consists of people in similar seasonal trades....they are slow or laid off in the winter months anyway. I dont give retainers (yet), but I do offer bonuses....and most of my help is making much better $/hr than they do during the regular season.

    Also, some of my help are employees of subs that I have(that I employ in the winter)....I can see this being a problem for some, but it has created some good relationships for me and some of my subs.
  5. truckitup

    truckitup Senior Member
    Messages: 259

    To bad you are not in Rochester, NY, I perfer to be a Sub Contractor.
  6. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    They may have more guys then needed, Some guys can work only days ,some nights only so they may switch off.
  7. Bossman 92

    Bossman 92 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,771

    You have to pay well for starters. I have found that you have to sort thru lots of screwballs but there are pleanty of guys wanting to work. I have only 1 or 2 other guys during the summer months, but usually have 9 or 10 guys in the winter. As someone else said make sure you have a few extra guys you can call if needed