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Time to overook the operation?

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by CNYScapes, Jan 20, 2007.

  1. CNYScapes

    CNYScapes Senior Member
    Messages: 136

    How many trucks / subs before I need to get out of the truck and just "put out fires", you know broken stuff, or pick up a little slack here and there. Basically right now i run 5 plow trucks and 1 sub-contractor ( 6 plow routes). I am thinking about putting on another sub to cover my route so i am free to overlook the quality of everyone elses work and for broken trucks/plows I will just cover that route for the night. Just wondering how many of you guys that run several trucks do it and if you all are still in the truck or running the show from the office?
  2. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 627

    I have had 25+ pieces of equipment out numerous times. I still go out. It is called leading by example. Now to be honest, I am not as productive as the other guys due to the phone ringing off the hook, but I am there. The guys will always have questions where it is nice to see what they are talking about. The other reality is you will not know what the storm is doing by watching the radar and talking to your guys on the phone. The way I handle things is by putting several trucks on each large account while I plow smaller accounts I can be out of in less than 30 minutes. This allows me to drive around checking on our other lots while still getting some lots done. You can bark orders from your office if you want, but if I were your employee it would leave a negative taste in my mouth. Just my opinion.
  3. Superior L & L

    Superior L & L PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,041

    I agree with Phil. I run 14 pieces of equipement and ive got to be right there. I do the sucky stuff
  4. Lawnscape89

    Lawnscape89 Senior Member
    Messages: 213

    Same here. I like to be "hands on" when it come to snow. If there is a problem, I like to check it out for myself, just to be sure and I'm usually in the area. The clients like this fact, too. I do some plowing but all of the salting, so I'm running around everywhere anyway. Just can't seem to let go of being in control.
  5. CNYScapes

    CNYScapes Senior Member
    Messages: 136

    I think I will still be out on the road, but maybe I will just take care of the salting. My salting takes a couple of hours, so when I get done I can just help out with some of the properties that dont get salted. Youre right that the guys would not be happy if I was not out there with them.
  6. YardMedic

    YardMedic PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,266

    Though I'm just a 1-man operation right now, I've thought about putting on another truck (yeah, and I know lots of people TALK and TALK about doing this!!). Lawnscape made a point that stuck with me -- doing all the salting for accounts means he's at all the accounts, so he sees what his guys have done. That's a great idea. I can also see making the boss' plow route lighter so if he had to break away to check a problem somewhere, the route won't get slowed down as much. I do have to laugh as I think about my own operation -- I know my accounts better than anyone & can get more done in less time than anyone I hire, so it will be tough to back off & supervise.

    A question for folks here, though... I would imagine that 2 trucks is not simply twice the productivity as 1 when considering the boss (me, or you) is checking on accounts or concerning himself with what the employee(s) is doing. Is that correct? My logic is that having 40 accounts right now, putting on a second truck would not allow me to reasonably do 80 accounts. My thinking was that a second truck would probably allow for 20 additional driveways per event (just using 20 for round numbers sake). Please forgive the little guy here for ignorance!

  7. Triple L

    Triple L PlowSite Fanatic
    from Canada
    Messages: 6,078

    It would be nice if it worked like that. I know I'm running 2 plow trucks and a skid steer plus a dedicated side-walk crew. I know my productivity has dropped to almost nothing this year because I will plow a lot here and there but I'm constantly on the two-way telling these guys where to go and what to do because with me it varries by priority and which ones must get done first. Than I break off and start running the salter and salt all the plowed lots. By running two trucks you may be able to get up to 70 accounts but you have to remember if your having employees running your equipment the number one problem I have is getting my side-walk guy out of bed and trying to stay in communication with a guy that is always out of a truck.Just a thought, sometimes I say screw all you guys and I go out there and do everything myself and show these guys that I know what I'm doing and trying to make them get thier act together. Almost a love to have employees but hate all the hassles to go along with it.
  8. hemisareslow

    hemisareslow Member
    Messages: 32

    where in CNY are ya...I work nights over at Gypsum express and am always looking for extra work if you need a little help during the day....Mike
  9. andrewlawnrangr

    andrewlawnrangr Senior Member
    Messages: 339

    befor the season start i got out with my sub and tell him where the snow has to be put ** with a semi scale drawing of obsticals and walk areas** so im not out there on 2 way with him tellin him what needs to be done.... take the time when its not snowing so you dont get held up..

    i like to be out working with the guys to modevaite them... keep them goin

    MRUSSELL Member
    Messages: 67

    HICKSLAWN if you need a hand on the weekends or evenings willing to lend a hand if needed
  11. GrandScapes

    GrandScapes Senior Member
    Messages: 189

    We have over 35 rigs out on a plow run not to mention the loaders and shovelers and I still run our big dump truck plowing and salting...We have a coordinator that sits in the office and gets guys in the right places. I hate the paper pushing part of plowing. I love being part of the action. Plus I dont care how good of guys you have. There finish work still needs to be checked on regardless.
  12. PORTER 05

    PORTER 05 Senior Member
    Messages: 449

    Yard Medic

    YARD-MEDIC-----hey ill try to awsner youre question.....you are right that you cannot double...it would seem this way but for some reason it just doesnt work....we run 2 trucks, we plow juts over 60 accounts, about 50 driveways rangiong from small 2 car wide 2 car deep, to huge quarter mile long driveways deep into the woods, 8 condos, 1 retail store and 1 church, ill tell you its a hadful, this is how i do it, i run alone and plow about 70% of the accoutns just smashing them out then the other truck will come in behind with the shovelers and theyll shovel out the walks ect, also they do about 30% of the other plowing mostly small drives and small condos, it works for me...but ti does get busy, well be adding on another truck for next season that well be subbing out to the city for plowing and sanding roads, and ill have to find somone to run that....