Getting More From Each Employee: Scheduling Tips

Productivity is the name of the game, right? As business people, we're always looking for ways to be more productive, more efficient, because being those means we have more opportunity to be more profitable.

But changing things around can be tough. And if you're in the green industry - lawn care, landscaping, and irrigation - doing that this time of the year is pretty much not going to happen. Unless, it's just that easy.

Here's an easy tip to get more out of your field crews: Set time requirements.

Stopwatch: Time requirements help you get more done each dayFor every work order you schedule, tell your technicians how long you expect that job to take. Will it be one hour? 30 minutes? If you do this, you'll start getting more work completed each day. Why? It's all about setting expectations.

If you give me 6 jobs to do for today, I assume that's my day's work. I'll make sure (probably not even consciously or intentionally) that each job takes between 1.3333 and 1.6666 hours. BUT, if each job has a time requirement - my boss has "told me" this job should take one hour - then there's a good change I'll move as fast as required to get it done.

So what happens when I've finished all my work orders, but it's only 2:00 PM? I'll give you a call, and ask what you'd like me to do next. And maybe that's just getting back to the shop and spraying down some equipment, but maybe there's more work that I could be doing to finish out the day... maybe even two or three jobs... meaning two or three extra invoices your business could be billing for each day.

So starting paying attention to how long jobs should take. Start setting expectations with time requirements. And watch your productivity increase.

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