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Window Cleaning Issues - Canvassing, pole systems, pricing, problems, etc.

Do you employ anyone?

Posted by simonb (simonb), 27 January 2004
If so do you pay commission or salary?
How did you make the jump from being on your own?
Comments much appreciated!
Posted by tam (tam), 27 January 2004
when you employ men el  insurance comes in to  the equasion if you pay commission some of the windows that are supposed  to be cleaned are missed as more comm. is made. Give them a basic wage and maybe a bonus for attendance or work done or just out of the goodness of your heart for work done
Posted by denzle (Denzle), 27 January 2004
This is a real hard one for anyone wanting to get bigger, i came up with the following solution which works for me.... I don't say it would work for everyone though. My guys are on a 20hrs per week guaranteed income with the promise of more hours if its possible to work them. I figure that no matter what the weather does it should always be possible to do 20hrs. Most times they get 35hrs plus. I do get them to do evening collecting for me which they get paid for. plus if they bring in some good work they get a bonus.
They are on an hourly rate with a bonus if they perform well and no complaints come from there work. I am fortunate to have a couple of very good guys, the one is beyond brilliant in the things that he does for the company although he has a vested interest in the fact that he is engaged to my daughter.
PAYE, etc etc is a pain but i use a program called quickbooks to do it all and its not such a chore, Employers liability, public liability, vehicle insurance etc all eats massive amounts of profit but its something you have to live with if you want to get bigger. If i had my time again i would price very high and stay small.
Hope that this is of some help.
Posted by simonb (simonb), 27 January 2004
Thanks Denzle, thats great.
To start with did you work your guts out then pass most of the work to an employee and you start from scratch again?
Posted by denzle (Denzle), 27 January 2004
No i got to a point where i just couldn't keep up and took 1 employee, then when we couldn't keep up i took another. What i should have done in hindsight is get rid of a lower priced job each time a high priced job came in, but you know what human nature is like and you always try to cope. Now i mainly work on my own and leave the 2 guys together for safety sake. It works for me but its getting to a point where half a day of rain will put us behind so i guess i need another guy.
Posted by karlosdaze (karlosdaze), 27 January 2004
on 01/27/04 at 21:22:31, Denzle wrote:
If i had my time again i would price very high and stay small.
Hope that this is of some help.

Well said that man!

Posted by mickeyfat (mickeyfat), 27 January 2004


by the way

nice site...i would have to say one of the best i have seen Smiley
ps soory about the caps guys only noticed half way  Tongue
Posted by denzle (Denzle), 28 January 2004
You are right, more staff means more bills.... and usually big ones. You have to be really switched on about Health and safety issues too. You need eyes everywhere to ensure that your staff work safely otherwise you could end up getting sued if an accident occures.
I wouldn't miss out on getting a dedicated work van though, the tax advantages are good, the image of what you do looks better and if its properly sign written it will bring you in more work than you can shake a stick at.
Posted by paul (paul), 28 January 2004
HI GUYS GETTING BIGGER ISENT a problem Huh you just take it one step at a time i now employ 6 guys full time on a 37.5 hr a week as for working out the paye etc let your accountent do it for you mine only charges me 35p per a week per a employee or i have to do is put the money in the wage slip when it arrives. Grin i intend to add another two vans this year to my small fleet of three and intend to employ at least another two persons this year Tongue Kiss
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 28 January 2004
Wow Paul, you are growing fast. How do you find/choose your employees? How much pay do they usually expect? I've only used subcontracted help up till now but would like to take on a full-time employee soon.

Posted by sc (sc), 28 January 2004
Is it easier to employ someone or to sub contract? sub contract seems a lot less complex.
Posted by mickeyfat (mickeyfat), 28 January 2004
i would love to go big but i find that with the weather and some cusomers not paying(collections)etc it puts me off..i mean having to pay all the costs with an income that is varied at the best of times...and also having to reley on men to earn mME money...i just dont like the thought of having all the big vans etc and then nothing left to myself at the end ..
BUT some of you here do it and like paul said "one step at a time" i have around 500 domestic and a few little shops, getting new customers aint a problem with cold calling , but i cant help think me on my own would be less HASSEL

maybe a good accountant would help(more cash Sad)

Posted by Rob_B (Rob_B), 28 January 2004
I look at it this way. To make it worth while employing somebody you have to pay them less then what they can make.

After you allow for holiday pay, employers liability, and rained off days then it will have to be quite a bit less then what they make.

How much pride would you have in your work if you were earning money for somebody else. do you really think that some one that you employ cares as much as you about standards, and if they are that good then surely they have the sense to set up by themselves. After all, we all know how easy it is to find work.

Posted by denzle (Denzle), 28 January 2004
Very true, but its always good to emphasize to your guys how much everything is costing you i.e insurance, etc, not everyone wants to get involved in all that and are quite happy making a living.
Most people are too busy making a living, to go it alone and make a fortune.
Posted by simonb (simonb), 29 January 2004
I am interested in the economics;
Domestic or commercial work?
I dont want to know the actual figures percentages would do.
If you had an employee earning 100 per day what amount would you realise in profit after ALL expenses?

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