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Staff from Hell

Posted by A_to_Z_Clean (A_to_Z_Clean), 2 October 2003
Today i have day from hell. I'm expanding my cleaning company soo i need new cleaners.I have 3 of them in this week and 0 of them come to work today!!!!!
Anty help with this, how to make sure that cleaner will came to workHuh?
Contract, deposit or wathHuh

Thanks For Help
AtoZ Clean

p.s. Eny errors with my english let me know please.(i'm foreign)

Posted by peewa (peewa), 2 October 2003
are u paying them enough to keep them
pay them a week in hand
Posted by Claire_Bennett (Claire_Bennett), 2 October 2003
It's a scenario i dread the most. I guess you have to pay them slightly more than other companies in the local area and also keep them loyal by adding other incentives such as bonus payments after they have completed certain number of hours etc. It might mean having to hike up your prices slightly but I guess it's worth it if it means not letting your clients down

Can I ask what kind of contract you offer your employees (see previous threads) are they on a permanent contract or do you sub-contract them?

Hope today is a little better for you

Posted by A_to_Z_Clean (A_to_Z_Clean), 2 October 2003
Dear Clarie

Thanks .My cleaners are student from EU cuntries so they are allowed to work 20h per week without tax and NI. Grin
I got this idea form another companies ( i know 10 of them doing the same thing)
I'm working on agency bases so i Have number of customers and cleaner is going to house.
I don't gona pay more becuse i work my ass off to got new customers and it is costing me small fortune Shocked Shocked
Weeek in hand is good i will try that.

AtoZ Clean

And today is better i got 8000 flayers so let go to work Cheesy Cheesy

Thanks Godd Luck for All

Posted by martin_606 (martin_606), 2 October 2003
Hi Adam

ahh, the day from hell, we all have them (sadly)

staff are an absolute nightmare, in any form. It's all want, want, want and I need, and 'can't/won't do that' and the law and legislation is all in their favour.

i will be going and recommend sub-contracting. If they don't do the work, they don't get paid and they are responsible for their own tax and NI.

Of course this doesn't help you if they don't turn up in the first place, but at least it cuts your costs. If you pay them a week up front and they still don't turn up, you're stuffed.



P.S don't apologise for being foreign.
Posted by A_to_Z_Clean (A_to_Z_Clean), 2 October 2003
Grin Grin Grin
Thanks All

Next cleaner who don't show up to work will have raealy bad day Grin Grin Grin

I'm realy nice person but i have my limits.

Ok end of talkig go back to work( we all need to get some money Grin Grin)
AtoZ Clean
Posted by noracarlin (noracarlin), 2 October 2003
High employment is your problem - staff can get a job anywhere these days, unless you pay them a good hourly rate.  Cleaners in this area are getting up to £10 an hour!  I pay mine monthly.


Arleys Angels
Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 3 October 2003

Sub contracting.... I understood that Government legislation had all but ruled this out.

If someone works for you on a regular basis then YOU may be liable for their tax and insurance.
The only way I can see around this is for them to form a company and give you invoices each week...messy.

Please check it out before you go down this route.

Posted by Musicman (Musicman), 3 October 2003
I believe you are right Derek.

I work on a self-employed basis doing freelance sales/consultancy work in the office cleaning industry. (This is essentially sub-contracting myself to cleaning contractors.)

When I set up I consulted with the Inland Revenue who obviously have strict rules on sub-contracting. I understand that anyone acting as a sub-contractor in this role (and this would apply to cleaners) cannot do more than 40% of their work for one person - therefore I must have at least 3 clients. I had to get a letter of acceptance from the IR before I could start.

With all due respect to cleaners, asking them to set up in a self employed role (and all the paperwork and accounting involved) is a bit much.

I've been reading these threads and thinking that it can't be possible to take cleaners on as sub-contractors.

In my experience, if you pay your staff well, give them proper support and management, decent equipment and materials to work with, and incentivise and motivate them, and look after them they will not let you down (well not too often).

This industry is hardly rocket science but it is unbelievable how many companies can't get it right.

Good luck to you (as long as you're not cleaning offices in my area) but if you do decide to sub-contract your staff I believe it will come back to haunt you.


Posted by martin_606 (martin_606), 3 October 2003
That will be the law and legislation I was talking about then. Cool

Tricky ground it seems...

How about only using each cleaner less than 20 hours per weekHuh

Is that possible and would it workHuh

Just a thought


Martin Wink
Posted by Claire_Bennett (Claire_Bennett), 3 October 2003
I think that if they earn less than £76 (ish) per week then they are under the national insurance threshold, so you as an employer won't have to calculate their tax and NI contributions, nor will they be entitled to sick pay or maternity pay, however I think they are still entitled to 4 weeks paid holiday each year (is this pro-rata?).

All of this of course depends on whether they have a job with someone else  or not - tricky
Posted by Musicman (Musicman), 3 October 2003
The Employer's liability for NI kicks in at £89.00 (12.8% of any amount above that).

Whilst it is possible (in theory) to take on cleaners who are prepared to work on a self-employed basis for 3 or more companies let me ask, do you really want to take on someone in such a capacity, and what level of commitment do you really think you will get from them?

A further element to take into consideration is that for them to be genuine sub-contractors they must be responsible for a reasonable amount of the cost going into the work - so will need to supply their own vacuums, chemicals, materials etc.

This really is a route to stay away from - find an alternative! The contract cleaning industry already has a bad enough reputation, please don't enhance it!!

For the record I'm aware of at least one cleaning company who gains business under their own name and then sub-contracts the entire contract to a third party (individual or group of cleaners). This is within the law as the cleaners are entirely responsible for the contract - even down to the provision of relief staff during the holidays of the regular cleaners. They submit an invoice to the original party who in turn invoice the client.

This is in the commercial cleaning sector, so may or may not apply to your line of business.

With regards to holiday pay, the national minimum is 4 weeks of which the 8 Bank Holidays can be included.

The 20 hours bit is irrelevant.

Posted by martin_606 (martin_606), 3 October 2003
Hi All

I feel I have to clarify my position here.

I am not trying to 'enhance' anything.

The whole staff issue is a minefield as we can see. I have had staff before and you can be breaking the law without even knowing it.

You have to calculate their tax and pay thier NI. Cover for holidays and take into account bank holidays and holiday entitlement. If they are sick, student, pregnant then there is statutory sick, maternity pay and student loan reductions.
you also have to calculate their NI contributions and pay a part of that (employer contributions), also don't forget how much pay to date, amount of free pay they are entitled too plus any tax credits.

If you do this youself you can either do it by hand on form P11 (nightmare) or buy the software sage runs from £50 for instant accounts to £500 for sage accounts. then you can ask your accountant to do it which can cost from £100+ (per business, per month).

Add on to this your staff with the full weight of the law and legislation on their side with I want this/ and all of that. Won't do this/or any of that. Plus if they get hurt working for you they of course might just want to sue you (the icing on the cake)

I am new to the cleaning industry so please excuse any cleaning related mistakes on my part.

Staff I am not new too


Posted by A_to_Z_Clean (A_to_Z_Clean), 3 October 2003
Hi All

I did't know is soo much trouble with stuff.But - life is brutal soo im still doing this and next one ( cleaner) no coming to work will get his/hers ass k.... Grin Grin Grin

AtoZ Clean
P.s I'm not interested in offices Grin Grin
Posted by DP (DP), 4 October 2003
I donít know if this might be of any use, however in my search over the last 10 weeks of visiting various Franchise companies (subject of a different post) up and down the country and talking to their current franchisees, I deduced from a multi national "Maid" type franchise that they didnít pay their staff an hourly rate they pay them on a percentage basis which adds incentive and reduces absenteeism.

One guy stated that he went through a lot of grief in the early days when his staff would not turn up, until he realized that not turning up was the norm not the exception. Therefore he begun to over staff i.e. he has 12 staff at the mo however he only ever works about 8 on a daily basis. His advice was to employ as many staff as you can assuming that at least 1/3 will not turn up for work.


Posted by martin_606 (martin_606), 5 October 2003
You can always ask friends if they need to earn a bit of extra cash, single mums etc etc.

Just a thought??

Posted by petra (petra), 5 October 2003
I have been running my own cleaning business for over 2 years now,and I have found that you do get the odd few that mess about, but insentives do help. I have just introduced employee of the month, which boosts self esteem and does make them more eager to please. A good christmas treat and talking to staff does help too.
Ask them why they have not turned up. Also use a good disaplinary procedure

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