PDA

View Full Version : I hate Subs


SECTLANDSCAPING
01-17-2012, 12:34 AM
Tonight was supposed to be light rain chance of snow. Every forecasted snow has been a dud so I wasnt sweating it. Right after my fiance drives to work with the car seat. The rain turns from rain to snow. Ill say a 1 1/2 inches in the first hour. So I'm panicking with a 8 month old and no way to bring the baby to a sitter.

So I call the guy thats supposed to be subbing for me. He hits me with every excuse in the book. Theres a car parked in front of his plow, serpetine belt is bad and could snap any minute, hes driving right now and his truck cant handle it, doesnt remember how to get to the places I showed him. I swear I'm going to choke this guy!

Call my buddy who is always reliable to pick up a truck but his wife took the car and he has no ride here. arghhhhh

Luckily the snow stopped and the rain came back. Theres almost no snow on the ground now. Hopefully it stays like this or doesnt pick back up till I can leave.

ringahding1
01-17-2012, 01:25 AM
I've heard and have come up with every excuse in the book. Right now I am fortunate my son made his own decision not to go to college and we many people on lock-down for snow..even extra plowers.

But I have been in that situation where I actually would have to tackle most of the load...aint this the life? Hey man just keep working hard, cuz it all comes back around and you look back on this.

SECTLANDSCAPING
01-17-2012, 01:54 AM
Its looking like ill just have to salt the lots which is good news. Its pretty much just slush now. Its 38 degrees so I dont think it will freeze over. I can get out before most the business open. If I had to plow though it wouldve been a issue.

I;m going to leave a truck at the other guys house so this doesnt happen again. He was willing to ride about 10 miles on a bike to pick the truck up. So hes not a issue but the other guy is getting buried.:mad:

Liberty Landscaping LLC
01-17-2012, 07:18 AM
At least you learned about him now instead of with ten inches on the ground. You can adjust now and maybe pick up two new subs. If you need one take two I have learned to keep a backup. Glad it worked out for you.

Steve
01-17-2012, 04:06 PM
So I call the guy thats supposed to be subbing for me. He hits me with every excuse in the book.

Have you ever used some sort of agreement that gave a financial bite to not showing up? Would something like that be useful?

SECTLANDSCAPING
01-17-2012, 10:29 PM
At least you learned about him now instead of with ten inches on the ground. You can adjust now and maybe pick up two new subs. If you need one take two I have learned to keep a backup. Glad it worked out for you.
Your right about that better to find out now then when it counts. I had 3 people call me about subbing today. I plan on taking on at least 2.
Have you ever used some sort of agreement that gave a financial bite to not showing up? Would something like that be useful?

I'm not sure how I could enforce it? I do like the idea though.

So heres how my wonderful day went. My buddy shows up at 5:00 a.m. I sent him to the farthest town inland. I didnt send him with a shoveler because I listened to the weather that said a 1" of snow and 1/2" of rain. A hour later he called me saying there was almost 3" of slush on the ground and the sander stopped working.

At this point I'm driving to the closest lots to me and there completely clear. I go pick up a guy for the walks and double up my salt. I head out on the 15 mile drive to help my guy. By this time I'm getting a call that theres slush on the ground asking me to salt where I just came from. I tell them Ill be there in a hour or two, that it was fine when I was there. Then another call from the property manager from the place my guys already at saying its slippery. I tell them I'm on my way with another sander.

At the last property I go to raise the blade and it wont move. I check everything over, the fluid looks low. I unhook the plow and go get some hydraulic fluid. I put it in nothing! So I leave the plow and meet up with the other guy and start looking everything over. Finally we find a blown fuse for the pump switch. After fixing this I drive back to pick up my plow. In all I had a hell of a day!


I didnt take before pictures because they were started before I arrived or I was rushing. Then I forgot to take more because everything is going wrong. The 4th picture doesnt show the lower half of the condos. All the water drains down a road and when you try to push its like a wave carrying the snow away.

http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/408753_10150540119549544_605874543_8778119_2285209 26_n.jpg

http://a6.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/409051_10150540119799544_605874543_8778124_1350905 871_n.jpg

http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/394372_10150540120104544_605874543_8778129_1099507 323_n.jpg

http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/401705_10150540120364544_605874543_8778133_1327283 825_n.jpg

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/394469_10150540120699544_605874543_8778137_1291336 069_n.jpg

http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/406802_10150540121374544_605874543_8778147_1741359 30_n.jpg

http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/404396_10150540121574544_605874543_8778150_1907594 57_n.jpg

http://a3.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/403592_10150540121859544_605874543_8778154_1269951 53_n.jpg

Chilehead
01-18-2012, 10:48 AM
Going forward, you need to have a written contract with any subs you use. Without one, there is no legal recourse if they fail to perform. If you do have a contract that states, "X amount of work shall be performed by Joe Contractor for X amount of dollars under X circumstances" and they don't perform, you can take 'em to small claims court for damages. Possible damages would be loss of income due to losing clients, delayed payment, the cost involved to find a new sub to do the work, etc. If you go to court you need to PROVE damages in order to win. I once took a sub to court for failing to mow several clients' properties. I lost 2 of them because of his negligence. He did not perform $105.00 in work, but I had a written contract with the clients for the whole season. Both clients combined were worth a total of $2300.00 for the season. I proved this to the judge (with the contracts) and I was awarded $1745.00**the amount I lost for the remaining time on the contracts. Case in point: ALWAYS WORK WITH WRITTEN CONTRACTS. If a sub won't do it, he is likely not business-worthy.

Steve
01-18-2012, 02:49 PM
I'm not sure how I could enforce it? I do like the idea though.

Could a certain percentage of their final pay be held until the end of the season and if they did everything properly they would get it, if not, then penalties would be deducted?

Or could they even forgo a bonus if they failed to perform something?

TiedemanLLC
01-18-2012, 02:57 PM
I have used subs for only 11 years now, and every year one or more I fire. To this date, I have only one sub that has last more than 3 years with me. We are actually going through something opposite of where we are trying to bring everything back in house now. We are trying to do away with all subs.

Steve
01-19-2012, 03:48 PM
and every year one or more I fire.

What is your view on why they are so difficult to deal with? Also, can you tell ahead of time when you hire them if they are going to be problematic?

SECTLANDSCAPING
01-19-2012, 04:02 PM
What is your view on why they are so difficult to deal with? Also, can you tell ahead of time when you hire them if they are going to be problematic?

I havent figured it out yet. I see it like this though if there a guy with a plow there more likely to have a bad work ethic then another business. Another business might put there customers first though.

I talked to 5 subs with hopes of taking on 2. I did rule out one with just a conversation. He never did lots, didnt have a sander, and was the cheapest. The one I'm leaning towards is the most expensive but sounds like the most reliable. There a excavating company that have experience with large lots. I hinted that we could potentially use them for other projects.

I also looked at 3 trucks but didnt like any of them. There overpriced and wont last long. It seems like a waste to me.

TiedemanLLC
01-19-2012, 07:43 PM
I havent figured it out yet. I see it like this though if there a guy with a plow there more likely to have a bad work ethic then another business. Another business might put there customers first though.

I talked to 5 subs with hopes of taking on 2. I did rule out one with just a conversation. He never did lots, didnt have a sander, and was the cheapest. The one I'm leaning towards is the most expensive but sounds like the most reliable. There a excavating company that have experience with large lots. I hinted that we could potentially use them for other projects.

I also looked at 3 trucks but didnt like any of them. There overpriced and wont last long. It seems like a waste to me.

I do agree that most of my problems come from when they put their clients before mine. Another big thing is that they think I won't be looking at their work on the jobsite, so they cut corners. The worst is when they make promises of when they are going to be there, I then tell my clients the approximate time, and then they never show up.

Steve
01-20-2012, 03:31 PM
I do agree that most of my problems come from when they put their clients before mine.

With such situations, would it be possible to pay less if the job is not completed by a certain time? Or no?

TiedemanLLC
01-20-2012, 05:02 PM
With such situations, would it be possible to pay less if the job is not completed by a certain time? Or no?

It may come back and back fire. They may decide that it's not worth the chance.

SECTLANDSCAPING
01-20-2012, 07:17 PM
It may come back and back fire. They may decide that it's not worth the chance.

I had a guy that was in the area and said he would clear a lot for me. From 4 a.m till 8 a.m he played games. After giving up on the guy I finally was able to make it there at 9:30 and the client was pissed. I ended up losing a contract with them and this one is close to being gone.

I had 6 people fill out applications. Talked to them all asking if they would be ready tonight. They all told me yes. Then when I started calling not one would pick up the phone. I was already short staffed and a truck went down. I was scrambling to find help. Finally a guy from Rhode Island showed up at 5 am. I couldve sent him to the above location but the other guy said he was 5 minutes away. Then time went by and I went up myself to find the lot was untouched.

TiedemanLLC
01-20-2012, 08:55 PM
I had a guy that was in the area and said he would clear a lot for me. From 4 a.m till 8 a.m he played games. After giving up on the guy I finally was able to make it there at 9:30 and the client was pissed. I ended up losing a contract with them and this one is close to being gone.

I had 6 people fill out applications. Talked to them all asking if they would be ready tonight. They all told me yes. Then when I started calling not one would pick up the phone. I was already short staffed and a truck went down. I was scrambling to find help. Finally a guy from Rhode Island showed up at 5 am. I couldve sent him to the above location but the other guy said he was 5 minutes away. Then time went by and I went up myself to find the lot was untouched.

I feel your pain. The last two years have been horrible with me and subs. With plowing I have used six subs in the last five years on one property alone. It's a doctors office that opens up at 5am so it needs to be done. Seriously, how hard is it to have the snow removed before 4am?

The other subs that I always go through are irrigation companies. The worst is when they tell me when they are going to be there, so I have to go over to shut off the security system, but then they never show up. No phone call, no answering their phone, nothing.

This year we are really pulling everything back in house though. This may be our last year using subs.

SECTLANDSCAPING
01-21-2012, 11:15 PM
This year we are really pulling everything back in house though. This may be our last year using subs.

Thats what I was trying to do but I didnt have any luck finding a new truck. In a way its cheaper short term to hire a subcontractor. I paid one sub for two storms almost what I spent on repairs for one truck in a week.

It can even happen with a employee. Today one of my better guys walked off the job because I wouldnt do something his way. Some people have nerve.

TiedemanLLC
01-22-2012, 10:32 AM
Thats what I was trying to do but I didnt have any luck finding a new truck. In a way its cheaper short term to hire a subcontractor. I paid one sub for two storms almost what I spent on repairs for one truck in a week.

It can even happen with a employee. Today one of my better guys walked off the job because I wouldnt do something his way. Some people have nerve.

I know what you mean about using subs. The cost is just so much better. But lately with the lack of control, and the lack of quality we are going to pull it in. We realize that the up front cost to get everything back in house will be large, but in the long term it will be better for us. It's almost like starting all over again.

dpld
01-22-2012, 12:48 PM
i mentioned in earlier posts in other threads that i know this dude who has a multi million dollar snow business. 95% of his properties is done by subs.

he hires subs to do each individual task and he has it broken into routes and has owner drivers with trucks, owner operators with machines and he even has seperate crews subbed out for the walks.

he also hires them based on his needs where as if the route is pretty set with "A" subs then he would build a "B" list of secondary subs for no shows and break downs as well as if it is a long snow event and guys need to take breaks.

i know you may be reading this saying " what does this have to do with a little guy like me that just needs a guy or two for extra help ", but my point is everyone that works for him signs a contract and unless all the paperwork is in place you will not work and he will use someone else.

the snow shovel routes are set in stone and the pay varies based on the depth of snow and the drivers and operators get varying rates based on plow size and machine size as well as if they have their own workers comp insurance or if they don't he takes a cut to include you on his coverage.

he has a very nice system in place and the contracts he uses cover all the bases and can be used for any business size big or small.
he also works out of three states NJ,NY and PA so his contracts take into consideration the different and various labor laws and such.

i used to work for him years ago when i had a truck i wanted to keep moving and i have a copy of his full sub contractor agreement so if i can figure out how to scan it and get it into the talking picture box i will post it up for all to use.
and if i can not figure it out i'll mail it to you if you like.

Steve
01-23-2012, 01:10 PM
i have a copy of his full sub contractor agreement so if i can figure out how to scan it and get it into the talking picture box i will post it up for all to use.

That would be great to see and I am sure it would be helpful. If you can, either scan it or take a picture of it and attach it. Thanks!

dpld
01-24-2012, 11:22 AM
That would be great to see and I am sure it would be helpful. If you can, either scan it or take a picture of it and attach it. Thanks!

steve, here is the contract i was reffering to and if you think it needs to be moved elsewhere on the site feel free to do so.


this particular agreement was based on me being a sub with a truck and there were a couple different types as far as what you were being hired to do for example: driver, machine operator or snow shoveler.
but this agreement is pretty much the same for all with the exception of what you are hired to do.

some parts i had to white out like my name to protect the innocent in case the dude see's it

i also accidently included two of the first page and for the life of me i can not remove it but i am sure all of you will figure that out.

Steve
01-24-2012, 04:31 PM
Thank you! Did you feel the agreement was fair to both parties or did you find it favored one side over the other?

Would you use it if you were to hire sub contractors to perform snow removal?

dpld
01-24-2012, 06:21 PM
Thank you! Did you feel the agreement was fair to both parties or did you find it favored one side over the other?

Would you use it if you were to hire sub contractors to perform snow removal?

overall it was fair, but it did lean slightly towards the business owner.

in this day and age you need to have something in place to not only get everthing out in the open in the beginning but to protect all the parties involved so there will be no misunderstandings.

without a contract it leaves a business owner open to situations where the sub does not feel like performing his duties and leaves you high and dry and the contract is a nice reminder to any subs that you have made a legal binding agreement that they must honor.
everyone will promise you the moon and the stars but when it comes time to deliver their attitude changes and when the business owner has made obligations to his customers he has to make sure he will not have these problems and the contract does partially eliminate these types.

i found in life that people who generally do not fullfill their obligations do not like to sign contracts and once again by useing contracts it helps weed these types out.

and to answer your question, yes i would use a similar contract if i were to use subs.