Home Forums Money matters Do I have to pay my employees to go back and fix a mistake?

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  • #999961
    Tmfield
    Member
    • Total posts: 9

    Hey guys…. I run a cleaning business with 9 employees. I am needing help with this question.

    We clean alot of houses and do jobs for realtors. I provide my staff with tick lists of what they need to do. I try to be there to check their work before they leave but I cant be in two places at once. Sometimes, customers complain that the cleaner either did not do a good job or they missed something completely, even if it’s on the list I gave them.

    My question is, can I send my staff to fix the problem without paying them? Or can I refuse to pay them until they correct the job. For example, last week, I did not have time to check on an end of lease clean..two window tracks were missed which is a 10min job. The realtor complained. I had to drive two hours to fix this up, out of my own pocket. Should I of sent the staff back to fix this? If I need to pay them again to to this, I cannot afford it, this is why i go back myself.

    #1222048
    Rowan@quaotic
    Participant
    • Total posts: 712

    No, it is your problem and you have to pay your employees even if they make mistakes.
    If this is happening often as you say then it seems that your procedures and training need working on, or perhaps better employees. Of course you do have the option to turn to contractors but you may still end up having the same problems, and you have less control over procedures. Sometimes a boss has trouble seeing things from an outside or employees point of view and you may be making problems for yourself without realising it, just a thought.

    I understand that you are frustrated and it is probably just blowing off steam, but I sincerely hope you don’t treat your employees or business in the manner that you have posted here.

    #1222049
    Paul – FS Concierge
    Keymaster
    • Total posts: 3,175

    Hi And Welcome to Flying Solo [USER=116814]@Tmfield[/USER] . It is great to have you!

    Thank you for joining our community and posting.

    It is a difficult spot you are in. It is your responsibility to make sure you are meeting minimum legal standards. Withholding pay or not paying your employees for their time is not within the law.

    Changing to all contractors is very complicated so I would advise you to seek Accounting and/or Legal advise before doing so.

    There is software that can help eg sweptworks.com but it will not replace having a set of eyes on the job

    Cheers

    #1222050
    Tmfield
    Member
    • Total posts: 9
    Rowan@quaotic, post: 268258, member: 28171 wrote:
    No, it is your problem and you have to pay your employees even if they make mistakes.
    If this is happening often as you say then it seems that your procedures and training need working on, or perhaps better employees. Of course you do have the option to turn to contractors but you may still end up having the same problems, and you have less control over procedures. Sometimes a boss has trouble seeing things from an outside or employees point of view and you may be making problems for yourself without realising it, just a thought.

    I understand that you are frustrated and it is probably just blowing off steam, but I sincerely hope you don’t treat your employees or business in the manner that you have posted here.

    Thanks for your reply. I am definately blowing off steam, I am always nice to my employees and I have never yelled, talked down to, or fire anyone I will have a look at my systems

    #1222051
    Mischelle
    Member
    • Total posts: 805

    Hi,

    I think every employer at some point has had to cover the costs of re-work.

    If my staff make a mistake regardless of if it costs my company anything, they need to be re-trained. It’s not hard, just re-do your checklist training.

    People make mistakes, BUT, if after re-training (not before) they continue to make mistakes which you have covered in your procedures, then you have to consider if you have the wrong person for the job and MAY have to consider starting the warning process.

    I feel for you, but that is just part of doing business and having employees, if we could all clone ourselves we would be so happy :):)

    #1222052
    Tmfield
    Member
    • Total posts: 9

    Thanks so much for your reply. I feel much better to know that I am not the only one. I will look at better ways to train :)

    #1222053
    Dave Gillen – FS Concierge
    Keymaster
    • Total posts: 2,556

    [USER=116814]@Tmfield[/USER] something else to consider…raising your prices (though not always easy) is one way to help you afford the cost of mistakes and be more generous to your employees and customers. If you can’t afford mistakes then your margins are likely too thin :)

    Best of luck and thanks for raising this topic for discussion!

    Dave

    Dave Gillen - Client Acquisition | Brisbane | (07) 3180 0288
    #1222054
    businesstrade
    Participant
    • Total posts: 210

    Unfortunately, it is part of doing business to pay your employees irrespective of whether they are perfect or not. Mistakes happen, you just need to move forward and figure out how to reduce the chance of this happening again in the future.

    #1222055
    Paul – FS Concierge
    Keymaster
    • Total posts: 3,175

    In line with what [USER=49676]@Dave – FS Concierge[/USER] said, taking high risk work (Bond clean with an Agent you are not affiliated with) that is too far away to fix minor mistakes is something to look at.

    Some members are being harsh on the OP. Minor mistakes happen all of the time in the industry. Looking for perfect employees or training mistakes out of them is a fools errand.

    Having miffed outside agents look for the smallest mistake is part of life…. and that is why I don’t take that sort of work unless it is for an excellent existing customer or good friend.

    #1222056
    bb1
    Participant
    • Total posts: 4,485

    Paul – FS Concierge, post: 268394, member: 78928 wrote:
    Having miffed outside agents look for the smallest mistake is part of life…. and that is why I don’t take that sort of work unless it is for an excellent existing customer or good friend.

    This doesnt just apply to cleaning work, I avoid any work which involves a real estate agent, not only are they unrealistic, they don’t cough up with the $’s unless the property owner or tenant has paid up.

    This could be easily solved if we all black banned them, but sadly there are always enough business’s around willing to put up with their unethical behaviour.

    #1222057
    jayen
    Member
    • Total posts: 23

    I think you’ve gotten some great answers to your original question and I don’t have anything to add there.

    But is there a way to avoid checking their work? Like, could you always send them in pairs and have them cross-check each other?

    #1222058
    Tmfield
    Member
    • Total posts: 9
    jayen, post: 268429, member: 54988 wrote:
    I think you’ve gotten some great answers to your original question and I don’t have anything to add there.

    But is there a way to avoid checking their work? Like, could you always send them in pairs and have them cross-check each other?

    I have tried that. They said it creates conflict. For example an employee said that the other cleaner came up to him and told him things he had forgotten (which is good) but then when he would do the same, that cleaner could not handle the criticism.

    #1222059
    bb1
    Participant
    • Total posts: 4,485
    Tmfield, post: 268436, member: 116814 wrote:
    I have tried that. They said it creates conflict. For example an employee said that the other cleaner came up to him and told him things he had forgotten (which is good) but then when he would do the same, that cleaner could not handle the criticism.

    I think your issue isn’t like others have mentioned, checking on the work, training, etc. But more people management and people relationship styles. Your comment shows that this is the area you need to improve. There are ways to handle these things tactfully.

    #1222060
    Tmfield
    Member
    • Total posts: 9

    Thanks everyone! I will offer better training. I am also hiring an area manager to supervise them as well

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