What to Do During Lawn Care Rain Delays

Published on April 15, 2021

Lawn care rain delays are an unfortunate byproduct that comes with owning a lawn care business working outdoors.

While rain delays are 100% unavoidable, when you know the right steps, you can still remain profitable despite it.

In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know in order to properly handle your next rain delay. You'll find out how to:

  • Reschedule your mowing crews
  • Decide whether to pay your employees for rain delays
  • Stay profitable and keep growing during lawn care rain delays

… And so much more!

By the end of this article, you’ll have all the knowledge and insider tips you need in order to handle your next rain delay like a true lawn care professional.

Use this article to create your own lawn care rain delay procedures now!

How to Reschedule Your Mowing Crews

One of the most common dilemmas among lawn care business owners is whether or not to reschedule mowing crews.

While there's no “catch all” answer for all lawn care businesses, there are a few factors you can consider to choose the best option for you.

Are You Under a Contract or Pay-as-You-Go?

Depending on if you’re under a contract or pay-as-you-go, will help you determine how to handle rescheduling your lawn care crews.

If you’re under a contract, then you’ll get paid regardless of whether or not the job is completed.

In this instance, it’s probably best to skip the jobs.

However, if you’re billing your clients as pay-as-you-go, then you don’t want to skip any of your lawn care jobs.

If you use a pay-as-you-go billing system, then I suggest doing at least one or more of these two things:

1. Build Extra Days into the Week

If possible, the best solution for lawn care rain delays is to build extra days into the week.

When you have enough people on your mowing crews, you can set them up to work 10 hours a day from Monday through Thursday (4 days a week).

This way, if there’s a rain delay during the week, you can work your crews on Friday to catch up.

2. Work Your Mowing Crew on Their Day(s) Off

A common problem among lawn care businesses is the trouble of finding the right lawn care employees.

If you don’t have enough lawn care employees, you likely already have your mowing crews working forced overtime at 10 hours a day from Monday through Friday (5 days a week).

Unfortunately, in this instance your mowing crews likely will have to work on Saturday and maybe even Sunday to catch up.

If this is the case, this should be made clear to your lawn care employees before hiring them. Otherwise, you could risk losing them later on.

Set clear expectations with your employees from the start. Make them understand that when there are rain delays, they’ll be working later during the week - likely on their days off when rain delays happen.

3. Cut Corners Where You Can Until You Catch Up

While this might seem unusual, it’s more important to get the jobs done than to give it your 100% effort.

Since you don’t get paid for jobs that aren’t completed, you can’t afford to miss any jobs if it can be avoided.

As a result, you should cut corners where you can until you can catch up.

Then, the next time you go back to the property, you can clean it up the following week when you’re less behind.

How to Decide Whether to Pay Employees for Rain Delays

How you pay your lawn care employees determines whether you pay them for rain delays.

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Hourly Lawn Care Employees

If you pay your lawn care employees hourly, then you won’t pay them for rain delays.

This is because hourly employees don’t get paid for hours they don’t clock in and work.

Most of the people working out in the field on your lawn care crew that aren’t managers should be paid hourly.

Pay-for-Performance or Piecemeal Lawn Care Employees

If your employees are paid using the pay-for-performance (or piecemeal) model, then (much like hourly employees) you won’t pay them for hours they don’t work.

Quick Side Note: When calculating hours worked, make sure you follow your local minimum wage labor laws.

Salaried Lawn Care Employees

If you have any lawn care employees who are paid by salary, then you’ll have to pay them their set salary (regardless of if they work).

In most cases, the only lawn care employees who might be paid salaries are your managers.

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Staying Profitable During Lawn Care Rain Delays

If you really want to keep growing and stay profitable during rain delays, then you need to start using a great lawn care software, like Service Autopilot.

In Service Autopilot, you can create your lawn care rain delay procedures where you can use Service Autopilot Automations to send mass updates via email, or you can instantly reroute and reschedule your jobs.

As an added bonus, you can also easily keep track of your profits to make informed decisions (for instance, deciding whether to skip jobs or not).

Now, you have all the insider information you need to create your own lawn care rain delay plan and procedures today!


Related: How Much Should You Pay Your Lawn Care Employees?


Originally published April 15, 2021 12:06 PM

Alyssa Sanders

Alyssa is a Content Marketing Specialist II at Service Autopilot. Her bookworming began after she discovered the Harry Potter series. Her love of books evolved into writing and creating content. When she's not writing, you can find her watching a new sci-fi series or shoving her nose into a book.
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