How do you manage time slots for cleaning clients to maximize your schedule?
Picking a territory will reduce the time spent commuting between jobs.
You should never book cleaning appointments on the fly. Scheduling your cleaning clients in advance is key to running a successful business.
Listen: Time Slots for Cleaning Clients
Watch: Time Slots for Cleaning Clients
Hey there, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is a show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer. You can find this and 400 other answered questions in this series on our YouTube channel.
How to Set-Up Time Slots for Cleaning Clients
How do you set-up time slots for cleaning accounts so that your schedule flows seamlessly throughout the entire day? A house cleaner wrote in with this question.
“I Have a question about having employees and cleaning slides. So, if you have an online booking system, how do you recommend starting slotting hours for clients to book? You have to consider about 15 to 20 minutes of commute time between each job. You also have to give them; I would say at least a 30-minute lunch break between clients.
So, do you start the day at 7:00 and end at 5:00, or 8:00 and 5:00, or 8:00 and 3:00? And then, what if you have clients online that want to book a five-hour job that may be a very long project or home, and then you have some that want to do two or three? So, do you pre-slot those and have people book them, or do you sort of leave the whole day open? I’d love to hear your take on the different ways of slotting, those open time slots for clients.”
Block Your Slots Out In Advance
What you want to do is block out your schedule in advance in a particular neighborhood. So, if you’re working in three neighborhoods, then you’re going to choose which day of the week you’re going to be working in that neighborhood.
Now, many houses in the same neighborhood take about the same amount of time. So, if you have a 2,500 square foot house that might take you two or three hours to clean. If you have a 5,800 square foot house, and all the homes are like four to 6,000 square feet, you might be talking about a four to six-hour job.
Then, you’re going to block out the hours in advance, depending on what neighborhoods you’re in. So, if you’re doing small 1,800 square feet apartments or condos, you might be able to fit more of those in the course of a day.
Figure Out How Long You’re Going to Spend Cleaning
So, you’re going to figure out how long you’re going to spend cleaning. You’re going to figure out where the houses are and if they’re all geographically in the same place. Then you don’t need 15 or 20 minutes of commute time between because you’re going to go one street over, or you’re going to go two doors down. So, your commute is very, very short and you’re going to block out those segments in advance.
When you tell a customer you only have one opening. You may have other openings on a different day in a different area. But if you only have one opening in this neighborhood and you want to keep all your houses together. Then if you only have that one slot available then you sell in that neighborhood.
So what happens if you have a five or six-hour cleaning? Do you leave your schedule open? No, because then your customer is dictating the job, not you, and you are the business owner and so time is money. There are only so many cleaning hours in a day. And so, you have to maximize those cleaning hours and make sure that you’re getting the best use of our time for our money.
Block in Particular Neighborhoods
So, you’re going to be blocked in particular neighborhoods. Then you’re going to work in those neighborhoods. So for example, if every time you go to a neighborhood and you are in one area, here’s what you might do.
You might ask the homeowners that live, “Hey, listen, I have one opening in this neighborhood. And to keep your prices low, I would love to stay in this neighborhood. Do you have any neighbors that you could recommend me to? And would you mind announcing that I have one opening on NextDoor?”
And then you can let that customer make a note with your permission to leave your phone number and your name saying that you have one opening. So now you’re not advertising on NextDoor.com for example, but your customer is. That way, you’re booking out and blocking those sections of your schedule.
Don’t Set-Up Time Slots on the Fly
So, do you do it in advance or do you do it on the fly? Do not do it on the fly. Otherwise, your schedule will be chaotic. It will be all over the place. You will have people that have five-hour cleanings, and you’re trying to partner that with a three-hour clean or one hour clean.
And then how do you arrange the schedule for your employees? Because it gets complicated where you have a mom that needs to pick her kid up from school. This is assuming that they pick their kid up from school and that the kid doesn’t have a daycare or something that they go to afterward.
So, if you have a mom that has to leave at a certain time, and you have these weird random jobs coming in. It’s very difficult to budget the employee for that amount of time.
Scheduling Ahead Makes it Easier for Employees
If you have specified neighborhoods and specified time slots, then you can say, “Great, you can work these hours. You can work these hours.” And you might have to put people in different neighborhoods based on the time that they have available to them.
So, if you have a five-hour job, for example, on a Friday, then you would only put that one person who can only work Fridays on that one job. And so, it allows you then to budget your time, budget your travel expenses and, fill out your schedules. And also to create the schedule seamlessly for your employees or independent contractors.
So, it’s a very easy program once you figure out the nuances of it. And that’s how much time you need, and how much break time, how much commute time, all that stuff is super important if you’re going to maximize your schedule. But maximizing your schedule is a key to success in the cleaning business.Resources
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