Get Rid Of Inefficiencies From Your Electrical Business

Before we start talking about the effect of inefficiencies, you need to ask yourself: Do you absorb some of the inefficiencies at work? If you do, then you don't have to. At Response Electricians, we have removed all the inefficiencies by implementing the Scorecard System, which has helped us to remove a lot of inefficiencies. Let’s look at what all problems you need to tackle to make your electrical business more efficient:


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Poor job notes:

Before we implemented the Scorecard System at Response Electricians, most of the job notes were so poorly written that it left us with a lot of questions such as:

  • What to bill for?

  • How long to bill for?

  • Where did they install it?

  • What materials were used?

When the job notes didn’t have the correct and required information it would affect work because these are a few of the questions that the customer would ask. So, our Operations Manager, Kirk would need to stop invoicing and call the technicians, but wouldn't be able to get through. It's replicated across jobs, which would end up being very ineffective for the whole team.

Missing attachments:

There are a few critical pieces of documents that your customers require such as the Safety Certificate and the Test Check. Without these documents, the invoice is void. After doing the whole invoice, Kirk would be ready to send but be unable to send it because he would need the attachments and they would be missing. As a result, the technician would be interrupted at work. So both of them are being inefficient because of this. So many hours of Kirk’s work hours (12-14 hours per week) goes into fixing meaningless errors and interrupting the technicians because of missing important documents.

Callbacks:

The negative impact of callbacks is phenomenal.  Ninety-five percent of the time a callback is avoidable by communicating with the customers why you are there and checking whether everything is working. When there is a call back, it so happens that you have got to stop what you're doing because you got a call from an unhappy customer. Now you have to talk them through and calm them down. After which you have to rebook the job and stop what you're doing currently to reschedule it. Lastly, you also need to call your electrician. Remember that you need to do a call back for free, so you are also losing money because you're paying expenses from the business. This is a REALLY expensive and time-consuming and negative customer experience. Even though you can spin the customer experience around with a successful callback, it still proves to be an expensive expenditure.

Poor customer review:

A customer who is not happy because of something as simple as not cleaning up after work can be a massive loss for your electrical contracting business. Not cleaning up after the electrical work is an inexcusable effort because it is courtesy. Would you leave that sort of mess in your business or your home? An unhappy customer who won't come back and stay unhappy is ten times more likely to talk about the bad or negative experiences they had with your electrical service. It wipes out the last ten good calls. You can't evaluate what you lost because you don't know. They might have wanted to work with you on a 100K dollar job but now you would never know -- it is not measurable.

Dead Time/Missing Time:

We don't know 100% what guys are doing with their time. So we always ask them to put something in the schedule so we know what they are doing with their time. The cost structure of your electrical contracting business should be such that -- If you are paying someone for 8 hours a day, you should be able to charge for 8 hours, otherwise, you are paying that wages right out from the profits. If you are only making 10% net profit, then that 5% loss in the day would be wiped out.  Check out the cost productivity matrix video lesson. Most of the guys are being productive during that time but it is not billable. Be transparent about the dead time, you have to put it on the job and charge for it. Build it into the price you give them. Don't go and absorb dead time into your business, it is straight off your profit. If you don't make profits, you can't keep your business running. As an electrician, if you get paid for 8 hours, go back and see whether you worked for 8 hours. If you are working with a construction company, then it is okay because you get paid for it. You also need to design the callouts such that it covers the gap for the day, service businesses have to travel around so you have to include these costs because you are not on site all day.

Inspector's Order:

There is no real reason why you need to be completing work that doesn't meet the standards. Be aware of the standards and regulations -- it costs 5 points on our Scorecard Review System. Even if it's a minor defect, it is not good because you need to go back and rectify it. It counts as a call out and there is also the embarrassment of having an inspector write you a note. Moreover, it can also prove unsafe or dangerous to the occupant of the building. So, it’s important to know your regulations so you can do the work per the standards. If not, then you are putting lives of the family in danger. How would you feel that your electrical work caused a death via electrocution before the electrician went and checked your work? Things like no MEN system and bad earthing are dangerous. So, don't fucking do that and think of the causes. Test your work, install it correctly, think of the standards and consequences if you don't install it correctly.

So these are the few things that happen because of inefficient work. How do you think knowing these inefficiencies will help you to improve overall productivity? We would love to know your experiences with increasing work effectiveness and productivity.

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