When most of us think of efficiency, we think about the time while applying an application. Keeping a certain pace, getting proper coverage, etc. What we probably focus on less is the time before, between and after applications. It’s those gaps of time that are usually absorbed by conversation, coffee drinking, running by the store, smoking a cigarette, smoking another cigarette or harassing your fellow employees. What most of us don’t realize is that it’s during these moments where the most efficiencies can be made.
The desired result is simply what we want physically and visually to take place (i.e. dead brush in a right of way at a width of 50 ft.)In the morning:
• The early part of the day is the time of day when the most amount of production can be achieved. Utilize it to its fullest.
• Employees should show up to work having eaten breakfast or with breakfast in hand. This way they don’t need to stop by the store or multiple fast food places to pick up everyone’s desired breakfast.
• The truck should be equipped to a capacity to not have to stop until lunch (i.e. water, replacement parts, chemical, etc.)
During the day:
• When you finish spraying a location, instead of lingering around the job site before heading to the next location, smoking cigarettes and kicking the tires. Utilize this time.
• If there are leaks, exposed hose clamps, etc., fix on that location instead of waiting until you get to the next place.
• This is the time to take a true break. Lunch should be eaten at a location within a reasonable distance from the job site. If this is not possible, lunch should be packed that morning or the Supervisor should bring lunch to the crews.
• After eating, fuel and water should be topped off to avoid stopping work later in the day.
At the end of the day:
• This is usually the time of day when the least amount of production is achieved.
• The day should end with planning for the next day. For example, you could fill the truck with water and gas to help make your start in the morning easier.
By utilizing these gaps, the employees will always be focusing on how to be successful at the next place or on the next day. Our roles as Supervisors are also meant to help support the Operators in keeping them productive. Finding ways to fill in the gaps will help make your district not only more efficient and productive, but also more profitable.