A landscape maintenance Checklist is a simple list that you can use to monitor regular landscaping tasks and the maintenance of your equipment.
Every employee should have a yard maintenance Checklist they will be required to fill out and submit to you. Likewise, you should also have a lawn and yard maintenance list to ensure that your customers and equipment have been taken care of.
Let’s examine what should fit onto a weekly landscape maintenance Checklist and why your business can benefit from this system.
The yard work Checklist may seem like nothing more than an extra administrative burden, but it has value.
The most apparent benefit is quality control. If you are not present at a customer’s property, you rely entirely on your employee to tell you what work has been performed. A lawn maintenance Checklist provides you with physical evidence of that work.
If a customer is unhappy or an employee claims they completed a task, your lawn care Checklist helps to resolve the confusion.
Another reason to use a Checklist for lawn and yard maintenance is upselling. Checklists remain standardized so you can easily bundle items together and show customers other possibilities.
Checklists can be utilized on both the customer-facing side and internally. Innovative businesses may use a lawn care Checklist template as part of their sales strategy.
Checklists also have value in managing your equipment. Improperly maintained equipment will incur more repair costs and downtime. Ensuring that tools are properly cleaned and winterized will help you get the most out of your capital investments.
In short, creating a Checklist for landscape maintenance takes only a few minutes but provides countless benefits.
Several sections make up a lawn maintenance Checklist. Businesses may use more than one Checklist for managing internal operations, payments, as well as lawn and yard maintenance services.
Let’s break down a master Checklist into sections. Feel free to change each section to suit your organization.
Keeping a yard in tip-top shape means regular maintenance tasks. These essential services will form part of the packages you offer to your regular customers in most cases.
Some of the core services you will find on this part of your yard work Checklist include:
Lawn Mowing - Keep grass cut to a reasonable height. Resolve rutting, alternating patterns, and deformation.
Trimming - Cut back overgrown hedges and trees. Remove any crossing branches and branches growing below the canopy.
Pruning - Remove infected or dead stems, twigs, and branches to keep trees and hedges looking clean.
Waste Removal - Take away any debris, such as leaves, twigs, dust, or any contaminants that have made their way into the yard. All litter and waste should be removed after each visit.
These tasks will form part of a weekly yard maintenance Checklist to ensure a perfect lawn and yard every time.
Basic maintenance tasks will keep a lawn looking pristine, but additional tasks are necessary to prevent yard degradation. These tasks generally won’t be carried out every week but on a seasonal basis.
Regular customers committed to a more comprehensive landscape maintenance Checklist will generally have a separate Checklist assigned to their profile.
Fertilization - Soil testing and determining which nutrients the soil needs. Apply the necessary nutrients at each interval.
Aeration - Ensure sufficient holes have been inserted into the soil to allow light, water, air, and nutrients to pass through.
Overseeding - Create thicker grass for brighter colors and to obscure weed growth.
Dethatching - Introducing thatch obstructs the grass from receiving nutrients and water. Check for the presence of thatch and, remove it, if necessary.
Weeding - Stop weeds from encroaching upon the lawn. Weed control may include physical removal or spreading chemical weed killers.
Mulching - Lock in moisture to reduce the presence of weeds and improve general soil health. Check the soil’s moisture and apply the necessary organic matter.
Staking - Control the direction of tree and hedge growth by placing ties around trees. Remove stakes after one year to eliminate tree girdling. Check the condition of stakes regularly.
Artificial Lawn Maintenance - Remove dirt and debris from artificial lawns. Cross-brush the grass to avoid matting. Rinse the turf regularly to prevent pollen accumulation.
Sod Maintenance - Manage and maintain sod regularly through regular watering and mowing throughout the spring and summer.
Pest Control - Armyworms, fire ants, grubs, and other insects pose a threat to any yard. Check for the signs of infestation and take the necessary steps to control and eliminate pests.
Irrigation/Drainage Maintenance - Inspect irrigation/drainage systems for leaks and remove blockages.
Not all of these services will be relevant to every customer’s yard. Inspect every yard and make tailored recommendations for ensuring the yard remains in good order.
Offering lawn customization services is something more and more customers expect. Not everyone wants the same yard as their neighbors.
If you choose to offer customization services, you’ll need to invest in additional internal organizational strategies. Platforms like FieldRoutes help you maintain unique user profiles, so you know what each client expects from you when delivering regular maintenance services.
Here are some of the aspects to take into account when preparing a lawn customization Checklist.
Climate Conditions - The climate impacts everyone’s lawn. Minute adjustments to temperature, humidity, and sun exposure can change everything. Log these important statistics for each customer.
Site Details - Is the yard flat or undulating? Laying turf and performing other tasks may require grading first.
Existing Vegetation - Field technicians need to know the current state of the lawn so they can attend the worksite armed with everything they need.
User Profile - If you need to create a lawn designed for a specific user, put together a user profile. Soft lighting, water features, and color schemes all help to give your clients what they want.
Lawn customization features elevate your business above your competitors. Go the extra mile and provide a fully personalized service to your customers.
Equipment maintenance is as necessary as the services you offer. You have downtime, a significant repair bill, and lots of unhappy customers with broken equipment. Regular maintenance will maximize the lifespan of your tools and equipment.
Refuel Daily - Ensure your operations never grind to a halt by refueling everything daily. Larger lawn care businesses may even choose to invest in an underground storage tank.
Blade Maintenance - Change all lawn mower blades daily and sharpen once per week. Maintain multiple sets of blades to ensure they remain in good condition.
Power Washin - Opt for a power wash of all machines, including mowers, trimmers, and blowers, to prevent a buildup of dirt, oil, grease, and grass.
Trimmer Lines - Inspect trimmer lines to spot any problems early.
Grease - Apply grease to hedge trimmers if required the following day.
Oil - Check oil levels and reapply as necessary.
Hand Tools - Wash hand tools every day if they were used. It’s better to avoid doing this on the job to keep things efficient.
It’s also wise to log the usage hours of each piece of equipment to ensure that you can put aside some funds to replace older pieces before they break down.
Perhaps the biggest mistake made by lawn care businesses is only replacing equipment when they finally die. Older pieces of equipment can still be stored for occasions where other commonly used tools are temporarily out of commission.
Managing your customers can be tricky when creating personalized checklists for each one. Beyond a yard work Checklist, you also need to consider customer payments.
Staying on top of customer payments ensures you never work for free and avoid payment disputes.
Direct Payment - Did your client pay directly for a whole year, per month, or after each visit? Direct payments are the easiest to track, especially if they make advance payments.
Installment Payments - Some clients prefer to cover a contract in installments. Many lawn care maintenance services provide this option, but you need to ensure your customers do not enter arrears.
Discounts - Some regular customers may receive discounts on their regular contracts. Has the discount been applied to their final bill? How long should that discount be applied to their contract?
Your employees should make sure to check this part of the job off their list if taking payment in person.
On the back-end side of things, plenty of platforms, such as FieldRoutes, can automatically generate invoices, send reminders, and ensure each customer’s account remains in good standing.
Your landscape maintenance checklist is the cornerstone that ensures you stay organized. Running a business with multiple employees increases the likelihood of confusion and misunderstandings. A Checklist creates a paper trail to help resolve problems.
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