Quotes vs. actual cost to run(employee times)
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  1. #1
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    Default Quotes vs. actual cost to run(employee times)

    I've been reading a bunch of posts on FaceA$$ about some guys taking too long on parts and the boss getting mad. As I am a one man shop, I know how to quote based on what it will take me to run it.

    How do you larger shops deal with guys who try to hold too tight of tolerances on +/-.005 parts and obviously costing you money?

    Sent from my rotary dial flip fone

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    Quote Originally Posted by wgnrr1 View Post
    I've been reading a bunch of posts on FaceA$$ about some guys taking too long on parts and the boss getting mad. As I am a one man shop, I know how to quote based on what it will take me to run it.

    How do you larger shops deal with guys who try to hold too tight of tolerances on +/-.005 parts and obviously costing you money?

    Sent from my rotary dial flip fone
    Lol, in the "Professional Machinists Group"?

    I saw those posts.

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    I have an issue with a guy always pushing the limits to try to run parts on the CNCs as fast as possible and of course stay in tolerance. This often can cost time when dealing with lower quantities. Spending 30 minutes try to get a 25 second cycle time down to 15 seconds on a 100 lot quantity on a second operation makes no sense. His logic is the gained knowledge can be applied if the job repeats or similar operations are needed on other parts. The guy is 60 years old and has been doing this pretty much all his machining life. I would seriously fire him but it would mean having no workers as that person is me and I am now an army of one.

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    We had that same problem in the shop I ran. We had one guy who had to make every part dead on. We had other guys that were fast enough to make up the difference. Kept him on as when it WAS needed we knew we could count on him to get it done. But it did cost him at bonus time though.

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    I find this weird.
    For every processing steps there are control limits to be expected.
    Bob

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    Quote Originally Posted by CarbideBob View Post
    I find this weird.
    For every processing steps there are control limits to be expected.
    Bob
    I found often times they would add steps or skip steps, sometimes it didn't matter others it did, anyhow we don't have them any more so when some dumbass screws up I fire him ( me) and reinstate him later at a lower wage. It turns out I was really poor at babtsitting adults, teaching them 3rd grade math was likely my worst subject.

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    Piecework....They will just sneak those parts by on the tolerances/finish's etc.

    Put the hours on the operation from your quote, and make them hit it, or don't pay them when they run over, unless they come to you with a good reason.

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    I look at every drawing and quote based on set prices per feature, then multiply by a set figure for tolerances. It's worked great for me. Then there is the "customer is an idiot", "rush job that will sit here done for weeks", and "late payer" multiplier.

    But as the FaceA$$ discussion went, there will always be the one "rookie", "perfectionist", "moron" who just thinks everything need to be +/-.0005.

    No matter what, the part needs to be done quickly, look great, and within the specified tolerances.

    Sent from my rotary dial flip fone

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    Piecework....They will just sneak those parts by on the tolerances/finish's etc.

    Put the hours on the operation from your quote, and make them hit it, or don't pay them when they run over, unless they come to you with a good reason.
    Best check with your lawyer and accountants before you try this strategy, it's very easy to get it wrong and wind up with heavy consequences...

    Piece Work: Pay Your Employees by the Task — Legally

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    Quote Originally Posted by wgnrr1 View Post
    I look at every drawing and quote based on set prices per feature, then multiply by a set figure for tolerances. It's worked great for me. Then there is the "customer is an idiot", "rush job that will sit here done for weeks", and "late payer" multiplier.

    But as the FaceA$$ discussion went, there will always be the one "rookie", "perfectionist", "moron" who just thinks everything need to be +/-.0005.

    No matter what, the part needs to be done quickly, look great, and within the specified tolerances.

    Sent from my rotary dial flip fone
    I started out quoting the time I thought I could do it in. I quickly learned that was a mistake.

    Then I started quoting for specific people that were going to be doing it. That worked out better. Then I would add the extra you were talking about.

    I thought I was the only one that still used an antique phone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    Piecework....They will just sneak those parts by on the tolerances/finish's etc.

    Put the hours on the operation from your quote, and make them hit it, or don't pay them when they run over, unless they come to you with a good reason.


    Thaaaaat's illegal...

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    Forget that in a job shop that does a lot of 1 off/new jobs. Repeat work with a proven process ok, but otherwise, good luck...
    I've seen plenty of times where a 2hr part gets quoted for $60 " cause that's all it looks like its worth, I can't charge more than that ".
    I've caught myself underbidding more than a few times, seemed easy to make in my head... usually ran into other issues that make it take longer. Then again most of what I make is tight tolerance and needs to look perfect all over anyway. If you run good tools and a half decent process .005" tolerances pretty well all come out withing .001" anyway, doesn't take any longer.
    Some shops should take a bit more time to make better parts... just cause something is just barely within tolerance and looks like sh*t, doesn't make it a good part, or that the customer will ever come back.

    Then there's all the time spent looking for where that 1 tool for the whole shop went last time someone used it. I thought that would stop when I started working alone in my own shop, I keep things really organized, but it still happens...
    In a shop with a few guys, a bit of time spent helping someone else with what they're working on and so on also adds time.
    Last edited by SND; 03-22-2021 at 08:17 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Milland View Post
    Best check with your lawyer and accountants before you try this strategy, it's very easy to get it wrong and wind up with heavy consequences...

    Piece Work: Pay Your Employees by the Task — Legally
    "Where many construction companies and other payers of piece-based compensation get in trouble is that they neglect to record and observe actual hours worked, which can put them squarely at odds with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Piece rates require legitimately keeping “two sets of books”: one set that records hours worked, the other set that records work completed. Reconciling those sets of records with actual compensation paid allows you to demonstrate to workers and government agencies that, while you paid by the task, the amount paid complied with minimum wage and overtime requirements."

    I see no problems here, just make sure your quoting & planning software doo this feature.

    You could also pay a base wage of minimum wage, and the piecework money is an "adder".

    Your already doing the figuring when you doo the quote process.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TeachMePlease View Post
    Thaaaaat's illegal...
    In what way sir ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    "Where many construction companies and other payers of piece-based compensation get in trouble is that they neglect to record and observe actual hours worked, which can put them squarely at odds with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Piece rates require legitimately keeping “two sets of books”: one set that records hours worked, the other set that records work completed. Reconciling those sets of records with actual compensation paid allows you to demonstrate to workers and government agencies that, while you paid by the task, the amount paid complied with minimum wage and overtime requirements."

    I see no problems here, just make sure your quoting & planning software doo this feature.

    You could also pay a base wage of minimum wage, and the piecework money is an "adder".

    Your already doing the figuring when you doo the quote process.
    Not a business owner, but if you are going to pay like that, better have that employee read sign something saying they understand it. You (employer) go through the paperwork and expense getting someone hired, and their frist paycheck they see the made 25% or so less than they thought, and walk out, that leaves you holding the bag.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike1974 View Post
    Not a business owner, but if you are going to pay like that, better have that employee read sign something saying they understand it. You (employer) go through the paperwork and expense getting someone hired, and their frist paycheck they see the made 25% or so less than they thought, and walk out, that leaves you holding the bag.
    I did NOT say "screw the employees" like many failed piecework systems have.

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    I did NOT say "screw the employees" like many failed piecework systems have.
    For a while I tried paying a fair wage with a bonus for each job they completed at or above shop rate thinking it would keep it at least in the back of their minds but it never seemed to work out. If one machine had an issue all 12 people would be over fiddling with the broken one and the rest would all stop, they would make a program change when an offset would do but usually the problem was an operator not putting the part in correctly. After a program change, a few offset changes and variations in putting in the parts all of the sudden none of the numbers on the print appeared on the part and all of the jobs suffered the lost time, it amazed me how many times something like this would happen. Bonuses used to be a pretty good carrot but times have changed and doing things in such a way so as to get that bonus don't seem to be a priority, does that make any sense? Some guys would get it every time but they were not the norm and the others were pissed off because it was the set up that caused them not to get it, not the fact that they were sloppy loading the machine then trying to adjust the machine to the variations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kustomizer View Post
    It turns out I was really poor at babtsitting adults, teaching them 3rd grade math was likely my worst subject.
    It seems as the decades roll by the average High School graduate seems to get dumber and dumber when it comes to simple skills that require using numbers. The percentage of young people that can't do simple income taxes or balance a checking account boggle the mind. Back when I worked for the man I gave applicants a math test to weed out the mathematically challenged, I even allowed use of a calculator. At one place I was doing that I was told to stop because it could be considered discriminatory. Of course that was in California.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dualkit View Post
    It seems as the decades roll by the average High School graduate seems to get dumber and dumber when it comes to simple skills that require using numbers. The percentage of young people that can't do simple income taxes or balance a checking account boggle the mind. Back when I worked for the man I gave applicants a math test to weed out the mathematically challenged, I even allowed use of a calculator. At one place I was doing that I was told to stop because it could be considered discriminatory. Of course that was in California.

    It's only considered discriminatory if it's not directly applicable to the job they applied for.

    Trust me, I had to go through the class on how to give an interview, for a big company that's very HR conscious.

    Secondly, as part of my apprenticeship, you take a math examination in your first week or so, and they dangle the carrot that if you can get a 90% or better, you can skip the first year of math classes (unpaid, after work, 2x a week). Well, I'd been through calculus at Georgia Tech, so how hard could a trigonometry test be?

    Turns out, it's really hard to pass if they don't let you use a calculator. I still managed an 88%, but I had to skip every question that had SIN/TAN/COS... I was not a happy camper.

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    Near the end of our hiring days I started handing folks that showed up looking for work a rolodex card upside down and have them put their name and number on it, if they wrote it dowm upside down I figured they were not too good at paying attention and would throw it away. Wonder woman decided I was past able to interview and took over the task which was fine with me. One day a few months later I noticed she would set them down with an application to fill out and would go outside. One day I followed her and asked what she was up to, turns out her first test, though similar to mine was to see if they parked in a parking spot or diagonal across several, seems she wanted to see if they were paying attention as well, it was then we decided we were out of the mood and started downsizing our operation as opposed to growing it as we had for a couple of decades. We had several really good people over the years but we needed half a dozen at the same time to take the pressure off ourselves and were never able to make it happen. Now we live almost stress free out in the middle of Idaho, other than being behind in our work which is getting better. We can't even imagine going back to trying to lure a "team" into doing the job the way it was laid out to be done.


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