As a business owner, you place quite a bit of trust in your employees whenever they’re on the road. And of course we hope that they never violate this trust. But as the saying goes, when the cat is away the mice will play. Sometimes, that playing can cost you a considerable amount of money!
In our line of work, we have heard from several surprised business owners who discovered their employees were doing side jobs for extra cash while on the company clock. One towing company reported that their drivers occasionally came upon stranded drivers, and offered them the standard 95-dollar company rate. But, as an alternative, the driver could pay 50 dollars in cash, in exchange for being towed anywhere they needed to go. Not only was the towing company losing business; they were losing money in fuel and mileage on their trucks!
A pest control company reported a similar problem to us. One of their regular technicians, Joey, seemed to be on the road much longer than necessary for his regularly scheduled appointments. After installing a GPS tracking system in the company truck, the owner visited each of Joey’s recorded stops under the guise of making sure customers were happy with the work performed in their homes. Sure enough, several of them reported they they were very happy with Joey’s work, and really appreciated the cash discount! As it turned out, Joey had been performing side jobs for the past three years, while using the company vehicle and equipment to turn a tidy profit.
In both of these cases, the business owners were completely unaware of their employees’ side jobs until they installed a GPS tracking service in company vehicles. Once these extracurricular activities came to light, the employees were fired, and both companies put an end to their losses.
Sometimes, it’s not what we know that is costing us money it’s what we don’t know!