How To Schedule Pet Sitters and Get Two Days Off Every Week
Do you know how to offer a 7-day per week service and get two days off every week?
Although, as an owner, it may seem like credible feat to work 7 days per week, it is not sustainable over the course of years (trust me, I tried it). Also, it is much harder to hire talented sitters when you require them to work 7 days per week — at all hours of the day — sometimes at a moment’s notice.
Before I revised my scheduling policy, I had sitter after sitter quit. Then I would hear the same thing at the exit interview. My new hires loved the job but they hated the 7-day per week schedule.
It was clear my scheduling policy was holding my company back. So, my team and I developed a scheduling model that allows for 7-day per week service and every sitter gets two days off per week.
How Does It Work?
Two sitters to work together to cover a set of visits. One sitter covers more of the AM shift and the other sitter handles more of the PM shift.
Both sitters have two ‘big days’ each week where they are scheduled visits all the way from the morning timeblock to the bedtime timeblock. These big days allow their teammate to take those two days off.
On a regular day for an AM shift person, they would be scheduled visits from the morning timeblock to the evening timeblock. On a big day, the AM shift person would have visits all the way from the morning to the bedtime timeblock.
For the PM Shift person, they would generally start with the late morning or mid-day timeblock on a regular day. On a long day, they would have visits from the morning to the bedtime timeblock.
For more information about scheduling with timeblocks, check out our article:
An Example Schedule
In the example above there are two pet sitters, Kate and Sean. Kate works mostly mornings, and Sean works mostly evenings, but both share mid-day dog walks. Kate has big days on Sundays and Mondays, and she gets Wednesdays and Thursdays off.
Sean has big days on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and he gets Sundays and Mondays off. Kate and Sean’s schedules overlap on Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday afternoons, which is the perfect time to set up meet and greets with new clients. Sometimes, if a client needs a meet and greet earlier in the morning or later in the evening, Kate or Sean will need to extend their days a bit to take on that new client.
Two Sitters Work as a Team
So, as you can see. This scheduling model relies on two sitters working as a team. Each sitter works longer days two days per week to give their teammate two days off every week.
Two Sitters at The Meet & Greet
You might already be thinking, this model requires you to send two sitters to the meet & greet (initial client interview) and you are right. But I actually prefer to send two sitters to each meet & greet because then I have a backup sitter right from the start for every visit. Also I think having two sitters going to a meet & greet is safer.
When to Schedule Meet & Greets
This schedule has three overlapping days where both sitters are working. These are the days you can schedule meet & greets.
Generally, I’ve found, when using the example schedule and timeblocks shown above, sitters are available for a meet & greet during these times.
- 10:00 – 11:00am
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