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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was curious as to how some of the GC's or framers start out new employees. Do you have a standard set of details that you give them or just throw them on with a veteran and say "do what he does"? We used to hand out our standard details that we liked to use to architects that were designing the homes too - which cut down on quite a few RFI's.
Anybody else do this or something similar?
 
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Most times I find the best thing to do with new employees is to pair them up as a helper for an expierenced person so that they get to know first the role of the helper and then after time the employee will have the knowledge to pass on to the next helper.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I don't disagree.. if they are green to framing. If I hire a carpenter I expect that they have some idea of what is going on and how to frame a building. If I hired someone with little or no experience I would start them as a laborer and move them up through the ranks and give them additional responsibilities as they go. They learn how to frame and I get an employee that knows whats going on.
But, as I said, if I hire a "carpenter" with some experience I want them to be able to look at a standard set of details and know how I want it built. It doesn't make sense for me to hire a carpenter and pay him that wage to work as a helper. And if I say "Hey Mr Carpenter I realize you have experience but I want to pay you as a helper until you learn how we build" then I may have just lost an excellent employee because I wouldn't pay him enough.
So pros and cons to that system.. again it goes back to experience.
 

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I agree with hatchet if I hire a carpenter he will do carpentry. Once he is working you can tell whether he is unexperienced or is just learning our way of building. There is a certain amount of adjustment time but after that he is pumping out good quality carpentry of he's walking out.
 

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I have ran ads to hire carpenters and get all kinds of calls.
One time I accepted a call from an operator for the hearing impaired and it wound up being a deaf lady who wanted to learn how to install carpet?
Most say they have some experience, so I start them that day at a low to their skill wage and tell them that if they realy know what they say and they have a good attitude , then at the end of the day we will talk about wage increase or get handed their days pay.
 

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hatchet said:
I know many framing companies that have new guys make a set of sawhorses..
Thats a great idea.

Tests whether they know how to cut a a nonstandard angle and if they have extensive cut experience (height of the benches)
 

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matt man said:
I have ran ads to hire carpenters and get all kinds of calls.
One time I accepted a call from an operator for the hearing impaired and it wound up being a deaf lady who wanted to learn how to install carpet?
Most say they have some experience, so I start them that day at a low to their skill wage and tell them that if they realy know what they say and they have a good attitude , then at the end of the day we will talk about wage increase or get handed their days pay.
I totaly agree, I hired a guy once said he had every tool known to man. I said dont bring them ie saw, drill etc. he came to work the nxt day with no bags or tape, Nothing at all. I tried to find easy things for him to do, cut out door plates with sawzall etc. He was totaly clueless. Paid him in about an hour.
 

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If you have that gut feeling that a guy might work out tell him that you'll do a one or two day evaluation at a wage close to what he wants and what your willing to pay. In the old days I'd walk onto a site meet the foreman and work for a week at what he'd pay with the catch that if I proved myself that next week I wanted more. Got me up to going pay in quick time that way.
 

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Design Build
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Last year I finally had it with guys pullin' up on the job on a bicycle, on foot or in a hooptie, smelling like they were allergic to a shower and feeding me a line that they were some master union carpenter or some other story and worth $25/hr. They always say that they can DO everything.

So I wrote a 35 question test one day and I would say I would hire them at minimum wage plus 50 cents per hour for every question that they got right on the test.

After I would hand the test out...the excuses started. Most just handed it back and left. One little scruffy guy got all huffy with me like I wasn't supposed to be able to give a written pre-hiring test. Yeah...whatever.

It wasn't that hard - I'm sure y'all would ace it. Some roof and stair work, and some freebie questions like how many 12" blocks can you cut from a 2x4 that is 16'-0" long?
 

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So I wrote a 35 question test one day and I would say I would hire them at minimum wage plus 50 cents per hour for every question that they got right on the test.

It wasn't that hard - I'm sure y'all would ace it. Some roof and stair work, and some freebie questions like how many 12" blocks can you cut from a 2x4 that is 16'-0" long?
Maybe not such a freebie, they'd have to realize saw kerfs would take them down to 15 blocks...
I agree that a written test is a good idea so you don't waste your time with them on the jobsite. Before I got my own business up and running, I applied for a job with a framing crew here in town. My first meeting with them, they gave me a written test. I thought it was great - a perfect way to weed out the first wave of losers! After I completed it (I think I missed one) the interviewer shared some stories about other guys who had taken (or refused) the test - some good laughs there! I mean, if you're hiring a carpenter, he better know what all those little lines on his tape measure mean!

Edit: After two weeks on the job, I came to realize the test was the "only" good thing about this company and left before I was killed in an accident.
Guy dropped a truss pig on my head as I was walking under him, hit himself in the forehead with his hammer head as he was knocking a truss brace loose, scary work conditions...

Mac
 
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We like domes.

I've built a dome or two in my day as well. I used the ubiquitous 3/4" plywood rids and a center disk. The disk was good in case you wanted to run an electrical box there.

I also finish my domes with galvanized wire lath, structolite and joint compound and made a custom curved knife for each dome I built.:jester:
 

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