MERRY MAIDS: Staffing and Routing Issues Proposal
Capstone Management Project
Capstone Project for Merry Maids
Merry Maids was founded in 1979 in Omaha, Nebraska by Dallen Peterson. The company is the result of the Peterson’s efforts to build a comprehensive maid cleaning service. On the promise of relax, it’s done, Merry Maids was the balance between a clean home and a busy work schedule. Dallen Peterson began franchising the business in 1980 (Hoover, 2014). Merry Maids has a unique cleaning system that consists of small teams, with an effective marketing strategy. This business strategy allowed Merry Maid to become not only an industry leader in the United States but a world leader in the residential cleaning industry. Interested in expanding the Merry Maids brand, attracting new customers, and increasing its sales volumes, Merry Maids partnered with the ServiceMaster brand in 1988. Service Master opened the door for Merry Maids to have access to the ServiceMaster family with connections to American Home Shield, Amerispec, Furniture Medic, Terminix, and Service Master Clean (Merry Maids, 2014a).
The Merry Maids and ServiceMaster partnership provided Merry Maids with an array of supplies, equipment, cleaning tools, home cleaning products, inventories, and a large distribution chain. Merry Maids currently operates 1,351 franchises and corporate-owned territories throughout the United States. Merry Maids cleaning services include floors, carpets, kitchen counters and appliances, bathroom fixtures, dusting, emptying trash cans, packing for moves, oven and refrigerator cleaning, wall washing, and upholstery cleaning (Merry Maids, 2014a).
Merry Maids also has operations in Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines, and the United Kingdom. Each year, Forbes Magazine publishes an annual list of top franchises to start. In 2012, Forbes Magazine, ranked Merry Maids as one of the top 20 franchises to start. The franchise business is a highly successful and unique type of partnership. From humble beginnings, franchise businesses can evolve into a profitable business venture (Franchise Direct, 2014). Due to the success of Merry Maids and the prediction for the increase in cleaning service, husband and wife, Rick and Janet Hobbs of Huntsville, AL started a partnership with Merry Maids. The franchise is in the process of being acquired by their son-in-law, Jason Butler. With over 25 years of business experience, the team was able to develop and refine proven cleaning systems for homes throughout Madison County (Merry Maids, 2014b).
The Merry Maids of Huntsville which has its office located at 3601 Memorial Parkway South; faces several issues which are addressed herein. First, the management team has attracted a group of hard working employees. However, due to the immense amount of physical labor related to the duties and under staffing problems within the company, the best members of the staff have moved on to create businesses for themselves; leaving behind the novices and less motivated workers. Secondly, the logistics associated with determining the highest and best use of resources for the cleaning of homes as it relates to gasoline usage, reducing wasted time and cleaning homes when the customer most desires them cleaned all the while maximum efficiency; have all lead to great challenges for the new owner (Merry Maids 2014).
Merry Maids of Huntsville provides solo and two person cleaning teams. All of their maids are trained in the Merry Maids 101 Cleaning System. The home cleaning services are available as: Weekly cleaning, Bi-weekly cleaning, monthly cleaning, one-time service, after-party cleanup, move-in /move-out cleaning, post-construction cleaning, and apartment cleaning (Merry Maids, 2014b).
Merry Maid of Huntsville / Madison County has, within the last year, been faced with staffing issues which have cost the company a considerable