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Salary policy for lumber companies
Pay for that is done. Not for just presence

Salary policy for lumber companies The Wood-Mizer Sawmill is ideal for making money – it saves wood and energy and can give the best quality lumber that is possible to achieve. However, all these parameters depend on the operator – his skill and desire to work. Understanding these details will help you to motivate your company employees.

Control Parameters
In a sawing operation most owners see the following three parameters as being the most important.

Productivity, i.e. volume of final product per timber unit
Lumber output, i.e. quantity of cubic meters cut in a given time Quality, i.e. the precision of cutting.
Quality of Produce. Sometimes the employer sets the workers salaries dependent on the quality of the timver produced. Bonuses for quality and recovery are not often implemented.

Often productivity and output are combined when calculating bonuses or pay. In this case the operator is interested both in cutting fast and in producing as much final product as possible from each log.

The logs are different one to other and therefore man-hour is different too. Rate of payment depends on log diameters. On average, when cutting 90 cm diameter logs, workers in Poland earn 10 zl for 1 cubic meter of logs, diameter 60-89 cm – 12 zl, 40-59 cm – 14 zl, 30-49 cm – 15 zl, 19-29 cm – 16,5 zl.

To stimulate people to cut to maximize quality extra incentives for grade are used. For instance, class 1 material gives 20% extra bonus to the workers, class 2 material gives 10%. These extra incentives are for groups working on sawmill. Usually extra incentives are divided in proportions as follow: 60% - for operator, 40% - for assistant.

Finished-product storage area
How can you organize the control of incentive payments? It is especially important if you have more than 1 Wood-Mizer sawmill.

A Stockman is usually employed– his job is to distribute and record the numbered and measured logs going to each sawing group and then, at the end of the day to record the volume and quality produced by each group.

''Personal'' blades
Each sawmill should use ''personal'' blades. If the blades are shared, nobody feels responsible for their quality. For instance, when a blade is handed over to sharpening, it should be marked with a colored label. Every group has its own color and pays for the sharpening of its own blades (2,5 zl in Poland).

Some owners intoduce bonus’s based on blade life For example if a blade cuts for more than 20 hours, workers get a bonus of 5 zl. If more than 25 hours – they get one new blade free of charge.

Developing Conversation
The essence of all these rules is that the lumber company can control itself. The Wood-Mizer Sawmill Owner should not bear all the risks of the company operation. Employees should understand the contribution that they can make to the successful running of a company and should be rewarded for that contribution.

To achieve this level of understanding can be difficult sometimes. It is important to describe clearly what is expected of them. For example, a job description is to sweep the factory – the expectations are that it should be swept every morning.

If your workforce is organized correctly you will not have to set productivity norms, your employees will achieve the highest levels of productivity themselves because they are properly motivated.

This article was published in the 'Wood-Mizer Today' company newsletter.

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