Eradicate chaos with SOPs


February 1, 2023

Getty Images: bubaone/DigitalVision Vectors

Getty Images: bubaone/DigitalVision Vectors

Chaos kills business growth. It steals productivity, increases everyone’s stress, and stops business owners from imagining a larger company because they’re already overworked and exhausted.

Most pest control business owners start as sole operations — it’s just them. Documenting procedures isn’t a priority. Once they’re ready to hire their first employee, however, the lack of defined standard operating procedures (SOPs) starts the chaos. They grow so busy that there isn’t time to create SOPs, yet they really don’t have time not to.

Regardless of company size, documenting how you want things done creates a system around every process. When systems exist, your business runs like a well-oiled machine.

Why you need SOPs

Sheri Spencer Bachman

Sheri Spencer Bachman

Pest control company leadership should implement and use SOPs because they:

  • Ensure a consistent, quality experience for every new and existing customer. This leads to high customer satisfaction and retention results.
  • Increase process efficiency and organization. SOPs help streamline and optimize the service process, reducing questions and inconsistencies. Management’s time and resources can then be better used elsewhere. This also makes it easier to train new hires.
  • Help new employees acclimate more quickly and easily to their roles within your company. This reduces turnover and increases retention rates.
  • Improve communication and collaboration efforts within your team. Everyone will be on the same page regarding any process.
  • Diminish the risk of errors at every level in the company. SOPs define what you as the leader want and how to achieve it, so there is no guesswork involved.
  • Kill chaos through accountability. Holding team members accountable is much easier when SOPs exist because everyone knows what is expected of them.

Growing to reach your first or next million-dollar milestone depends on creating, establishing and using documented SOPs. The using is particularly important: Don’t just print and organize your SOPs into notebooks to hand out and forget. They quickly will become obsolete as you grow and update your processes. Instead, refer to them often in your ongoing training efforts; revisit them regularly to ensure they’re still relevant as written; and make them easily accessible to everyone, every day, through technology.

The Game Plan

“But I don’t have time to create standard operating procedures [SOPs],” you protest. Thanks to technology, you do. Try these tools to get started:

  • Voice-to-text transcription: For example, is one of many apps on the market today that types what you say and imports it into a Word document for easy editing.
  •  Screen recorders: For example, lets you record your voice and your computer screen. It’s awesome for documenting office processes.
  • Project management software: Cloud-based platforms like make access for office employees a breeze, especially if they’re scattered across branches or working remotely.
  • Videos: Use your smartphone to create “how-to” videos. For service processes, create a video that shows how you want each service done. You don’t need to make these videos extremely professional; in fact, just being conversational on camera is likely more helpful to employees. All you need to do is cover the process of how you want things done.
  • Industry-specific tools: My company offers “Pest Control Business in a Box,” which includes pre-written, customizable SOPs; and the “Pest Control Business App,” which allows your team easy access in the field to these documents from their smartphones. Visit for more information.

About the Author

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Spencer Bachman is a second-generation pest management professional, and owner of the Pest Control Business Coach consulting firm based in Canton, Ga. You can reach her at

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