Commercial Pool Operation – In-house or Outsource?

In Blog, CPO® by Timothy Petsch

Why not let outside pool professionals tend to your commercial pool? After all, they are “professionally” trained to ensure that pools run effectively. Pool care is  what they do, all day, every day. Besides, if you use them, you do not have to pay for all those costs that employees bring to the company: Health Insurance, Workers Comp, etc. Plus, you lose all the headaches that come with looking after one more employee. Ditch that headache!!

As a professional who travels to many commercial pools around the country, I have heard the above line of thought from a number of clients. I have observed in operation both this model and  facilities that run their own pools in-house. I have seen success with both, but in all honesty the best run pools out there are managed in-house by a team of dedicated and well trained staff who have clearly defined procedures and a passion for aquatics.

The inherent flaw in outsourcing is that the pool operator is only on site occasionally and that your pool may not always be serviced by the same individual. Add to that the fact that this contractor has multiple stops to make in a day and could very well be running behind their schedule, meaning the service technician may not always be able to be at your pool at the same time each day.

As many of you are aware, running a pool requires, in part, being tuned into the “trending” of the the day to day operations. From chemistry readings, to flow and pressure readings, down to the sight, sounds and smells that indicate potential issues that will lead to pool shut down or equipment failure (both potential revenue loss issues) if left unattended – these are the day to day concerns of the full time pool operator. Stopping off at a pool a number of times a week to take readings, add chemicals and backwash a filter is not conducive to actually having a “feel” for the pool, nor does it allow for a “connection” with the ongoing operation of said pool. It is simply a service, nothing more.

My conclusion is, obviously, that outsourcing is not as effective a method of pool maintenance as is internal ownership of day to day pool operation. My onsite experience has proven that to me many times over.