Why Does Your Facility Need Smart Cleaning?
Under pressure to do more with less, today’s Building and Facility Managers often fight an uphill battle. Economic unpredictability and business belt tightening mean more and more companies are still slashing budgets, scaling back and trying to shore themselves for the unknowns ahead.
“With so much on your plate, Smart Cleaning can help you both manage your facility at the required level and meet ever tightening budget requirements.”
As challenging as it is, today’s Facility Managers play an even more vital role in protecting their facilities reputation, assets and even profitability. With challenge often follows innovation and Facility Service Companies have been pushed to innovate, to eliminate waste and maximize efficiency wherever possible. As a Facility Manager, you are often tasked with the security, maintenance and services of your facility. What does that really mean? Well, for many Facility Managers that can mean:
- Forecasting & budgeting
- Lease management
- Managing multi-disciplinary teams
- Supervising building maintenance responsibilities
- Assuring facility compliance with all pertinent regulations and requirements
- Planning and managing building work and/or renovations
- Guiding your facility to greater energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness
- Coordinating security and general administrative services
- Assigning and managing space within facility
- Directing cleaning, catering and parking services
And that’s not even everything. As a Facility Manager, with so much on your plate, Smart Cleaning can help you both manage your facility at the required level and meet ever tightening budget requirements.
Putting Smart Cleaning To Work In Your Facility
Considering whether Smart Cleaning might be the just what you and your facility need? Smart Cleaning comes down to identifying the essentials services in your facility, delineating those that are non-essential but important, understanding areas you can intermittently do without service and finding the most effective, efficient way to get it all done. As a Facility Manager and even in partnership with your janitorial services company, you must ask the following questions:
- “What are we doing and does it make sense?”
- “What are non-negotiable things that must be done even on a reduced budget?”
- “Are there things we are doing that could be done less?”
- “Are there things we are doing that perhaps don’t need to be done anymore?”
- “Are there better, more efficient ways to do those things we must do?”
If you are considering newlyoutsourcing your building maintenanceor even if you have an existing commercial cleaning company, they must be a partner in your endeavor to trim costs and improve efficiencies. Smart Cleaning cannot be a top down mandate, rather it is a collaboration between you and your building services company.
“Smart Cleaning cannot be a top down mandate, rather it is a collaboration between you and your building services company.”
Is It Even Possible to Get Your Janitorial Company to Charge Less?
While no business wants their customers to spend less, your janitorial and maintenance company likely can relate to the pressure you are under to uncover efficiencies. Yourcommercial cleaning company faces much the same challenges. While a solid janitorial company won’t do the same work for less money, many will be willing to work within the budget requirements you are facing in order to wisely adjust work to meet your needs without throwing service and the overall maintenance of your building into a tailspin.
Real Smart Cleaning Requires Planning & Training
Your office cleaners or industrial cleaning team cannot put their focus on essential services if no one has trained them to view cleaning in this need-focused way. In the hands of an inexperienced or shoddy janitorial company with inadequate training and systems, Smart Cleaning isn’t about efficiencies and value but simply doing less without a plan. Without a plan, the wrong things are often left undone, there are no benchmarks or predictability in place and little to no accountability from your janitorial services company. The single most critical element of Smart Cleaning is a solid, effective training program. Cleaners must be trained to understand and work to the use patterns in the facility they maintain. The most effective and experienced commercial cleaning companies work with their cleaners to identify essential services, adjust their cleaning specifications to reflect budget cuts and still hold their team accountable for the work they have promised.
How Is Smart Cleaning Really Different?
How is Smart Cleaning different from standard janitorial services? Smart Cleaning is one part finding efficiencies and one part creating efficiencies. Certainly you can evaluate your facility maintenance plan for redundancies or repeated work but a critical element of effective Smart Cleaning is to find new ways to do more work with fewer resources. Yet, it can’t simply be about cost cutting because often the best and most effective Smart Cleaning requires a sizable investment from your janitorial company in products, equipment, training and even the systems in place to keep it all running smoothly. What kind of best practices can be included in the goal to reduce costs without sacrificing overall building maintenance through Smart Cleaning?
Traffic & Use Patterns in Your Facility
The first is understanding how your facility is used and where the day’s traffic and people flow has the most impact. This can help you reduce or alternate vacuuming days or floor days in areas that accumulate less soil. Likewise, zone cleaning can improve overall efficiency by reducing mistakes, issues of cross contamination and more. Zone cleaning refers to the plan in which specific cleaning tools are used in specific ‘zoned’ areas to set up a simple, easy to follow flow through the building. A mat system can help your facility save on time and money. Putting correct matting at each of your building’s entrances points and your highest traffic areas will reduce soil, dust and debris from entering your building in the first place, reducing your need for cleaning. Additionally, floor matting systems help prevent slip and fall accidents, reduce indoor air pollution and long term wear and tear on floors.
Janitorial Efficiencies Like Color Coded Micro Fiber Cleaning Cloths Add Up
On that same note, color coded microfiber can offer significantly more effective cleaning while reducing wasted resources and improving efficiencies. Micro fiber is itself better at cleaning but when your janitorial company implements a color coded microfiber cloth program, they use color to indicate to employees precisely where a towel is to be used. So red is typically toilets and urinals inside restrooms only with yellow being counters, sinks and partitions in restrooms only. Green microfiber towels are for general cleaning outside of restrooms and blue towels are for wiping glass, mirrors, and polished surfaces. While it sounds simple, this color coded cleaning cloth program saves cleaners time, avoids unnecessary laundering and significantly reduces cross contamination in your facility.
Other efficiencies can be found with chemical dispensing systems. These state of the art dispensing systems save time in part because their hassle-free design, one step cleaning process. This does away with time spent looking for the product you need, restocking and storaging bulk cleaning chemicals. Likewise, these chemical dispensing systems eliminate the time applied to mixing chemicals and assures effective, on label dilution by eliminating operator error.
Smart Cleaning, with the help of your professional janitorial services company or commercial cleaning company, can help you maximize the cleaning budget you have, keep you facility in good working order, protect the long term lifespan of your facility’s assets and make it at least a little easier to manage your towering work load a little easier.