As a Facility Manager, commercial cleaning prices can be really difficult to compare. Why is comparing commercial cleaning prices so difficult? Sometimes it’s a deliberate attempt by a cleaning company to leave things purposely vague. How does this benefit them?
Well, it can make it harder for you to compare their quote to another company’s and if they realize there is more work than they anticipated, they can posture for more money or additional fees later. Other times, it’s just a side effect of a janitorial company not fully understanding how to price their services. This inexperience can also result in your cleaning company asking for more money down the road.
So whether you are on the hunt for a commercial cleaning service for your facility or want to get rid of an existing janitorial company that isn’t delivering the work you need, how can you get clear pricing, compare ‘apples to apples,’ hold your commercial cleaning company to an agreed upon budget and get the value you need at a price you can live with?
Why Cheap Cleaning Bids Might Not Be As Great As You Think
Oh those low bids sure look good but you know that to some degree the adage ‘you get what you pay for’ rings true. This is not to say that just because a janitorial service charges more that they will offer better service, but overly low commercial cleaning bids should raise a red flag. Very low prices or janitorial prices that seem too good to be true probably are. Too low prices might indicate other issues that will cost you in the long run, like:
- An inexperienced company that wants to cut their teeth on your facility.
- A janitorial company that promises the world but fails to deliver.
- A cleaning company that uses illegal workers.
- An overall cleaning quality for your facility that goes downhill fast.
No One Wants To Be The Training Ground For An Inexperienced Cleaning Companies
Really, we know everyone starts somewhere but do you want your facility to be the training ground for an inexperienced cleaning company? A low cleaning bid might be indicative of a janitorial company’s inexperience and lack of understanding how much work really goes into keeping your facility clean and in good order. Inexperienced cleaning companies or those janitorial companies new to larger accounts often don’t understand how to determine what level of work or time is necessary to maintain your facilities to the standard they promised so they tend to underbid.
While the number on the paper might look enticing, it will quickly come back to bite you because in time, your janitorial company just do less and ask for more money or add on fees that weren’t part of the original quote. Your best bet is to choose from companies that offer transparent pricing so that you can evaluate bids and service levels in a meaningful way in order to get the best value for your dollar.
Don’t Get Suckered Into Believing Everything You Are Told
The salesperson for your commercial cleaning company can say anything but you depend on the whole organization, especially your front line cleaners, to actually make good on those promises. No matter what the reason, you just will not quality, consistent, responsive service from a company that is charging too little. Cleaning takes time and requires people, a cleaning company must pay people for their time. They must cover the cost of the equipment, materials, insurance, and more. And they must make room for profit, even if it’s a small profit. On an overly low cleaning bid, the math just doesn’t work.
If the math doesn’t work, a janitorial company can’t pay their people for the time needed so in time, they will just do less. If you want solid cleaning and maintenance, you must partner with a professional janitorial company knows how to fairly price their services and honor the commitments they make. Of course, these reputable, professional, established cleaning companies will likely not offer the lowest pricing but they probably won’t be the highest either. The best Michigan cleaning companies will deliver real value by reliably doing the work they commit to.
Low Janitorial Prices May Indicate Illegal Hiring
When a cleaning bid comes in really low, you should pause and reflect on why and how? Like we mentioned before, a janitorial service cannot ignore the essential math of running a profitable cleaning company. A commercial cleaning bid that comes in well below most of the other bids can indicate that the company in question is using illegal hiring to cut costs.
There are two different types of illegal hiring that plague the building services industry. One, the hiring of undocumented workers. An undocumented worker is an individual that is working off the payroll or an individual that has not furnished to their employer the necessary identification to verify their legal status or authorization to work. The other illegal hiring entails illegally classifying workers as independent contractors. Unscrupulous cleaning companies do this to avoid the legal requirements one has when having employees like payroll, taxes, benefits and all of the other things businesses must provide for legal employees.
Janitorial companies that are prepared to take shortcuts with their people aren’t interested in protecting their reputation and YOUR reputation. Likewise, the use of illegal employees raises turnover considerably which can result in more people in and out of your facility. If a cleaning company is willing to hire illegally, where else might they be taking shortcuts? Undocumented workers who aren’t subject to criminal background checks and drug testing puts you, your employees and facility at risk.
Too Low Prices Lead To Poor Quality & Reduced Work
The best Michigan commercial cleaning companies know that sometimes you have a budget that is less than ideal. They will understand that even if your budget is below what is optimal for your facility, there is a financial reality you must consider. Instead of just offering less work, experienced cleaning companies can help you determine what work is most critical in your facility and how to get the most done with the budget you have. Similarly, the real pros can help you develop a cleaning plan that best supports your facility while you work with a razor thin budget. Experience building maintenance companies understand where it is possible to cut back on services and which services are critical to get over a budget crunch AND maintain your facility for the long term. An overly low cleaning quote offered in the absence of a real understanding of what your facility needs should be suspect.
Ineffective Cleaning Has A Real Cost & It’s Your Facility That Pays
When you choose a too low bid an ineffective janitorial company, you will have short-term headaches to contend with but there are also some significant long term risks and costs you leave your facility open to. Short-term headaches might include an increase in complaints and management issues.
There are also the risks inherent with illegal hiring and even the health and safety of your employees, tenants or customers. Long-term issues might include an increase of illness and absenteeism in the workplace. Additionally, inadequate cleaning creates an environment and expectation of apathy. And finally, neglecting on-going maintenance and even preventive maintenance will likely reduce the lifespan of valuable building assets. Finding a quality building maintenance company means many small repairs and maintenance get caught before they become major issues that cut into productivity and the bottom line.
It Is Possible To Find An Exceptional Commercial Cleaning Company at a Reasonable Price
Quality, responsive, consistent cleaning can be affordable even if you are working with a less than optimal building maintenance budget. The most experienced janitorial services can help get the most value from your maintenance dollars. When shopping prospective commercial cleaning services, consider the following. Companies that offer transparent pricing allow you to compare quotes in a meaningful way. Clear pricing give you the chance to view multiple quotes side by side in an ‘apples to apples’ way. This allows you to determine value. Even better, a clear janitorial price quote sets a benchmark for evaluating your cleaning company’s performance. Think about it, both you and your cleaning contractor know upfront exactly what is expected. This means fewer surprises and a significantly easier overall management of your cleaning and maintenance. Choosing a solid commercial cleaning company with experience and a trusted record of above board hiring and business practices will give you the best chance of forging lasting partnership and protecting your valuable assets.