To keep businesses running smoothly, restaurant owners, retail store managers and building service contractors must oversee numerous key tasks, including cleaning. If cleaning is considered a priority, this can have a positive impact on a brand’s reputation, sales, employee satisfaction and retention, and more. When cleanliness is ignored, a business risks losing out on these benefits. According to a survey by the International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA), 95 percent of shoppers note that unclean restrooms and foul odors would influence shopping decisions, along with unclean floors, spills or stains and dirty shopping carts.
Facility managers may face numerous challenges that complicate cleaning, including:
Heavy foot traffic - Busy facilities, from airports to schools to big box retailers, can quickly show signs of wear such as dirty floors and messy restrooms. Although cleaning during busy times may not be top of mind for facility managers, it’s important to devote time to tidying up. Not only is it possible to complete these tasks while customers and occupants are present, daylight cleaning provides numerous benefits. First and foremost, it means that employees are focused on cleanliness during times when it is needed most. Additionally, it allows patrons and occupants to see that cleaning is being performed, which can improve perception of a facility or business. To simplify cleaning during busy times, facilities should equip employees with an easy-to-carry cleaning kit or maneuverable cart filled with all the necessary products. When products are not well-matched for the stains and surfaces that employees need to clean, tasks can take longer than necessary. Provide employees with microfiber cloths, a streak-free cleaner for glass, mirrors, chrome, etc., a deep cleaner for hard water stains and soap scum, degreasers for tough stains like gum and grease and a ready-to-use disinfectant cleaner to sanitize and disinfect surfaces.
High turnover - The retail and foodservice industries have especially high turnover. According to the Hay Group, the median turnover rate for part-time retail employees is 67 percent. This can make it difficult to establish a regular cleaning routine and to properly train employees about the importance of cleanliness, where to clean, when and how. It’s important for managers to take time to train employees on proper procedures, including cleaning. Developing talent, recognizing success and being tuned in to employee needs will help cultivate a better work environment and combat turnover. According to a report from the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD), when companies invest little or nothing in training 41 percent of employees said they’re likely to leave within one year. This drops to just 12 percent when employees feel that they’re employer has prepared them for the job duties at hand and provides opportunities for development and advancement. In addition to training employees about the importance of cleaning, it’s crucial that they have the best tools, technologies and products available to them in order to complete their cleaning tasks.
Shrinking budgets - Due to shrinking budgets, many organizations are trying to do more with less, especially in regards to facility management and maintenance. However, cutting corners when it comes to cleaning is not advised. Using too little chemical means that floors and other surfaces won’t be properly cleaned, which can impact customer satisfaction and require employees to spend even more time fixing their mistakes. Alternatively, using too much product is not only wasteful and expensive, but can actually damage surfaces. However, employees may not even be aware they are using the incorrect amount of chemical. To ensure maximum cleanliness and eliminate confusion, managers can purchase concentrate in bottles that accurately dispense the product into spray bottles. No longer will employees have to manually measure chemicals. Instead, they can clean with confidence.