This Multinational Department Store Chain Saved $7.5M by Improving Labor Productivity and Cleaning Processes

Presentation mattersresentation matters. Whether you’re running a specialty boutique or a large department store, retail spaces speak volumes to your visitors. If the experience doesn’t match your customers' expectations, they may not be back again. 

Flooring sets the foundation for that experience, so keeping them clean is a priority for most retailers. This requires proper training and safety precautions, especially as most retailers today use concentrated cleaning products. 

One multinational discount department store sought to improve labor productivity throughout their cleaning processes, reduce waste, and increase worker safety. As part of this effort, they approached the Sealed Air Diversey Care team to audit their cleaning and maintenance program and reevaluate their current cleaning solutions. 

The audit discovered that employees were responsible for measuring, combining, and hand mixing the concentrated cleaning products. Additionally through that mixing, employees also had the potential to be exposed to the cleaning products — a possible safety hazard. 

Regardless of how well-trained employees are, spills happen

We were able to partner with this retailer to suggest other business improvements. Together, we identified the sheer variety of needs this giant retailer had. Types of flooring varied throughout the store based on departmental needs, and while the sales floor saw the most traffic, the flooring in one area needed extra protection from oil, grease, and other substances. Meanwhile, the retailer's bakery and deli areas required commercial cleaners to remove baked-on carbon residue from soaking bakery pans, rotisserie skewers, and other utensils.

To solve all of these problems, the Sealed Air team recommended closed-loop ready-to-dispense cleaning products that would save employees from measuring the product or becoming exposed to hazardous chemicals. This solution automatically mixes the water and concentrated cleaning product to provide the right combination every time for each application. 

Improve labor productivity through cleaningMany of Sealed Air’s cleaning solutions are available in this ready-to-dispense format, including the ProStrip SC High-Efficiency Floor Stripper, Tempest Solvent-Free Degreaser, and Suma® Liquid Carbon Build-Up Remover. While ProStrip SC allows maintenance personnel to remove worn floor finish and provide a clean floor surface for reapplication, Tempest helps the automotive department to manage oil and grease stains. The Suma Liquid Carbon Build-Up Remover supports food service departments in cleaning their aluminum and stainless steel trays. 

The use of these ready-to-dispense cleaning products helped reduce the overall variety of cleaning products as well as the labor necessary for the retailer's cleaning processes. 

“We’ve had a relationship with this retailer for over 25 years now,” says McDaniel. “They trusted that our recommendations would improve safety, reduce exposure to harsh chemicals and increase operational efficiency.”

As a result of these recommendations, the retailer saw significant resource savings. Labor costs in cleaning were reduced by 66 percent and product and packaging waste were reduced by over 850 tons annually because of the fewer products used and the ready-to-dispense format. Because of those resource savings and operational efficiencies, the retailer added over $7.5 million to its bottom line. 

Sealed Air continues to be a long-term partner with this customer, helping to identify and recommend other solutions that will improve labor productivity in the retailer's cleaning processes. 

If you’re interested in learning how your facilities can optimize its cleaning process — whether you are a retailer or in another industry — contact our Sealed Air Diversey team today