Is Your Workplace Healthy?
As an office manager or business owner have you ever looked in your janitorial closet?
If not, I can’t blame you. You hired a janitorial service to clean your facility and bring in the proper equipment and supplies. After all, equipment and supplies don’t vary much from one cleaning service to another, right?
That couldn’t be farther from the truth. The equipment and supplies a cleaning company uses can have a huge impact on the cleaning results you get. At a minimum, most facilities require a vacuum, mop, cleaning solutions, disinfectants and towels to get the job done. So, does it matter what type of vacuum or mop they use? You betcha!
Is Your Janitorial Closet a Mess?
Does your janitorial closet look like your kid’s room? Are bottles and rags thrown all over the place? Do you see dirty string mops and filthy buckets? Is there a “dirty” laundry bag to keep new and used towels separated?
A janitorial closet should be well organized and kept clean. It’s a sign that your cleaning company is doing its job properly. But, the type of equipment and supplies you find inside your closet can uncover the real reason you’re not getting better results.
Cleaning Best Practices:
Best practices are defined as commercial procedures that are accepted as being correct or most effective. Best cleaning practices have been developed in the janitorial industry through research by leading authorities in the field. These practices include the use of certain types of equipment, supplies and cleaning methods and when followed, produce high quality results.
So, how can you know if your janitorial company’s equipment passes muster? It’s really not hard to find out. Just follow the checklist we’ve created for you below. This list is not arbitrary. Its based on accepted cleaning standards that have been developed after years of research by highly respected organizations such as: the EPA, CDC, ISSA, and USGBC (United States Green Building Council).
The cleaning standards developed by these organizations are widely accepted as best practices. But, unfortunately, they aren’t always practiced. Cleaning companies in South Florida often use outdated, ineffective equipment that just can’t get the job done properly.
Janitorial Closet Checklist:
The equipment checklist below is your best defense against hiring the wrong cleaning company. Ask these questions before you sign your next cleaning contract:
1) Do you use string mops?
If they answer yes, this is a big red flag. Many companies use outdated string mops that spread dirt around. Microfiber flat mops are a better choice and an accepted standard.
2) Do you dilute chemicals by hand?
Many companies still dilute cleaning solutions by hand. Manual methods of dilution are unreliable and can be dangerous. Automated dilution systems are the cleaning standard today.
3) Are all bottles labeled according to OSHA standards?
OSHA requires labeling on all cleaning products to prevent improper use. This is for the safety of your building’s occupants. Is the company OSHA compliant?
4) Do you use green clean certified products?
Green cleaning products are safe and non-toxic. They are not required, but are becoming an accepted standard in many facilities.
5) Do you use microfiber towels?
Microfiber towels are the accepted standard for surface cleaning and disinfection. Paper towels and cotton rags cannot remove dirt or soil as effectively and are out of favor. Many companies use paper towels to avoid using microfiber towels that require ongoing laundering services.
6) Do you use a color-coded system for towels?
Color-coded towel systems prevent the spread of germs from one area of your facility to another. You don’t want a janitorial worker using the same towel to clean your bathroom and desk. Color-coding prevents this from happening.
7) Do you use HEPA certified vacuums?
HEPA certified vacuums capture very fine dust particles. They improve indoor air quality and remove more soil than other vacuums. This is an accepted cleaning standard, especially in hospitals, medical offices, schools and child care centers. Many cleaning companies use in-expensive, less effective vacuums.
8) Will you be using EPA registered, hospital grade disinfectants?
There are many disinfectants available for purchase over the counter. However, the accepted standard and more effective practice is to use commercially available, EPA registered disinfectants.
9) Do you use a laundry system to clean and disinfect towels and rags?
If a cleaning company doesn’t have a separate laundry bag for used towels, its another red flag. Accepted standards include frequent changing of microfiber towels to prevent the spread of dirt and germs, aka cross contamination. After towels have become soiled, they should be stored in a “dirty” bag until laundered.
This sounds like a simple process, but you’d be surprised how many companies don’t have a laundering system in place. Or, they’re using disposable paper towels instead of microfiber towels to avoid laundering (which takes time and coordination).
Take Our Free 5 Minute Healthy Building Challenge:
The list we’ve provided should be enough to evaluate the type of equipment and supplies a cleaning company uses. But, we know you’re busy and you might not have the time to go through this checklist.
So, we’ve come up with an easy solution. Give us 5 minutes and we’ll look inside your janitorial closet for you. We’ll evaluate the type of equipment and supplies your current cleaning company is using. We’ll provide you with a written evaluation of our findings and show you the changes we’d make. Then, compare our equipment and supplies to other companies.
There’s really no way around it. If you want to hire the right cleaning company, you have to know the type of equipment and supplies they’ll be using. The easiest way to find out is to take our 5 minute equipment challenge. Click Here for more detailed information and charts about what janitorial companies should be using to clean your business.