Throughout the years, we have received a lot of questions about how often floors should be cleaned in an office or facility setting. To answer this, there are several key factors to take into consideration that are going to affect the frequency of this. Hopefully by reading this it will help give you pointers for you determine an ideal frequency to have your floors cleaned.
Factors to Determine Frequency
The frequency is largely dependent on how much traffic there is in each area of your office or facility. The most common used areas in your office are:
-Entryways and exits-Primary hallways -Main stairwells
These areas are going to need more frequent cleaning. You do not want clients or even potential clients to walk through a dirty office when they stop by to visit. With that, your office employees and team members do not want to walk through a dirty office with messy or beat-up floors. There are also going to be lower traffic areas that do not need to be touched as often, but the areas with the most frequency will dictate how often you will want to get your floors cleaned.
There may be areas that get a lot of activity but not a lot of foot traffic. Think of areas like kitchens or conference rooms. These areas will have people sitting in them but not necessarily a lot of walking around. These areas while not a lot of foot traffic are still prone to having scuff marks say from chairs, spilled beverages or food. This is what is called a high level of personnel activity that is going to lead to more frequent cleanings versus areas that do not have as much use.
A determining factor that is also going to determine how often to sweep/clean your floors is the number of floor mats or “runners” located throughout the facility. Floor mats tend to keep floors relatively clean which will then reduce the cleaning work and frequency of the cleaning. You will typically find these located toward the front entryway and around the office with areas that have access to the outside as a place to wipe your feet when entering the office or facility. This lessens the chance of people entering tracking mud and dirt throughout the entire office.
Knowing what your floors are made out of will help you also determine the frequency of having your floors cleaned. As an example, sealed floors offer far greater protection against things such as spills, scuffs, scratches etc. When you have unsealed floors, the floors will be much for susceptible to these types of damage that could lead to permanent damage over time. These types of floors will need to be maintained much more frequently versus sealed flooring.
As you can see, there are multiple different determining factors that come into play when trying to figure out how often you should have your floors maintained. There will be areas with much more frequency than other spaces, areas with more activity, and even the types of flooring. It is recommended to maintain your floors on a weekly basis and figure out what frequency works best for your office/facility. We get it, you simply don’t have the time to constantly maintain all of this on top of the other thousand tasks you need to worry about. This is why maintaining your floors professionally will behoove you in the long run with saving you both money and time!
It seems like a pretty simple question and answer don’t you think? Well, that’s because it is, but this post will help you better understand some terminology used in the industry. You may come to realize that janitorial companies may be able to provide more services than you ever would consider.
As you look around the industry you will notice many companies refer to themselves as “building service contractors”, “commercial janitorial services”, “custodial services”, or even just “commercial cleaning services”. To put it simply, there is not much of a difference at all with these “labels” if you will. Mainly, it depends on who is asking for the services. For example, schools ask for “custodial services”, medical facilities ask for “housekeeping services”, commercial office buildings may ask for “cleaning services” or even “janitorial services” for manufacturing plants and warehouses. These are all interchangeable terms for the most part.
Daily Service – Anything that involves ongoing, daily, routine care of the facility. These tasks are broken into four primary categories and usually outlined in the scope of work on the proposal document:
- Trash removal
- Routine floor care
- Dusting and wiping surfaces
- Restroom/breakroom services – this includes everything listed above, in addition to replenishing consumable products (toilet paper, paper towels, hand soap, etc.)
Day Porter Service – This is most common with facilities that have a large number of daily users of the building. This includes employees, visitors, students, patients, etc. A Day Porter cleans and keeps things “tidy” in high use areas throughout the day. These spaces can be lobbies, common areas, restrooms or breakrooms, kitchens, cafeterias, outside areas.
Disinfecting Service – This has always been an important offering of janitorial companies with disinfecting high touch areas/surfaces to reduce the spread of viruses. It just so happens that COVID-19 has pushed this into the forefront of everyone’s minds.
Hard Surface Floor Restoration – Periodically, restoration services will be needed to protect and maintain certain floor surfaces. Some hard surface floors that need maintenance include but not limited to vinyl composite tile (VCT), ceramic tile, wood, concrete, terrazzo. Some of the terminology used for these restoration services are “strip and wax”, “recoating” or “deep scrubbing”.
Carpet Restoration – Just like hard surface flooring above, carpeted flooring surfaces also require periodic work. I know what you may be thinking right off the bat. No, carpet shampooing is NOT what is performed by commercial cleaning companies. Instead, carpets are normally cleaned through processes such as encapsulation, bonnet cleaning or even dry carpet cleaning.
Window Cleaning – For the most part, the cleaning of entryway doors and interior glass (office partitions, etc.) is all part of the daily services. However, the cleaning of exterior windows (inside and outside) are usually listed as a separate service. There is a specific deionizing cleaning system that eliminates water spots when it comes to exterior windows.
In conclusion, when you are in your search to outsource your cleaning services, make certain you are inquiring about a detailed list of service offerings as well as coming up with a plan for scheduling these project-based services.
As offices start to reopen in the midst of Covid-19, we all must do our part in slowing its spread. This all starts with safe and informed cleaning practices. Cleanliness has always been important to maintaining good health, job performance, and the satisfaction of employees in the office. Today, there is a more particular emphasis to this, showing that the transmission of disease in the workplace through surface contact is a real threat. In some more extreme cases, it can shut down an entire operation.
This blog will provide helpful tips for disinfecting your office. Following these tips and guidelines will help ensure you keep your business running smoothly, and more importantly your employees safe.
How and When to Clean
“Cleaning” is essentially referring to the use of detergent or soap mixed with water to remove germs from surfaces. This will reduce the risk of spreading infectious diseases. Yes, cleaning removes dirt, grime and debris as well as reducing germs, but it does not necessarily kill the germs.
Cleaning should take priority for everyday office use. Per the CDC guidelines, it is recommended for daily cleaning even when there are no potential instances of infection. Hight touch surfaces, which we will go more in depth below, should be cleaned regularly. If an office co-worker is sick, you may want to add a time to disinfect these surfaces as well.
Disinfect High Touch Surface Areas
Bacteria and viruses alike can live on surfaces on a number of different materials. For example, Covid can live on plastic for as long as 3 days! With this, comes a high risk of spreading infection on high touch surfaces by employees. If there is a sick employee, it is important to disinfect these high touch surface areas throughout the day:
-Desk, tables, and countertops
-Computer monitors, mice and keyboards
-Shared office equipment (fax machines, printers, phones)
-Faucet handles and toilets
-Breakroom equipment (vending machines, coffee makers, etc.)
Maintain a Safe Office Space
Safe habits are essential in preventing the spread of Covid-19 or any disease for that matter. To keep the office running without exposure – or to limit exposure at the very least – make sure you remember 2 things: isolating and reacting to instances of illness. Below are a couple ways to maintain a safe and germ-free work space.
Hand washing is and will continue to be the best way to prevent the contraction and/or spread of germs. Regularly communicate what the best practices are to employees. As needed, employees should be washing their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
It is also important to keep cleaning supplies and disinfecting wipes available. It is crucial to react quickly to sickness. Always maintain a log of your cleaning supplies so you have them properly stocked at all times. What has been seen more and more, and is a great idea as well is to install hand sanitizer stations in convenient locations along with disinfecting wipes to encourage their use.
At long last, summer is coming to a close and schools are reopening their doors and welcoming back the bright students of tomorrow. Thanks to Covid-19, there has been A LOT of hygiene changes on top of all the confusion on how to protect our schools the best we can. So, I ask you this, how clean are the schools that you and/or your family are attending? No need to fear since professional cleaners are here to save the day! With all of these increased practices for cleanliness, hygiene, etc., schools all across the country are having trouble keeping up with all of these new responsibilities. Thus, leaving copious amounts of added stress and anxiety on both students and staff members alike.
How exactly can professional/commercial cleaning services help protect against Covid-19? And what new cleaning rules are being applied to our schools? Below we will cover why schools NEED to hire professional cleaning services now, and when this pandemic is fully in the rear view.
How Professional Cleaners Protect Schools
Step 1 – the most important step – is to outsource and hire professional cleaning services if not done so already. The key to this before fully deciding on a service is to make sure that the school’s custodial and maintenance staff are thoroughly educated. Professional cleaners have been extensively trained for these tasks and are in compliance with CDC recommendations. Professional cleaning companies – for the most part – are able and willing to establish their own personal cleaning regimen that is uniquely fit to your school, facility along with the virus that was introduced to the school in the first place.
In short, school cleaners may not be fully aware of the proper things to use in certain areas.
Benefits of Using Professional Cleaning Services
Simply put, if there is a spike in Covid-19 cases, professional cleaning services should be the first to be contacted. We, as professional cleaning companies are capable of following all of the procedures and requirements needed to decontaminate the area. From start to finish this can be completed a lot faster than the school districts themselves, all while following the local and state CDC regulations. All of the sanitation equipment can and will be provided along with following procedures which allow for the ease of cleaning the entire school inside and out.
This will provide all of the parents of students with the peace of mind that they desperately need.
How to Take Care of Schools Without Disruption
All schools alike are very important institutions, so when it comes to management, there are going to be different rules for each school. If the funds for a school allows them to outsource their cleaning, they can assure that it is going to be clean and safe! Just like any facility or office manager, cleaning issues such as mold or allergens you should and will not ever have to deal with. On top of this, any schedule the school needs to be worked can be worked! This will avoid any disruptions during the school hours.
Any emergency that arises, professional cleaners are going to be prepared as they have additional training along with special equipment and most importantly, specialized equipment for mold. This is one of the main culprits that can make people ill if not properly taken care of.
These school cleaning services will come with high quality and reliable services, and may be more reasonable than you may think. The bottom line is that we all have to remain vigilant when it comes to keeping viruses and hygiene practices in check.
Over the last 17+ months, our lives have been overtaken by this pandemic with safety and hygiene being the main concern for all of us. The nature of this virus plus ways to combat it have become very crucial, and with constant research it has been implanted into our daily work routines. Businesses around the globe now more than ever face what it means to be “clean” and has become one of the top priorities.
For the vast majority, “disinfecting” and “sanitizing” have always seemed interchangeable, but are very important to delineate. Looking at these two as cleaning strategies can be wildly consequential for the safety and well-being of your employees and customers if you are unaware of the similarities and differences amongst them. Below, we will take a look at what is sanitizing and what is disinfecting along with when to use one or the other.
What is sanitizing? Sanitizing is the removal of germs from surfaces, and most times the safe levels of sanitation are determined by public health authorities. It essentially refers to reducing the number of germs rather than actually killing them all, and clears surfaces of visible contaminants as well as reducing the number of bacteria.
Cleaners need to be EPA-certified in order to carry the label of “sanitizer” or “disinfectant” by law. Yes, some can be qualified as both in certain cases. Sanitizers are defined by the EPA as being able to kill 99.9 percent of germs. However, this does NOT include most viruses, mold or fungi.
When to Sanitize
Sanitizers are very popular in the food industry mainly because of the fact that they are safer when we are in contact with them. Disinfectants are very powerful where it can cause serious harm to us if we come into bodily contact with them or ingesting any of its residue. An important consideration when cleaning countertops that will be used for food preparation is safe cleansers. It is very critical to follow use instructions on these food contact sanitizers for safety purposes. Always allow for the products to dry completely before using these surfaces.
What is disinfecting then? Disinfecting refers to the killing of germs on surfaces. It lowers the risk of the spreading of infection by eliminating viruses, bacteria, mold and fungi through the usage of much stronger and more thorough chemicals.
Disinfectants do NOT kill all germs. Disinfectants kill 99.9 percent of microorganisms as defined by the EPA in which are labeled on the product that are actually targeted. One major difference between the two methods of cleaning is that disinfecting does not refer to the actual removal of any visible contaminants from surfaces.
When to Disinfect
Since these cleansers are the more powerful, disinfectants are used best in areas that are high-touch or used by a known sick person. Disinfectants should be used periodically in areas with constant contact and by many people. A common area where this is specifically important and prone to such contamination are bathrooms. Other common high touchpoints include: doorknobs/door handles, sinks, toilets, light switches, desks/tabletops, keyboards, phones. Now, with this there are many CDC guidelines with disinfecting in commercial facilities to follow for the most optimal safety.
In conclusion, using disinfectants are the most effective way to eliminate the spreading of pathogens such as Covid-19. While these products can eliminate such hazards, they can be highly hazardous to our body and health in general if overly exposed. Save this for high-touch or areas with heavy contamination that have potentially been exposed to infectious diseases. Sanitizers are a good go-to for everyday germ removal and good for cleaning spills and contaminated areas in mainly healthy workplaces.
If it wasn’t already a big deal before, safety and cleanliness are prioritized now more than ever, especially in the midst of seemingly never ending COVID-19 pandemic. Commercial facilities, workplaces, businesses etc. are making sure that all health and safety requirements are thoroughly met. Most of which use, you guessed it, commercial cleaning services.
As with any service, when you hire a professional commercial cleaning service, you expect and hope that the job is done correctly and efficiently. This is unfortunately not always the case. After all, we are human and human error is bound to happen at one point or another. But some can obviously be more costly with time and money than others. From our long and vast experience in the cleaning business, one of the more common mistakes made by a commercial cleaning company is using the incorrect cleaning products. This causes the job to be done incorrectly (obviously), thus not only leaving the task unfinished, but leaving others at risk as well. Below, we go over some of the top risks associated with using the incorrect cleaning products.
One of the biggest concerns with using the incorrect products is that those who actually work within the property/facility at risk. Majority of the commercial-grade cleansers can be heavily acidic and can contain a good amount of potent toxins that are just simply not meant to be breathed in consistently. This is exactly why companies specifically allocate certain cleansers for high traffic areas and areas with no so much traffic.
A good example of this would be a heavy-duty floor cleaner meant for a warehouse or factory floor with a lot of foot traffic. This may not be the best for floors in an office setting per say. Carelessness with this can quickly expose people to specific gasses or fumes can become nauseating to individual workers in that setting. In some extreme cases this can even cause pneumonia. The not so serious, dare I say best-case scenario of this would be using the incorrect – yet harmless – cleanser on a piece of glass that leaves behind streaks. Be sure that the correct cleansers are being used in the correct areas.
The Job is Incomplete
As stated earlier, using the incorrect products would lead to an unfinished job, which, in the short-term may not seem like such a huge deal to some. But, as with anything yet again, smaller problems over time mount to much bigger problems. For instance, constantly neglecting the floors from being done correctly can lead to permanent damage down the road. Whether it is too little of the correct product, or just incorrect altogether, the results will not be desirable let alone costing you more money in the long haul.
Your job is not to be in the janitorial business. That is our job and our obligation to be on top of all things janitorial, which is why you hired us in the first place. Especially in present day when there is a large concern over bacteria and pathogens in the area and on surfaces. Regardless, the space still needs to get cleaned the correct way to avoid larger risk with employees. More time consuming and more money spent.
Whether you are a property owner, facility manager/coordinator, office manager etc. you take pride in your space. To get up to where you are at currently has taken a tremendous amount of work, and you want to make sure it is taken care of as best as possible. More often than not, this is associated with outsourcing professionals to handle certain tasks quickly and efficiently. Well, I hate to the bearer of bad news, but this is not always the case. To add on to what we talked about previously by leaving others at a high risk and leaving your space unfinished, this can also cause damage to your property as well.
Let’s use hard wood floors as a good example for this. For review, there are certain products designated to clean specific areas. Hard wood floors usually are coated on top with polyurethane, which is meant to stand out and potentially catch the eye of a customer as well as it just looks nice and presentable. However, if the wrong cleanser is used, this coating can be stripped off and can lead to the eventual deterioration of the floor. This can open up a whole new can of problems and lead to permanent damage. While it may be covered by insurance, it will lead to a lot of wasted time to deal with a problem that was easily avoidable.
While we are all in a state of the unknown with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, people want and value a sense of comfort. Covid-19 to say the least has certainly changed the standard of health and safety protocols, which if met correctly can most certainly help with you and your employees having that sense of comfort.