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Good Cleaning Habits in Facilities

All facility managers understand the importance of maintaining a good standard of cleanliness.  Providing a clean, healthy workplace environment improves employee well-being, productivity, and performance. It’s also important to give the right impression to visitors with a clean and hygienic environment.

However, maintaining good standards of cleanliness means implementing good habits and policies in your facility to make sure that your cleaning routine is effective. Here are some of our top tips for creating good cleaning habits in facilities.

1. Develop an effective cleaning routine 

A cleaning routine ensures that staff work methodically and efficiently, and also means that all areas and surfaces receive regular cleaning. By mapping out all areas of your facility and creating a routine that covers each area thoroughly, you can be confident that your facility will be consistently clean and tidy throughout. Employee effectiveness is improved in almost every industry by having clear and efficient processes in place, and cleaning is no exception.

2. Inspect the risk before starting to clean

For janitorial companies, safety is a top priority. Your work environment should be a place of safety first. Before beginning a task, a janitor will first observe the work area and make sure it is free of any hazards.  For example, if you see a spill, identify what substance has been spilled so that you can clean it safely and effectively. If the area is busy, it may not be safe to clean it at that specific time, so you may opt to put a sign up warning others to be cautious, for example, a “floor slippery when wet” sign.

Spills are not the only risk that needs to be assessed. Some cleaning products contain harsh chemical compounds or have strong odors. The smells or fumes from these products can cause headaches and other problems for people in the area being cleaned. Impacts other than health and safety also need consideration; for example, loud cleaning machinery can be disruptive to workers in the vicinity.

3. Keep sanitizers throughout your facilities 

Sanitizers kill 99.9% of germs and reduce the spread of bacteria. Having sanitizer available at appropriate points in your facility helps prevent your employees from getting sick, and reduces employee absenteeism. Hand sanitizers are a quick and convenient way to keep people’s hands clean when they are at work and reduce the spread of germs.

Place hand sanitizers and wipes in high-traffic areas like kitchens and meeting rooms rather than in the restrooms. Proper handwashing is more effective than sanitizer, so keep the sanitizer for areas where people either can’t or won’t wash their hands.

4. Use a ph neutral floor cleaner (PH of 6 – 8)

Some floor surfaces can be damaged by harsh cleaning products. Using a neutral-ph floor cleaner reduces the risk of stripping any polished coatings or sealer from your flooring and damaging the floor.

To keep your floors sparkling, you also want to avoid floor cleaners that leave a residue. Not only does this reduce streaking and dullness, but it means there is nothing for dirt to stick to, and so your floors will remain cleaner for longer. Neutral cleaners rinse off surfaces thoroughly and leave little residue. Ph-neutral cleaners are all around safer when you stay within the recommended ph scale of 6-8.

5.     Change the mop heads and water consistently

It’s important not to forget to keep your cleaning tools clean; otherwise, you risk simply spreading dirt around instead of removing it properly. For example, using the same water and mop heads to clean a large facility with mean you are cleaning for most of the time with dirty water and dirty mop heads. This not only fails to clean the floor effectively but will also leave bad odors in the workplace.

6.     Finishing floors requires a detailed eye 

Floors should always be streak, dirt, and residue-free. Sweeping and mopping alone are not enough to create the right finish. There’s an art and craft to good cleaning that takes a detailed eye. Take time when finishing the floor you are working and avoid rushing as this will create small, unnecessary mistakes.

7.     Manage the basic things around the office

The saying “the littlest things can make the biggest difference” is not just a life lesson; it also applies to keeping the workplace clean and tidy. Small things like keeping magazines together in neat stacks, keeping an extra set of trash can liners in the trashcan, and not allowing paper clips to be miscellaneously placed around the office make a big difference. Maintaining these basics will help consistency, routine, and organization flow in your workspace.

8.     Give things a designated area

Make supplies accessible for employees and customers by giving them their own area. Make sure that the area you choose is neatly put together and regularly organized. Messy shelves, cupboards, or supply areas make it difficult to find what you need and can make an otherwise tidy workplace look messy and disorganized.

9.     Deodorize

Deodorizers can eliminate unpleasant odors and make your workplace feel more welcoming. However, it’s important to choose deodorizers with a neutral scent. Strongly scented deodorizers can be disturbing to some people who are sensitive to smells, and may even cause headaches or nausea. Aiming for a pleasant, subtle, neutral smell will keep employees and visitors comfortable while still eliminating unpleasant odors.

Implementing these suggestions allows you to maintain a clean, healthy working environment. Of course, to ensure your facility is always presented in the best possible manner, employing a professional cleaning service is preferred.  Team Clean provides office cleaning services across the Philadelphia metropolitan area. Our eleven-point Office Check System ensures a clean and clutter-free office environment, and our Spotless Restrooms program is used to eradicate harmful microorganisms that can contaminate a building

The Importance of Cleaning

As COVID-19 has swept the nation, keeping schools and most businesses closed indefinitely, many Americans have rediscovered (or discovered for the first time) the importance of hygiene and cleanliness. What used to be commonplace – people keeping themselves and their environments tidy and clean – seemed to have fallen by the wayside in recent times as we rush to get things done faster and cut costs wherever possible. But with the rise of our first pandemic in over 100 years, we have once again had to shift our focus to taking care of ourselves, our environments, and giving cleanliness the time and attention it needs to be effective.

As someone who has been in the cleaning business for over three decades, it is heartening to see almost everyone taking cleanliness so seriously and taking many extra precautions to protect themselves and others. But, we have to remember that following these precautions year-round is crucial. Cleanliness is not only a matter of public health, but also one of economics. It will be one of the most important keys to our comfort and success as a nation from here on out.

As we begin to see the curve flatten and people return to work, school, and other normal activities, we have to consider how we are going to continue keeping everything sanitary and free of germs and bacteria. A lot of this work will be done by cleaning companies, and we have to make sure that those cleaners are trained properly and certified to the highest standards. Would you hire someone untrained to work on your home? Fix your car? Provide you with medical advice? Probably not. And we must consider cleaners in this same category, from the largest corporate office cleaner down to the small mom-and-pop shop that cleans houses in the neighborhood.

Proper cleaning is also an economic investment for the future. If businesses do not invest in proper cleaning services in the future, germs and diseases are likely to return more frequently and affect not only the health and safety of customers and employees, but also the bottom line when they have to close for cleaning over and over again. Not to mention the reputation that a business can get as a place that doesn’t take its cleaning and disinfecting seriously.

So, what does it mean to have the proper training and certifications? When companies are looking for cleaners to keep their buildings and offices sanitary, they should look for proper certifications and seek out companies that are trained to deal with bio-hazardous environments.

In addition to other diseases, such as the common cold, influenza, or pneumonia, we now have to take precautions to avoid new and unexpected health threats. We have to expect that even if COVID-19  it goes away, it will return. In order to mitigate the impact of future outbreaks, we absolutely must be vigilant and diligent in our efforts to maintain high standards of personal and professional hygiene and cleanliness. If social distancing is going to become a standard part of our society moving forward, proper cleaning procedures must follow along.

While in these times there is no way to 100% guarantee protection from contracting COVID-19 in shared spaces, there are actions we can take like washing your hands often, staying at home, and property cleaning and disinfecting your surroundings to help lessen the likelihood of transmission.

These are matters of life and death. Maintaining a safe environment through proper cleaning is more important than ever before. Proper procedures will save lives, and we must start today.

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