Updated: Jan 24
Look for Value, not Cost
There are many commercial cleaning companies to choose from. As you’ll find with hiring any service provider, there is a great deal to consider before making a decision regarding your commercial cleaning services. More often than not, it boils down to budgets and effectiveness. We know that it can be difficult to look past price, but janitorial cost shouldn’t be the only thing that informs your decision. Having a professional cleaning service that meets your needs should be your primary search criteria considering price after you’ve found the services you need. This is challenging and time-consuming task, but with the right information, you can find a service that works for you and your budget. So, what should you be on the lookout for in the overcrowded market that is commercial cleaning services?
A Murky Bid Often Means Shady Business Practices
A critical factor in finding an effective commercial cleaning company is having quotes that are easy to compare apples to apples style. Many commercial cleaning services do not price their services in a clear way. A major red flag that your prospective cleaning company is either inexperienced or looking to make a quick dollar off you is a quote that is difficult to understand. In order to make an informed decision, you need to know exactly what you are paying for and how the cost is determined. Otherwise, the quote is little more than a suggestion that doesn’t really tell you anything about how much you're going to pay and what services you are going to get. If your prospective cleaning service isn’t giving you good information and a clear, understandable janitorial bid, chances are, they are not going to deliver on their promises of quality, effective cleaning service.
Communication is Key
The backbone of the commercial cleaning industry is people and people are bound to make mistakes. This is just a fact of life. What makes a good company great is how well they handle these issues. The key to dealing with problems before they spiral out of control is real-time communication so that they can be addressed and smoothed over quickly. All too often we see small problems go unchecked until they grow into an expensive, time-consuming issue. If your janitorial service company is not communicating with you regularly about operations and problems, it is time to start looking for a new service provider.
Cheap Versus Value
As we mentioned before, people are what makes up the backbone of any service company, commercial cleaning notwithstanding. If a commercial cleaning company’s staff aren’t fairly compensated for their work with competitive pay, benefits and incentive programs, you’re not going to receive consistent, quality service. It is easy to fall into the habit of thinking that cleaning labor is unskilled and therefore shouldn’t pay well. This couldn’t be further from the truth. While it doesn’t require a formal education, commercial cleaning requires a lot of training and hard manual labor that can account for the industry’s high turnover rate. A lot of this can be attributed to company’s inability to grasp that their staff need to feel valued and treated as hard working employees. If you company isn’t offering competitive pay, their staff is likely to perform below industry standards, and you’ll be faced with the constant revolving door of new employees that will further hurt the quality of your service and value of what you are getting. Of course, companies that pay more are going to cost a little extra, but in the long run you're going to be getting a more consistent and quality clean.
Security is a Paramount Concern
The majority of cleaning services do their work at night, so you need to have some trust that the people that are in your building. This means that your prospective cleaning company has to take screening and background checks seriously. This includes a complete criminal background check, multi-panel drug tests and proper safety training for you specific building. Safety in your facility should be a paramount concern. If you don’t trust the people in your building, then it is time to start looking for a company that takes safety and security concerns seriously.
Green Cleaning Is So Much More Than a Buzzword
Looking for eco-friendly cleaning services? You may hear a lot of promises from a company trying to get your business. The most common tactic we see today is cleaning companies trying to get your business by offering ‘green cleaning’. Green cleaning isn’t just a buzzword that you can add in front of every service, there is a lot that goes into providing an environmentally responsible service that works to provide a solid clean while keeping health in mind. This can take the form of environmentally conscious chemical usage, recycling programs, equipment that uses less energy and water and cleaning techniques that safeguard indoor air quality. If you are interested in a green cleaning program, ask your prospective cleaning service to show what they are doing to provide a green clean, actions speak louder than words.
Not Everyone Is Cut Out for the Work
Contrary to popular belief, commercial cleaning isn’t a job that you can pick up on the go. Without proper general and industry specific training, cleaning staff simply aren’t equipped to provide a quality service in an efficient manner. This is especially problematic with buildings that have niche requirements. Industry specific training can be just as important as general training. You might need medical cleaning services, industrial cleaning services, office cleaning services, or office disinfection services, different types of work require different types of skills. Successful commercial cleaning companies have successful training programs.
The Right Equipment for the Job
As the age-old adage goes, you need the right equipment for the job and as it turns out, broken or outdated equipment is not the right equipment for the job. Scientific innovation has been advancing at an unprecedented rate and commercial cleaning equipment is no exception. Many of these advances have practical uses that help reduce waste, improve cleaning and increase efficiency. For instance, multi-filtration HEPA vacuums weigh significantly less than their counterparts making them easier and faster to use and improve air quality. Any company that isn’t taking advantage of these advances isn’t going to provide a quality service.
Accountability Means Fewer Mistakes
The best companies will always try to minimize mistakes because mistake mean more headaches and work for everyone involved. This is accomplished through accountability. Many Facility Managers have found success with a checklist, task list or spec sheet that sets clear and reasonable expectations for staff. Not only does it keep everyone on track, but it makes clear what your expectations are.
Success is Never an Accident
You aren’t successful by accident and the most effective commercial cleaning companies take every chance they get to improve and prepare for the future. This means adopting effective cleaning techniques and equipment before they become industry standard. The marketplace is a crowded one and it takes a special level of commitment to stand out against the competition. The good news for you is that many commercial cleaning companies offer reasonably priced cleaning services to better compete in a tough market. With a little effort, you can find commercial cleaning services that meet both your needs and your budget.