There’s a recent GEICO ad featuring an anthropomorphized robot vacuum complaining about its limited role in the world. “All I do is suck up dirt,” says the vacuum. It’s a morose, monotonous life for the machine.
The takeaway is supposed to be that GEICO does more than one thing (car insurance, in this case). The contrast works – sure, a vacuum really does just have one role – but it’s interesting that the marketing people responsible for the ad identified cleaning as a static field when dreaming up the comparison.
In fact, it’s somewhat indicative of the overall tendency of industry outsiders to identify commercial cleaning as a static arena. All that a commercial cleaning company does is make dirty things clean. That’s it, right?
Of course, there’s more to it than that. While it may come as something of a surprise to industry outsiders, the truth is that commercial cleaning is a dynamic, quickly changing industry. As in any other field today, the companies that are able to adapt and innovate their cleaning services and technologies will be the companies that succeed.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at three of the most impactful commercial cleaning trends on the horizon in 2018.
As it turns out, commercial cleaning is about more than just sucking up dirt.
Employee Training Programs
There’s a common misconception that commercial cleaning is not a skilled endeavor. The thought goes that anyone can show up, be given a set of cleaning products, and be expected to get down to effective work.
The truth is that employee training is one of the most important components to successful commercial cleaning. Commercial cleaning products, techniques, and best practices are innovated often. On top of that, each facility environment poses a unique set of cleaning challenges and requires a unique set of cleaning services.
Simply put, training is a necessity. In 2018, the commercial cleaning companies that facilitate robust and effective employee training programs will be the commercial cleaning companies that win the day.
Toward that end, employee training should typically include:
- Training on general supplies, equipment, and procedures in use
- Training on HAZCOM
- Education on GS42 green cleaning procedures
- Training in concentration dispensing systems for green cleaning chemicals
- Education on blood borne pathogen cleaning procedures
- Training on dealing with hazardous materials
- Managerial and supervisorial training for appropriate employees
For instance, at the Wilburn Company, all staff is required to participate in 12 hours of initial GS-42 training in order to form a foundational knowledge of quality custodial practices. After finishing foundational training, employees complete annual continue trainings, including 24 hours of GS-42 training each year that are tailored to the unique locations that staff members are assigned to.
Finally, in addition all other trainings, management personnel also complete continue training with Building Wellness Institute Training. Those personnel share expertise acquired in that setting with on-site teams.
At the end of the day, all of that training allows employees to offer cleaning services at the highest level of quality using cutting-edge methods and best practices.
Another trend impacting the commercial cleaning industry is cost control – the ability to keep cleaning prices low while maintaining high levels of service.
Admittedly, cost control affects all industries, but it’s particularly impactful in the commercial cleaning industry for two reasons.
First, it’s impactful because of the perception that cleaning is not a skilled endeavor – so the thought is that it must be inexpensive. Second, cost control is important because there’s a perception that things are either clean or not clean. Either a commercial cleaning company can make your facility clean, or they can’t. In this mode of thinking, there is no room for differentiation based on quality – which means that the remaining differentiator is price.
So, the bidding wars begin.
For commercial cleaning companies, this is, admittedly, unfortunate – but it’s also the reality of the competitive landscape, and cost control techniques consequently play a pivotal role in determining success.
And, as new technologies and techniques are developed, cost control becomes more effective and more essential.
Cost control techniques include:
- Stocking the correct amount of commercial cleaning products to reduce waste
- Efficient cleaning techniques that clean to high quality standards while minimizing product usage
- Optimized scheduling of employees
- Optimized cleaning plans for unique spaces
- Efficient disposal of waste materials
Finally, likely the top commercial cleaning trend in 2018 is green cleaning.
Green cleaning has been an industry buzzword for several years, but it’s moving from the status of “buzzword” into the realm of “necessary business practice”. Essentially, green cleaning is the practice of cleaning to quality standards in a way that reduces the harmful impact of cleaning activities – both to the environment, and to humans.
We’ve written before about what green cleaning entails, but to summarize, the practice includes:
- Utilizing green cleaning products
- Practicing green cleaning procedures
- Implementing a scientific approach to cleaning
Among its host of benefits, green cleaning offers improved building occupant health, reduced environmental impact, and even potential tax breaks.
Simply put, if you’re not using a green commercial cleaning company, you’re doing commercial cleaning wrong.
Get on the Cutting-Edge of Commercial Cleaning Trends in 2018
The commercial cleaning industry is dynamic, and the best commercial cleaning services are those that consider industry trends and adapt to innovation.
At the Wilburn Company, we pride ourselves on that. A lot has changed over our decades of commercial cleaning service in DC – but one thing that hasn’t changed is our commitment to constant improvement and quality service.
If you’re looking for commercial cleaning services in the Maryland area, get in touch with us. We’d be honored to help you keep your facility and its occupants healthy with our leading service.
Health matters – and commercial cleaning is more than just making dirty things clean.