You have a lot of items on your To Do List and work to get done every day with regard to your business. Worrying about how clean your building is shouldn’t be on that list, but what happens if it makes it there?
Over the last several posts, we have covered The Vanguard Difference. Before we get into How to Hire a Cleaning Company, we should discuss the signs it is time to change your cleaning company. A low-quality, poorly performing janitorial service could potentially be costing your school or business thousands of dollars a year in lost productivity and waste.
According to the ISSA, "cleaning is an investment in human health, the environment, and an improved bottom line...a modest investment in cleaning can help facilities reap big savings."
Retaining a low-quality provider that has slacked off on service level and communication can cost you even more, especially when constant employee complaints begin to mount up. Learn to recognize these signs early to avoid the costly hassle of high vendor turnover.
Poor service quality is typically the first sign that it is time to replace your cleaning company.
- Trash receptacles go unemptied for more than a single night.
- Restroom supplies are not stocked sufficiently or refilled regularly.
- Accumulation of dirt, dust, and debris under desks, on shelves, or along window sills.
- They lack the knowledge, ability, or willingness to accept further responsibility outside of general cleaning duties.
- Your vendor's management refuses to accept responsibility for poor service delivery and regularly points the finger at workers, or worse, the customer.
While an occasional missed task is understandable and forgivable, continuous failures can lead to occupant health issues, poor public image, and a loss of business and productivity.
This will typically manifest early on in decreased communication and response time, resulting in constant complaints from your customers and employees, which translates into lost revenue, and inefficient use of management time-resources.
A lack of solid communication will disrupt most business operations, especially when a provider fails to respond to requests in a timely fashion.
- Vendor response times to service requests increase significantly.
- Multiple contact attempts must be made to get a response.
- Account managers follow up on service performance and work requests are decreasing.
Readily accessible technology and tools have simplified communication across multiple channels, especially for the routing and handling of customer issues and complaints.
A cleaning company vendor who has not invested the time and resources necessary to ensure open and rapid communication and response times is unlikely to be fully vested in their customer's success.
Recognize these signs of probable communication issues, early on:
- The vendor uses a free email address for their business (Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo).
- Your business is not assigned a dedicated account manager.
- You are not assigned a primary point of contact with a follow-up number where humans answer, in the event of an emergency, or to handle service delivery failures.
Early signs that this will be a problem are often relatively easy to ascertain in the form of negative online reviews from former customers and employees.
Poorly maintained and outdated equipment
You notice their equipment is old, shabby, or obviously outdated. Perhaps their electrical cords are duct taped. Poorly maintained janitorial equipment can lead to health hazards in your office, wasted resources, and function inefficiently. This translates into wasted time and unnecessary expense.
As time goes on, service quality in many industries tends to taper off. The burden of the vendor is to ensure that there is a definitive level that they will not allow the service quality to go below. When that does happen, the cost and time-resource investment can be extremely expensive.
- Frayed or duct taped electrical cords
- Floors still look dirty after cleaning
- Cleaning seems to take longer
- Water/Solution leaks from equipment
You see new faces on a regular basis, indicating the cleaning company has a high turnover ratio, leading to inexperienced service personnel that needs to be trained, inefficient clean times, and a likely negative impact on employee satisfaction.
Your vendor should understand that in any service business, the employees are the greatest asset to their company and can't be left to chance. A properly hired and trained employee will be more satisfied in their jobs resulting in cleaner buildings and happier customers.
High employee turnover can also have a big impact on our final sign - security.
- Doors left propped open
- Doors left unlocked
- Alarms not properly set
Consider that your cleaning company janitorial staff is often working when there is no one else around and has access to every corner of your building. How can you be sure they are taking your buildings security seriously?
You have literally handed the keys to your company over to a stranger. Security protocols and hiring practices of your vendor must be at the top of your list of concerns when hiring a cleaning company.
Do you recognize some of these signs and think it is time to change? Are you worried you don’t know where to start?
Don’t worry. You are not alone!
Stay with us over the next several posts and we will walk you through every step of the process of hiring a cleaning company.
Do you have other questions we didn’t cover?
Discover the Vanguard Cleaning Systems Difference for yourself.