Anyone reading this blog will have probably worked somewhere with a shared kitchen area. Of those, it’s likely a large percentage will have worked somewhere where it’s near impossible to get staff to tidy up after themselves. Whether it’s laziness, a low standard of cleanliness or because they’re just too busy, some people – not matter how hard they’re coerced – just won’t clean up their own mess. As an employer, it’s your task to educate your staff about the importance of business cleaning, to ensure the workspace is a healthy and safe place to work. That said, there’s only a certain amount of cleaning you can expect them to do during offices hours – to ensure productivity, the rest of your business cleaning should be left to professional office cleaning services. Here are some ways to get your staff to be more hygienic at work:
Our hands carry the most germs – make sure they’re washed frequently
Regular hand washing is one of the most effective ways to curb the spread of germs, yet many people aren’t even aware of this. Stick signs up around areas like the kitchen sink and in toilets, reminding people to wash their hands thoroughly whenever they’ve used those areas. You could also buy each employee a small bottle of hand sanitiser to keep at their desks.
Computer keyboards are often overlooked in the cleaning process
Did you know our computer keyboards are one of the dirtiest places in the office? Encourage staff to wipe their keyboards down with a tissue and some pure alcohol once a day – or at least once a week. Provide the materials for them to do so.
Stock your office with plenty of cleaning supplies
If you really want your employees to take ownership of keeping the office clean and tidy, it’s essential to make sure they’ve got the right tools. Keep the store cupboard stocked up with bin bags and cleaning materials, so there’s never an excuse not to be clean and tidy.
The kitchen area is a germ and pest hotspot – keep it tidy at all times
The kitchen area is one of the most problematic areas to keep clean. The law of physics dictates that the likelihood of people washing their dishes diminishes proportionally to the number of dirty dishes left in the sink. Getting staff to clean their dishes as soon as they’ve finished with them is the Holy Grail. If they’re too busy to wash them then and there, request that they rinse dishes thoroughly before abandoning them in the sink. Dirty dishes will attract flies, ants and other unpleasant pests. For the same reason, any sugar or milks spills around the kettle must be wiped up as soon as they happen.
Cleanliness can be achieved with either a carrot or a stick
If staff are still finding it difficult to keep shared areas tidy, you could try implementing coercion tactics like threatening to throw away any mugs that are left in the sink – even the most careless staff member will leap up to save their favourite cat mug. Another tactic is to label mugs with the names of your staff, so that those failing to wash up are named and shamed. You could also try the carrot approach, by promising treats to those who do their washing up in a timely manner, and even more treats for anyone who washes someone else’s dirty dishes.
Careful bin management will keep pests at bay
Dirty, overflowing bins are another sure-fire way to encourage germs and pest infestations. As mentioned above, always make sure you have plenty of bin bags on hand so that rubbish is never thrown into a “naked” bin. Keep a centralised bin in the kitchen area, rather than giving employees their own bins. The more bins, the more chances of attracting vermin as personal bins will only build up dirt, especially if some employees are lazier than others when it comes to emptying them regularly. Devise a bin rota to make sure that rubbish is removed every day and doesn’t have a chance to rot.
The professionals are here to help reach the most difficult spots
Business cleaning isn’t just important from a health and safety point of view – it’s important for your brand image. Even if you don’t work in the restaurant industry, where cleanliness is literally a matter of life and death, an unkempt office will send the wrong signals to both your staff and clients. In addition to the tactics mentioned above, call in a professional business cleaning service twice a year to do a deep clean of all those hard to reach places. They’ll ensure your windows, ceilings, air vents and every nock and cranny are spick and span.
Think your business could do with a spring clean? Download our Contract Cleaning guide and find out how office cleaning services can benefit your business.
Photo credit – zippyclean