How Cleaning Routines Increase Productivity
Efficiency is crucial for cleaning large commercial facilities such as offices, hospitals, and schools. Streamlining your cleaning routines saves the company money and increases productivity.
Develop a Cleaning Routine
Every building is different, so the facilities manager will need to create a routine for the cleaning staff to follow during each cleaning. Work in circular patterns—clockwise or counterclockwise. However, leave whole floor mopping or vacuuming at the end. A specific cleaning circuit establishes a rhythm and flow for every cleaning session. Backtracking or moving haphazardly waists time. Plus, there is more of a chance of missing something.
The zone cleaning method is when one worker focuses on a single area of the building. When workers concentrate on one zone, they often develop a sense of ownership over the space. The variety of tasks offers more variety to the job.
Zone cleaning involves two passes. First, the janitor will walk through the designated path dumping trash, sanitizing surfaces, dusting, and sweeping small areas. On the second pass through, the worker vacuums or mops the whole floor following the same path as before. This also allows them to visually inspect their work in case they missed something.
In the team cleaning method, multiple staff members clean one area of the building. The first person takes the predetermined path, taking out trash, dusting, and wiping. The next worker trails behind, vacuuming, and double checking trash cans, etc. A third staff member can be the Sanitation Specialist. This person focuses on sanitizing restrooms, break rooms, and drinking fountains.
The collaborative cleaning method is often found in schools. Cooperative cleaning is when the tenants and housekeeping staff both contribute to the cleanliness of the building. For example, building occupants will place their trash in a larger bin in the hallway which makes it easier for end of day cleaning. Building tenants can also be responsible for dusting and wiping desks. The cleaning worker can clean efficiently following the cleaning path. They gather trash, clean restrooms, and mop on the first pass through and then vacuum on the second pass.
Carry the right supplies and tools with you to eliminate the need to run back and forth. Carry spray bottles and microfiber cloths in an apron or caddy. For extensive facilities, invest in a janitorial cart to take supplies between rooms.
When training new staff, have a specific route planned in advance. Create a map outlining the exact path. Part of the training should include an in-person walkthrough of the space. If using a team cleaning or collaborative cleaning method, make sure all parties understand their duties. Create an outline or checklist for new workers to use to make sure they don’t miss anything. By establishing routines early, you train efficient and thorough custodial staff.