Janitorial turnover rates in the United States average out at about 200% annually--translating to a complete restaffing of custodial workers twice per year--an unsustainable business model by any definition.
Is Janitorial Turnover An Issue?
In the janitorial industry, employee turnover averages about 200%, typically due to a lack of best practices with the janitorial provider or direct employer.
Such a high turnover rate leads to dissatisfied customers, and may negatively impact your business's profits and your employees' safety.
According to a recent article published by Facilities Executive;
[...] a typical office keyboard can contain as many as 7,500 bacteria at any given moment?
Or that viruses like the flu can linger on office desks or computers for 24 hours or more?
These frightening statistics reveal just how filthy an office environment can get if it is not cleaned regularly.
Aside from the general unpleasantness of occupying a dirty building for several hours a day, this can also have a negative impact on workplace productivity for numerous reasons.
Also, companies lose a seismic amount of time and revenue because of unclean office environments.
Custodial staff plays a significant role regarding worker and student output quality and productivity by providing a clean and safe working and learning environment, which numerous studies have demonstrated leads to improved occupant health, sense of wellbeing, and overall satisfaction.
The high-performance output from the custodial staff requires extensive training and experience, not only within the industry but within the facility they serve.
Replacing the entire team twice (on average--turnover can range as high as 400% annually) per year negates the potential for acquiring the level of expertise and experience necessary to produce high-quality results.
Just How Important is a Clean Office?
Over the years, the concept of clean has shifted dynamically--from a generally clean appearance, to the modern view of cleaning for health first, which has demonstrable benefits for everyone, including the surrounding community and environment, as well as the janitorial team, which suffers from abnormally high exposure to toxic chemicals, repetitive motion injuries, and slip and fall accidents, resulting in higher than necessary medical expenses and litigation.
This shift in thinking has been studied and reported on for several years and has yielded surprising and desirous results, including:
- Increased focus - The absence of clutter reduces or eliminates visual elements that compete for our mind's attention.
- Increased time efficiency - A clutter free working or learning space also reduces the amount of time spent searching for necessary materials and improved individual operational productivity.
- Reduced stress - Clutter overstimulates the mind by forcing it to compete for attention, leading to elevated stress levels.
- Increased profits - Reduced stress combined with increased focus and efficiency naturally leads to increased productivity and higher profit margins.
- Decreased absenteeism - Clutter, filth, and germs lead to poor indoor air quality (IAQ), a key indicator corresponding to poor occupant health and an increased number of sick days--a multi-billion dollar issue in the U.S.
- Improved occupant satisfaction - A clean, safe, and healthy working and learning environment has been shown to correspond directly to improved occupant satisfaction--a quality necessary for repeatable high-performance output and social collateral for schools and businesses.
How to Maintain a High-Performance Office or Classroom
Health is critical to productivity and cleaning is mandatory for maintaining a clean office, business, or classroom.
Regardless if you employ your custodial staff directly, or outsource--occupant behavior plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy and sanitary environment.
This can be achieved by:
- Implementing and enforcing a clean desk policy that includes eating restrictions and regular equipment wipe downs and surface cleanups.
- Encouraging occupant hygiene through regular handwashing.
- Routinely disinfecting germ hot spots, such as computer equipment and water faucet or coffee pot handles, and;
- Maintaining cleaning equipment and cycling out old used mops, sponges, and towels that are probably spreading more germs than they clean up.
If you do choose to employ your custodial staff in house, you will need to take steps to ensure their retention well above industry standards, including:
- Incentivizing employment through advancement and pay scales.
- Providing regular training to keep up with current and emerging industry standards.
- Equipping them with modern tools and chemicals that reduce their potential for injury, as well as short and long-term health issues, and;
- Opening up and maintaining consistent lines of communication between staff, management, and the custodial team to ensure everyone is on the same page and demonstrates the appropriate level of appreciation for those who clean up our messes and keep us safe from deadly germs and bacteria.
References & Resources
Maintaining a team of experienced and driven janitorial providers has proven to be a significant challenge for U.S. businesses, with absurdly high turnover rates demonstrating that the current approach is not working, and is costing schools and businesses millions, if not billions, in lost productivity, on top of the costs of custodial recruitment and training.
Failing to maintain experienced staff has a cascading effect on the remainder of the building occupants by decreasing the quality of their working or learning environment, ultimately resulting in further lost income for a business, and lower grades for students.
Outsourcing to a vendor with a proven track record of top 1% in the nation for janitorial worker retention is a proven method to cost-effectively address each of these issues while maintaining or improving current occupant output quality and satisfaction.
Contact us today and discover why Vanguard Cleaning Systems® is the Standard of Clean® for businesses throughout Northwest Arkansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma.
In Oklahoma, dial 918-960-4450
In Arkansas, dial 479-717-2410
In Missouri, dial 417-812-9777