COVID 19 - Exposure Reduction: High Touching Cleaning Checklist

High touch items are among the most pathogen heavy surfaces in your facility. Routine cleaning and disinfecting of these items along with frequent hand washing are critical to breaking the chain of infection and creating clean, safe, and healthy environments.

Please feel free to use or share this PDF flyer however you may need to.

We also want you to know that, while we hope it will not be necessary, ServiceMaster Clean Wake is qualified and equipped with the required protocols and processes should any pathogen outbreak occur within your facility. Please call us at 919-981-6553 or contact us if we can be of service.

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Ways to Protect Your Office Against the Flu

What are some effective ways to protect your office against the flu?

Smart employers who take a proactive approach to manage their businesses seek the answer to this question before the dreaded flu season arrives. And for all the right reasons too.

Based on the data collected by the Centers for Disease Control, employees in the U.S. miss a total of about 17 million days of work as a result of suffering from flu. This decrease in productivity further leads to a loss of approximately $7 billion for the economy.

Here, we list different ways to protect your office against the flu so that this seemingly minor illness doesn’t wreak havoc for your business.

Provide Flu Shots at Work
Vaccination is the first step towards the prevention of common cold and influenza. But amidst handling the workload and balancing their personal and professional lives, employees tend to forget, or are unable, to take time out to visit a vaccination clinic.

Therefore, consider providing on-site flu shots so that every employee can get their vaccines without facing any difficulty.

Help Employees Get Flu Shots Elsewhere
If hosting a vaccination clinic at your workplace isn’t a feasible option, make it easy for your staff to get the shots from any other appropriate place.

Make sure that the health plan offered to your employees covers the cost of flu shots, and allow them to take a day or at least a couple of hours off from work so that they can visit the community clinic or local pharmacy for the shots.

Maintain Basic Hygiene
Maintaining proper hygiene is a highly effective way to prevent the spread of flu in your office. Unfortunately, some people need to be reminded of basic manners like covering their mouths while sneezing and coughing.

Encourage your employees to follow the basic steps as set out by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. This includes the following steps for preventing sickness:

  • Washing your hands properly with soap every time you cough or sneeze, or use a hand sanitizer instead
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth as they are most susceptible to germs
  • Use a tissue to cover your mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing. Dispose of the tissue paper immediately after use
  • During the flu season, avoid close contact like shaking hands with others whether or not either of you has caught flu

Moreover, you should keep the office environment clean by using disinfectant sprays more often.

Prevent the Virus from Entering the Workplace
What is the best way to stop the flu from spreading in your office? Well, you need to stop it from entering the premises altogether.
Tell the employees to utilize their sick leaves and avoid coming to work until the symptoms subside. After all, that’s what sick leaves are for!

Or you can allow them to work from home instead.

Implement these tips to keep your office safe from the fast transferring virus when the wave of influenza hits. To protect your employees from falling victim to flu, get in touch with ServiceMaster Clean of Wake. We take all the necessary measures to minimize the chances of contamination and stop at nothing to prevent the flu from entering your workplace.

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The Importance of Walk-Off Mats in the Workplace

These mats weren’t just made for walking; they’re there for a variety of reasons including improving the cleanliness and safety within a building.

Walk-off mats are constructed to capture wet and dry soil before stepping onto carpeting and flooring. They absorb the moisture from rain and snow that could if tracked indoors, create dangerous conditions for employees or customers to slip and fall. A fall or accident in the workplace will end up costing your business far more than the price of a walk-off mat.

Where you place your mats and the size of each mat is important as well. The sooner someone can step onto a mat and remove the soil from their shoes, the less chance there is for the debris, moisture and dirt from their shoes to be transferred to your flooring. Not only could wet shoes lead to a safety hazard but when dirt and debris are repeatedly ground into the floor, they can leave unsightly marks and cause damage to the integrity of the floor and its top coating as well. In addition to being a safety precaution, the use of walk-off mats can lessen the number of times you need your carpets and floor deep cleaned or even replaced.

The Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) shares that 80% of the soil brought into a building can be trapped within the first 12 to 15 feet after stepping onto a carpeted surface (walk-off mat). For the highest efficacy of walk-off mats, they should allow room for at least six footsteps. That is about 18-20 feet of walking space and should be placed at all entryways and major transition areas. The minimum suggested length of an effective walk-off mat is 10 feet long.

When purchasing, walk-off mats, look for these features:

  • Indoor mats should have a rubber backing to create a non-skid surface that firmly holds the mat to the floor, aka prevents it from moving and sliding around.
  • An outdoor mat should be thicker to withstand harsher environments and larger debris such as mud and snow.

While walk-off mats prevent debris and dirt from getting transferred to the flooring and thus decrease the amount of deep cleaning needed to said carpet or floor, walk-off mats themselves need to be cleaned daily. Once a walk-off mat is soiled (literally) and not cleaned or replaced, it will then transfer the soil to the soles of shoes and easily spread throughout the building, defeating the purpose of a walk-off mat.

When discussing services with your commercial cleaning service, make sure to ask and ensure they will regularly clean your walk-off mats. You should also ask for their professional opinion regarding at what point your mats have become so soiled they must be replaced. Walk-off mats are a simple investment to protect your floors and other’s safety.

 

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Office Checklist - 10 Things Most Businesses Forget to Clean

Office Checklist 10 Things Most Businesses Forget to CleanWhile most businesses will try their best to keep their office places spotless, there will often be areas that will get overlooked. In this short checklist, we present you with the 10 things most businesses forget to clean.

1. Door Knobs & Switch Plates
A good way to spread illness around the office is by neglecting cleaning your doorknobs & switch plates. Since they are touched hundreds of times by different people, there is no telling what kind of harmful germs may be gathered on it. Have them cleaned regularly.

2. Office Chairs
The amount of dust and debris you will find accumulated in the chairs of many offices will surprise you. Because deep cleaning them can be quite difficult, they are often neglected.

3. Behind Printers and Copy Machines
Dust, residual particles, and all sorts of debris can collect around the crevices and behind your office printers and copy machines. Unless addressed, the mess can build-up and damage your machines.

4. Picture Frames
Dirt and grime build-up in the edges and top of picture frames can be difficult to spot and hence, easy to forget about when cleaning.

5. Baseboards
Similar to the case mentioned above, baseboards are also often neglected when cleaning as the dust on them doesn’t easily catch one’s eye.

6. Light Fixtures
Dirt, dust, and even bugs can pile-up in and around your office light fixtures, causing their light to become dull and even become a health hazard.

7. Vents
Extensive usage of the building’s ventilation and heating system can result in debris becoming trapped in the vents. They should be routinely clean to ensure the health of office workers or the efficiency of the system is not compromised.

8. Ceiling Tiles
The rough surfaces or edges of the ceiling tiles can make it easy for grime or dirt to stick to them. Since they are most often out of eyesight, their dirtiness gets unnoticed.

9. Ceiling Fans
The blades your office ceiling fans easily attract dirt on them. Again, since they are often out of eyesight, their routine cleaning gets neglected.

10. Steps
Stairs attract a lot of foot traffic and hence, can gather up a lot of dirt. Yet, surprisingly, its clean-up is regularly neglected in offices.

In your next office clean-up, pay these areas the proper attention they need or go the extra mile and hire a professional cleaning service to make your office truly neat and spotless. If you are located in Wake County, North Carolina, consider hiring us at Service Master Clean to get the best cleaning results at the most reasonable prices. For further details, call (919) 981-6553.

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Ensuring a Healthy Work Environment - Mold and Mildew in the Workplace

A Mold and Mild Ensuring a Healthy Work Environment Mold and Mildew in the WorkplacePublic awareness has caused growing concern about indoor mold and mildew in the workplace. OSHA and CDC have both issued comprehensive guides and information packets on mold and mildew in homes and workplaces.

Mold is basically fungi that thrive in moist, damp, and humid conditions. They can easily grow both indoors and outdoors if the growing conditions are right. They spread by releasing spores in the air that latch onto other humid and damp places. They can survive harsh conditions and have bad effects on humans and other living beings breathing the spore-filled air.

Mold Effects on People
Depending on the type of mold and the intensity of its presence, mold can have mild to serious implications for humans and animals. The spores can actually lead to many respiratory issues.

Common symptoms of mold exposure include wheezing, itchy and red skin, irritated eyes, and a stuffy nose. People with allergies and conditions like asthma can have more serious reactions to the spores.

Before diving into discussing preventative measures, it’s important that you get mold remediation services as soon as you notice signs of mold at your workplace. Common signs include a damp-musty smell that doesn’t go away, people having breathing difficulties, and visible dark brown, black or green spots in the bathrooms, kitchens, or other damp spots around the office building.

If your walls, ceilings, and floors are clean, the mold might be growing in the HVAC ducts. If you suspect the presence of mold, get a contractor to come have a look and test your workplace. Immediate action can protect your employees’ health and the structural integrity of your building.

Prevention
According to the OSHA guide, moisture control and cleanliness are the two main ways of preventing mold and mildew in the workplace.

  • Make sure you get plumbing faults and leaks fixed as soon as you find them
  • Look for wet spots around the office, especially in rooms that are next to or below bathrooms.
  • Getting the HVAC system checked and maintained regularly.
  • Scheduling an annual or biannual mold check for your office building.
  • Maintaining indoor humidity between 25% and 60%. You can use dehumidifiers and improve natural ventilation.
  • Maintaining a thorough cleaning routine.

ServiceMaster Clean doesn’t offer mold cleaning services but we can help prevent mold and mildew with regular cleaning services. Since we clean thoroughly, we often see spots on walls, ceiling, and floors that are often missed by busy employees. This way, we can help identify any presence of mold or mildew that you might have ignored until it got worse, enabling you to take immediate action.

 

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How to Minimize Workplace Clutter for Maximum Productivity

desktop covered with laptop and papers clutter Where you work has large impact on how you work, but when you’re working in a cluttered or messy environment, it can cause you to be distracted and it will affect and impact your work productivity and most commonly in a negative way.

The easiest way to get started in minimizing your desk or workplace clutter is to start with a purge. The duration of the purge period will be determined by your efficiency in organizing everything and how chaotic everything was to begin with. When starting, create three catch all spaces; one for important documents, one for things (umbrella, travel mug etc.) and then one for trash. After organizing everything into their specific catch all locations, you can start on the physical space.

Many find that the two-tray system works well. Have two trays on your desk for important documents, one for new items to deal with that haven’t been reviewed and the other for items that have been reviewed that still need to be dealt with. Once handled or completed, the documents are to file away in a file cabinet, shredded or tossed depending on the specific circumstances of that document.

As tempting as it can be to want to leave your cute pencil cup or paper clip holder on your desk, these items are better stored in drawers, shelves and storage boxes. The less you have on your desk, the better you’ll be and the less distracted you will become at work. Plus, when these clutter-causing items are out of site, you are less likely to need them as often and therefore likely decrease the document hoarding.

The last thing to help keep you organized is getting a bigger trashcan and the reason is simply psychology. You’re more likely to think about it and actually use it. It’s actually a strategic hack, because the trashcan is more prominent and less likely to reach capacity so fast and thus overflow. When one’s trash can overflows your office looks messier and you often stop tossing papers in the trash but leaving them on your desk.

There should be a place for everything and everything goes in its place. When you are not thinking about or distracted by the mess or clutter around you, it leaves your mind free to focus at the tasks on hand.

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5 Ways that Every Business Owner Can Benefit from a Commercial Cleaning Service

Business partners doing a high-five We’ve said it before and we’ll say is again, your employees spend more time at the workplace during the week than they do at their own home. Your employees work hard for you and your business, the least you could do is provide a healthy and clean work environment to encourage their best work.

Most business owners like yourself are often looking for ways to increase their company’s efficiency, safety and physical appearance and hiring a commercial cleaner can help you do those things effectively and in a timely manner.

1,  It’s less work for you to do
Let’s me honest, added tasks on a to do list can only add stress to your day. Having to delegate cleaning tasks to your staff is work and stress that no one needs in addition to running a business.

2.  Provides a safe work environment for you and your employees
Your office and workplace become exposed to and susceptible to millions of bacteria and germs each day. Aside from the health concerns, an unkempt workplace creates a potential for dangers such as accidents and personal injury (don’t say workman’s compensation around the office). Running a vacuum in the hallway and taking out the bathroom trash once a week is not enough, you need a professional to correctly clean and maintain your workplace.

3.  Increases productivity
As cliché as it sounds, a clean workplace is a happy workplace, is the truth in this day and age. There have been numerous studies that prove that those working in clean, uncluttered and organized work environments are more likely to be concentrate and work efficiently than if the office was in a state of disarray.

4.  Better utilizes your employees’ skills
You hired your employees to work for you because they have a skillset you require to run your business. You don’t hire a data analyst to clean the toilets, you hire them to run analysis on your data and help the business become more successful. Don’t belittle the skills of your staff by asking them to do tasks such as vacuum, hire a company like ServiceMaster of Wake County to do those things. Commercial cleaning companies like ServiceMaster of Wake County hire and train their staff to do the things your employees aren’t hired to do; clean!

5.  Improves physical and professional appearance
To be brief, hiring a professional company to clean your business makes your business look more professional too. The office will be cleaned correctly, your staff will be doing the role they were hired to do and your customers will see that you take your business seriously. Hiring a professional commercial cleaner is about more than just getting your office clean, it’s about promoting an image that you too are professional and having your staff wipe down the water fountains as a customer walks through the hall, does not project that image.

Not only do you get higher level of clean with a professional commercial cleaner, but you’ll save time and money having it done right the first time by people who know what they are doing. Having your staff clean for you is not cutting corners because in the end, you often have to hire a commercial cleaner to come out and re-clean the areas anyway, or worse someone gets hurt and you’re dealing with an employee injury. Save your money, prevent headaches and respect your employees’ skillsets…hire a commercial cleaner!

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Three Ways to Show your Customer and Clients You Appreciate Them

thank you written on a yellow post it padFebruary is traditionally a time to show appreciation for your significant other, but why not use this season to surprise your customers and clients and show them how much they mean to you? How would you feel if the president of the company you order from weekly called you out of the blue one day and thanked you for your business and asked for your feedback? How much would your respect for the brand increase? A lot right? The smallest gestures can mean the most and they don’t have to cost a lot either.

Here are three tips and suggestions for surprising your clients and customers with small gestures of appreciation. Not only will your clients and customers appreciate your efforts, but also it will create a deeper and more positive connection with your customers. In turn you can expect better reviews, connections and exposure.

1,  Provide long-time customers with a surprise, one-time special service or product for free or at a reduced rate. The surprise element makes this special.
2.  Send a personal, hand-written note that details the positive impact their continued loyalty has had on your business. Make it personal and specific to your experience with them.
3.  Pick up the phone and just say thank you and ask how else you can satisfy their needs. Making a patron feel like their ideas are important can go a long way.

The little things matter more thank you know, so work on the little things because while they don’t take a lot of time or effort they will go a long way. The goal is to turn loyal clients into brand ambassadors and it doesn’t have to cost a lot just your attention and creativity.

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The Importance of Cleaning Doors In Your Office

Hand opening a door via the doorknob It’s the first thing someone touches when they come into your office. It’s the last thing someone touches when they leave your office. You touch them multiple times a day. They’re doors. Doors are the most touched and used items in a commercial building and yet they are the most commonly overlooked item when being cleaned. Have you ever thought about how many doors are in your building? There are entry doors, hallways doors, office doors, bathroom doors and the list goes on. As doors are such high traffic areas, they are prone to bacteria and germs and can easily transfer viruses between everyone at your office.

Your commercial cleaner should know the proper ways to clean a door, but not all cleaning companies are equal. Make sure that all areas of the door are being cleaned and disinfected properly, not just the doorknobs. Don’t forget the top edge of the doorframe, the hinges, door surface and the area about the doorknob; especially on doors that are simply push doors. People will often push on any surface of the door to open the door so make sure those areas are properly wiped down. If you scrub too hard, the paint will come off, but a properly trained cleaning company knows how to disinfect a door without damaging the paint.

The teams at ServiceMaster of Wake County are extensively trained to property and effectively clean and disinfect doors to ensure your office and doors are clean, germ-free and free of fingerprints and smudges. If you want your office, including doors, cleaned properly then take a moment to get a FREE estimate from ServiceMaster of Wake County today!

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Proper Terminal Cleaning and Disinfecting

Cleaning crew using proper cleaning techniquesStaff and patient well-being is of primary importance if you manage a healthcare practice, and maintaining a properly cleaned facility plays a significant role in helping to keep both practitioners and patients healthy and the environment safe. You already know that medical, dental and surgical environments require a greater degree of cleanliness and disinfection than the average commercial facility, but do you know the right disinfectants to use in your unique practice?

You should understand the products your contracted commercial cleaners use to ensure their level of disinfection is appropriate for your specific facility. You should consider each of the following factors recommended by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) when evaluating disinfectants for your healthcare facility:

  • Mode of action
  • Efficacy
  • Compatibility
  • Cost
  • Current health and safety standards
  • The nature and degree of contamination

With extensive experience providing patient-centered cleaning services for healthcare facilities, the technicians at ServiceMaster of Wake County are experts in the science and skill of disinfecting.

Steps to proper terminal cleaning

1.     Perform Hand Hygiene/Don PPE

step1 Perform Hand Hygiene/Don PPE

2.     Remove trash, debris,and linens

step2 Remove trash, debris, and linens

3.     Clean and Disinfect the Ceiling*

step3 Clean and Disinfect the Ceiling*

4.     Damp High Dust

step4 Damp High Dust

5.     Clean and Disinfect the Walls

step 5 Clean and Disinfect the Walls

6.     Disinfect Surfaces

step6 Disinfect Surfaces

7.     Disinfect the Floor

step 7 Disinfect the Floor

8.     Inspect

step8 Inspect

9.     Doff PPE/Perform Hand Hygiene

step9 Doff PPE/Perform Hand Hygiene

FINISHED!

step10 FINISHED!

Kinds of Terminal Cleaning Supplies

Quaternary ammonium compounds, or “quats” as they’re called in the healthcare industry, are active ingredients used in detergents and chemical disinfectants to kill harmful pathogens like fungi, amoebas, mold, many types of microbes, and some strains of viruses.

When used properly, quats are ideal for infection-control in dentist and physician offices, waiting rooms and clinics, and they can be used on just about any hard, nonporous surface. These readily available solutions are also trusted sanitizing agents for surfaces that come into contact with food. Quaternary disinfectants are not effective at removing harmful bacterial endospores that can spread infection, however.

Quat-based products are a top disinfectant choice for most health facilities because every solution must be registered with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or approved by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to receive the quaternary label. Refer to the categorized lists of EPA-registered disinfectants to find cleaning products that serve your facilities’ specific needs.

Although many of the quaternary disinfectants available today are considered a one-step treatment, we recommend removing any visible soil or debris from surfaces before applying quats for best results. Janitorial technicians should refer to product manufacturers’ instructions for correct dilution rates, application methods and contact times. Exposure to the chemicals in quats can cause dermatitis and respiratory discomfort, so it’s crucial for anyone handling these agents to wear proper protection in the form of gloves, breathing masks, goggles and long-sleeved clothing.

In recent years, bacterial resistance to quats has been of increasing concern, according to a report from the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), a division of the National Library of Medicine (NLM) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). To make sure you continually meet healthcare facility safety standards and best practices, remain alert to updates and changes reported in the efficacy of the cleaning products used in your facility.

As you may remember, quats do not kill endospore-forming bacteria that can lead to the dangerous spread of infection. Because endospores are the most difficult micro-organisms to destroy, you’ll need a powerful disinfectant with sporicidal properties if your facility is susceptible to these kinds of micro-organisms.

Hospital-grade sporicidal disinfectant is best used for terminal cleaning in critical environments like surgical centers and operating rooms where patients are highly susceptible to infection. Cleaning crews must take extra precautions when cleaning these environments and use proper techniques to perform thorough, high-level disinfection in order to prevent cross-contamination. Sporicidal disinfectant will only be effective when used properly, so cleaning technicians should refer to the product manufacturers’ labels for specific instructions.

Due to their high toxicity levels, sporicidal disinfectants pose a greater risk to health and safety during use. To avoid contact with the chemicals, cleaning staff should always be fully equipped with protective gear. Some harsh sporicidal chemicals have been known to cause damage and discoloration to certain exposed surfaces, as well, so always refer to product warnings before use.

Fortunately, high-level sporicidal disinfection isn’t required for all healthcare environments. In non-surgical practices, quaternary disinfectants are usually sufficient for regular cleaning, while sporicidal disinfectants are kept on reserve in case of bacterial resistance or disease outbreak.

Rather than keeping up with industry recommendations around each cleaning product available, the easiest way to make sure you’re using the right disinfectants for your specific facility is to hire a professional cleaning service with extensive experience serving the healthcare industry. Contact the experts in healthcare cleaning at ServiceMaster of Wake County to discuss your facility’s unique needs and start customizing your quality-cleaning plan today

Terminal Cleaning Should be Left to the Experts

It takes extensive training and knowledge to properly clean and sanitize terminals. This practice should always be left to the professionals, rather than attempting to save money and have your own staff clean it. Terminal cleaning is a sensitive area of professional cleaning and takes proper knowledge of powerful sanitizing products and a finesse that most commercial cleaners don’t have. When seeking your commercial cleaner to sanitize and clean your terminals, ask what kind of training their staff go through and what kind of products they use. If you want your terminals cleaned right the first time, simply call ServiceMaster Clean of Wake County!

 

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Boost Workplace Safety Investing Good Commercial Cleaning Service

Yellow safety in front of mop bucket and mop in computer labIf you’re still having your staff clean your office and work space rather than hiring a commercial cleaning service, you are going to want to rethink that decision. Having your staff and employees perform the cleaning duties is really not as cost effective as you may think in the long run and it can be dangerous.

Your employees are more than likely not trained in the practices of cleaning a commercial space. While they may clean a great house and their desk is tidy, the actual sanitizing of the workplace is not normally something covered on the first day of job training. This includes the chemicals and products to use, the areas to focus on and pay particular attention to and effective cleaning techniques. This can be dangerous and if the cleaning is not done right because improper chemical handing could lead to them being mixed and causing reactions or surfaces could be left wet or greasy causing hazards. Not to mention, if they don’t clean every area properly and miss spots, you might have to hire a company to come in behind them and now you’ve wasted their time and your money when you should have just hired a commercial cleaning service to begin with and let your employee to the job they were hired and trained to do.

When you hire a professional company to clean your work space, you prevent the opportunity for injuries and mistakes. Injuries in work places can be avoided by maintaining clean and safe surfaces properly. Slips and falls can occur if the floors are not well maintained with the proper tools. As such, a good cleaning service ensures that the floors are properly dried after cleaning and any moisture or soil that could cause employees to slip is removed.

A good commercial cleaning service delivers a healthier and safer working station for the company employees. Since the workers of the cleaning agencies are highly trained professionals, they provide quality work eliminating any germs and bacteria that could pose a health risk to employees. With a healthy working environment, the employees can work comfortably and consequently, the company will register more profits.

The professional cleaning company you hire will properly dispose of trash and waste, including chemical waste used for cleaning such as soapy water from mopping. Employees are often more concerned with their own work than they are with taking up the trash and that is why the kitchen trash is so often overflowing in so many office kitchens. Trash can pile up in the work place, making the place look unattractive to employees and other visitors. In addition, a cluttered work area provides a breeding ground for pests that could spread diseases to the people around. Hiring a commercial cleaning service ensures that work stations are cleaned on a regular basis and the trash is properly disposed of. Moreover, your professional cleaning company can recommend key locations to put waste baskets to avoid the spread of germs and maintain a healthier environment.

Every company should hire a good commercial cleaning service to enhance its employee’s safety and health in the workstations. A clean work environment makes the employees feel more confident in their work, which in turn improves their performance positively. Moreover, enhancing employee safety prevents the company from any legal suits by the employees that could arise due to injuries or illness obtained in the work place. Be smart, be safe and hire a local professional cleaning service to clean your office today!

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Office Recycling Socially Responsible Business

 

Staff meeting about recycling program - recycling image in backgroundGoing green in the workplace isn’t only about using “green” cleaning products; it’s about being a “greener” business as a whole. Incorporating an office-recycling program at your workplace may yield potential cost savings, but more importantly it benefits the environment, can boost employee morale, and designates your company as socially conscience. When you advertise your “green status” it can even open doors for business opportunities you didn’t originally have.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in the average workplace about 80 to 90 percent of solid waste is recyclable.

  1. Ink and Toner Cartridges – Check with your local office supplier as many have drop off locations for your ink and toner. Sometimes there are kickback programs where you could possibly benefit in receiving a cost reduction on replacement cartridges or reimbursement on empty cartridges.
  2. Paper – If going fully paperless is not an option, then conserve paper by printing on both sides, cutting up sheets to make notepads and shredding and recycling used paper. If you have dozens of magazines backed up, they can be donated to a doctor’s office or nursing home. If your business regularly ships, consider shredding the magazines and using them for filling in shipping packages.
  3. Batteries – Never throw away batteries; find a local drop off for old batteries such as your office supply store or Walmart. Some drop off locations also offer incentives to recycle batteries rather than tossing them in the trash.
  4. Electronics – When you recycle consumer electronics like cell phones, laptops, and desktops you conserve our natural resources and avoid air and water pollution. You can find recycling centers near you through the EPA.

The office kitchen is a great place to start your recycling efforts. Require your staff to use reusable water dispensers rather than plastic cups and use and regularly clean utensils rather than using disposable ones that overflow our landfills. If your office consumes a lot of coffee, consider using the coffee grounds as fertilizer in the landscape or garden.

How to implement office recycling…

  1. Start by looking around your office and finding potential items to recycle or make reusable.
  2. Analyze the layout of your office and determine the best placement of recycling bins. Ideal places include office copy rooms, restrooms, and kitchen or break rooms.
  3. Discuss your program with property management, additional businesses in the same complex, and your janitorial team so that everyone is on the same page.
  4. Regularly communicate and update the recycling program to your staff and team members and makes sure to a assign a “head of recycling” or “head of green initiatives” to oversee your “green” efforts.

Going “green” isn’t hard; it simply takes initiative, consistency and someone to keep everyone accountable. If you have questions or would like more information on how to go green, look into businesses like Green Seal, which can help you not only jumpstart your “green” efforts, but provide thirty party certifications that identify you as an environmentally friendly business.

 

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Safety Data Sheets and ServiceMaster’s Dedication to Excellent Service

File folder with Safety Data Sheets Label There’s so much that goes into cleaning commercial spaces than meets the eye. Companies go to great lengths to façade commercial cleaning as only being about cleaning, but we at Servicemaster of Wake County are here to share that commercial cleaning is more than just about the cleaning. It’s about the safety, security, sanitation and especially consistency between every client and company and ensuring their needs are met every time. To ensure the consistency of service, ServiceMaster of Wake County adheres to all national laws and requirements for commercial spaces cleaning and sanitization.

ServiceMaster of Wake County is part of a Nationwide family that only uses the highest quality equipment and products to get your workspace clean and sanitized for your staff and customers. We can help with your USGBC LEED points and other green certifications and we adhere to all national laws and requirements for commercial spaces.

One thing we are very meticulous about is our documentation of products and procedures. The Hazard Communication Standard requires chemical manufacturers, distributors or importers to provide Safety Data Sheets (formerly known as Material Safety Data Sheets or MSDSs) to communicate the hazards of hazardous chemical products. Since we use a variety of chemicals to clean businesses, we keep an extensive list of Safety Data sheets at hand and easily accessible.

By June 1, 2015, Safety Data Sheets (SDSs) will replace MSDSs with a user-friendlier, 16-section format. According to OSHA, the information contained on each SDS must include the properties of each chemical; the physical, health, and environmental health hazards; protective measures; and safety precautions for handling, storing and transporting the chemical. This helps us know how to properly use all products and what they can and cannot be used with for safety reasons.

ServiceMaster of Wake County understands the requirements and properly follows all systems to ensure the safety of all employees and customers. Trust is a company that knows policies and procedures trust in a company whose utmost concern is your safety and the proper care of your property. Trust in ServiceMaster of Wake County and call today for a free estimate.

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How to Improve Employee Productivity and Happiness

Team High Five - How to Improve Employee Productivity and HappinessThe weather in Wake County has been quite the roller coaster lately and research shows that weather can contribute to low work productivity and morale. Research has shown that improving the work environment can boost employee productivity and happiness. And happier, more productive employees lead to more success for the company.

We’ve composed a list of a few ways you can improve your office work environment for the betterment of your staff and team.

  • Invest in comfortable seating and nice furniture to show your care about their well-being and health. Proper posture and comfort when sitting (or standing) at a desk has shown to reflect on the productivity and attention one puts towards projects
  • Ensure your office is well lit, poor lighting leads to poor productivity and performance
    Have a space for employees to escape and relax, such as a break room or relaxation room. This allows employees to take a break and have time for social interaction without distracting other employees who may still be working
  • Encourage collaboration and team work
  • Have small work areas where employees can step away from their desks or offices to work together in teams on projects. This space will encourage team collaboration without distracting others around them
  • Keep the office clean of dust, allergens, dirt and mess. A clean office is a happy office and a happy office inspires productivity and better quality work.

Call your local cleaning company, like Servicemaster of Wake County, and request regular cleanings. If employees are trying to work in filth, sadly their work may reflect that because they are not focused on their work but the mess surrounding them. Clean offices are not only more sanitary and welcoming to others but they are more productive and successful in business than a dirty or messy workplace.

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How Drinking Water at Work can Help Your Productivity

water cooler workplace cleaningThe best office gossip is usually discussed around the water cooler, but are people really gathering around jug of water for the gossip or are they truly interested in the health benefits of water? For your boss’s sake, let’s say it’s because you’re interested in hydrating your body and staying healthy. Next time your boss says you’re spending too much time at the water cooler, inform them of the benefits of drinking plenty of water at work.

Drinking water in the workplace is critical for productivity and mental alertness. Our brains are 85% water and they depend on a constant flow of water in order to work properly. A water deficiency of even 2% can cause the brain to slow down and lose focus.

In addition to dehydration affecting productivity, it can also cause fatigue, poor digestion, prevent headaches and keep your joints and cartilage lubricate and moving smoothly. Water flushes out toxins, promotes weight loss, increases energy, boosts your immune system and it’s a lot cheaper than the sugary sodas in the vending machine.

The question now arises of how much water do adults need daily? The Institute of Medicine determined that an adequate intake (AI) for men is roughly about 13 cups (3 liters) of total beverages a day. The AI for women is about 9 cups (2.2 liters) of total beverages a day. However, your exact AI varies depending on how active you are, your climate and your health status. While that sounds like a lot of water, it’s easily achievable in the course of a day. The Mayo Clinic suggests you drink a glass of water or other calorie-free beverage with each meal and between each meal and to drink water before, during and after exercise. When in doubt, adhere to the 8×8 rule at a minimum; that is 8 glasses of water 8 times a day.

So bosses, remember that hydrated employees are happy employees and happy employees are productive employees. Next time you see someone at the water cooler or you boss asks why you left your desk for more water, explain that you’re increasing your productivity by staying hydrated. Now THAT’S a statement no boss can argue with.

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364 Hits

How Often Should My Workplace be Cleaned

Dust wand janitorial Just like every home is different, every workplace is different too. There are a variety of factors that go into the necessity of cleaning frequency in the workplace, not just day-to-day pickup. While there are some things you must do everyday, not all commercial spaces and businesses require a professional a team to come in each day for a deep scrub down.

There are 5 important questions to consider when determining how often you need to have your business cleaned by a commercial cleaning company and team.

 

  1. What is the industry of your business?
  2. Do you have an office staff?
  3. Do you have customers and client visit your office/workspace daily?
  4. What is the season?
  5. How often are you in the office?

Depending on the industry, the law often requires certain sanitation and cleaning procedures/practices to be both performed and adhered to in order to remain open and operating. If your business is a medical clinic or healthcare facility, then not only will it require daily cleaning but daily sanitation as well. If your facility processes food or consumable goods, then daily cleaning and sanitation, like in healthy care, must be performed in order to prevent the transfer of germs, bacteria and other pathogens. Make sure to speak with your local commercial cleaning company to discuss your cleaning needs for your specific business. 

Dayporter w cart trash janitorial Who comes into your office or workplace is just as important to the frequency of cleaning as the industry. If your office has a staff in the workplace daily, you will want to have daily pickup services, but perhaps only a deep cleaning once or twice a week. This number is deterrent on how many employees you have in the space. If your office sees customers and client every day, your office needs to be cleaned everyday. This does not only mean having the garbage taken out and toilets cleaned, there is far more into the commercial cleaning process then meets the eye.

The season is also very important because spring and summer not only bring heat, but they can bring pollen too. The fall months can bring dust and even leaves inside. When speaking with your commercial cleaning representative, discuss the need for cleaning depending on the season. The spring and summer months require much more frequent cleaning than the winter.

While having your workplace cleaned by a professional cleaning crew may not be at the top of your To-Dos, it should be. When you office or workspace is cleaned and well cared for, it shows your care for your business and thus are likely to also put the same care into your clients and customers needs as you do your business. Having a clean office or facility will not only help you with retaining new customers and clients, but it can decrease potential office accidents. You will not only save money when you hire a professional cleaning service but it can make you money too. In addition, it will increase the in-office moral because a clean workplace is a happy workplace.

The team at Servicemaster of Wake County servicing Raleigh, Durham, Cary, Chapel Hill and other surrounding areas is able to cater your cleaning schedule and needs based on your business and specific cleaning requirements. Call Servicemaster of Wake County today to schedule your free estimate!

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350 Hits

How Much Do Commercial Cleaners Need to be Insured For?

Service Master Clean Van

No one likes talking about worse case scenarios but it is those worst case scenarios that no one wants to talk about that you need to be prepared for. There are plenty f questions to ask when hiring a commercial cleaning service, such as background checks, products used, experience, equipment used and especially, liability coverage.

Contracting out your cleaning services makes a great deal of sense both from the practical professional level of experience in doing the work but also the savings in your cleaning budget. However, there are a few questions your need to ask in order to be protected from liability, should a worse case scenario happen. Does your commercial cleaning service have workers compensation, general liability, theft liability while on property and umbrella liability to cover everything else.

Per North Carolina state guidelines, a janitorial/cleaning vendor should have the following coverage at minimum:

General Liability

$1,000,000 per occurrence/$2,000,000 aggregate for Bodily Injury and Property Damage

Workers’ Compensation

$500,000 Each Accident/$500,000 Each Employee/$500,000 Policy Limit

Excess/Umbrella Liability

$1,000,000 per occurrence/$1,000,000 aggregate

Theft of Client Property

-Limit will vary based upon what items could potentially be stolen from the client’s location-

The limit for Service Master is $25,000. This is pretty standard, but a client with higher value items may want to see a higher limit.

 

That’s a lot of money, but you want to make sure that should something happen, such as a snagged carpet thread get caught in the vacuum causing someone to trip or worse, that all bases are covered. A little due diligence on your part will go a long way.

A TRUE professional cleaning service will always be properly covered and have additional coverage to ensure the safety and best interest of all parties involved in worst case scenario events. Ask about insurance, ask about liability and ask what happens in worst-case scenarios. When it comes to your business, there is no such thing as a dumb question or too many questions. Call us today to get a free estimate and all your questions answered!

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317 Hits

What To Ask When Hiring A Commercial Cleaning Service

Questions to ask when hiring a commerical cleaning serviceHiring a commercial cleaning service to clean and sanitize your commercial space is not something to be taken lightly. You want to make sure you do your research and trust the business that will be keeping your business clean and free of mess, dirt and germs. We’ve composed the top 6 questions to ask when hiring a commercial cleaning company.

1.  What hours are they willing to work?
If you’re choosing a commercial cleaning company for your business, you need to be sure that the company will be available during the hours you prefer them to work. If you don’t mind having some cleaning going on during your regular business hours, then this shouldn’t be a problem, but if you’d rather them not be sweeping up while business is going on, then you need to be sure they’re willing to clean after everyone has vacated the premises for the day.

2.  Do they have a track record of good customer service?
If you want to make sure that you’re getting the spiffiest cleaning treatment available, find out about the commercial cleaning company’s history and reputation before deciding to hire them. There are a variety of ways to find out if the company is worth its salt-or soap, as it were. One of the very best ways is word of mouth. Ask your friends and business colleagues to refer you to a top-notch cleaning service. Another reliable option is to go online to find customer reviews and ratings.

3.  What are their rates?
Just as in any other business transaction, you want to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck when it comes to hiring a janitorial or other commercial cleaning company. Not only should you compare their rates to their competitors, you should also find out exactly which services they will provide for the agreed-upon fee. This should be thoroughly explained in the contract agreement.

4.  What are their hiring guidelines?
To protect your own company’s reputation and assets, it may be a good idea to find out how the cleaning company goes about hiring its employees. Specifically, ask if they require a drug test or references for potential employees. If the person cleaning your business is going to be doing it during business hours, you need to ensure that he or she will appear and behave as professional as possible. If the individual will be working after hours, you need to be assured that the person is responsible and trustworthy.

5.  Are they insured?
This is another question targeted toward protecting your business and your financial security. You need to make sure that the company has insurance so that if they damage any furniture, flooring, or equipment in your facility, they will have the means to replace it. Otherwise, you might be footing the bill.

6.  What are their quality assurance policies?
Ask the company what they will do to ensure that you are satisfied with their services. Anticipate beforehand what will happen if you are unsatisfied with their work. Do they offer a satisfaction guarantee? Will you receive a credit for any work that is less than quality? Will they send someone out immediately to correct the error? These are all things that need to be resolved before a problem occurs, and preferably in writing.

Hiring a commercial cleaning company is not a decision that should be made hastily. Be sure to ask the right questions beforehand to make sure that you receive the best service available at the most competitive rate. Put Servicemaster of Wake County to the challenge of your toughest questions and call us today to get your questions answered and your free cleaning estimate today!

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319 Hits

The Importance of Background Checks on Employees

 

Importance of Background Checks on EmployeesBackground checks are vital for many careers and jobs in America these days but why are they so important? Background checks fill many needs: to enhance security in the workforce, to reduce turnover, to minimize the occurrence of worker burglary and to leave you with the genuine feelings of serenity that your property, both physical and intellectual, is safe.

Servicemaster of Wake County requires full background checks on all employees in addition to the extensive interview and training process. This ensures your workplaces are not only in the best hands technically with the high quality training and knowledge, but the individuals in your workplace are trusting and reliable. Most of our work is done after hours, when you’re away; we want you to sleep soundly knowing that professionals are maintaining your office with the utmost respect for you, your property and your business.

Background checks on our staff are covering a wide variety of territories. Drivers’ permits, licenses, character references, personal colleagues, training records, criminal records, court records, credit records and considerably more. It is likewise essential to note that a lot of this is open data. Furthermore, we comprehend and abide that per the Fair Credit Reporting Act, some data can’t be utilized as a part of conjunction with a Background checks.

Just like you like to know who is working for you and in your workplace, so do we. We care so much that we spend a large of amount of effort, time and money in our background checks and interview processes to only hire the best. When you hire Servicemaster of Wake County we know your are trusting us to only provide the best service, by the best technicians and employees and we do that with our extensive training, background checks and interview process.

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323 Hits

Cold and Flu Prevention Tips for the Workplace

A manager with a cold sitting at a desk at work, working while sneezing into a tissue. 

Each year winter comes with unwanted visitors. The influenza virus causes flu season to hit each year without fail. In 2017, the CDC reported having one of the worst years as there were a record-breaking number of cold and flu cases.

As the virus poses health risks to anyone that comes in contact with it, having an outbreak at work can be bad. More employees will be out sick, affecting daily business operations.

When you’re surrounded by so many people in close vicinity, it only takes one person to sneeze or cough to put others at risk.

You have to be proactive even before the flu season hits to prevent cold and flu in the workplace. Here are some prevention strategies that might help:

Onsite Flu Vaccinations

The first plan of action should be making the flu vaccine available onsite for all of your employees. Everyone should have a record of the annual flu vaccine. If somebody wasn’t able to get it for some reason, consider having a vaccine clinic onsite.

The actual shot doesn’t take a long time, and your employees can get back to work without any inconvenience.

Educate Your Employees

Hold a short seminar or send an email boost to educate your employees about healthy habits in the workplace. Organizations like the CDC have resources that can help teach the etiquette necessary for preventing the spread of germs and staying healthy.

Make Hand Sanitizers Available

In the workplace, everything is communal. You don’t know who touched what surface. Placing hand sanitizers around the office in strategic places will allow people to stay free of germs.

You can install the wall-mounted sanitizer dispensers in restrooms, the cafeteria, break rooms, etc. Also, tell your employees the importance of the hand sanitizer and encourage them to use it.

Provide Your Employees with Disinfecting Wipes

Brands like Clorox make disposable disinfecting wipes that can get rid of germs from any surface. Have them stored in a break room or janitorial closet that everyone can use. Encourage the employees to use them and sanitize their work area.

Pay attention to the surfaces on phones, computers, desktops, and workstations, as they collect germs. Ask your employees to wipe these surfaces at least once a day, especially if they’re coughing, sneezing, or experiencing other cold and flu symptoms.

Ask Employees to Stay at Home

Flu and colds are incredibly contagious. Just one person down with the flu can expose it to everyone they come in contact with. This is why managers should encourage sick employees to stay at home.

If there is important work that only that employee can do, offer that employee the ability to work from home.

Keep your office clean

Lastly, the actual workplace should be cleaned regularly. Flu viruses can survive on surfaces for two to eight hours. Cleaning the office after everyone has left can remove the viruses and prevent anybody else from being exposed to them.

ServiceMasterClean Wake County offers commercial cleaning and janitorial services that can make this task easy. We have cleaning teams provide these services across Wake County. Please contact us at (919) 981-6553 today and find how we can keep your workplace clean and fit for your employees.

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370 Hits

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