Cleanliness over Cost
At a time when budgetary control is a prime concern for many organisations, unfortunately, many companies still undervalue the role of the cleaner. Some choose to save money by adopting only a ‘crisis cleaning’ approach; that is, waiting until the floor surface looks incredibly unsightly, whilst others use poorly or completely untrained individuals with unsuitable equipment. Both approaches are a false economy, costing more in the long term. The most common result is damage to flooring and company image, while also compromising the company’s initial investment.
Floorcare technology is ever evolving thanks to industry developments and closer working relationships between flooring manufacturers, equipment manufacturers and specialist cleaners. The resulting innovations enable previously unsolvable cleaning problems to be tackled in a cost-effective way, which do not break the bank or damage a company ‘s sustainability credentials. Businesses cannot be expected to know what these innovations are, which is where specialist floor cleaning expertise is required to understand the full picture. For cleaning to be carried out efficiently and effectively, it requires training , knowledge and experience. Furthermore, when it comes to floorcare and periodic floor maintenance, there are other factors to consider:
- the location and type of floor surface
- the most appropriate cleaning chemicals and equipment
- the level of appearance required
- what cleaning chemicals and equipment to use
- whether a ‘scientific’ approach can achieve full restoration
- the business case for renovation rather than replacement
For instance, a 3,000m2 office building could typically house £180,000 of carpet; a valuable asset which needs to be carefully managed. A planned maintenance programme, where the correct cleaning is carried out by the right people at the right time, will not only minimize disruption to this office, but it will also ensure a more manageable expenditure and significantly reduce the company’s financial outlay by as much as 65%.
Consider ‘other costs’
Aside from the obvious financial considerations associated with paying for a cleaning service, it is important for companies to remember their duty of care to provide a clean, safe and healthy place for employees to work, under The Health & Safety at Work Act 1974.
A clean floor will help to ensure compliance at the same time as protecting employees and any other visitors. The likelihood of an accident is greatly minimized, safeguarding the company ‘s reputation and exposure to an injury claim. A clean floor is crucial to maintaining hygiene standards, especially in healthcare environments, where there is greater microbiological vulnerability. The consequential savings achieved as a result of reduced absence levels, increased productivity and greater employee and customer satisfaction, are often unquantifiable.
At the same time as being a financially sound investment , a considered approach to contract floor maintenance also protects the environment. If the premature replacement of flooring can be prevented, organisations can avoid the unnecessary disruption, waste and landfilling of perfectly recoverable materials. Worn hard floors such as vinyl can be repaired, re-coloured and sealed, creating the illusion of a new-look floor without the need to rip up the original. This sustainable approach can be carried out at a fraction of the cost of a replacement floor. It’s easily maintainable and, if dressed with a polish or more permanent PU sealer, the lifecycle will be further extended and the organisation’s investment protected for longer.
Elsewhere, unsightly or tired carpets can be deep cleaned and restored using a range of cleaning and maintenance options, including dry extraction, hot water extraction often with a fabric and fibre rinse, bonnet cleaning and even encapsulation techniques. The latter treatment utilises a chemical to capture dirt particles from the depths of the carpet fibres,which can then be simply vacuumed away with an ordinary upright machine once dry. The appearance of the floor will be revitalised , the texture refreshed, and the carpet lifespan significantly extended. Environmental pressures and recycling targets for commercial and industrial sectors are continuing to mount, so, if a sustainable approach to cleaning is not already on an organisation’s radar, it cannot be postponed for long.
To refurb or not to refurb?
When faced with a worn and dirty floor, it is perhaps understandable to fear that it is beyond repair. Sometimes replacement is of course inevitable- perhaps if a carpet or floor has been severely damaged or worn – but not always. Every floor will be different depending upon factors such as the environment, the level of footfall and the extent to which it has been proficiently cleaned and maintained throughout its life. Before a decision is made as to whether or not the floor is salvageable, it is important to seek the knowledge and expertise of a floorcare specialist.
Regardless of the type of flooring , consultants can thoroughly assess the floor, devise the best-fit solution for the particular covering within budgetary requirements, and clean a test area to demonstrate the effectiveness of the renovation techniques. Norland Managed Services, contract holders to KPMG, called Beaver Floorcare in to assess whether 1800m2 of worn travertine floor could be salvaged at offices in Canary Wharf. Drawing upon vast industry knowledge and experience, Beaver conducted an extensive consultation and test procedure, that proved a full restoration could be achieved. In this carefully considered, six-month project, Beaver diamond grinded the pitted floor, applied an epoxy filler and resin-based impregnator, before finishing with a full polishing process. The floor was fully restored, saving KPMG excessive expenditure and disruption, whilst upholding their environmental credentials by saving the valuable flooring from landfill.
The choice of whether or not to refurbish of course lies with the organisation concerned. However, as with all important business decisions , judgments should be made on the basis of informed knowledge, not rushed presumptions . This is where Beaver Floorcare is able to provide unparalleled advice and professional floor restoration services, to assist their clients, helping them make the correct decisions , and ultimately save money.