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Evaluating Your Cleaning Company: Are They Hitting the Mark?

Is Your Cleaning Company Missing The Mark

Determining whether your cleaning company is effectively meeting your standards can sometimes be clear-cut, but often it’s a more elusive assessment. This article aims to clarify what constitutes “clean” and provide guidance on setting realistic expectations with your cleaning service. Additionally, we offer strategies for addressing situations where your cleaning vendor may fall short.


Defining “Clean” and Setting Expectations

The concept of “clean” can be as subjective as beauty, varying widely from one person to another. This variability makes it challenging to set a uniform standard for cleanliness across different individuals and organizations. To avoid the ambiguity and potential frustration that comes from this subjectivity, it’s advisable to establish a clear and detailed scope of work. This document should outline specific tasks to be performed in various areas of your facility, such as offices, restrooms, and break rooms, along with the frequency of these tasks. Confirming this scope with your vendor allows for consistent, routine inspections to ensure adherence to these agreed-upon tasks.


Key Metrics to Gauge Cleaning Effectiveness

Since perceptions of cleanliness can differ, how do you objectively measure the performance of your cleaning company? Consider these three metrics:

  • Number of Complaints: A fundamental aim of any janitorial service is to reduce disruptions by minimizing complaints. These can range from missing supplies to unemptied trash bins. Maintain a log (an email inbox can serve well) of all complaints, noting even those reported verbally by sending yourself a reminder.
  • Response Time: It’s crucial to have a system in place for reporting service issues, whether through a dedicated service portal or via email. Track how quickly your cleaning vendor addresses and resolves these issues to assess their responsiveness.
  • Inspection Scores: Regular inspections are a cornerstone of a robust cleaning program. Request that your vendor provides you with the results of these inspections to gauge the ongoing quality of their work.


These metrics offer objective, straightforward ways to monitor and enforce accountability within your cleaning program.


Addressing Performance Shortfalls

Even with clear expectations and monitoring, your cleaning vendor might not always meet your standards. If performance issues arise, consider the following steps to realign your service:


  • Engage with Your Vendor: Have a candid discussion about the specific issues. Ask probing questions to understand the root causes of the problems, such as staff turnover or delays in response.
  • Reestablish Expectations: Clearly remind your vendor of the agreed-upon standards and outline a timeline for necessary improvements, providing them with reasonable time to address the issues.
  • Plan for Alternatives: If the vendor continues to underperform, prepare to make a change. Start by compiling a list of potential replacement vendors and solicit proposals for their services. Communicate with your team about the possibility of changing vendors to ensure they are informed and prepared for the transition.


By taking these proactive steps, you can better manage your cleaning services and ensure that your facility maintains the standard of cleanliness you expect, ultimately leading to a more satisfactory and effective cleaning program.