Joe Tehan

By: Joe Tehan on September 26th, 2021

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4 Key Ways To Reduce Your Facility’s Commercial Cleaning Costs

The cleanliness of your facility is a priority, especially given the value placed on cleaning and disinfecting during the COVID-19 pandemic. But, keeping your facility clean can be expensive, especially during labor and product shortages. 

Like with any other business, identifying ways to cut costs is key. However, finding ways to reduce the cost of your commercial cleaning program without sacrificing the level of cleanliness in your facility can seem like a difficult task.

Luckily, there are several aspects of a cleaning program, and many can be streamlined or optimized to help you save money.

While some key ways to lower costs may actually cost money to implement initially, the long-term savings can help reduce your expenses significantly. Similarly, some ways to save money may take some time to implement, but the savings can lead to larger profits and lower operating costs.

In this article, we’ll review 4 ways you can reduce the overall cost of your cleaning program, which includes:

  1. Implement a Dilution Control System
  2. Switch to Powered Equipment
  3. Provide Formal Janitorial Training
  4. Limit Waste With Controlled Consumption

1. Implement a Dilution Control System

131100703 - Spartan Versa FillConcentrated cleaning chemicals require your team to manually measure and dilute chemicals.

When your staff has to pour out cleaning chemicals to prepare them, there is an increased risk of injury or accidents like spills, splashes, or slips which can result in higher workers’ compensation costs. 

Dilution control systems ensure that cleaning solutions are properly diluted for use. 

With the use of a dilution control system, there’s less risk of chemical accidents because the system handles all of the chemical measurements and mixing, producing an appropriately diluted solution. 

Aside from safety, there is an increased risk that your janitorial team can accidentally dilute chemicals incorrectly with manual dilution. 

Improper dilution of cleaning chemicals can result in wasted products and increased cleaning costs. 

When mixing by hand, many people use the “glug-glug” method to dilute chemicals. This method is measuring chemicals by hand and relying on just eyesight to define measurements. This is not properly measuring out chemicals and can result in over or under-diluted cleaning solutions. 

Using too much chemical can be dangerous, and it can also leave a chemical residue on surfaces. Conversely, when too little chemical is used, proper cleaning isn’t achieved and germs can be spread throughout your facility. Dilution control systems eliminate these issues. 

When a dilution control system is used, your facility can also save money on purchasing cleaning chemicals. Dilution control provides you with the most cost-effective in-use cost of chemicals. 

While the initial cost of purchasing highly concentrated dilution chemicals will be higher than other RTU products, the product yield increases and the actual in-use cost will dramatically lower the product cost.

By properly diluting chemicals using a dilution control system, you will be able to enjoy cost savings and a better cleaning outcome.

2. Switch to Powered Equipment

506500101 - CERTO Orbital AutoscrubberSome of the most common cleaning tasks are extremely time-consuming and laborious. 

Thankfully, powered janitorial equipment can speed up many cleaning processes or even replace the need for human intervention completely.

There are many types of powered janitorial equipment that are designed to increase your cleaning team’s efficiency and boost their productivity.

You’ll likely enjoy the greatest boost in efficiency from battery-operated or autonomous machines. 

Some janitorial equipment, like backpack vacuums or automatic floor scrubbers, are battery operated and operate without the use of power cords.

With cord-free machines, your staff is able to complete cleaning tasks unrestricted because they’re not limited by power cords. By moving freely, your staff can clean more, faster. 

This also helps increase ergonomics and safety for your staff by allowing them to perform cleaning processes with more freedom of movement. They can even clean across multiple areas without having to move from outlet to outlet.

For example, by switching from an upright corded vacuum cleaner to a battery-powered backpack vacuum you could see a 230% increased in productivity.

As mentioned, some powered equipment can be completely automated, like sweeper vacuums and autoscrubbers

These autonomous machines can complete cleaning tasks without the need for user operation, allowing your staff to complete other jobs while the machine runs. 

Autonomous equipment also allows for increased cleaning consistency due to the computer-generated cleaning routes which are stored in the machine and then followed exactly every time. Increased consistency means greater cleanliness and fewer reworks.

Adding powered equipment to your cleaning program can drastically shorten the amount of time your staff spends completing manual tasks, resulting in labor savings for your business. 

3. Provide Formal Janitorial Training

Janitorial training can save your company money on labor and employee turnover costs.

During training, your team will learn the most efficient and up-to-date cleaning practices. These practices allow your staff to clean with the least amount of errors while also achieving consistency within their cleaning processes.

With fewer mistakes, your staff can achieve more during their cleaning shifts since they don’t have to spend time (or additional product) on reworks.

EBP Training Academy CropSome things janitorial training can teach your staff include:

  • The necessary safety precautions to take before working with chemicals
  • The recommended PPE and the steps to properly put it on
  • How to choose the right cleaner for the task at hand
  • Proper preparation and use of cleaners and disinfectants (proper dilution, wet dwell time, etc.)
  • Proper procedures for each cleaning application to ensure uniform results
  • The importance of their job and the integral role they play in keeping the facility clean and safe

Training also sets the standards for cleaning expectations in your facility. Clear expectations tell your team exactly how cleaning should be done every single time to avoid reworks. 

By training your entire janitorial staff, you can experience uniformity of cleaning throughout the facility since the entire staff is trained on proper cleaning systems and procedures.

When your team receives formal janitorial training, they experience increased confidence and comfort in the procedures they’ve been trained in. This boost in comfort and confidence can reduce employee turnover which lowers turnover costs, including the costs of recruiting and hiring.

4. Limit Waste With Controlled Consumption

Essity Tork PeakserveProduct waste can also be contributing to high operational costs.

It’s easy for your guests to overuse products like soap and towel products when they have unrestricted access to them.

If given the opportunity, people often take more than they require, especially with paper towels, tissue, soap, and other products. Eliminating excess use of your products is important to make sure that you aren’t replenishing more often than is needed.

However, controlled consumption limits the amount the people in your building use by dispensing or releasing a predetermined amount of product.

When you use an automated paper towel dispenser, you could see between a 30-57% decrease in napkin usage. Since dispensers distribute one sheet at a time, your building’s occupants don’t take more than they need to dry their hands.

Cutting down on wasted products also reduces the amount of time and money your company spends to replenish them. When the use of products is controlled, they last longer and require less frequent refills.

By using a paper towel dispenser in your restrooms, you can minimize the amount of paper towels the people in your building waste. Dispensers release a pre-determined amount of paper towels and allow your rolls to last longer.


Final Thoughts

Lowering the overall cost of your commercial cleaning program can seem challenging but there are a variety of ways that you can achieve this.

One being, through the use of a dilution control system designed to help reduce the risk of worker injury and product waste. Without manually diluting products, the risk of accidents is minimized and you can save on the cost of cleaning chemicals.

Your team can also see a boost in productivity by adding powered janitorial equipment to your cleaning program. Powered janitorial cleaning equipment could be beneficial in lessening the amount of time it takes to complete cleaning tasks.

Providing your staff with formal janitorial training can help reduce cleaning times by setting clear expectations for cleaning processes. Having a team that knows the most efficient way to clean reduces the need for recleaning, as well.

Another effective method to help you lower your cleaning program cost is limiting the amount of wasted product with a controlled consumption system. By providing a predetermined amount of soap and paper products that are available for your guests to use also helps save money on replenishing items.

Interested in implementing one or more of these cost-saving methods?

If you’re located in the United States, Puerto Rico, or the Caribbean, EBP and other Imperial Dade locations can supply your facility’s janitorial needs. Contact EBP today for help assessing your current cleaning program and help identify ways to effectively reduce your overall cleaning expenses.

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About Joe Tehan

Joe Tehan is the Vice President of Services and Training for EBP Supply Solutions, with over 20 years of experience in the Chemical and Janitorial Industries. During the first part of his career, he primarily focused on helping customers solve their toughest warewash and laundry challenges. He specialized in developing effective warewashing and laundry programs that utilize one-pass washing, sustainable products & processes, and staff training to help customers achieve increased safety, improved cleanliness, cost-savings, & maximum operational efficiency. Today, Joe, who is an ISSA-CMI certified instructor, helps customers optimize their cleaning operation with innovative solutions, customized cleaning programs, and staff training.