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Making the case for daytime cleaning
Retailers understand that cleanliness, hygiene and the appearance of their store goes hand-in-hand with customer perceptions and the reputation of their business. Over time they have established procedures that meet these objectives very well. But changes in the way retailers operate have created new demands on the way they manage their cleaning.
The traditional model for many retailers has been to employ building services contractors who cleaned a site early in the morning, before opening time, or at a conveniently quiet period during the day. Supplementary cleaning, to deal with accidental spillages perhaps, was managed by trained staff or a dedicated janitor.
But longer opening hours, including round the clock operations, means there is less time for a suitable cleaning slot amongst other vital tasks such as shelf-stacking. Services such as home delivery create a proliferation of picking trolleys which means there is even less time available when access and floor space is clear for cleaning to take place unhindered.
Employees and customers are present more and more of the time. Most retailers have contracted-out and in-house cleaning operations, adopting a clean-as-you-go policy for the in-house part which is in effect a daytime cleaning regime. Labour continues to account for the largest proportion of costs in almost every cleaning operation. Whether this cleaning is carried out by retail staff or cleaning specialists the operation has to be efficient, unobtrusive, simple and safe.
Diversey, now part of Sealed Air, continues to innovate across its range to introduce cleaning products and tools that aim to deliver simpler, superior and sustainable cleaning performance that helps retailers (and their building service contractors) to meet their objectives with controlled and reduced costs.
Even with longer opening hours there are still significant fluctuations in customer throughput, particularly during lunchtime and at rush hour. This can create additional demands on cleaning, especially during wet weather, when customers bring dirt inside on their shoes. Contractors are unlikely to be present at these times so the retailer's own staff will be responsible for cleaning. But this is precisely the time they will also be at their busiest serving customers. The solution is to provide them with tools and equipment that are simple to use and highly effective.
Many retailers operating local or convenience stores have chosen compact scrubber driers such as the Taski by Diversey swingo 150 and the swingo 350B to clean their floors whenever the need arises. Like all Taski by Diversey scrubber driers these efficient machines are designed to clean the surface, remove dirt and leave the floor dry so that it can be walked on almost immediately with minimal risk of slips or trips.
The machines are quiet during operation and, if one of the many battery powered model models is used, there are no trailing power cables, which means they can be used unobtrusively whenever people are present.
The larger walk-behind and ride-on machines offer significant performance and sustainability benefits by covering expansive areas quickly while using minimal amounts of energy, water and cleaning product.
Diversey offers a complete range of cleaning products for different floor types that can be used with its complete range of TASKI floor care machines including scrubber driers and carpet cleaners. Ideally a single product would be used for front of house cleaning and, possibly, a second for back of house where soiling may be heavier. Its technical and application specialists can advise on the most appropriate product and process to use.
The company also offers a comprehensive range of products for cleaning front of house and back office areas. This includes a choice of formats with the same formulation, including super concentrates, bulk and ready to use products.
Many retailers choose the Divermite dosing system for use with Suma concentrates for cleaning and sanitising kitchens and food services areas. Popular platforms for front of house cleaning include JFlex, QuattroSelect, SmartDose and Exact. All of these enable and support the efficient and sustainable use of concentrates with controlled and predicable costs. They provide end users with complete flexibility, choice and consistency so that staff training and compliance requirements are reduced.
Cleaning operations and the equipment used must be well organised and efficient without taking up any valuable retail space unnecessarily. Many retailers, including some of the largest multiples, have selected the advanced Taski Trolley as their preferred platform. This integrated and modular system can be configured to support any cleaning operation for optimum performance while at the same time promoting improved ergonomics. Features such as lockable box lids and colour coded components enhance safe operations in busy environments.
The Taski Trolley is also an ideal platform to support daily washroom cleaning because it can be used to carry consumables as well as a wide range of products for tasks such as spillage removal and spot cleaning.
Diversey also offers a number of specialist products for applications in retail. These include Zorba, a disposable strip that absorbs up to 3.33 litres of liquid for every metre length and is designed to control leaks and spills from chillers, retail units or anywhere a liquid barrier control is needed.
Another useful product during summer time is Suma Ice which cleans chill and freezer cabinets at temperatures down to -25oC without taking the appliance out of commission. There is no need to defrost the freezer once the contents have been removed. A regular dose of disinfectant into the equipment's drain will protect against the build up of bacteria in the condensate and help prevent blockages that can lead to unsightly leaks and spillages.
The choice of cleaning products and tools helps retailers to portray a highly professional appearance. Customers who witness a well organised and properly equipped cleaning team are more likely to be more supportive and show greater understanding of the cleaning process. Many operators report that customers make less mess when daytime cleaning is employed which helps to reduce the burden for cleaning staff, promoting productivity and making it easier to enhance the appearance of the shop.
17th November 2011