ServiceMaster Clean: Dedication to cleaning

Gone are the days when cleaning was a fading task in public perception.

At the end of 2021, the cleaning and maintenance industry continues to be defined by the progress and response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Cleaning service providers and construction service contractors are truly leading in Canada, North America and the world.

ServiceMaster Clean, as always, is helping lead this charge in Canada.

The company has a long history in the commercial cleaning industry in Canada, dating back to the 1960s. Today, it serves thousands of businesses around the world, including a family of business franchises spanning from coast to coast in Canada.

Its National Director in Canada, Gavin Bajin, notes that while the needs and processes involved in delivering his service have certainly changed over the decades since, his primary mission has not changed: to put the customer first. of his performance.

Bajin started his career with ServiceMaster a little over ten years ago. “Over the past 10 years, my God, we’ve seen a lot of different changes and trends, whether it’s the green movement or sustainability or the movement towards operational efficiency,” he said. FC&M.

Facilitate a cleaner office

In an industry with a pre-existing propensity for change, the past 16 months or so have nonetheless been a turning point. ServiceMaster Clean works a lot in offices and Bajin recognizes that the focus has changed.

“We’ve long been preaching the message that clean offices are healthier offices,” he explains. “Typically, we had this message focused during flu season, when retail spaces are most affected by people in the facility and germs. But maintaining a healthy work environment has been part of our modus operandi for many years in the industry.

Before COVID-19, cleaning in offices was all about maintaining a healthy workspace. It still is, but the meaning of the sentence – and the end goal – has changed. “Now, obviously, we are seeing changes in maintaining a healthy workplace in terms of preventing pathogens and reducing the possibility of the spread of COVID-19. “

One particular example of how the communication of the commercial cleaning approach has changed is the renewed emphasis on rugs. Evidence-based evaluation has shown that carpets can be a refuge for pathogens such as SARS-CoV-2. Bajin notes that there may be a tendency to rely on infrequent carpet cleaning in environments such as offices, sometimes once a year or even less frequently. “But maintaining a clean carpet is essential because it is essentially a giant filter of your space,” he stresses.

Of course, office installations also present unique challenges. A first, rudimentary as it may seem, is simply to reach the surfaces to provide a sufficient level of cleanliness. Ensuring pathogens are removed from a space is critical, but in a crowded environment this can create annoying line scrambling when it comes to the preference not to move personal property into the room. workspace of an individual. So how can cleaning service providers ensure that workspaces are properly cleaned and disinfected without exceeding these limits?

Communication and education are essential

The answer, it seems, lies in another facet of the profession that emerged during the pandemic: communicating cleaning practices.

“Customers who understand that clean environments are healthier has certainly been a challenge,” admits Bajin. “Office cleaning isn’t just about dusting and wiping off surface dirt; the offices are full of germs that require disinfection. Prior to COVID-19, communicating this wasn’t necessarily misunderstood, but it may never have been taken with the level of concern it must have been. “

It’s fair to say that this has changed dramatically.

These days, at a time when everyone is more directly interested in how and when areas are cleaned and disinfected, BSCs have had to rise to the challenge.

Bajin notes that while the general public has become a little more demanding of a certain level and visibility of cleaning, ServiceMaster Clean has seen a higher appreciation from customers for its methods and tools.

“The importance of having a clean workspace, the peace of mind that it affords an employee in that workspace, is really in the hands of the commercial cleaning company and the industry,” Bajin recognizes. “A big change in the industry has not been to relegate disinfection to healthcare or catering, where one would expect the highest level of germ prevention. People appreciate that it plays a role in all workspaces.

However, a certain degree of education has always been required, especially with regard to what Bajin calls “the whole of science, of the cleaning process and of the budget”. Educating customers and end users on the different ways and products through which to deliver the required level of cleaning has become essential to the work of ServiceMaster Clean. It is no longer sufficient to announce the delivery of clean. Bajin notes that people are starting to ask ServiceMaster Clean for disinfectants, if they are approved on Health Canada’s list, if they have a particular residence time, etc. “People have done a lot more research on our processes and you have to be able to answer these things, so educating the customer is critical.

Constant innovation

To respond to the COVID-19 challenge, ServiceMaster Clean has introduced a new program called Protect3 Advance with the aim of educating on the science behind the company’s methods. The three-step program – cleanse, disinfect and fortify for long-term protection – aims to provide greater peace of mind to the client as well as better management of the budget.

Part of this is evaluating innovative ways to use different products to make cleaning last longer.

Bajin notes that there have been continuous innovations in the industry for efficiency gains, both in products and equipment. For example, ServiceMaster Clean now uses long-lasting durable antimicrobials to help protect surfaces against different pathogens. Many product manufacturers are also finding ways to produce disinfectants with shorter residence times. “If it kills pathogens in, say, a minute or three minutes instead of 10 minutes of residence time, that’s obviously attractive,” adds Bajin. “It’s something that we see a lot a year later.” Other trends have included the massive adoption of electrostatic equipment as a common tool for effective cleaning.

Providing enough cleanliness and peace of mind in often tight budgets has always been one of the challenges the industry faces, Bajin believes. But he suggests that while the overall operational budget of BSC clients is not necessarily likely to increase, he expects to see trends in the intensified cleaning and disinfection processes and needs being reflected in some kind of bump in the face. the budget allocated to these processes.

When it comes to business and office facilities, Bajin believes that a particular evolving challenge is the growing proliferation of shared workspaces. This, of course, makes sufficient disinfection paramount and would result in a higher level of cleaning and disinfection.

Again, this is linked to increased customer and public awareness. “There is a higher level of understanding among office workers of the protocols they feel are important for them to feel comfortable in the workplace,” says Bajin. “It’s almost turning into a wave of support. Providing worker peace of mind is certainly part of the overall considerations for facility managers and property managers. It can be as simple as individual, worker-controlled solutions, such as wipes on desks or the ability to have a workstation cleaned on demand. All that stuff that I see as considerations in the workplace of the future. “

Indeed, there will be many considerations for the future. Companies like ServiceMaster Clean are leading the way, however, as the cleaning and maintenance industry – and the world – continues to find its feet in the new normal.

About Genevieve Swain

Genevieve Swain

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