Green Cleaning 101
One of the many jobs of a facility manager is to maintain a clean and healthy work environment. An abundant of cleaning products can hike up your bill. Additionally, many of the common products used for cleaning can cause great harm to the environment, as well as to vulnerable employees. A green cleaning program uses products, tools, equipment, and chemicals with Green Seal Certification. Here are some tips to help you create safer and more cost-effective cleaning procedures in your organization.
- Buy concentrated. The more concentrated the cleaning solution, the longer it will last, helping to reduce costs significantly.
- Choose quality over short-term savings. It may seem counter-intuitive, but paying more for higher-quality products will ultimately reduce the cost of cleaning. Better products will be easier to use, perform more effectively, last longer, etc.
- Choose multi-surface chemicals and tools. The National Service Alliance recommends multi-surface cleaning chemicals and equipment. “One cleaning solution or one machine that can clean multiple surfaces (i.e., hard surface floors and carpet) is one of the best ways to reduce supply costs.” Most facilities can be cleaned daily and efficiently with as few as two to four products.
- Buy bulk. Buying cleaning chemicals in five-gallon containers will save you money. Partner with other businesses to increase your savings. If you purchase enough, you may even be able to negotiate a price ceiling
- Buy in. Management, cleaning staff, and workers all need to agree the facility should adopt a green cleaning strategy. They need to understand what it entails and how it will be carried out in their facility. Once agreed on, document the green cleaning policy in writing.
- Conduct surveys. It’s important to determine the current status of your cleaning program by conducting surveys that set a baseline from which to judge the improvement. Evaluate your existing paper products, liners, and cleaning equipment, as well as your existing indoor air quality problems and complaint record. Once you have the information, prioritize which things need to be addressed.
- Buy green products. Not only will you need to purchase new products (like bio-based cleaning products), you may also need to upgrade your equipment like vacuum cleaners with enhanced filtration systems, floor machines with dust-control systems, and the like.
- Provide feedback. As with any new process or procedure, the ultimate goal is continued improvement, and that is only possible through communicated feedback.
Follow these simple steps and you will save money on your purchases and create a safer work environment for everyone at your organization. For more tips on how to reduce your cleaning costs, contact Vanguard Resources.