Do you own a business or work somewhere with a communal area? If so, you’ve probably had your fair share of issues when it comes to keeping the kitchen or break area clean – and you’re not alone…
In a study conducted in 2010 by OfficeTeam, as many as 44% of workers identified making a mess for others to clean up as the most annoying behaviour in company break rooms.
“Since the kitchen is a common space, some workers may believe it’s someone else’s responsibility to keep it clean and organised,” – said executive director of OfficeTeam.
A messy communal area frustrates employees causing them to be in a negative mood at work and therefore reducing productivity levels. Simply put, a dirty communal area means employees are miserable and less likely to pull their weight at work.
If the plates are building up on a regular basis and you’re getting fed up of the overflowing bin and crammed fridge, here’s some steps you can take to tackle your communal workplace cleaning…
1. Devise a policy
In order to improve cleaning standards in communal areas, you need to set some guidelines for employees to follow such as the following:
• Place all rubbish in the bin
• Wipe down surfaces after use
• Wipe down microwave after use
• Only store food in the fridge if it is adequately sealed
• Do not leave dirty dishes, cutlery or mugs in the sink – clean, dry and put away after use.
2. Make it clear to employees
Once you’ve devised a plan, you need to inform employees. The best way to do this is to place a sign on the wall in the communal areas clearly stating the new guidelines and notify staff during meetings or via a mass email.
Some employees may need encouragement to keep the communal area clean. If this is the case, remind them of the health risks associated with a dirty workplace and politely give them reminders every now and then.
3. Allocate responsibilities
There’s always one employee that revels in the joy of having responsibility and some sort of power over their colleagues. If you have someone like this in your workplace, they are the perfect person to help you keep on top of the guidelines you set and encourage other employees to do the same.
4. Reward success
Hopefully your employees will be mature and understanding enough to follow the new rules and genuinely want a cleaner work place. However, you can still reward good results by treating them every once in a while. Whether it’s adding a top of the range coffee machine to the break room or simply adding a nicer brand of biscuits, little gestures of appreciation will go a long way.
5. Hire cleaning experts
Most businesses don’t have time to add cleaning to their to-do list and there is a fine line when it comes to expecting employees to clean as most will argue it’s not listed in their job description. Additionally, a good use of your employees time is doing what you pay them to do – which isn’t cleaning.
Hiring a commercial cleaning company can take care of all of the issues we mentioned above and more. They’ll not only clean the workplace but sanitise too which will prevent your staff from picking up work place illnesses and taking time off work.
A clean business is a productive business.