On the surface, your office may look perfectly clean and tidy. However, with so many different employees using your facilities, it can actually be the ideal breeding ground for bacteria.
Germs can lurk in the places you would least expect and an inefficient cleaning regime can have a dramatic and negative effect on your business. High levels of germs and bacteria can lead to an outbreak of staff sickness as illnesses like colds and flu can quickly spread. This may mean your employees will be forced to take time off work.
Therefore, it’s in the best interests of both your company and your staff to maintain a clean and sanitized office environment at all times.
FACT: The average work desk is an astounding 400 times dirtier than the typical toilet seat!
Additionally, one of the dirtiest areas in the office is also one of the objects you might least expect; office phones!
As the phones in your office are so regularly coming into contact with your employees’ hands, this equipment often harbours damaging germs and bacteria. In fact, startling statistics indicate that the average office worker’s hands come into contact with 10 million bacteria every single day.
Inevitably, some of these harmful bacteria are transferred onto office phones, which are contaminated with approximately 25,000 germs per square inch. However, office phones aren’t the only piece of equipment taken over by germs and you might be surprised by the dirtiest places in the office. Water coolers, computer keyboards and taps are all key areas of the working environment that are vulnerable to high levels of contamination.
Whilst it is impossible to completely stop germs spreading in a busy office, there are steps you can take to reduce unhygienic and potentially dangerous bacteria levels. As an employer, it’s your duty to provide a clean working environment and uphold high standards to protect your employees from contracting illnesses.
To reduce germs both on office phones and in the entire office environment, you should firstly ensure that employees who are unwell do not come into the workplace. One employee’s absence is a lot more cost effective for your business than allowing an unwell employee to spread their illness to your other staff.
Secondly, you should inspire your staff to regularly clean their office phone and general desk area by providing access to anti-bacterial wipes and cleaning materials. If costs allow, you might also consider providing one office phone per employee and encouraging employees not to share phones to halt the spread of germs. You should additionally ensure there are signs displayed in toilets and kitchen areas to remind employees of the importance of washing their hands.
Despite these proactive steps, many employees are too busy with their work to commit to keeping their desk area hygienic. Therefore, to keep germs and bacteria at a safe level and provide a clean and pleasant working environment for your employees, you may need professional help.