LONDON — A survey of 1,000 workers by support services firm resource GB has revealed that two out of every five organizations have had to cut back on cleaning in maintaining their offices because of the recession.
The research displayed a culture of dangerously poor hygiene in workplaces across the UK, which can lead to the spread of bacteria and add to the costly and damaging problem of absenteeism through ill-health.
Half of all employees who took part in the research said they were embarrassed about clients or customers visiting their work premises because of a lack of cleanliness.
Meanwhile, ten per cent of those polled described their office toilets as “filthy”, a quarter claimed that their colleagues did not clean up after themselves and over a third complained that poor hygiene was making their working environment unsafe.
Steve Wright, Chairman of the British Cleaning Council, commented: ''''These results show how staff are reacting against measures by their employers which negatively impact their health and decrease the quality of their workplace environment. Legally, employers have a basic responsibility to provide their staff with a safe workplace and too many firms are falling short of this. We need to see businesses match the importance their workers clearly place on cleaning and hygiene”.
Andrew Large, Chief Executive of the Cleaning and Support Services Association, said: “The downturn has been tough on all industries, but this is no excuse to cut corners on hygiene. Not only can such practices have serious repercussions on people’s health, but they are extremely counter-productive: sub-standard cleaning increases the cost of absence through sickness and harms the image of a business at precisely the time when they should be doing everything to attract new customers”.
Established in 1967, the Cleaning and Support Services Association is the UK trade association for private sector employers in the contract cleaning sector. CSSA members account for over 70% of the turnover in the sector and employ in excess of 300,000 people.
The British Cleaning Council is the voice of the UK cleaning industry. It was established in 1982 to coordinate the affairs of the industry and to be responsible at home and abroad on industry matters.