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ICAN/ATEX: How can we deal with less man power?

July 11, 2013

Many cleaning professionals visit the International Custodial Advisers Network (ICAN) Ask the Experts page for insight and, every business day, we deliver advice to better help you perform your job.

Wednesday’s Question:ICANATEX Logo

Our school district had to make some cuts last year.

One custodian retired and was not replaced. Now, the cleanliness of the building is deteriorating.

When, as facilities manager, I ask why we’re not keeping the building clean, the response is, “We’re down a man.” However, the retired custodian told me that he could clean his area in six hours.

This tells me that the person now cleaning this area must be getting done in four hours, because it’s not clean.

He has been with us for years.

Wednesday’s Answer:

Parkinson's Law (C. Northcote Parkinson) states that work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.

Whenever there is an absence of cleaning standards or the lack of accountability, supervision, and/or enforcement, people tend to work at their own pace.

Professional cleaning management strives to benchmark productivity and require adherence to quality standards. This should lead to productive workers, who do a good job and are happy with their assignments.

Improving productivity and quality does not come easily. It requires establishing best practices, implementing process improvement, and utilizing quality inspections.

However, not all areas of a facility clean at the same rate. One person who cleans gymnasiums and open and lightly used classrooms will accomplish the job much faster than another worker who must clean the cafeteria and a substantial number of restrooms.

What this converts to is that some workers may  ... Gary Clipperton, president of National Pro Clean Corporation

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