Wednesday, February 22, 2012

There is Always Room for Improvement

Change can be difficult for any organization, but it is often necessary to remain competitive.  One way to overcome the challenges associated with change is to develop a systematic approach to make incremental improvements to each area of an organization.  This can help create an environment where change is expected, and force your team to review even the greatest strengths of your organization.   

At Whistle Building Maintenance, we have found some of our biggest breakthroughs by taking another look at our strengths, and are thrilled to announce our latest change.  We will be releasing a specialized inspection, communication, job scheduling, and tracking system to our valued clients during the month of February.  This tool will be completely available online and will offer the following benefits:
·         Online Inspections to ensure any deficiencies are addressed and resolved immediately.
·         Daily Detail Cleaning system to push specific cleaning tasks to top of the “To Do” list for each day/night of service.
·         Contact Management system to link site-specific information to a permanent client record.
·         Work-Ticket system to capture every detail needed to clean every part of each facility.

This system will only improve the high quality of our services and unmatched responsiveness that we currently provide to our clients. 

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Remove Bacteria with...Cheese??

That's right!  Say cheese after dinner!

Eating a piece of cheese after dinner is healthier for your mouth than eating a sweet dessert, says the American Society for Dental Aesthetics.

Cheese neutralizes oral acids and helps remove bacteria. It also contains calcium and phosphorus that re-mineralize tooth enamel.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Why Clients Leave: One Surprising Reason

When business is slow, it's easy to think clients have moved to cheaper products or decided to do without the services you offer.  Particularly during such times, it's a good idea to survey present and recently departed customers in order to check the pulse of your business.
You'll probably discover some clients didn't like the level of service you provide.  That's not pleasant to hear, but complaints of any kind are good.  They give you a starting point for improvement.

Many former and present clients are nice people who don't want to complain. These are the people you need to talk to.  Studies reported by the CornerStone Leadership Institute show that for every person who registers a complaint, there are a couple of dozen who don't say anything about it at all.  This is why one might want to reconsider accepting "No news is good news," as a measure of client satisfaction.

Conversations with clients will show that you really care about them.  They will be more loyal to you in the future.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Safety & Health in the Office

About 10 percent of office injuries are caused by slips and falls. Most happen because of wet surfaces and unanchored rugs or mats. Others were caused by falling off a chair when a person was rocking or sitting down without realizing the chair wasn't in the right place.

Trips happen when you hit an obstruction and lose your balance. Causes include clutter, obstructed views, wrinkled carpet, uncovered cables, drawers not being closed, and uneven surfaces such as steps and thresholds.

Fitness. If the only part of your body you move on the job is your mouse finger, you need to increase your fitness level with exercise. When your body is stronger, you are less likely to fall or suffer strains and sprains.

Lift safely. If you want to move a piece of equipment or anything heavy, don't take a chance on injuring yourself. Ask a co-worker to help you.

Electrical. Most office equipment is manufactured with grounded plugs as a precaution (three prong plugs). Never remove the third prong. Overloading electrical circuits and using extension cords can result in a fire.

Bacteria. A study by the University of Arizona found that a desk has far more bacteria than a toilet seat, including plenty of cold and flu germs. Keep your hands, desk and keyboard clean with a disinfectant.  Review the work specifications with your Commercial Building Cleaning Company to ensure these surfaces are being professionally cleaned regularly.

Nodding. If you are often sleepy at work, remember that you need seven or eight hours of sleep a day. If you often have tension or migraine headaches, see a doctor for effective treatment.

Hurting hands. Hands and wrists can become sore with intensive computer use, but many conditions other than carpal tunnel syndrome can cause pain. Check with your doctor to get relief from tendonitis, which can be treated with splinting and anti-inflammatories, such as Tylenol and ibuprofen.

Back, neck and shoulder muscles. Check your computer and chair height so they are appropriate for your work. Chair posture is important, so sit up straight. Take breaks and walk about.

Eye strain. Microsoft suggests increasing your font size so type is easier to read. Look away from your computer frequently to allow your eyes to adjust to different distances. Be sure to blink occasionally to keep your eyes moist. Taking a fish oil capsule every day helps many people avoid dry eyes.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Minimize Costs with An Effective Floor Mat Program

An effective floor mat program is one of the most important ways of protecting the floors of any commercial building.  Walk-off mats stop dirt at the door and help keep building maintenance and cleaning costs to a minimum.  In offices, schools, industrial buildings, restaurants and theaters, mats should be a key element in any commercial building cleaning and maintenance program.  Here are a few facts to consider:
  • 70-80% of dust and dirt in a building is tracked in from the outside on people's feet, which has damaging effects on carpets and hard surface floors.
  • One square foot of carpet can accumulate 1 lb. of dirt in 1 week, and double that amount in inclement weather.
Entrance mats are the most common solution to help trap dust, grime and dirt before it comes in contact with your carpets and hard surface floors.  High traffic areas should be pinpointed and strategically placed for maximum effectiveness.  There are numerous options and types of floor mats available for consideration.  Seek the advice of a professional commercial building cleaning service to assist in recommending the proper floor mats for your building.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Lighting Maintenance - Relamping & Cleaning

Every commercial building has lights, and the chances are at least fair that they are not being adequately maintained. Once installed, lights tend to be forgotten. They are out of the way and dust accumulates so gradually that it is hardly noticeable. In some buildings, there may be no lighting maintenance plan at all. Lamps are replaced haphazardly as they burn out, with no records kept. Cleaning occurs irregularly, if at all. Many building owners and managers may not realize how much energy and, ultimately, money is being wasted.

There are many benefits of good lighting. The benefits of good lighting will, of course, depend on the type of commercial building. For example, in a factory, good lighting might increase productivity; in a retail store, it might increase sales. The following are some of the benefits of maintaining proper lighting.
  • Better Productivity - Numerous studies, in both factories and offices, have shown that improved lighting increases productivity; poor lighting decreases it.
  • Improved Quality - Proper lighting results in fewer errors, thus improving quality and reducing the need to do the work over. Quality control is also improved.
  • Increased Sales - Good lighting results in greater sales of merchandise or services, as well as increased rental of tenant space.
  • Improved Safety and Health - Eye fatigue and headaches occur less frequently, as do accidents with machinery, hazardous materials, etc. Job-related accidents and health problems can have a serious effect on medical, legal, and insurance costs.
  • Improved Security - Proper lighting, both indoors and out, reduces the likelihood of theft to the company and assault to workers and customers. Again, medical, legal, and insurance costs can be affected, and there can be the further costs of stolen material, lost business, and employee morale and turnover.
  • Improved Appearance - The appearance of a building, inside and out, can have an important effect on employee morale and community relations.
  • More Light for the Money - An old dirty lamp produces less light than a new or clean one, even though it consumes just as much electricity. Regular maintenance assures that maximum light is produced for the cost in energy. Furthermore, because lighting maintenance is frequently poor, some buildings are designed with more light fixtures than necessary. In such "over-designed" buildings, the required light is delivered even when lamps are old or dirty. If, however, lamps are properly maintained in these buildings, then it may be possible to shut off some lamps, saving money in energy and materials, while still providing the necessary light.
Group relamping for fluorescent systems is nearly always combined with the commercial building cleaning operation. With incandescent systems, these operations will sometimes be combined, though it will usually be necessary to relamp two or three times before cleaning is again needed, due to the shorter life of these lamps. 

Relamping Operation:
  1. Turn off the lamps.
  2. Remove the louvers and clean.
  3. Remove the lamps.
  4. Shock-proof the fixtures.
  5. Clean the outside of the fixtures.
  6. Clean the inside of the fixtures.
  7. Remove the socket covering.
  8. Insert new lamps.
  9. Replace the louvers.
  10. Straighten the room.
  11. Put lamps away.
When relamping is not combined with cleaning, the tube or bulb is simply replaced. Essentially, this involves turning off the lamps, removing the louvers (if there are any), removing the old lamps, inserting the new lamps, replacing the louvers, straightening the room (if necessary), discarding the old lamps, and putting any good lamps away in storage. Even when cleaning is not scheduled, it is a good idea to check the fixtures to see if they need it. This is especially true if access to the fixture is difficult or time-consuming, as it is with high-mounted fixtures. A lamp changer is particularly useful when relamping is not being combined with cleaning, since it is not necessary to have a person actually at the fixture.

When lamps are replaced, obvious or suspected electrical problems should be noted for repair. This can be easily done by putting a brightly colored tag on the fixture in question. Your electrician will then be alerted to the problem and can repair it.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Removing Stains From Carpet

The rapid cleaning of spots and spills is essential in preventing permanent staining of carpet fibers. The use of a good universal spotter is recommended as a 1st approach on all types of spots. Read the instructions before using any product for safety and proper use, but the following procedure is typically suggested:
  • Remove any solids with a spoon/putty knife.
  • Blot up liquids with white terry or paper towels.
  • Spray the stained area with spotter.
  • Wait a few minutes for the product to dwell or work.
  • Repeat above until stain is removed.
  • If spot remains, then try set stain removal procedure below.
Some spots and stains cannot be removed using a universal spotter. The spot may consist of a very difficult to remove material, or it simply has been allowed to age for too long. There are two approaches possible in this situation. The first option uses the same universal spotter, but in combination with a steam iron:
  • Moisten stained area with universal spotter. 
  • Wait a few minutes for the product to dwell or work.
  • Place a white towel over the stained area.
  • Place a steam iron at medium setting on the toweling above the stained carpet (do not place on towel longer than 45 sec.).
  • Move toweling occasionally to provide a clean wicking area to absorb the stain.
  • Repeat this procedure until stain is removed.
  • Dry the area using a hair dryer after stain is removed to prevent the stain from wicking back into the surface of the pile.