In the age of COVID-19, the true value of the cleaning industry has become crystal clear. Ongoing cleaning, disinfecting, and infection prevention best practices are now absolutely essential.
Yet businesses that suffered financial losses or cutbacks due to COVID-19 restrictions are going to be looking for ways to save money and facility budgets are one area where they may turn.
Therefore, it’s now even more important than it was before the pandemic for cleaning industry professionals to make a strong financial business case that cleaning should be considered a critical investment, rather than a cost. Achieving this relies on leveraging the right information and statistics.
The business case for cleaning
“Communicating the best business case for investing in proper cleaning right now requires you to connect the dots between your services or products and an organisation’s top pain points,” advises Dianna Steinbach, ISSA Vice President of Corporate Development, ISSA.
“The power of your case comes from sharing the right data to catch decision makers’ attention and explain how you help solve their current issues.”
Investing in a high-quality cleaning programme can deliver numerous benefits including: reduced risk of virus transmission; improved occupant productivity, comfort and wellness; enhanced customer satisfaction; reduced liability; and ultimately, financial returns.
ISSA has gathered data from around the world to make it easier for cleaning professionals to demonstrate the true value of cleaning and disinfection, particularly in the COVID-19 stabilisation phase of the pandemic.
For example, improved cleaning and basic hand hygiene measures can reduce viruses on a surface by more than 85 per cent, according to a study in the International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health 2019.
Moreover, research shows satisfaction with workplace cleanliness enhances employee productivity and the quality of work (Wageningen University & Research), while cleanliness reduces instances of absenteeism – a global issue that negatively impacts productivity and costs businesses billions of dollars each year. The direct costs of absenteeism alone lead to a loss of AUD 44 billion per annum (Australian Industry Group).
Cleanliness has also been found to influence customer perceptions and actions, with 79 per cent of EU citizens feeling less inclined to shop when the store’s environment is dirty (A.I.S.E).
And when it comes to profitability, regular cleaning and maintenance increases a building’s lifetime value and preserves assets; with a maintenance plan in place, it is estimated a large facility could save over USD 40,000 on annual floor life-cycle costs (DPM Care).
ISSA Value of Clean tools
Sharing the right data with decision makers is a good first step, but what makes the strongest case is relating that information back to their specific situation. That’s why ISSA created the ISSA Value of Clean® tools – including the Value of Clean Data Report and Infographic and Calculator – to help cleaning industry professionals create their own value calculations centred around improved occupant health and productivity, as well as lengthened asset preservation and more. In light of major changes to the industry following the COVID-19 crisis, ISSA has updated these valuable tools.
As a result, companies will better understand how to invest in cleaning to protect the wellbeing of key stakeholders and enhance brand reputation and customer satisfaction through cleanliness.
The ISSA Value of Clean tools include the following powerful resources:
- The ISSA Value of Clean Data Report includes valuable studies and data compiled from a variety of sources, supporting the argument that investing in cleaning leads to bottom-line financial gain.
- The ISSA Value of Clean Infographic is created for cleaning professionals to be able to download, print, embed on a website or share on social media.
- The ISSA Value of Clean Calculator can be used to customise a special business case for customers and calculate the return on investment of proper cleaning.
- The ISSA Power of Clean Video is an animated video free to share on a professional cleaning website or social media account. ISSA members can add this resource to their own presentations and videos.
The ISSA Value of Clean tools are designed to provide the facts and figures needed to highlight the importance of cleaning for better occupant health, safer environments and an improved bottom line for facilities.
“ISSA’s Value of Clean data and tools have been helping cleaning professionals and facility managers around the world protect their budgets for many years,” Steinbach says. “In response to the impact of COVID-19, we’re very pleased to provide this updated data when our members, and their facility customers, need it most to justify the proper level of cleaning to protect occupant safety and health.”