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Healthy & Happy Employees Need a Clean Work-Space

Employee morale sagging? They may love their job, but on those bad days, a bright and clean work-space can help lift their moods and keep them productive. Working in a clean, healthy environment can have a major impact on how people feel. (I know I love coming home after my housekeeper has visited. That clean smell that hits my nose when I walk in the door perks me right up.) In a dingy or cluttered work-space, frustrations can mount more quickly and bad days and problems seem to only get worse.

While your employees may be more concerned about pay raises, benefits and vacation time, one of the top issues affecting their overall performance is the state of the office environment. In fact, as study done by Harvard and Syracuse Universities ( https://phys.org/news/2017-05-air-quality-productivity.html )  shows that if you improve air quality at work, you’ll improve productivity too. It’s one of those things you don’t think about until it becomes a problem.

It goes beyond your employee’s moods, and can save your business money.

Going too long without a good cleaning can put the health of your employees at risk. A clean work-space improves air quality and reduces the spread of germs and bacteria. That cuts down on sick days and absenteeism. When your workers are healthy, they’ll have more energy and feel more creative, resulting in improved performance and a boost in business. Who doesn’t want that!?!?

A clean work-space benefits your customer service as well. A well-maintained and clean work-space will make your customers feel confident entering your business and working with you. A bright, clean, airy space is like putting out a welcome mat for your clientele and it demonstrates your professionalism and attention to detail.

The bottom line is that you want people, customers and employees, to feel good about your work. If you don’t have the internal resources to clean and maintain your work environment as well as you’d like, a commercial cleaning company such as Townsend & Styer Maintenance can help you put together a regular and affordable cleaning and maintenance schedule. Townsend & Styer Maintenance provides cleaning services for commercial, industrial and institutional work-spaces. Give us a call 510-597-7900 today for a free estimate.

 

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6 Surfaces Swarming With Germs

  1. Money

It’s cringe-inducing to wonder who last handled your cash or coins. A sick drugstore customer buying medicine? A child sticking the quarter in his mouth? A person traveling straight from the bathroom stall to the vending machine without stopping at the sink? New York University researchers found in 2014 that a dollar bill carries about 3,000 different types of bacteria, so wash your hands after shopping.

  1. Towels

Washing your hands is a great step in preventing illness, but where you dry them must be clean, too. University of Arizona researchers found in 2014 that 89% of kitchen towels contained coliform bacteria, and 25% contained E. coli, which gets introduced to kitchens by uncooked meat. After each use, machine wash towels using warm water for colored towels and hot water for white ones.

  1. Door Knobs/Door Handles

Doors get us from point A to point B, and they open our microwaves, ovens and refrigerators. But in 2014, University of Arizona researchers found that one germ-infested doorknob could spread a virus to 40-60% of a workplace staff within two to four hours. Microbiology professor Charles Gerba said people can stop the spread anywhere with a simple item: Disinfecting wipes. In the studies, the wipes alone reduced occurrences of the virus by 80%.

  1. Electronic Devices

Phones, tablets, TV remotes and gaming controllers all spend hours in our hands, and they’re germy. We pass around TV remotes and video game controllers while stuffing our mouths with food. And our cell phones, which follow us everywhere, contain 18 times more than the amount of germs you’ll find on a toilet handle. Debate continues on how to clean a phone or tablet without harming the screen, but the New York Times offers ideas you may try at your own risk.

  1. Light Switches

We finish touching our light switches after a quick flick, but nonetheless, they’re communal locations that everyone lays hands upon. Studies show light switches can have as many germs as a trash can. Run a disinfecting wipe across the light switch to eliminate the germs living there.

  1. Washing Machines

We’ll save you the stomach-turning specifics, but just know that underwear introduces bacteria to the washing machine. And when wet laundry sits in there after the cycle, the bacteria invades, according to ABC News. Use hot water (140-150°F) or bleach to wash your clothing when possible. When it’s not laundry day, run a wash cycle with bleach and no clothing to rinse your washer. Always wash your hands after handling laundry.

 

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Allowing Dogs in the Office

Do you allow dogs in the office?

It is becoming a more popular practice. Personally, my Ava Louise comes to work with me every day. She takes her job seriously. That patch of sunshine isn’t going to nap alone.  And everyone that walks in to the office gets stopped for kisses and belly rubs.

Ruff day

There are pros and cons to allowing pets in the workplace.
*Helps reduce stress levels
*Encourages getting up and away from computer
*Encourages midday walks = more exercise = healthier employees
*Happy employees = productive employees (unless games of fetch get a little rowdy)
*Employees can work later because they don’t have to run home to the dog
*It is also financial benefit for the employees: It eliminates Pet Care Costs
Allowing owners to bring their pets to work also provides a significant financial benefit—it eliminates the additional costs of doggie daycare or dog walking services for employees who work long hours or commute a significant distance from their home each day. 
Daycare or walking services can be quite costly, so this can be an excellent perk for a pet owning employee.
*Customers and Clients like being greeted by a wagging tail
*Promotes Positive Interactions
A pet-friendly workplace tends to increase employee satisfaction and to improve morale.  Pets are also a point of common interest that can help to promote an atmosphere of teamwork and communication.

Pitfalls:
Allergies and messes – 

Dog-friendly workplaces can cause a serious medical problem for employees who are allergic. For most, the allergy resides in the pet’s dander, which is secreted through the dog’s saliva, skin, and hair. Dander can travel through the air, so an allergic employee can be exposed even if he or she tries to maintain a distance from the pooch. Vacuuming regularly, which is often offered as a solution, may help some, but it is probably not a cure-all.

That’s where we come in.

Professional janitors have the tool to handle any dirt (or muddy paws) you throw at them. HEPA filters are your friend (see https://www.tsmaintenance.com/hepa-filters-often-change ).
If you allow pets in the office, then your cleaning team needs to be detail vacuuming on every visit. And that’s just for the dander… Accidents happen and spot cleaning doesn’t always get the job done. The dog will likely do his/her business on the floor at some point,
so have cleaning supplies (spray cleaner and paper towels) available. Then, call your janitorial company and give them a head’s up to bring the spot bot with them on their next visit. Mark the area with a note and give that dog a written warning from HR.

Obviously there are a lot of things to consider, when considering a dog-friendly workplace. Don’t let fear of dirt and hair be one of them; Hire a professional cleaning company, Good dog!

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Benefits Of A Back-Up Estimate

Here at T&S Maintenance, we often contact businesses that currently have janitorial services through another provider. Many times the companies that we contact are relatively happy with their current service. Believe it or not, it is still worthwhile for us to put together a free, no obligation estimate for our services. The reason we are willing to put together an estimate is that you never know what might happen to the current service. For Matt and I, putting together this free, no obligation estimate is of not an inconvenience to us. With our twenty years of experience, we have found that companies need to make unexpected changes for a variety of reasons. We’ve seen companies need to make changes due to family emergencies, moves, acquisition of new accounts, financial difficulties, etc.  If one of these unfortunate situations were to arise with your provider, you would have a detailed service and rate in your file. It is like having an insurance policy for janitorial services. If you would like to receive a free, no obligation estimate, please fill out the request for quote form and we will happily contact you.

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Is Clutter Killing Your Productivity?

Does your work space need some serious de-cluttering?  If you are always thinking, “I just don’t have time to get organized”? Well, this might spark you to make the time: In a survey by OfficeMax and the National Association of Professional Organizers, 82 percent of workers said that being organized improves their performance. (But hey, don’t feel bad — almost a third also fessed up to keeping a disorganized workspace.)

And if bettering your productivity isn’t enough to motivate you to declutter your cubicle, how about this: Writing on Forbes.com, Jenna Goudreau tells us, “According to a survey of over 1000 workers by staffing firm Adecco, a majority of Americans (57 percent) admit they judge coworkers by how clean or dirty they keep their workspaces. Meanwhile, nearly half say they have been ‘appalled’ by how messy a colleague’s office is, and most chalk it up to laziness.”

Now we’re sure you don’t want to be billed “lazy” by your coworkers; so here are a few tips for banishing clutter and chaos:

1) Go digital. Do you really need to print out all those sales reports or meeting notes? By cutting down on printing, or printing double-sided when you absolutely need a hard copy, you’ll reduce those piles of paper that invariably collect on your desk. You’ll save a few trees to boot.

2) Make time. Take a few minutes at the end of the day to dispose of food containers and coffee cups (or wash reusable ones), sort paperwork and gather personal items to take home.

3) Adopt a once-a-week routine. If you’ve reduced the clutter, you’ll have an easier time keeping dirt and dust at bay. Use earth-friendly wipes to clean your phone, keyboard and mouse, and other items you use a lot. And don’t forget your monitor; a soft microfiber cloth is best.

Following these tips will make it easier for your janitors to vacuum and dust around your cubicle, and who knows, a little of your sparkle might inspire your coworkers to tackle their own clutter.

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Cleaning Up Your Co-Workers Mess?

Janitorial Service – It’s not the most glamorous topic of conversation.  It’s also not something someone thinks about unless it goes wrong and you need to make a change.

What happens when you walk into the restroom at work and see that no, there aren’t secret fairies that come clean up your mess in the middle of the night? Most employees take it for granted that the garbage will be emptied, the carpets vacuumed, and the restrooms clean and stocked with soap and paper.

No one likes cleaning their own bathrooms at home, let alone having to clean the ones at work. In my personal experience, you learn WAY too much about your fellow coworkers. Some things are better left to the professionals.

Your boss may say that there is no room in the budget for something ‘so frivolous’. While that may be the case, a professional cleaning service doesn’t have to break the bank. Townsend & Styer Maintenance will work within your budget (or lack thereof) to find a solution that works; whether that is once per week, or once per month. Regular disinfection of touch surfaces greatly reduces the spread of germs and bacteria thereby keeping your employees healthier and at work, not sniffling away at home. Your employees will be happy and the workplace will be healthier.

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Who is T&S Maintenance and What Do We Do?

Townsend & Styer Maintenance was founded in 2001 by Matthew Townsend and Jeremy Styer.  The two principals decided that they could provide better service through state-of-the-art products, stellar customer service and the ability to adapt to each individual client’s needs.  From restaurants and bars to schools, gymnasiums and Class A office space, Townsend & Styer Maintenance develops customized service plans and strives to exceed all client expectations. We have two locations serving the greater Bay Area.  

Pricing & Supplier Strategy:
Pricing Methodology – T&S Maintenance customizes each individual proposal based on a number of variables including type of facility, density, frequency of service, type of business and hours of operation.

T&S Maintenance will provide all cleaning materials and we ask that the client provide all paper products, hand soaps and trash liners.  Additionally, T&S Maintenance can manage your supply inventory thru a third-party vendor.

Communication Process:
T&S Maintenance prefers that all communication comes through our central office for proper tracking and resolution.

Account Management & Quality Control:
Each account has it’s own on-site supervisor to ensure overall quality control. Quality Controls Used:

  • On-site Janitorial Supervisor
  • Account Representative
  • Internal Quality Control Manager
  • Communication Logs
  • QC Questionnaire
  • 24-hour access to voicemail and email

Supplementary Services Offered:
We are strictly a full service janitorial maintenance firm.

We do not distribute janitorial supplies.  We contract with a third party vendor.

Yes, we can provide proof of liability insurance and worker’s compensations.

As a small local janitorial company, we find that we offer our clients unparalleled customer service, which allows us to nurture long-term relationships with our clients.

T&S Maintenance strives to provide each and every client with the latest cleaning services and products.  We offer a full line of “Green” cleaning products and will adhere to each client’s recycling and/or composting policies.

Would you like to find out more about us?  Give us a call to discuss your facility needs and schedule a free, no obligation site visit.

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Hard Surface Flooring: Beyond Sweeping and Mopping

3 Reasons You Don’t Want to Overlook Regular Service of Your Hard Surface Flooring

Though you might be under the impression that your hard surface floors don’t require any special maintenance, even the toughest flooring material still requires regular cleaning and treatment. While it’s true that tile, vinyl, and concrete floors don’t retain dirt and debris as much as carpet does, they definitely still get dirty, and can even get scratched or lose their finish if they aren’t properly cleaned.

Despite all these potential problems, however, most business owners are complacent with their flooring maintenance. They might take time to regularly sweep and mop these floors, but if you want to maximize their long-term durability and appearance, you have to call the professionals.

Whether your workplace is a manufacturing facility, financial institution, retailer, medical facility, or restaurant, our cleaning experts have experience in many different industries, and know exactly what problems to look for that are unique to each industry. For example, if we’re treating the hard surface floor in a kitchen, we can use special cleaners that are extra effective at cutting through grease, breaking up compacted food particles, and killing germs. But no matter what industry your business is in, you can expect to see the following benefits whenever you call us to take care of your hard surface floors:

  • Improved Appearance
    Without a doubt, the first thing you’ll notice after we take care of your floors is simply how much better they look. If your floors are in a retail setting, this helps make the best possible first impression, and also gives your business a more professional appearance. But even if your workers only see them, it’s been proven that visible buildups of dirt and dust can actually hurt your employees’ ability to concentrate and stay productive, so a cleaner workplace is better all around.
  • Reduced Risk of Long-Term Damage
    When you hire T&S Maintenance to take care of your hard surface flooring, not only will we be able to prevent long-term damage by caring for your floors, but also by knowing what potential problems to look for. Where you simply see a loose tile, we see an opportunity for more tiles to get damaged, and do everything we can to prevent that from happening. We know what causes problems, how to solve them, and how to prevent them from happening again – which helps saves you lots of cash.
  • Reduced Injury Risk
    Slips and falls are one of the most common ways employees and customers injure themselves in the workplace. By regularly scheduling your hard surface flooring maintenance, however, we’ll be able to prevent slippery buildups and fix any uneven floors.
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5 Benefits of Hiring a Professional Cleaning Service

How many hours do you spend at work each week? 40? 50? 60+? Let’s face it, if you’re working full-time, your office is practically your second home. And not only is it YOUR second home, it’s also the second home to all of your co-workers and employees! With so many people spending so many hours there, there’s no question that you need to take good care of it. That is where a professional cleaning service comes in.  

Though your business might do a decent job at keeping your workspace habitable, it doesn’t mean they’re doing a good job of keeping your workspace clean. Simply put, cleanliness is rarely a priority for businesses, so most just do the bare minimum to keep up with appearances (i.e. vacuum every now and then, keep kitchen and bathroom areas tidy, etc.). And while this might save time for more “important” tasks, a dirty workspace can actually inhibit your workers from completing these tasks.

In order to help you maximize your business’ efficiency, safety, and appearance, we’ll explain the top 5 benefits of hiring a commercial cleaning service:

1) Safer Work Environment

Keeping your workplace clean means keeping your workplace safe. Not only are offices a breeding ground for germs and bacteria, but an untidy workspace in a manufacturing facility can also lead to accidents and possibly injury. Though you might be sanitizing surfaces areas every now and then or “keeping an eye on things” in the warehouse, no one does a better job than the trained commercial cleaning professionals. For example, when was the last time you cleared your HVAC air system of all its dust and germs? Commercial cleaning services do more than just sanitize the desks and scrub the toilets, they make sure your entire workspace is clean – even down to the air particles you breathe. And at time when the average worker in the U.S costs businesses $230/year due to workplace absenteeism caused by personal illness, paying for cleaning services doesn’t seem all that bad.

2) Less Stress

Your employees are your top priority, but we all know the worst part about cleaning is the fact that it’s, well, cleaning. As a kid, you dreaded doing these chores, and it’s likely that not much has changed today. As a result, you’ve probably neglected a few things here and there along the way. For commercial cleaners, however, doing these tasks is just another day on the job. In fact, we’ll even work around YOUR work schedule to make sure you aren’t bothered by our presence. Rather than spending time doing something that stresses you out, leave the cleaning up to the pros and spend more time working on what matters most to you.

3) More Productive Workers

There have been numerous studies on workplace productivity and workplace cleanliness, and they all point towards one thing: a cleaner workplace leads to happier, more productive workers. In a survey by OfficeMax of more than 1,000 U.S. adults, 90% admit that unorganized clutter has a negative impact on their life, with 77% claiming that their productivity is affected the most. Additionally, in a study conducted at Brigham Young University, 88% of respondents report that visible buildups of dirt and dust can actually hinder their ability to concentrate, be productive, and learn. Want more productive workers? Hire a commercial cleaner to keep your workspace tidy and clean.

4) More Professional Workplace

Did you know that 35% of workers feel ashamed or embarrassed when other people see their workspace? That’s because Americans often associate cleanliness with professionalism. If you don’t look like an organized professional, you won’t be perceived as one, and there’s nothing more embarrassing than having your customers and clients view your business as unprofessional. By hiring a commercial cleaning service, however, they’ll make sure your business looks top notch, both inside and out. Whether it means power washing your parking lot and building, washing your windows, or making sure your work or retail spaces are 100% clean, commercial cleaners can certainly help your brand build a reputation around professionalism.

5) Higher Quality Clean

Though you might think you’re doing an adequate job as the full-time manager and part-time cleaner, there’s no one better at cleaning than the cleaning professionals. For example, even though you can take care of your teeth by brushing and flossing, no one cleans your teeth as well as the dentist. Why? Because they not only have more knowledge, but they also have more tools. In the commercial cleaning industry, cleaning professionals are equipped with all the necessary tools to get the job done, as well as a better understanding of how things need to be done.

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Selecting the Right Cleaning Service Company

Outsourcing your building’s maintenance to a janitorial company should make your job easier not more difficult. If you find yourself going back to the drawing board time and time again, to select another cleaning service, you may start to feel like all cleaning companies are the same with lackluster performance and inconsistent service. If you are searching for the right cleaning service, consider the following:

  • Ask how many hours they plan to work per week. Multiply those hours times 4.33 per weeks in a month and divide that number into their monthly price.  That will give you their facility management hourly billable rate.  In California the minimum hourly wage is $10.00.  So if the number is anywhere close to $12.00 per hour, the chances are they are doing something illegal that will put your organization at risk.
    Don’t settle for fuzzy math or confusing pricing. If you cannot compare apples to apples with a clear, precise, unambiguous cleaning bid or janitorial quote, move on.
  • Consider size. You likely don’t need a behemoth national janitorial company, but a larger local operation that has a number of benefits for your facility maintenance; from state of the art equipment, to agility, to cost savings on bulk goods like paper products.
  • Determine if they have a quality assurance program that included regular janitorial inspections.
  • Ask for a copy of all insurance certifications to assure that you are adequately protected.
  • Ask about their green cleaning program and commitment to sustainability and health.
  • Request that they provide you with documentation from the company conducting employee background checks for every employee working in your facility.

Don’t make your job unnecessarily hard by neglecting to do your homework upfront. A little extra work at the front end can save you a ton of hassle, headaches and money down the line.