Office cleaning

Gateway to Digital Advertising – New ad launch

Gateway to Digital Advertising – New ad launch 3294 1752 Danielle Tynan

Spaghetti Junction is one of Birmingham’s most recognisable features, so where better to launch the newest round of our Digital Out Of Home advertising campaigns?

Following the success of our ad on the Aston Expressway Digibridge, we have now begun working with Elonex to display our company on several screens across Birmingham.

With over 3000 digital advertising billboards in the UK, and a Sunday Times Fast Track 100 ranking to brag about, Elonex are market leaders in the LED architecture industry.  Their screen at StarLights is the most-seen billboard in the Midlands, and they have several elite sports partnerships, such as Worcestershire CCC, Ricoh Arena and Gloucester and Northampton Rugby clubs.  On top of that, they have recently launched Badhero sunglasses, which are the official sponsors of Love Island 2021.

Hearing all these credentials made the decision to work with them a very easy one to make.  As a local cleaning company, Elonex saw the value in offering a great package, putting us up alongside international giants such as Boohoo and Coca-Cola.

Continuing with our consistent branding, we modified the advertisement we had previously used and we are now live on the digital 96 sheet in a prime Midlands location.

 

We are very excited to be at the forefront of Birmingham commercial cleaning companies using this form of advertising to create brand awareness.

Have you seen any of our ads yet? We would love to see your pictures if you do, as long as it’s safe to take them.  Let us know your thoughts on our social media or via info@tcmscleaning.com

Questions you should ask commercial cleaners

Questions you should ask commercial cleaners 2000 1333 88Admin

So you’ve made the decision that you need to find a local commercial cleaner or an office cleaning service for your business.

Maybe you’ve tried to manage daily office cleaning inhouse, or maybe you’ve just installed new carpets and want to put a regular carpet cleaning service in place to keep it in the best possible condition.  Where do you start?

In this post we’ve tried to summarise the things we think are worth looking for when procuring cleaning services.

  • One of the key benefits of contract cleaning is that it will improve the safety of your environment by reducing hazards caused by dirt, debris and transmissible infections.  Kitchen deep cleaning and canopy and extraction grease removal reduce the risk of kitchen fires.  Daily office cleaning with virucidal chemicals in common areas and touchpoints has proven extremely effective in combatting the spread of illness across colleagues and so affecting absenteeism.

    Therefore, it follows that any company you employ should have a firm commitment to Health & Safety.  This can be demonstrated in some of the following ways:

    • PAT Testing – all company equipment should be fully PAT compliant and stickered, and certificates should be available upon request.
    • COSHH – all chemicals used should be accompanied by a Safety Data Sheet (from the manufacturer) and a COSHH sheet completed by the company, and these should be supplied ahead of any clean upon request.
    • Risk Assessments and Method Statements – these documents should be sent to you ahead of any cleaning, detailing the ways in which cleaning will be carried out, which potential risks are present and how these will be mitigated.
    • Health & Safety accreditation – Companies with a Health & Safety accreditation, such as ISO45001 (Occupational Health & Safety ) or Safety Schemes in Procurement (SSIP) such as Safecontractor/CHAS membership, have demonstrated that they have undertaken an audit of their processes, which equates to a stronger commitment to these principles.
    • PPE – it is your right as a procurer to have details of what PPE cleaning companies intend to use prior to any clean taking place.
  • How a company recruits, trains and manages their staff is a key to show their values and the quality of service you can expect to receive from them.

    • Safeguarding – if your business involves children or vulnerable adults as service users, it is essential that companies in your supply chain has a standalone safeguarding policy and are willing to accept yours. Cleaning firms can go further with this by applying for DBS clearance for their cleaning operatives.
    • Equality & Diversity – cleaning companies should be able to provide you with their equality & diversity policy ahead of any clean to demonstrate that they take a fair and unprejudiced stance regarding staff.
    • Subcontractors – many cleaning companies use subcontractors on their behalf, and this should be made clear from the outset, with documentation to be made available to ensure that any subcontractors are up to task and compliant with the ethos of the company
    • Supervision – how will the cleaning contract be managed and who will be the main contact point for you during the process? Reputable cleaning companies will give you key contact information for staff in advance, and clearly breakdown the best ways to remain in touch with the right person, saving you time.
    • Training – training is arguably one of the most important features of a commercial cleaning company and companies should be able to clearly show that their staff have had the relevant training for the job they have been hired for.
    • Modern Slavery & Human Trafficking  – we all have a responsibility to work towards the eradication of these human rights violations. Whilst companies with a turnover of less than £36million are not legally obligated to provide a policy statement, having one shows that they are committed to identifying risks within their workplace and supply chain.
  • It has become ever more clear that businesses of all sizes must remain aware and proactive in terms of protecting the world in which we live.  Excessive use of dangerous chemicals or carbon-heavy transportation can generate a cost to the environment that far outweighs any individual savings.

    • Waste policy – any responsible company carrying out waste removal on your behalf will dispose of the waste appropriately and supply you with a Waste Transfer Notice for your peace of mind
    • Environmental Policy – since the UK Climate emergency declaration in 2019, British companies now have to show how they are acting to reduce carbon footprint and their impact on the environment. Cleaning companies should be able to supply you with their Environmental Policy and show which steps they have taken to consider the impact of their operations.
    • Accreditations – One of the best ways for a company to demonstrate they are committed to Environmental Management is to supply up-to-date certification of independent accreditations such as ISO14001
  • You wouldn’t go to your accountant for a haircut, or ask your plumber to sing at your wedding.  Likewise, the key to getting the very best service is to hire a professional who has a wealth of experience and references to show that.

    If a cleaning company cannot provide references of previous similar work, it might be worth looking around for someone who can do this.

    A caveat to this is where a company is new, but in any case, if no references are available offering character verification and evidence of transferable skills, this could raise alarm bells in a business setting.

  • It goes without saying that cost is a key consideration of procurement professionals.  This is especially relevant in the aftermath of a global pandemic where many businesses took a financial hit as operations were limited or even halted altogether.  This doesn’t mean that the lowest price will always be the best option for your business, and there are other aspects that must be taken into account (pardon the pun!)

    • Suspiciously low prices – as the saying goes, “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is”. If you receive a quote from a professional cleaning company which is dramatically lower than local competitors, this can point to issues later on, such as hidden additional costs, dramatic price increases after an initial period or financial setbacks during the life of the contract (where the company may not be able to supply the promised service at the cost).
    • Quality is a price worth paying – contract cleaning companies should be able to demonstrate that they are paying staff at a liveable wage, investing in high quality PPE, equipment and chemicals, and have appropriate management and staff cover built into the contract. These costs should be clearly detailed in your quote, with a breakdown of what the price includes, with no hidden costs.

Is there anything else?

Looking for the perfect cleaning company for your business can be overwhelming, but hopefully these questions can offer a good insight into the kind of thing to look for on your journey through professional cleaning services.  This list is by no means exhaustive, and there may well be other key considerations for your business in order to fit in with your ethos and priorities.

Let us know what else you look for in your professional cleaning, and if you need any assistance, you can contact us at website@tcmscleaning.com or on 0121 333 5824.

Digibridge Ad – “Let us know if you spot us on the Aston Expressway

Digibridge Ad – “Let us know if you spot us on the Aston Expressway 2000 900 88Admin

“Go big or go home”

“Speculate to accumulate”

“If you’ve got it, flaunt it”

These adages are at the heart of the newest move at TCMS Headquarters.

Over our 38 years in business, we have always been keen to invest in innovative equipment, methods and products, in order to grow and improve.  Sometimes these moves are decided over a period of weeks, born of careful planning and painstaking research, and others, like this one, are lightning strikes of inspiration whilst sitting in traffic on the Aston Expressway on a Monday morning commute.

Any Birmingham-based commuter will be familiar with the Aston Expressway, one of the main arterial routes into the city, and will have spotted the advertising Digibridge based there.  With sightlines from 1km away, you can’t really miss it!

The Digi-bridge is managed by Ocean Outdoor, a key player in the Digital Out Of Home advertising landscapes.  Ocean are a national company, with 148 locations across 10 major UK cities.  Alongside market leading digital screens, they also value Sustainability objectives like Ocean for Oceans with a mission to eradicate single use plastics from their business by the end of 2021 and with £2million investment into start ups championing plastic alternatives.  This sits perfectly with our ISO14001 Environmental Management commitment to reduce our impact on the environment via the partners we choose to work with.

After meeting with Ocean’s local representative, we had confirmation that this was yet another innovative move on behalf of TCMS – cleaning companies have traditionally shied away from this type of marketing in the past, and we were about to become the very first cleaning company to take our place in front of the Birmingham commuter traffic on A38.

Once the decision had been made to go ahead with the advertisement, it was clear that we needed to produce a clear, relevant and beautiful piece of artwork to sit proudly on the Digi-bridge, alongside household names such as Stella Artois, Ford and EE.

We are so proud to be flying the flag for Birmingham cleaning companies, pride of place in the commuter heart of the city.  From Monday May 17th.

Let us know if you see the others, and your thoughts on our social media or via info@tcmscleaning.com

Reopening after a year in lockdown

Reopening after a year in lockdown 2000 2000 88Admin

Monday 17th May marks the penultimate step towards the light at the end of a long, dark and uncertain tunnel.  Boris Johnson has announced that, as of this date, changes will be made to the restrictions we’ve all been living under since the Coronavirus pandemic took hold on 20th March 2020.

The vaccination process has been successfully rolled out, with in excess of 67% of the UK adult population having received the first dose of the jab, and more than a third having had both.  Globally, over 1.2bn vaccinations have been delivered, as seen on the WHO live dashboard covid19.who.int.  Real time data available here – coronavirus.data.gov.uk shows that the number of Covid-related deaths in the UK has dropped by a third* and hospital admissions are down by a quarter*

As a result of the success of the roadmap and the efforts made at large by the public, 17th May sees us moving to the following changes:

Rule of Six – now extended to indoors, allowing six people or two households to spend time in each other’s homes, with domestic overnight stays allowed
Hugging to be allowed again outside of households and bubbles, with people urged to remain cautious
Restaurants, pubs and hospitality venues are allowed to reopen indoor seating, with table service
Indoor entertainment venues such as cinemas and theatre will be able to reopen
Domestic holidays extended to the Rule of Six rather than household only, with international holidays permitted subject to a traffic light system
Businesses will now be subject to Covid safety guidelines to ensure they are following the rules to keep customers and staff safe and keep the risk of virus transmission at bay.

The role of cleaning post-pandemic

It is no coincidence that the initial advice, once WHO announced Coronavirus as a pandemic, was centred on hygiene.  Thorough handwashing and antibacterial sanitisers have been a staple discussion point since February 2020 and the importance of these actions in reducing risk has been in the spotlight, for good reason.  The fact remains, however, that these are just the start for businesses looking to embrace safety in post-pandemic Britain.

Key decision makers in businesses are now looking at their cleaning schedules with new information, and the frequency, effectiveness and attention to detail of these schedules and the products used can be all the difference in how smoothly a business navigates the reopening of offices and hospitality venues.

It can be a minefield as a business owner to manage these services when the focus needs to be on recouping costs lost during a pandemic and settling staff back into the workplace with new working methods.  Trawling through the safety data sheets of various products and training and monitoring staff to manage the cleaning routine takes valuable time away from your business priorities.

Having a contracted cleaning service in place can ease these issues.  By choosing the right cleaning company to provide regular, scheduled cleaning, you can ensure that all necessary areas are being meticulously covered, and that the products are safe, effective and suitable.  Staff are fully trained and focused on their roles and provided with all necessary PPE.  Initial decontamination fogging services and surface testing can be added for extra peace of mind, from a provider with whom you have built a strong working relationship.

Based in Birmingham, TCMS have been offering both regular contract cleaning and periodic deep cleaning, locally and nationwide, for over 35 years.  These services include washrooms, kitchen and canopy and floor maintenance.  We are passionate about getting businesses thriving again, and watching the UK re-open up, safer than before.

If you would like a quote for regular or periodic commercial cleaning, you can call us on 0121 333 5824 or email us at info@tcmscleaning.com

*as of May 10th compared to prior 7 days

The benefits of regular office cleaning

The benefits of regular office cleaning 2000 1022 88Admin

Whatever your business sector, keeping your business premises clean, hygienic and presentable is indisputably important.

Retail business spend thousands on presenting the most desirable space to encourage shoppers to enjoy their stores and online operations.  Hospitality establishments know that washroom cleaning or a dirty utensil can be critical in online reviews, an ever-growing factor in a fierce industry.  Food preparation areas undergo stringent scrutiny from Environmental Health, and any discrepancies in sanitation in a healthcare or academic setting can be catastrophic, as the recent pandemic has sadly illuminated.  A study published in the American Journal of Infection Control showed established links between cleaning quality and hospital-acquired infections (Murphy 2002)

What’s more, the prevalence of information on social media can spread low scores or non-conformance information across your target audience in a matter of hours, meaning that any ambivalence to cleaning duties can cause potentially irreparable damage to your business.

The difficulty with cleaning is that, all too often, there is some role ambivalence regarding who the duties should fall to.  Whilst it is in everyone’s interest to pitch in, regular cleaning (rather than tidying) is rarely detailed in job descriptions for on site staff.  This can lead to the following issues:

  • Irregular or inconsistent application, due to fluctuation in workloads or staff rotas
  • Resentment caused by inequity between staff members carrying out the bulk of cleaning duties
  • Difficulty in reaching standardized cleaning levels without set “Service Level Agreements” detailing which areas should be prioritized and the level to which those areas should be cleaned
  • Affect on staff workload, with staff falling behind due to time spent working outside of a previously agreed job description

One way to avoid delegating cleaning duties to existent staff members is to directly employ cleaning staff inhouse.  A benefit of this is that this staff member can report directly to you, and you can cut potential costs associated with dealing with contract cleaning companies.  If you have a minimal cleaning need (one day per week, for example), this might be the best solution for your business, but it is not without drawbacks.  In our experience, companies have fed back that employing cleaning staff directly also has disadvantages, such as:

  • The need to manage all payroll obligations for the employed cleaner, such as PAYE, HR and NI, which can include larger outgoings such as parental leave, carer’s leave or long term sick pay. These costs can often be higher than the actual employee wage.
  • Health & Safety obligations, such as providing COSHH assessments, Risk Assessments, Method Statements and PPE for cleaning staff, who will often be exposed to cleaning chemicals, manual handling and working with electrical machinery.
  • Time taken to draw up detailed cleaning specifications, and manage and monitor them with inhouse SLAs
  • Management of the procurement of all necessary chemicals, equipment and consumables without which an inhouse cleaner would find it difficult to complete their duties.

Taking the above into account, a study by The International Facility Management Association (IFMA) estimates that in-house cleaning is, on average, 23% more expensive than contract cleaning services.  Alongside this, it offers a huge amount in added value, in removing the mental load associated with directly managing cleaning services, either by current staff or directly employed cleaners.

When you engage a professional contract cleaners to service your business, you are getting far more than cleaners on site.  Dedicated cleaning companies manage the entirety of the process, from detailed cleaning specifications, to efficient recruitment and staff management, through to the monitoring of agreed KPIs.  The quote price you receive from us is inclusive of these duties, and issues can be resolved with one telephone call or email, allowing you to focus on your own business growth.  Once mobilized and functional, the extent of your involvement can be reduced to a monthly catch up and the payment of an invoice, although we actively encourage core client representatives to have as much input as they wish, and seek to build long-term fulfilling relationships between staff.

Full and ongoing specialist training is built into the core of our business, and our Health & Safety accreditations demonstrate our commitment to safeguarding staff and service users from both our company and yours.

Recruitment is carried out in line with Equality policies, with clear person specifications, and our staff are DBS-approved and work in line with Safeguarding policies (essential in our academic and public sector work).

Additionally, as a commercial cleaning company with many specialized expertise, it is extremely straightforward to add extra deep cleaning services, such as external window cleaning or floor maintenance, to your services from a trusted supplier without adding the burden of procurement.

Whatever your sector, and however you currently meet your cleaning needs, if you feel that we can make your business life easier with our regular or periodic cleaning services, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

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