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Choosing A Cleaning Contractor

If you own or are responsible for maintaining a large establishment, then you’ll need to have the place cleaned everyday. Pubs always need proper cleaning and janitorial services to ensure a clean and healthy working environment and a comfortable and hygienic place for their customers.

Maintaining in-house cleaning staff can be problematic it can be a real chore supervising everything by yourself, when you could be managing other aspects of your business. The solution, in some instances, is to out-source this critical activity to a specialist cleaning contractor. These services can provide you a hassle free solution to all your cleaning needs. Not only will a contracted cleaning service relieve you of some of your day-to-day responsibilities, but they are more efficient and thorough with their work since this is what they do all day, everyday and more importantly it’s all they do.

The process of hiring such a company needn’t be difficult. Primarily you must make sure that you are hiring the right company for your pub. There are many factors to take care of when you make the decision to hire a commercial cleaning service.

Job Description

Be absolutely clear what it is you will want a cleaning contractor to do for you. The best way to do this is to identify the rooms and areas you need cleaning; know exactly what cleaning jobs are required; be sure of the periodic nature of some cleaning jobs (vacuuming and polishing are daily jobs, window cleaning fortnightly, high cleaning of picture rails might be monthly).

Identify and record all the jobs that need doing and the frequency of the cleaning and then estimate how long it will take to perform all those jobs efficiently and effectively. This will give you a “ball-park” figure of the man/woman hours needed each week to perform the tasks and what it would cost you in employee costs (don’t forget to factor in your Employers costs – National Insurance and Pay Roll costs). Add to this what you would spend on cleaning materials and comestibles (such as dusters, bin-liners etc) and you have the nominal in-house cost of cleaning. This is the figure you are trying to improve on.

Finding A Cleaner

You must do some research to find the most professional cleaning service providers, a first stop might be to ask other pubs who are outsourcing their cleaning work. Ask them for their opinion, as well as their experience with their current provider. This little exercise will give you an idea about what you can expect in a real life situation, despite the promises made by all the contractors.

Next, invite those cleaning service contractors to meetings that you think can handle your cleaning requirements (allow sufficient time between meetings so you can digest what each one has to offer). Whilst presenting your requirements on the tasks and frequency always listen to them and talk to them about their proposal (they may have time/material saving suggestions you haven’t considered). Ask for clarification on the information they have provided, and ask them about their other contracts as well as their references, make sure there are no hidden extras (such as Bank Holiday working rates it’s always better to know charges up front than argue over a bill later). Be sure to cover their liability insurance (for damage of your property and their public liability insurance) their COSHH (control of substances hazardous to health) and their Health and Safety Policies. Ensure there is provision for compensation if the jobs they contract to undertake are not done properly and a clear resolution process for any grievances (on either side) is in place. Get a specimen copy of their Terms and Conditions and their contract for provision of their services. Most of all take notes for later use.

Choosing The Right Contractor For You

Once all the meetings are over, go over the proposals one more time and think of the respective meeting experiences you have had with them, look at the notes you made at each meeting. Before you reach a decision, make sure that you are getting all the services that your pub requires and only the services you want. Whilst it is a good idea to go with the proposal that offers a complete solution to your needs certain elements of what they propose you may be able to source separately for less (for instance window cleaning can often be sourced locally at less than the inclusive service from a contractor).

While you are short listing companies call their references to ensure that they are reliable and competent. It is usually a good idea to go with established cleaning service companies instead of start-ups.

Above all remember these companies and their personnel will often be unsupervised in your premises during out of hours periods so you will need to have absolute trust in them (especially if they are coming in very early or very late and require keys and/or alarm codes).

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