Cleaning companies under surveillance
A wise company always checks the backgrounds of its partner companies. Are they reliable, efficient and legit? Are visions and values similar? Furthermore, will they keep the image of your company clean, or is there something they could do to compromise your reputation?
According to article in ‘Suomen Kuvalehti’ (22.2.2011), background checks are often skipped when it comes to partnerships between hotels and cleaning companies. Losing your reputation is nothing compared to health risks that could be caused by this sloppiness.
When Finnish hotels decide to outsource their cleaning and laundry, there are a lot of companies to choose from and they are increasingly foreign. It can be hard to keep a track on the company that has its headquarters in another country. It just happens to be something that needs to be done. Hotels should not only pay attention to the price, but also what they get with the price. It is rather a rule than exception that when you invest more you get better quality. But it is also true that when you start tendering, the prices will go down. That’s why it is important for hotels to keep eyes open for other options and clearly express what they demand from the cleaning companies.
Hygienic and risk-free result is an obvious demand every hotel should have when choosing the cleaning companies. However, checking what really happens at the cleaning company is not something that is possible for all the hotels to do, and that’s why there should be a third party that makes sure cleaning companies do what they say they are doing. They could help the hotels to check the backgrounds and reliability of the cleaning companies. Regular checks should be made to the premises of the cleaning companies. And if there is foreigner cleaning companies on Finnish markets, that third party should have an access to their info as well. When the cleaning company can’t meet with the requirements set about hygiene, they activity should be pulled down.
Sustainability is something most of the people appreciate these days. I was inspired by the fact the Scandic hotels only use ecolabelled cleaning companies. This should be something valued by other hotels/hotel chains as well. Choosing both hygienic and sustainable cleaning companies could be done easier for hotels by creating a list of approved cleaning companies. This would also encourage cleaning companies to pay attention to the sustainability of their work. There could even be some type of ranking system for the cleaning companies with their attributes and values. This would lead to similarity in visions between hotels and cleaning companies.
However, sustainability shouldn’t be put before hygiene. As for example, mentioned in the article, one of the laundry companies Finnish hotels had been using advertised they wash their laundry in 20 degrees; to make their work more sustainable. 20 degrees isn’t clearly enough for good, hygienic result. Instead they should invest on new equipment that saves water and doesn’t use toxic detergents.
Suomen kuvalehti article, 22.02.2011
Your idea/solution in one sentence: There should be a third party that checks the reliablity of the cleaning companies and also, their sustainability.