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What is Industrial Cleaning? Why is it Necessary?

Logistics Facility with Clean Floor

In today’s environment, keeping your industrial facility clean and safe is critical, and easy, if you solicit the right help.

Industrial cleaning services are commercial cleaning services tailored for industrial facilities, such as warehouses, manufacturing plants and distribution centers. While the type of commercial cleaning services provided depends on the specific needs of each facility, the most commonly requested services are deep cleanings, janitorial services, hard floor cleaning and disinfection services.

In this article we will primarily focus on deep cleanings and hard floor cleanings. Deep cleanings are needed less frequently, but are the most intense and effective as they include the walls, ceilings, pipes and floors. Hard floor cleaning on the other hand is often the most frequent component of industrial cleaning services given the large size of these facilities and the need for clean and safe warehouse floors.

While most businesses understand the need for regular commercial cleaning services, some warehouses are less familiar with the range of industrial cleaning services available to them. There are a few reasons for this. In medical facilities, for example, health and cleanliness are well-understood. The same is true for high-touch consumer-facing businesses, such as restaurants and gyms, as well as corporate offices. Regular, quality cleaning is expected.

Conversely, warehouse employees operate in a large and fast-paced environment, and the team is measured by and more focused on an operational end goal. In addition, warehouses are rarely customer-facing and are usually far larger than the adjacent office space. Taken together, it’s understandable that a clean warehouse is not always top-of-mind and so the importance of warehouse cleaning can sometimes be overlooked.

But regular cleaning of a warehouse is as important as any other facility. Below we explain why.

Why is Warehouse Cleaning Important?

1. Increased Safety

Whether your warehouse is a logistics facility, distribution center or manufacturing plant, there is a lot of activity. In logistics facilities and distribution centers, employees zip up and down aisles in forklifts transferring products from one location to another. In manufacturing plants, employees manage the rapid flow of products from assembly into finished goods. In all instances, clean floors are critical to worker safety. Propane, oil spills, rubber burns, discarded wood and stray cardboard are all hazards that can put your employees at risk.

Clean floors create a safe work environment, reduce the chance for worker injuries and workers’ compensation claims and maintain a high degree of operating efficiency so your team chooses to take time off for vacation rather than needing to take time off to recover from an injury.  Regular warehouse floor maintenance is critical and increases the standards for employee protection.

In addition, warehouses often house a large number of people, and regular disinfection services protect your workers from viruses, bacteria, and other potential health hazards. Proper cleaning also helps prevent products from gathering dirt and dust and, more harmfully, from the potential for bacteria or mold to grow if you experience a leak.

2. Compliance with Health and Safety Regulations

Whether you are in the food industry and need to maintain SQF compliance or if you simply want to comply with basic health and safety standards, CleanRight has the experience and ability to ensure that your facility is cleaned to a standard that far exceeds baseline regulations. With many customers in the food industry, our practices and procedures have been tested against the strictest standards, and we have helped our customers pass upcoming audits for years.

3. Improved Productivity

Warehouse employees operate at a fast pace, and studies have shown that they are able to concentrate more effectively when unnecessary distractions are minimized. For example, a forklift operator driving up and down aisles is used to checking for incoming traffic before crossing an aisle intersection. They are trained and accustomed to doing this. They are not trained, however, to swerve out of the way of a discarded box or large spill, and their productivity will suffer if they need to continually slow down to check for and avoid such items. A warehouse with clear aisles and minimal dust and debris improves efficiency.

4. Enhanced Appearance

At CleanRight, we have stepped foot in many warehouses, and the differences among them are substantial. This is true not only from an operating perspective – how automated are their processes and how efficient is their layout, for example – but also from a cleanliness perspective – how clean and organized are their floors and workspaces? We’ve seen some warehouses littered with discarded inventory, broken crates and other debris and others with spotless floors for as far as one can see. All employees take pride in their workspace and maintaining a clean and safe environment is an easy way to convey a high-standard of performance to everyone that enters your facility.

This is even more true for your customers. When dust circulates in the air it settles not only on your floors and shelves but also on your products. Customers, regardless of whether they are consumers or other businesses, expect clean products, and a quick and easy way to lose a customer is by shipping them products that look dusty and old, or worse products with mold or bacteria.

What to Consider When Hiring a Company to Deep Clean Your Warehouse?

A warehouse deep cleaning is one of the most technical and advanced forms of cleaning in the industry. Ensuring that you select an experienced company is critical to achieve a positive outcome. Below are some key factors to evaluate as you select a commercial cleaning company to provide warehouse deep cleaning services.

1. What Equipment Will Be Used for the Deep Cleaning?

If you have production equipment, make sure the cleaning company understands that it should be covered prior to starting the job. Painters plastic is typically a great option, but confirm the cleaning crew is prepared to wrap the equipment before the cleaning begins. For most warehouse deep cleanings, a scissor lift is required, and when working around and above production equipment, an articulating boom lift is also helpful. Lifts are expensive to rent so make it clear as to whether or not you would like the cleaning company to bear that cost. In addition to plastic and lifts, large ladders, blowers, industrial size dusters, industrial vacuums, dust mops and automatic floor scrubbers are critical requirements.

2. How Many People Will Be Used for the Deep Cleaning?

Warehouse deep cleaning jobs are very intense and require a lot of manpower. While there is not an exact science to determining crew size, make sure the team seems adequate for the size of the facility and your timeline. 

3. Does Your Crew Have the Ability to Complete the Work on Your Schedule?

Before doing a walkthrough of the facility, ensure that the cleaning company has the flexibility and capacity to work on your schedule. Deep cleanings usually need to occur when production equipment is not being used, so confirm the professional cleaning company you select for the job understands the schedule and can execute on your required timeline. 

What to Consider When Hiring a Company to Clean Your Warehouse Floors?

While regular disinfection and janitorial services are important, they are also more widely understood, so below we share a few questions to ask if you are considering hiring a commercial cleaning company to provide floor cleaning services.

1. What Equipment Will Be Used to Clean the Floors?

Ask about their equipment and machinery. For a large space, a warehouse floor scrubber will deliver the best clean. Manually mopping or sweeping a 1,000,000 square feet warehouse is insufficient by themselves. A machine—and for larger warehouses multiple machines—is necessary to clean warehouse floors thoroughly. Make sure you understand what machines are being used, what they do and the overall steps involved in the cleaning process.

2. What Schedule Do You Intend to Follow?

A regular floor maintenance program is the best way to maintain your warehouse. Ask the company how often they plan to touch each inch of your warehouse and why. High-traffic areas where debris and packing materials build up require more frequent cleaning, and the cleaning frequency may differ for different areas based on need. Check that the cleaning schedule does not interfere with your production or operating schedule. The commercial cleaner should accommodate your schedule by working through the night or on weekends.

3. Can Adjustments Be Made to the Cleaning Program?

It’s important to be flexible early in the cleaning program. Sometimes the cleaning frequency or scope may need to be adjusted up or down based upon your experience. For example, if you are getting your warehouse cleaned for the first time, you may find that a certain area requires more frequent service than you had originally anticipated due to traffic in that particular area of your facility.

Why You Should Give CleanRight a Call?

Warehouses vary widely in their size and needs. Some warehouses are as small as 1,000 square feet, while others are millions of square feet with multiple stories. Regular floor maintenance of warehouse floors is a significant and demanding job, and most commercial cleaning companies don’t have the teams, machines and experience to do it. At CleanRight, we have seen and cleaned them all.

We also have significant disinfection and janitorial services experience in large spaces and with heavy machinery. We will work with you to develop a customized plan with specific services and a unique cleaning frequency tailored to your warehouse. That way, your employees can work most productively at their jobs. If you are in need of industrial cleaning services or would like to learn more, call CleanRight at (404) 267-1312, or contact us online today!

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