49% of remote employees have returned to the office full-time as of 2022, according to Zippia.com. While many have returned to the office, however, a clean workspace is an essential component in keeping everyone healthy and in maintaining an attractive brand — even in a post-pandemic setting. From understanding just how vital workplace cleanliness is to how one can implement a positive working environment surrounding the topic, here are just three important things to consider when looking to create a healthier business atmosphere.
Health concerns that lurk in an office
A clean workplace might sound simple enough, though it’s necessary to realize that it isn’t as simple as mopping the floors. “People spend a large amount of their daily life in the confines of the office where shared spaces and high interaction with shared surfaces increases the amount of microbes on surfaces and in the air,” explains Krissi Hewitt, director of institutional research and strategic initiatives at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics. That said, everything from the fridge to the phones, computer mice, door handles and bathrooms all bring to light the potential for germs to hide — and spread — within the workplace.
When looking to understand the parts of the office which hold the most risk, American researchers conducting a 13-month study found an impressive 4,800 surfaces in office buildings were “officially dirty.” This includes high-contact surfaces, such as computer keyboards, microwaves, and fridge doors, which were among the most dirty surfaces. The Conversation highlights the relation between these findings and the rise of shared-desk workplaces and open-plan offices, citing that those in open-plan spaces actually have a 62% higher incidence of sickness absence than those in shared cellular or private offices.
Setting the foundation for a healthy workplace
To further illustrate the concern of workplace wellness and office cleanliness, as many as 90% of workers go to work while under the weather, according to one 2019 report from Robert Half. Not only can this lead to an illness spreading among employees, but it can magnify the issue of spreading germs while at work, especially if the workplace isn’t kept clean in the first place. Establishing an environment that makes cleanliness a priority is just one way to set the foundation for a healthy workplace. In addition to stressing the importance of calling off when sick, simply placing signs that encourage hand washing in restrooms and lounges and making cleaning products readily available (disinfecting wipes, hand sanitizer/soap, etc.) can all help cultivate a positive culture that embraces cleanliness.
Maintaining cleanliness — and a good first impression
While the environment of the workplace plays a role in maintaining a clean office and the health of current employees, it can also be an attractive quality to prospective employees, too. During an interview, for instance, the visual appearance of a clean workplace can put the individual at ease, especially in a post-pandemic world. That said, a clean workplace and positive culture can also be a smart way to boost your brand — not only does this show that your business is well-kept and cares about employee health, but it can be an attractive quality to present/prospective clients by making a fantastic first impression, too.
While encouraging cleanliness in a workplace can be done by establishing a positive environment, physically cleaning the space on a regular basis remains necessary. Cleaning an office, however, is a large endeavor, and maintaining it can be even more challenging if a cleaning crew isn’t on staff. Enlisting the help of a professional cleaning service is just one idea worth considering, and can not only bring peace of mind to a business, but will allow employees to thrive in a healthy and productive environment. With the ability to choose from a variety of cleaning services, personalization can be made easy and will ensure that you’re getting exactly what is needed. Options can include deep cleaning, eco-friendly cleaning, and even organization, allowing for an impeccable workplace as a result. This can be a great option for workspaces that need to be cleaned frequently (such as those with an open/shared floorplan), as booking services online can present as a convenient solution.
An unclean workplace can not only be unappealing to work at or do business with, but it also presents an unhealthy environment for anyone present. With that in mind, implementing a regular cleaning routine in addition to a positive workplace environment regarding workplace cleanliness can prove to be key in maintaining a healthy work environment.
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