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EcoPro - creating healthy environments

the 8-point guide to choosing the right commercial cleaning company

We've identified the 8 Criteria you should consider when choosing a Commercial Cleaner. 


1.

All employees have been security checked and references verified

All cleaners and all their team members are thoroughly checked through the Ministry of Justice pre-employment vetting system.  All cleaners and contractors must be photo ID-checked and references verified.

2.

Service levels are maintained in accordance with the schedule and environmental procedures

Managers check standards against a Quality Assurance programme in order to maintain contractual obligations as set out in Service Level Agreements.

3.

The rate of customer churn

If client retention rates are less than 2 years, this could be evidence of poorly maintained standards. Researching, evaluating and vetting a new commercial cleaning contractor is a time-consuming process which business owners/managers prefer to undertake as infrequently as possible. Ask the commercial cleaner you’re evaluating, what the average rate of customer retention is.

4.

Fairly paid skilled contractors and workers

The document ‘The Principles for a Sustainable Property Services Industry’ is one that was put together by the Property Council of New Zealand, the New Zealand Government, the Service and Food Workers Union and the Building Service Contractors Association of NZ.

The purpose of the document is to ensure service providers (or cleaning companies) display high ethical and corporate standards at all times. They must also be seen to fairly compensate and treat commercial cleaning industry workers. This has required industry participants to up-skill and properly train contractors and workers.

As a minimum requirement, any reputable commercial cleaning provider should be able to demonstrate adherence to the ‘Principles for a Sustainable Property Services Industry’.

5.

Demonstrable cost saving benefits

The provider can prove the cost savings they’ve helped clients achieve. They do not make bold un-verifiable claims.

6.

Products, processes and services licensed by Environmental Choice NZ

Environmental Choice NZ (ECNZ) recognises the genuine moves made by manufacturers to reduce the environmental impacts of their products and provides a credible and independent guide for consumers who want to purchase products that are better for the environment. Any business licensed by ECNZ, has undergone an exhaustive evaluation of its processes, products and people, in order to achieve internationally benchmarked standards.

For example, the cleaning chemicals used must be certified ‘eco-labelled’ products and carry the ECNZ eco-tick. The cleaning processes, including those for handling and best use of chemicals, must be ECNZ licensed and only the best possible equipment should be used. Where possible, licensed ECNZ alternatives on all washroom consumables must also be used. ECNZ certified commercial cleaning companies must also adhere to the ‘Principles for a Sustainable Property Services Industry’.

As a minimum requirement, an eco-aware commercial cleaner should be able to demonstrate adherence to internationally recognised environmentally-friendly cleaning standards. The full ECNZ Cleaning Services standard EC-45-09 document can be viewed on their website.

7.

Green Star rated in accordance with the New Zealand Green Building Council regulations

The New Zealand Green Building Council recognises buildings which create a healthy, efficient, productive and environmentally sustainable building for New Zealanders to live and work in. Building owners can have the building evaluated and rated based on the Green Star system, which is an expensive and rigorous process. Owners invest in the process because of demonstrable proof, that healthy buildings result in fewer lost days due to employee sickness.

If your building is Green Star rated, the harsh chemicals and bleach based products used by an uninformed commercial cleaning company, can potentially compromise your green building eco-system. This can be counter-productive, in relation to reducing the number of lost work days due to sickness.

Again, as a minimum requirement, an eco-aware commercial cleaner should be able to demonstrate adherence to internationally recognised environmentally-friendly cleaning standards.

8.

Independent third party auditing of environmental procedures which must also comply with Environmental Choice standards

The company should be able to prove they are independently and annually audited by a recognised international standards-based authority.

 


Members of NZ Green Building CouncilSponsors of Project AwareWinners - "Excellence in Sustainability"
 

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