Some building service contractors specialize in servicing small accounts (under 55,000 square feet). But doing so, and across several states, it can be difficult finding local help.

Please read the preceding article (titled “Staffing Issues for Small Account”) on this subject to understand some of my comments in this one. In summary, you can invest in a field office that will manage these sites or sub-contract the work to a local cleaning service. Both have risks and benefits based on how you are structured and what your goals are for this geographic area. If this is an isolated contract that you do not want to grow around the seriously consider the sub-contracting idea for long term. If you see opportunity to grow in this area, then you can use this account as a base to expand your operations even though you may not make much in the short term.

My experience was with the various chains of banks I serviced. Some had branches that were over 125 miles round trip and were nowhere near 55,000 SF. I would oftentimes pay a local cleaner so well that they jealously guarded the contract and were independent except for periodic supply drops and inspections. I kept contact with the customer on a regular basis to make sure everything was working as promised. I had the worker check in/out each visit and report by phone any issues such as burned out light bulbs, leaking pipes, etc. so that the customer felt they had an additional layer of management at no additional charge. I kept the worker as employees and paid them a weekly rate, which was far above minimum wage. The further out the contract, the more I was willing to pay for peace of mind.

This may or may not work in your situation.

Your comments and questions are important. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or