On May 18 Contracting Profits, along with sister publications Sanitary Maintenance and Housekeeping Solutions, presented the Cleaning Innovations Virtual Conference & Expo. The event was a success, attracting more than 400 cleaning industry professionals. The virtual platform allowed building service contractors to visit a trade show floor, attend educational seminars and network with colleagues, all from the comfort of their own offices.

Attendees appreciated the fact that product information was easily and quickly accessible on the virtual trade show floor. You could either chat directly with a manufacturer or simply download the available materials.

Just like a live event, there was also a place to mingle with colleagues (though you had to bring your own drinks). The networking lounge provided an area for some great conversations among BSCs, jan/san distributors, facility executives, in-house cleaners and manufacturers. I had an interesting discussion about cleaning restrooms with water only.

Other highlights included a seminar on immigration issues by Steve Hendrickson, president of Porter Industries, a building service contractor who has earned IMAGE certification from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Also, attendees learned about day cleaning from Steve Spencer, facility manager for State Farm Insurance, which currently has 30 million square feet cleaned during daytime hours.

In my follow-up with attendees, I learned that owners liked being able to allow their entire company to experience the conference rather than just a handful of top executives that normally get to travel to live events. Though, if you were unable to attend, don’t worry. An archive of the event, including all booth information and seminar presentations, is available here, for the next three months (and like the event itself, the archive is free).

Contracting Profits and its sister publications will be putting on another virtual event this fall. Be sure to mark September 14 on your calendar now for the next virtual trade show: Cleaning Innovations: Green. Sustainable. Smart. As the name implies, this event will focus on green products and sustainable practices. Visit www.cleanlink.com for updates.