I recently attended a day-cleaning training academy featuring a number of leading experts on the subject, including Robin Grouette, Steve Spencer and Dave Hewett, among others. While listening to the seminars, I noticed a recurring theme: Without good communication, day-cleaning programs will fail.


Building service contractors need to start conversing with facility managers and building occupants well before any cleaning takes place. In fact, the consultants recommended BSCs start explaining the transition to day-time cleaning about five months before the launch date. Every 30 days send an e-mail describing how cleaning will now take place while occupants are present. As the launch gets closer, increase the frequency of these e-mails to weekly and post notices in company newsletters, on bulletin boards or on the chairs of occupants. That way no one will have any excuse that they didn’t know that the change was coming (because these complaints will happen).


Once launch day arrives, don’t expect to do much cleaning, but rather make it an event. Have all hands on deck to demonstrate how cleaning will take place and answer any questions. (Having a launch day on Monday will help because the building will have just been cleaned over the weekend, so skipping a day will be OK).


Maintaining this communication once cleaning commences will be vital. Janitors will need to know if building occupants don’t want to be disturbed — i.e. mastering the art of the “wave-off.” And occupants must understand that continual wave-offs are the reason for no service.


As the program continues, keep up with e-mails and flyers to explain any changes to the program and also communicate benefits, such as lower energy bills.


The biggest obstacle to day cleaning is a fear of change. Communication will calm fears and make the transition a success.