A commercial cleaning company operates a little differently than the average corporate operation. The number of employees working in the corporate office is minimal compared to the number in the field.

MahlerClean employees clean 9 million square feet daily. Its workers spend their time in office buildings, medical facilities, banks and manufacturing operations throughout Milwaukee, but also in Madison, Green Bay and Sheboygan in Wisconsin, as well as northern Illinois.

Keeping employees fulfilled and satisfied when the only time they might enter the corporate office is when applying for the job or attending orientation can be a challenge. 

“It’s never easy to teach people core values, get them to believe in them and practice them every day,” says Sullivan. “It is a lot more complicated to convey our core values and share best practices when most of our employees work remotely.”

Sullivan believes employee satisfaction begins upon a potential employee’s first experience with the company — when he or she visits to complete a job application. Dawn Sanders, the company receptionist and long-time employee, greets potential employees warmly as they enter.

“As money has gotten tight, many businesses no longer have receptionists,” says Sullivan. “You walk in and there is a sign instructing you to fill out an application. We want people to walk in and feel a more welcoming experience than the previous companies they’ve applied to.”

Sanders takes candidates to an inviting room with comfortable furniture, soft lighting and bright artwork to fill out their applications. Here, they’ll see three posters designed to help them apply for the right positions.

Each poster ask, “Is this you?” and then names the job, be it service rep, floor care technician or account manager. The duties of the position as well as its hours and vacation time are also posted.

“Our challenge is to find the people where this job fits their life,” says Sullivan. “Whether they have a full-time job and they need a second source of income, or they are a stay-at-home parent and need to work part-time.”

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