As the pandemic continues to impact the country and the world, facility executives are tasked with encouraging the use of proper hand hygiene throughout their facilities. Whether that is a hospital, educational facility or another commercial building, encouraging the practice of handwashing can go a long way toward keeping those buildings open and safe from viruses and bacteria.

Building service contractors have been preaching the importance of handwashing for years, and the general consensus among industry leaders is the message has been embraced by facility executives.

“Years of handwashing information was definitely absorbed by facility customers,” says Glen Huizenga, sales leader at Holland, Michigan-based Nichols. “They have understood that proper hand hygiene is important to the health of all. During COVID-19, customers have executed and applied that knowledge with the expectation that people will be washing their hands.”

Distributors can help BSCs continue to navigate the COVID waters by exploring the number of products available to promote proper hand hygiene.

Focus On Fragrance

When consumers purchase soaps at the store for home use, they will opt for a fragrance that appeals to their sense of smell, but cleaning contractors do not have that luxury. A fragrance that appeals to the nose of one building occupant could be repugnant to another and cause a person to avoid washing their hands. That’s why it’s important that BSCs work with their distributors to identify the right product for their customers.

“Fragrances and scents can sometimes become a double-edged sword,” says Keith Schneringer, director of channel marketing and sustainability for Waxie Sanitary Supply, San Diego. “While it’s recognized from hand soaps that people like to have the right fragrance, they typically don’t want something that’s overpowering. Sometimes it’s good to stick with fresh, clean scents.”

Linda Silverman, president of Maintex, City of Industry, California, believes it could benefit contractors to suggest soaps with a specific scent.

“Scents can be a pleasurable experience,” says Silverman. “They can invoke memories of cinnamon or Christmastime, for example. If people like the scent, they’re more likely to wash their hands. There are two schools of thought, but I think that your scented soaps far exceed the sales of those that are unscented.”

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