Cubicles are found in a majority of commercial office buildings. The partition dividers, which often hide dust and stains by design, are among the most neglected areas in many office buildings.

“Trying to convince customers that cubicles should be cleaned is really tough — yet those are one of the biggest filtering medias that you have in the building,” Yeadon says.

Cubicles are commonly covered with a layer of polyester fabric and collect dust and other airborne debris. They also collect stains associated with workers eating and drinking at their desks, from coffee spills to soup splatters. Not only should BSCs offer to vacuum cubicle walls regularly, but they should also include spotting in upholstery cleaning services.

Each person sheds about a gram and a half of dead skin cells per day, Jasper says. That alone should make customers want to prioritize regular dusting and vacuuming. However, the real concern with dust lies in dust mites, whose allergenic droppings threaten indoor air quality.

While it’s good that partitions and furniture capture and hold dust, they should be cleaned on a regular basis to prevent dust mites from causing problems indoors, Jasper says.

“The office partitions get more of the airborne-type soil, so it’s best to use the cleaning agents that are a little more solvent, such as pre-sprays,” he adds. “Cleaning partitions is a very fast process — and very profitable.”

When cleaning cubicles, always check with the facility manager to make sure that any electrical or phone cords that may be running through them can be unplugged. Also, find out whether there is a cardboard backing behind the fabric, as that affects how much moisture should be used.

Upholstery cleaning is a must in any building where indoor air quality is a priority. It’s also important to remove visible stains or damage from foods, beverages, sweat, skin oils and more. Cleaning should be recommended to most commercial office customers once every 12 or 24 months.

One rule of thumb Morrow lives by: “If you see the soil, you’ve waited too long to get it clean,” he says.

Offering to bundle carpet and upholstery services is a great way to introduce customers to upholstery cleaning without scaring them away by the price increases caused by an additional service.

“Everyone comes in and does the floors, but they skip over the upholstery and the cubicles. But if you were to go in and give them one price for all three, with the idea to keep the building at a high level of clean rather than do a restorative cleaning once or twice a year when things start to look bad, you could potentially be cleaning them every month,” Jasper says. 

Lisa Ridgely is a freelance writer based in Milwaukee. She is the former Deputy Editor of Contracting Profits.

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