Green cleaning is certainly not new. Scores of facilities throughout North America now have an effective green cleaning program in place. And in many situations, this strategy not only includes the transfer from traditional cleaning chemicals and equipment to those that are green and sustainable, but it often involves adopting cleaning procedures and practices that are now considered essential to an effective green cleaning program.
However, a big concern among many professional cleaning experts is that facility managers and cleaning professionals will become complacent about green cleaning and green cleaning practices, believing they have learned and now know all there is to learn. This complacency works against green cleaning because managers and custodial workers start to forget what the green cleaning program is all about, why they are selecting and practicing green cleaning, and worst of all, may actually drift back to using more traditional, non-green cleaning products and procedures.
Here are some suggestions on ways to stop complacency and keep green cleaning alive and well in your facility.
Look for new technologies. Ask suppliers what knew technologies have recently been introduced that help foster green cleaning. It must be admitted, some first-generation green cleaning products did not always meet performance expectations. However, many manufacturers are now on their second, third, and even fourth generation of green cleaning products, encompassing new technologies that have improved their performance and cost effectiveness.
Meet with competing vendors. It is usually a good practice to select only one vendor to purchase green cleaning products from. If for no other reason, they know your facility and your cleaning challenges. However, this does not mean you can’t meet with competing vendors to see what they have to offer. They may be working with suppliers that have introduced innovative green products your current supplier does not offer.
See what other buildings are doing. Managers and cleaning workers can learn a lot by seeing how other facilities are practicing a green cleaning program. What typically happens in these meetings is the discovery of new green cleaning products as well as an exchange of ideas that continues long after.
Educate cleaning workers. Most cleaning experts agree that just as in other professions, ongoing education is necessary for cleaning workers. Not only do they learn new practices and procedures that can help improve their cleaning effectiveness, but also they are reminded why your facility went green in the first place.