As we draw another year of uncertainty to a close, it’s not just those last minute presents you need to think about… Read on for our top tips on successfully planning your office closure so you can fully enjoy the festive break knowing everything is covered and will be ready for a brilliant start to 2022.
1 | ChristMAS not ChristMESS! Festivities Unfortunately Create Extra Mess
It’s inevitable that if your Christmas party goes ahead this year, it is going to create extra mess. While everyone in the office enjoys the festive cheer, food is aplenty and tinsel, wrapping and pine needles go everywhere, someone has to be on hand to keep it clean for those not partaking in the revelries.
Be sure to plan ahead for your party season and ensure you have adequate cleaning cover planned for clearing up after any major events in the office.
2 | No One Like a Grinch. Recognise the Silent Heroes in Your Team
Don’t be afraid to invite your cleaner to join in the with the office festivities be it the party, a mince pie or even the office secret santa plans.
Your cleaning and maintenance teams would love to be included and unlike many other colleagues, they will most likely stay on after to clean up for you too! While the work away in the background, often unseen and unheard – being recognised as part of your sider team and their success is one of the biggest motivators for our cleaners and just a little gratitude goes a long, long way.
3 | Dear Santa, We’ve Been Good and This Year We’d Like a Plan Please!
If you can, it’s helpful to create a closure plan and communicate it with your teams and your key partners (cleaning and maintenance teams and any relevant suppliers).
It will let people know what is planned, what availability there is for access (keyholding) and who the emergency contacts will be when the premises are shut. It should detail all security requirements as well as explaining any other policies you have in place (e.g. switch off to save energy etc).
Check in early with your Cleaning Contract Manager and communicate your needs for Christmas and New Year as early as possible. Also, think about:
- Tackling changes to rotas, payroll and task planning early to save stress later in the month.
- Revisiting your Covid-19 Continuity Plans & Risk Assessments (especially considering recent changes to government guidelines).
- Reorganising collections for normal, confidential and sanitary waste and recycling.
- Asking employees to leave desks clear of clutter (and drawers clear of perishables) and plan for those on leave so cleaners can clean thoroughly (this might include asking employees to declutter and remove personal items that prevent cleaning around desks or floors).
- Booking in all routine servicing and ad hoc maintenance jobs.
Getting ahead with planning your closure in advance will mean you can sit back and relax this Christmas with the family.
4 | 5 Gold Rings Golden Opportunities. The Deep & IT Cleaning Tasks to Tackle
During the pandemic, creating a culture of self-care has been critical for businesses and their employees but all to often we can neglect the environment in which we work.
Use the rare opportunity presented by closing your office for more than a weekend to take care of those deep cleaning tasks which will make all the difference when you return in the New Year:
- Deep clean fridges, freezers and kitchen appliances like dishwashers and microwaves
- Deep clean IT equipment
- Clean the high- and low-level areas not covered in daily cleaning
- Descaling wet areas and toilets
- Wash out all internal and external bins
- Clean your soft furnishings
- Pay attention to any special or unusual parts of your offices. We see all sorts of amazing perks, from indoor climbing walls and fish tanks, to retro games machines and nap pods! Whatever makes your premises unique – make sure its being serviced and cleaned properly as not all these oddities will be covered by a standard daily cleaning contract.
5 | Spring Cleaning for Santa: It’s the Perfect Time for Periodic Cleaning Jobs Too
The Christmas break is the ideal time to carry out all your periodic cleaning and maintenance tasks. Things to consider getting done this Christmas:
- Floor polishing and buffing
- External and internal window cleaning
- Gum removal
- Descale kettle and appliances
- Grout cleaning
- Blind & curtain cleaning
- Service and clean water coolers, vending machines etc
- Purge the place of wastepaper and get shredding up to date
- Restock the spoons, kitchenware etc and always remove chipped or damaged items that harbour germs
6 | Brrr!! Get Ahead of the Brutal Weather
The office might be closed to staff but be sure to arm yourself with ample stocks for bad weather (e.g. salt / grit). While you might not be traipsing in on a rare white Christmas Day, your cleaning operatives might be and they still need safe passage and the tools to do their job effectively and safely.
Keep good stocks of key supplies including salt, consumables, PPE and cleaning products to keep the wheels moving over the Christmas break. Also remember to bear in mind the impact freezing conditions can have on pipes and plumbing and mitigate accordingly. This is another reason, emergency contact planning is really helpful should anything bad happen while the premises are closed.
7 | The Gift That Keeps on Giving: Ample Time for Important Maintenance
Maintenance tasks can be hugely disruptive in working hours and there isn’t an employee in the land who doesn’t dread the regular fire alarm test which usually goes off mid-client call. Use this quiet time to get to grips with all maintenance jobs and maximise the life of your key physical assets – your employees will thank you:
- Book in regular servicing
- Test alarms and security systems
- Service the air ventilation and any potential conditioning units
- Replace lights
- Fix plumbing or electrical issues
- General repairs and decoration
8 | Look What Santa Bought Us! Cleaning Up After Surprise Office Improvements
You may choose to renovate or improve your workspace over the Christmas period while you are closed, it may even be a nice surprise to help motivate your teams in the New Year (aren’t you nice!).
Closure allows for a little rethink of layout too. Rearranging workspaces can have a big impact on teamwork, collaboration, focus and productivity. It also gives an ideal opportunity to clean deeply behind furniture and items that might not otherwise ever move.
All maintenance and building works, (even just adding new furniture) creates additional dirt, grime and can pollute the air with nasty VOCs. When thinking about what changes will make the most impact in 2022, be sure to organise the relevant cleaning support so that improvements can look their best when they are unveiled.
9 | Boxing Day Throwout – Clean Out & Upgrade Your Cleaning Cupboard
The festive period is a great time to check cleaning and maintenance equipment is compliant and fit for purpose.
We suggest you take time to clean your equipment, conduct PAT testing, do inventory checks and organise the cupboard ready for the New Year. No one is motivated by returning to their place of work to find it a jumbled mess and cleaners are no different.
10 | New Year’s Resolutions: Implement Positive Changes to Kick Off the NY with a Socially & Environmentally Positive Bang
They say change is not easy and there is never a good time to make big changes, but this time of year is probably THE best time to take the leap and implement big changes if you have appetite to.
Whether it’s for the benefit of your people, your community or the environment – there are lots of things you can change about how you manage your premises that will make a tangible difference worth talking about:
- Consider switching to all natural, safer to use probiotic cleaning products. It’s a gift to your cleaners, your teams and the environment too.
- Invest in regular sanitary misting to promote better health and wellbeing in the workplace.
- Implement more sustainable cleaning and working practices – go paperless, start recycling, implement a Living Wage pay policy… the opportunities to make a difference in this way are really endless!
We hope these tips will prove useful for you. Please speak to us if we can help you prepare to start 2022 with a bang.
Finally, from everyone here at The Clean Space may we take this opportunity to wish all our readers – season’s greetings and here’s to a happy, healthy and safe New Year.