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We’re not here to tell you cleaning is sexy. But we are on a mission to convince you that commercial cleaning is more than just one cost of doing business. Rather, truly effective building or workplace hygiene management and disinfection can positively impact your bottom line. By prioritizing the health and safety of your employees and customers, we can point to specific metrics you can use to calculate a return on investment for total cleaning and hygiene management.

The Real Costs of Employee Health Hazards


You may not be aware of the strong link between employee health and productivity. But you should know that the cost of sickness is real. In fact, poor health leads to absenteeism and often a reduced quality of work, which costs much more than you’ll pay for employee health coverage.

The CDC estimates that American employers lose nearly $1,685 per employee per year, or $225.8 billion annually in productivity from absenteeism. The price is even higher for employers who rely on a large sales team for revenue. A survey published by Mercer Marsh shows that unplanned absences can lead to a significant drop in sales and customer service results. Yikes.

When you consider how quickly and easily germs spread, it’s not difficult to understand why employee illness costs so much. One contaminated door knob can infect up to 50% of patrons in your building in less than 4 hours. Moreover 75% of sink faucet handles and half of all computer mice and desk phones exhibit high levels of contamination. And those are just the surface level causes of illness.

Poor indoor air quality is another major issue, which can lead to a phenomena called sick building syndrome (SBS). SBS is a situation when multiple people in your office complain of similar problems, such as headaches, attention deficit, colds, and flu-like symptoms, which can be directly linked to their time spent in your building. The most common sources of indoor air contamination are upholstery, carpeting, synthetic fragrances, and unsafe cleaning agents.


On the other end of the same spectrum, you have presenteeism, which can be even more detrimental than absenteeism. Presenteeism is a concept that refers to the occurrence of sick employees who come to the office to work anyway. Sure they are physically present and you pay them as such, but are they really there? According to research published in the Harvard Business Review, the walking-ill at your office are at least 30% less productive than their healthy counterparts. And off-task workers can cost you an average of $2,000 per person. That’s because sick workers:

  • Get distracted and spend more time than usual on daily tasks
  • Produce less quality work
  • Feel less driven and motivated
  • Are mentally and physically incapable of performing at their peak
  • May transmit their virus or illness to other employees or customers

While people get sick for many reasons, the risk of air and surface contamination in the workplace can be mitigated. Fortunately, absenteeism and presenteeism are costs you can avoid with a sound strategy for enhanced hygiene management and disinfection services.

In fact, sound commercial cleaning helps reduce surface contamination from viruses by 62% and lowers the chances of catching a cold and flu by 80%. This can help you slash absenteeism by nearly 50% and improve productivity by nearly 10%! Plus, think of all the sales your talented team could make if they cut their sick time in half!?

Better yet–why not calculate it. According to a study of 400 employees and managers cited by The Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association, you can determine exactly how much you can save per person with the following formula:

Bottom line: A clean workplace makes happier, more motivated, and healthier workers who help directly contribute to higher profits.

First Impressions and the Value of Clean

First impressions matter when people enter your building. In fact, 95% of shoppers choose which stores to enter based solely on its exterior appearance. This is true no matter what type of organization it is. Customers value cleanliness above most other factors. If your business is dirty, smelly, or even slightly unkempt, you risk creating a poor image that will cost you real dollars.

In 2010, a Procter & Gamble (P&G) study on quick serve restaurant chains revealed consumers ranked cleanliness higher than value, speed, convenience, variety, and accuracy.  A similar study conducted by Chain Store Age asked consumers to rate retail store atmospheres by the most appealing elements. Consumers rated cleanliness the most appealing by far among 13 aspects of the store’s overall atmosphere.

Even more alarming than consumer preference towards cleanliness, is the statistic that 94% of adults will actually avoid your business in the future if they run into an unkempt bathroom.

Such impurities not only affect consumers’ perception of your business, they’ll also affect your employees’ morale. Research points to a direct link between cleanliness and mental health. And employees working in a messy or unclean space have been shown to exhibit higher levels of stress.

Protection from Lawsuits

The latest estimates from the Bureau of Labor & Statistics said there are nearly 3 million office injuries and illnesses every year–and that was pre COVID-19. Aside from causing rampant absenteeism and presenteeism, these occurrences can be major liabilities. On the other hand, when you keep your space well-maintained and disinfected, you help mitigate the type of workplace injuries and illnesses that could lead to expensive lawsuits and workers comp claims.

The most common workplace injuries are slip-and-falls, which generally occur when your floors are not properly cleaned and dried. When someone has an accident like this at your facility, the average cost of medical care is $40,000. And that does not include losses in productivity, re-staffing costs and potential OSHA penalties. Slip-n falls account for nearly 2 million injuries and 700 deaths every year. They are also the leading cause of personal injury claims and lawsuits against employers.

In addition to accident liability, you now face the threat of employees or customers contracting COVID-19 at your facility. Unfortunately, the risk is even greater if your janitorial staff is not properly trained to clean and professionally disinfect hot spots, air quality and hard to reach areas. This is why employee training is the number concern among facility managers in a recent Cleaning & Maintenance Management survey. Moreover, more than a third of respondents said their cleaning staff has no certifications or credentials at all.

That is a frightening statistic especially given the fact that there have already been several cases of patrons suing businesses whose negligence they claim directly led to contracting the virus onsite. Nursing homes have been hit the hardest by such cases, but every business faces the possibility of getting sued. Walmart, Safeway, Tyson Foods, Amazon, and McDonalds just barely scratch the surface of companies currently facing legal challenges.

Unfortunately, most small and mid-size businesses cannot afford to wait for accidents to occur before taking action. An insufficient hygiene strategy puts your people at risk of getting hurt or sick, which puts you at risk of paying high claims or getting sued for negligence. On the other hand, proactively employing frequent commercial cleaning and disinfecting services that adhere to government regulations is your best defense.

Government Agency Compliance (OSHA, CDC)

That’s one of the reasons our team at Total Cleaning is committed to compliance in every process and protocol we employ. We are certified experts in OSHA guidelines, which means our team is trained to create a safer and healthier environment for the people who work, live, and spend money at your facility. We also hold a Global Risk Advisory Council (GBAC) certification for infection prevention response and recovery. This means we have the most updated knowledge of safer cleaning solutions, state-of-art-equipment, protocol-driven training, and the proper PPE to keep you safe from harmful pathogens.

Moreover, our team fervently monitors announcements from the EPA and CDC regarding emerging viral pathogens, such as COVID-19,  and general infection control guidance. As a leading commercial cleaning and disinfection company in Florida, we are also vigilant about staying updated on state and county level regulations. We know it’s easy to fall behind the ever-changing news cycle, so we handle that for you. The risk and associated cost of missing one of the ever-changing recommendations is far too high.

Our dedication to compliance means you can significantly reduce your risk of liability. When you employ advanced hygiene and disinfection services, you are proving your commitment to the health and safety of your people and the environment.

The Bottom Line

Advanced cleaning and disinfection tactics directly affect your bottom line. This is especially true during the COVID pandemic. Allow our team at Total Cleaning to demonstrate how we can give your facility an immunity boost by helping to improve productivity, reduce absenteeism, protect your people, and lower your risk of liability. It all starts with a FREE onsite risk assessment. Call our team today.

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