A disinfection program for the 21st century customer

The cleaning industry has experienced constant change during the last several years.

We have transitioned to better cleaning processes, which have resulted in a better work environment for custodial staff and a safer indoor environment for building occupants.

We have adjusted to a different kind of customer, the 21st century customer who is more knowledgeable about our business and the cleaning industry than ever before.

We have been forced to implement new technologies into how we provide services to our customers. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are called upon to adjust the way once again we do business.

Now more than ever, it is vital that we demonstrate that we are experts in the cleaning, sanitising, and disinfecting of our customers’ facilities.

You need to identify the benefits your disinfection program brings to your customers. You can show these benefits in the following areas:

  • Training program – What is included in your training program that will benefit your customers? Remember building occupants are now bombarded with information on disinfection. Emphasise that proper training allows your staff to properly disinfect your customers’ facilities.
  • Technology – Provide an overview of the technology used in different disinfection programs. Describe the disinfection process that you use and explain the benefits to your customer.
  • Management – How are you going to assure your customers that your staff will adhere to the agreed upon disinfection program? What type of documentation will you provide to customers?

Customer communication

We’ve learned how important customer communication is during the pandemic. The 21st century customer wants to be informed! What more can you do to demonstrate your organisation’s expertise?

Develop a pandemic disinfection team to keep the communication lines open. This team should be composed of the following:

  1. Operations management (managers, supervisors, leads)
  2. Frontline representative (utility person, custodian)
  3. Executive management (CEO, vice president of operations, or owner)
  4. Distributor representative
  5. Manufacturer representative (disinfectant manufacturer, equipment representative)
  6. Customer representative (a customer who has benefited from your program)

Website marketing

The 21st century customer vets prospective building service contractors by researching the service providers’ websites. Here are some simple ways your website can highlight benefits of doing business with you:

Show customers – All pictures on your website should show your actual employees and always show your company logo. Make sure pictured employees are wearing proper personal protective (PPE).

Educate customers – Explain the difference between cleaning, sanitising, and disinfecting. Highlight your methods and offer a clear contact for customer questions. Let them know you have a disinfection team in place.

The pandemic is changing our lives, and some say this change is the new normal. As an industry we can adapt, but more importantly, we can lead.

We need to be the drivers of change and provide our customer with safe and healthy facilities. That is what the 21st century customer expects of us.

Ron Segura is president of Segura Associates. 

This article was re-published with permission in the March/April issue of INCLEAN magazine 

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