What do we think about when we contemplate a company’s growth? Education is a key area of focus that plays a vital role. It touches a company and the industry at every stage and level.
It is not a voyage that simply ends at a destination, but rather a continual corporate journey. The question is, how are we supporting and developing this area?
From an internal perspective, practical and technical knowledge covers a range of elements and can form the educational foundation blocks for a company.
It can addresses areas such as equipment training and chemical handling, OHS requirements as well as qualifications in particular skill sets.
Over the past several years government regulations have focused on ensuring staff are not only qualified but are also competent.
Lorraine Rogic, managing director of Logic Business Resources, says one of the most consistent drivers she reinforces to business owners is the difference between training to be qualified versus training to be competent. While both elements are important, there is a difference.
From the perspective of business and internal acumen, some questions businesses should be asking are:
- How are we facilitating training and development?
- Are we creating succession plans to aid business success?
- Are we empowering our teams and enhancing staff and management skills and capabilities?
- How are we educating our customers on who we are, as well as our products and services?
- And finally, are we educating the broader business market on the needs and requirement of our industry?
In some cases these areas of education are not necessarily straight forward. However, one element is true, there is value in the time and spend.
It cannot be denied that the cleaning industry is a truly eclectic business sector, and one to be regarded. As a whole it encompasses a vast array of players across a wide spectrum of fields.
While each group shares certain fundamental training and education requirements, there are elements specific to certain niche areas, facility types and even geographic regions. Not to mention access to various support tools may not be as readily available for all.
Associations can play a vital role with supporting key areas of education and business development. This year ISSA will be investing in a business education series.
We want to support our members in developing their staff, management teams and their business and industry knowledge. This will occur across a variety of platforms, including digital, formal and informal environments.
These objectives appear to support the latest IBISWorld report findings which highlighted the future key success factors for a business within the commercial cleaning services industry. These included:
- Business expertise of operators
- Having contacts within key markets
- Ability to compete on tender
- Use of production techniques that add value to base product
Similar drivers, in a large number of global markets have historically led to an increase desire for education, training and certification. As a result globally ISSA has implemented a range of certification programs and tools to support their growing members.
Education and training are valuable tools that can strengthen a brand, build confidence with customers, motivate employees, contribute to business success, and support the credibility of an industry.
Lauren Micallef is Oceania manager for International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA)
This first appeared in INCLEAN magazine