Keep Employees Healthy by Maintaining a Tidy Office

by Johnny Palleres

In nearly all work environments, there are two types of desks: the ones that are clean and organized, and others that have papers and leftover food wrappers cluttering the desktop. A dirty office can lead to a loss in productivity as employees worry about their health and lose focus on their daily tasks.

The average office keyboard has 400 times more bacteria on it than a toilet, according to the National Center of Health. These bacteria are usually harmless; however, if an employee does get sick it means the business will suffer, as the person has to take time off to recover. 

Here are three additional areas to focus on when cleaning the workplace.

Clean the door handles. One of the most-often-overlooked places in the office where it comes to cleaning are the door handles. As one of the most-touched places in the office, door handles harbor bacteria and viruses that lead to illnesses. According to a study by the American Society for Microbiology, “Using disinfecting wipes containing quaternary ammonium compounds registered by EPA as effective against viruses like norovirus and flu, along with hand hygiene, reduced virus spread by up to 80 to 99 percent.” Office cleaning should include wiping down door handles throughout the office with disinfectant spray or wipes on a regular basis, at least three times per week.

Clean the office equipment. It’s important to regularly clean office equipment used by everyone. This includes phones, printers and computer devices, especially the mice. These areas accumulate dust and bacteria quickly. Dust build-up on these machines can lead to them breaking down.

Dusting and disinfecting these devices on a regular basis, at least three times per week, will help keep the employees safe.

Office chairs, especially adjustable chairs, have many nooks and crannies where dust, lint, crumbs and hair can accumulate. The accumulation of organic material can lead to the formation of bacteria that may cause illness. These should be wiped down at least once a week, making sure to get in all the crevices.

Clean the bathroom. If the office bathrooms are not regularly and thoroughly cleaned, illness-causing germs can build up and spread. Along with keeping employees safe from bacteria, the office bathroom says a lot about the business. According to a 2017 Hand Washing Survey by Bradley Corporation, 89% of Americans believe the condition of the office bathroom is a key indicator of how a company values its employees. Businesses should have the bathrooms cleaned multiple times per week if not every day, making sure the cleaning service hired uses disinfectants and wipes down all surfaces, including stall doors, soap dispensers, faucets, sinks, floors and mirrors.

By cleaning the workplace on a regular basis, such as with a commercial cleaning business that can clean it on a fixed schedule, businesses improve the focus and well-being of their employees.   

Johnny Palleres is owner of Phoenix-based DLR Commercial Cleaning, which has serviced more than 500 clients in the Greater Phoenix area.

Did You Know: The average office keyboard has 400 times more bacteria on it than a toilet, according to the National Center of Health.

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