An important step in the commercial cleaning sales process is the site visit or facility tour. While it is possible to receive a reasonable proposal from a commercial cleaning company without this step, allowing a potential cleaning vendor to lay eyes on your building will produce better results. In this article, we discuss the purpose of the site visit and how to best prepare for visits from potential vendors.
Direct labor (wages) and labor-related costs (ie. taxes, benefits) account for over 90% of the cost of a commercial janitorial program. Direct labor is calculated by estimating the number of hours needed to clean a facility and then multiplying it by the wages of the cleaning team. Estimating the number of labor hours needed to clean a facility is the most important factor when estimating the cost to clean a facility.
So, the primary purpose of the site visit is to allow the prospective cleaning company to gather
information required to make an accurate estimate of the number of hours needed to clean a facility.
This refers to the tightness of the cleaning areas. For example call centers (“cubicle farms”) and medical offices tend to be very dense. Denser spaces tend to reduce efficiencies and thus tend to require more time to clean.
This typically comes into play only in manufacturing facilities where the working conditions might be hot, dusty, or require extra personal protective equipment (PPE). While working conditions may/may not have an impact on the number of work hours needed to clean. They can have a significant impact on the wages that must be paid to attract cleaners to work in certain conditions.
Cleaning floors is a big part of any janitorial program. So, cleaning companies need to see what types of flooring are in a building and how much (square feet) of each type. The two broad types are hard surface flooring and carpet. Hard surface floors require two cleaning tasks (sweeping and mopping) and generally take longer to clean than carpeted flooring (vacuuming).
Potential vendors will be looking for two things. First, if the building has not been cared for very well, it will require more time to bring the facility back to a manageable level. Second, cleaning companies will try to assess your level of expectations. If a potential client has a very high cleanliness expectation that must be considered when developing the work hours estimate.
This is pretty straightforward – how big is the building and how spread out are the spaces. Cleaning companies must consider things like the amount of time a cleaner spends walking/traveling from space to space and/or building to building, the location of dumpsters, etc.