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The British Cleaning Council report on the UK cleaning industry
Recent research conducted by the British Cleaning Council (BCC) into cleaning, waste-management and FM sectors has cemented the sector’s position as one of the UK’s top ten industries.
The revised figures show the cleaning, hygiene and waste industry sector contributed £55.5 billion to the UK’s economy – a slight rise on previous figures – with turnover soaring in a sector with tens of thousands of businesses.
The latest employment data available, from 2020, shows that there are 1.47 million workers in the sector, approximately five per cent of the UK workforce and firmly in the top ten UK industries for employment.
Other more recent figures show the varying effect of the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic and the lockdowns have had on some parts of the industry, with demand soaring in some areas while others saw demand shrink.
The report also testifies to the change in public attitudes which has put cleaning and hygiene at the top of the agenda and brought widespread recognition for the vital work of the sector’s previously invisible workforce.
The impact of the pandemic on the cleaning industry
In March 2020, the lockdown imposed by the UK government in response to the COVID-19 pandemic had a profound impact on the cleaning sector.
There was a sharp decline in the demand for house cleaning services around this time, as many workers moved from the office and started working from home. Many people were also isolating and non-essential businesses and venues closed to the public.
Government regulations, corporate policies and generals changes to working methods, like these, cut the need for residential cleaning services drastically overnight, many cleaning companies experienced a sharp decline in revenue – with the sector seeing a 60% decrease in revenue in April over March.
As the workforce moved from the office to their homes, this reduced the need for office cleaning contract to proceed as usual. Thousands of cleaners who clean offices throughout the UK had their work hours severely reduced, with many placed onto the government’s furlough scheme. Those that stayed on, however, working throughout the pandemic, cleaning offices to high standards, had an important role to play in workplace safety.
When fears stuck, professional cleaners throughout the country were expected to step up and confront the virus head-on, even though they could be exposed to a serious hazard themselves. With so many unknowns at the beginning, this only heightens fears for all.
Professional cleaners throughout the country adapted to the changes quickly. Many built upon their existing skills with covid-based training, just as we went into lockdown. Thanks to their training and experience, many had the understanding and the tools available to ensure they remained safe while at work, while also following tested cleaning methods to improve hygiene levels and to maintain a COVID-secure workplace.
The cleaning industry securing the workplace
As perceptions have changed, cleaning is no longer thought of as a luxury. For many offices, workplaces and commercial properties, maintaining strict hygiene levels and a COVID-secure environment are essential to continue operating safely.
Customers and visitors often pick up on poor hygiene levels when entering a businesses property – as this is often deemed to be a reflection of the business. Businesses would therefore ensure that expectations were met to ensure customer satisfaction and retention of business. Workers expectations were a different story, however.
Concerns with their workplace hygiene levels and overall satisfaction with the working environment has not been such a concern for management (unless the issue was a serious health hazard). Now, things are changing.
Many workers may now feel insecure entering a workplace that does not meet a satisfactory level of hygiene. Furthermore, the Health & Safety Executive do enforce workplace Covid regulations, which if the employer is in breach of, they could face penalties.
People are starting to appreciate the important role that cleaners now play in protecting the workforce. Trained and professional cleaners are one of the best defences in combatting workplace pathogenic spread, one of the best investments in maintaining a Covid-secure environment and help reassures your workers – reducing sickness and workplace absences and helping to drive productivity.
To improve the health and wellbeing of your staff and to make your office or workplace COVID-secure, get your workplace professionally cleaned by our experienced office cleaning team. For further information on our Professional Office Cleaning Services, contact our team today.
Email our cleaning services on: email@example.com
Tags: cleaning, Coronavirus
Categorised in: Industry Cleaning News
This post was written by Tony