This is a great question and we get asked it quite often here at Pristine Commercial Cleaning Services. Generally, the question is either what is commercial cleaning or what does commercial cleaning mean? Simply put commercial cleaning is cleaning specifically related to the cleaning of the premises. Those premises may be owned by commercial businesses and this must be where the term commercial cleaning is derived.
However, it is worth noting here, commercial cleaning does also include the cleaning of not for profit organisations’ premises too. Generally, a commercial organisation is considered a profit-making business, so adding not for profit covers all businesses.
And then what does premises mean? The Collins Dictionary defines a company’s premises as “the land and buildings where it conducts its business.”
Commercial cleaning companies will therefore be hired, often on a contract basis, by all types of businesses to clean a whole host of different properties.
To elaborate further on the question of what commercial cleaning is, it makes sense to consider what sort of premises a commercial cleaning company might clean. If we think about where businesses carry out their activities, the obvious one would be offices. However, there are so many more types of premises that a commercial cleaner might clean including:
- Manufacturing facilities
- Warehouses and factories
- Pubs and clubs
- Nursing homes
- Public sector and government buildings
- Supermarkets and department stores
- Building sites
- Venues like football stadiums, cinemas and concert halls
- Hotels and restaurants
- Gyms and leisure centres as well as private health clubs
- Churches and community centres
- Children’s nurseries, schools, colleges and universities
To be honest, trying to list all the potential premises is difficult and I will have no doubt missed a few, but hopefully the above list gives you a good idea of the sort of premises a commercial cleaner is most likely to be involved in cleaning. Of course, not all commercial cleaners will work at all these types of premises although Pristine has cleaned at all those listed above.
When it comes to commercial cleaning it’s important to note that the cleaning of the premises covers both the interior of the building as well as the exterior of the building.
Commercial cleaning of the exterior of premises
Looking at the exterior of the premises the commercial cleaning will generally clean the façade of the building, where the commercial cleaner may use a specialist cleaning system called DOFF Steam Cleaning. Besides the façade, the cleaning company will also clean any gutters and cladding.
Of course if the building has windows then window cleaning will also be completed, no matter how high the building or how difficult it is to get to the windows! Clean, or lack of clean windows is something that is obvious to those visiting your premises but can often be neglected especially when property owners and business owners are at their premises on a regular basis. Often the dirt and grime goes unnoticed.
However, keeping the windows clean ensures those inside can see out, and also get the light coming in, ensures any dirt is removed, and generally makes the building looked well kept. Commercial window cleaners will generally have specialist equipment for cleaning of more complex windows with architectural features and most should be able to tackle the taller office buildings with specialist equipment. At Pristine we can clean windows up to 80 foot from floor level with our pole system and use hoists, booms and platforms (also known as cherry pickers) as needed.
The cleaning is not limited to the building itself, it would also include the cleaning of the surrounding land and car park areas owned by the customer too, for example. In some instances, this may include specialist services such as graffiti removal as well as the removal of animal waste, weeds and more. In car parks, the power washer maybe used to remove oil stains left from vehicles such as cars, lorries and vans. In fact for floors such as those in car parks, forecourts, school playgrounds, factories and yards that can become stained by oil, petrol or paint specialist industrial removers and equipment are often needed to restore to the floor to its former glory.
Of course, cleaning the outside of the premises makes perfect sense for a variety of reasons. To maintain a good image, it makes sense for the exterior to look clean and well kept, and it also helps to reduce the likelihood of any big maintenance or repair issues as a result of a lack of regular cleaning. In fact, the regular cleaning will prevent moss, algae and fungi which are not only potentially harmful to humans but can also penetrate and degrade the building’s façade causing bigger maintenance issues moving forward.
There’s no doubt that keeping any gutters free of leaves, feathers, mud and grit will help prevent any major issues with roofs and façades. It is amazing what water can do if it doesn’t drain away appropriately.
Commercial Cleaning Of The Interior Of Premises
The interior cleaning can include a whole range of cleaning services depending on the use of the building at the time. Office cleaning is perhaps the most well-known and of course covers the cleaning of desks, monitors, keyboards, carpets, communal areas, toilets and kitchens as well as potentially the restaurant or canteen if the offices has those facilities. The commercial cleaner may also clean showers and gyms if these are part of the office building.
The cleaning of floors in commercial environments varies widely from the standard carpet or carpet tiles in offices to stone floors, marble floors as well as wooden and parquet flooring. Depending on the flooring, the commercial floor cleaning company may brush or vacuum on a daily basis, and certainly with Pristine we would recommend scheduled deep cleans of flooring.
More specialist interior cleaning would include the cleaning of commercial kitchens in hotels, restaurants and pubs, where the commercial cleaners may do, for example, scheduled deep cleans. The cleaning of machinery and plant in manufacturing and production facilities as well as mills will potentially be carried out by a specialist commercial cleaner. Labs and testing facilities as well as medical facilities also require specialist cleaning. At Pristine we even clean industrial tanks.
When it comes to all these premises there are some additional cleaning services that would be undertaken at relevant times including the cleaning of ceilings. This is often missed but an important service which if not completed can lead to the ceiling looking grimy, with the light reduced and the chances of damage from mould and bacteria increasing over time.
Of course, some of the cleaning is very specialist and will require highly trained personnel with relevant qualifications and accreditations.
This is certainly an important consideration when appointing a commercial cleaner as depending on your property, you may be best engaging with a commercial cleaning company with appropriate accreditations.
Commercial Cleaning Company Accreditations
Commercial cleaning companies will generally have some accreditations to undertake their services, these accreditations will vary depending on the type of work that they undertake but could include any or all of the following:
The Alcumus SafeContractor accreditation is trusted by many of the largest UK companies, and is one of the UK’s leading health and safety accreditors. The awarding of the SafeContractor membership verifies a commercial cleaning company’s health and safety compliance. If you’re looking to appoint a commercial cleaning company, the SafeContractor seal of approval will go a long way to putting your mind at rest that you are appointing a professional cleaning company that takes health and safety seriously. Pristine Commercial Cleaning is accredited and operates in accordance with the SafeContractor standards.
British Institute of Cleaning Science
The British Institute of Cleaning Science is available for cleaning companies that have been trading for at least 12 months. It is the largest independent, professional and educational body within the cleaning industry.
CHAS is one of the UK’s leading accreditation scheme for contractors. The organisation is for contractors who want to adopt the best practices for risk prevention, meet excellent standards and gain accreditation. This makes it easier for those wishing to appoint a commercial cleaning company to find a reputable one that is a CHAS member. Pristine is a member of CHAS.
Achilles is a global network of industry communities that serve buyers in supplier pre-qualification, supplier risk management and compliance, and supplier visibility. This organisation undertakes rigorous, industry-specific pre-qualification processes so that buyers know they’re choosing from suppliers who can meet their high standards.
The British Window Cleaning Academy
The British Window Cleaning Academy is the recognised training body for the window cleaning industry. It provides professional training and accreditation to window cleaners in the UK. Pristine is a member of The BWCA.
If a commercial cleaner works in the construction industry, cleaning construction and building sites, it is important to check whether they are a member of Constructionline. The Constructionline accreditation enables buyers to identify contractors that have been pre-qualified to Constructionline standards. Pristine Commercial Cleaning is a member of Constructionline.
The Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) provides cards as proof that individuals working on construction sites have the appropriate training and qualifications for the job they do on site. This of course helps to improve standards and safety on construction sites. Pristine Commercial Cleaning is a member if the CSCS.
Of course, there are also other accreditations which commercial cleaning companies may have including ISO9001, the international standard that sets out the requirements for a quality management system, as well as ISO 14001 which is the standard for environmental management systems.
So, depending on the service you need, it will be worth asking the commercial cleaning contractor for details of their accreditations before you appoint them.
Commercial Cleaning Company Insurance
As with all businesses, commercial cleaning companies will need to have a range of insurance including:
- Public liability insurance
- Employers’ liability insurance
- Professional indemnity insurance
Each company will need to take advice on the insurance they needed. However, if you are looking to appoint a commercial cleaning company, we would recommend that you ask for confirmation of their insurances.
In summary, commercial cleaning is cleaning undertaken at premises, other than homes. It usually involves a regular cleaning schedule although ad hoc cleaning and deep cleans are also included. A commercial cleaning company will clean a whole range of areas and buildings and will generally hold accreditations related to the work they carry out. All commercial cleaning companies will hold a range of insurances which reflects the size of the business and the work being completed. As a buyer it is certainly worth checking a contractor’s accreditations and insurances before appointing them to undertake cleaning projects for you.
So, have you found this article of use and what do you look for when appointing a commercial cleaning company? Just leave a comment below with your feedback and thoughts.