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TRAINING

Why GREEN cleaning is a team effort Implementing a green cleaning program means that everyone from the facilities managers, to the cleaning staff, to the occupants of the building need to be on the same page, writes GECA’s Kendall Benton-Collins.*

Procuring sustainable cleaning products is a significant step for the health of both people and planet, but it’s not the whole story. For a truly green clean you need to consider not only what products are being used but also how they are being used. Implementing a green cleaning program means that everyone from the facilities managers, to the cleaning staff, to the occupants of the building need to be on the same page. The benefits of a green cleaning program are well documented. Using green cleaning products helps improve the indoor air quality of a building, which has been linked to improved productivity, better health, and reduced absenteeism for the building occupants and cleaning staff alike. Having healthier, more productive workers translates into less money spent on sick leave or inefficient working processes. There are also obvious environmental benefits that contribute towards any sustainability performance requirements of the building. In order to reap these benefits, procurement and facilities management professionals need to select the right products in the right quantity for the building. These need to be used correctly, with cleaning staff following proper procedures and understanding the reasons behind choosing green products over conventional cleaning solutions. “Facilities management professionals and cleaning product manufacturers are very aware of the benefits of green cleaning programs – but unfortunately, the products that they might 20 INCLEAN March/April 2019

specify aren’t actually being used by cleaning staff in a lot of cases,” says Paula Clasby, head of engagement for GECA. “Often it’s simply a case of a cleaning staff member not understanding the importance of green cleaning products or perceiving them to perhaps be inferior to the conventional products they’ve been using for years already. “We’ve heard stories of staff members adding bleach to cleaning units that are designed to use only water or insisting on using bathroom cleaners with a strong fragrance because that’s perceived as an indicator of an effective clean. So, it then becomes a matter of making sure that all cleaning staff understand what they’re using and how it will benefit them.” Cleaning staff using conventional cleaning products can potentially be exposed to high levels of various chemicals that range from being

“For a truly green clean you need to consider not only what products are being used but also how they are being used.”

Profile for The Intermedia Group

INCLEAN March-April 2019  

Published for more than 25 years, INCLEAN magazine is the only dedicated cleaning and hygiene industry magazine in the Australian and New Ze...

INCLEAN March-April 2019  

Published for more than 25 years, INCLEAN magazine is the only dedicated cleaning and hygiene industry magazine in the Australian and New Ze...

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