Do you know the reasons employees leave commercial cleaning companies? Here are 5 of the most common (and what you can do about it).
When you run a business, any business, there’s a lot to take care of. In the commercial cleaning business, you might do anything from finding new customers to payroll to accounting to picking up a mop and heading out to service your accounts. Because you’re doing so much, it’s helpful to have a steady team. But the fact is, people leave all the time, and the reasons employees leave are many.
That’s not unusual, and you should expect that hiring and training new employees will be a regular part of your duties as a business owner or supervisor. Still, when you have good people, you hope they’ll stick around. It’s better for your customers; it’s helpful for other employees, and, to be honest, it lets you focus on running your business.
The secret to getting people to stay with your company is to diagnose the problems. What are the reasons employees leave? Are there factors you can control or change?
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5 Reasons employees leave + what you can do to encourage them to stay
The employee turnover rate in the commercial cleaning industry is notoriously high. So, when you have a good team of well-trained people, you want them to stay with you. But, to keep them with you, it’s helpful to know the reasons employees leave a cleaning company.
Some of those reasons are out of your control: they move, retire, or win the lottery. But there are plenty of reasons employees leave that you can do something about.
1. Low pay. Let’s start with the big one: low pay. According to the Pew Research Center, 63% of workers cite low pay as the reason they quit a job. This is challenging territory, of course. In order to raise wages, you have to raise prices or cut back somewhere else. That’s hard to stomach when you have a thin profit margin. But there are ways you can charge more for your work and cut back without losing customers and going broke. You can read more about some of that here, but for now, the short version is this: there are customers who will pay a premium for top-notch work if they know you treat your team well. And you can give yourself more financial wiggle room when you keep your business organized and efficient.
2. No opportunity for advancement. Here’s another of the big reasons employees leave a company. People want to feel successful and that their hard work is appreciated and rewarded. One way to do that is through promotions. As you expand, promote your best people into supervisory or training roles.
3. Lack of safety. There are different ways to interpret this. In some cases, it’s a matter of personal safety. People don’t feel comfortable going to certain locations or being the only person in an office building late at night. They might have problems with harassment from people in the facility itself. In other cases, the issue might be a policy (or lack of) around handling cleaning chemicals or other potentially hazardous materials. In either case, it comes down to the fact that people won’t stay with a company where they feel their safety is at risk. This one can be easy to correct with a little thought. It might be a matter of adjusting the schedule or reassigning personnel. As for chemical safety, this should always be a priority.
4. Feeling disrespected. You probably don’t need a poll to understand that this is one of the reasons employees leave, but if you do want some proof, the same study cited above points out that 57% of employees who left a job did so because they felt disrespected. That’s a little vague, so let’s bring things into focus and look at what might happen in the workplace that would leave someone “feeling disrespected.” There are some obvious things, like talking down to people, but there are less apparent occurrences that can leave someone feeling like they aren’t respected. Things like micromanaging employees or paying them late fall into this category. So, how do you change this? Set the expectation that everyone on your team will treat everyone else with respect and kindness. And remember that it begins with you.
5. Inconsistent schedule. First, a varying schedule is not necessarily bad. People need days off, and they might need to switch things up for any number of personal reasons. Even so, a varying schedule could still be pretty regular, say five shifts per week from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., with the occasional switch here and there as needed. That’s different than an inconsistent schedule. An inconsistent schedule might be 40 hours one week and 20 the next, or even a full week, but with continually changing days and times. An inconsistent schedule makes it impossible to plan things outside of work and can be one of the big reasons employees leave a company.
Some of these reasons for leaving are relatively easy to change, and some may take more time and planning. But if you feel depleted by constantly trying to hire and train people because so many of the people on your team leave, it might be worth taking a look and seeing what you can do.
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