Discover the steps you can take to help your night cleaning crew stay safe at work.
In some ways, a night cleaning crew is ideal. There are fewer interruptions. The offices, restaurants, medical centers, and retail shops are closed, so your team doesn’t need to work around people or worry as much about equipment being in the way.
As convenient as it can be, there are also risks. Those very same conditions that make it easy for your night cleaning crew to get their work done are the same that can make safety a genuine concern. Inside or outside a facility, if someone on your team is in trouble, there aren’t many options available for help.
It’s not just about crime, either, although that’s certainly a concern. Injuries or health conditions can go from bad to worse if people on your team are working alone or in isolated areas. What can you do? Certainly, you can’t be there watching every single employee or team. But you do have some options.
Harness the value of Janitorial Manager to keep your night cleaning crew safe. Learn more today with a free discovery call.
9 Ideas for keeping your night cleaning crew safe on the job
1. Note Potential Hazards on Your Walkthrough. Before your team begins working in a location, note any potential hazards you see. Even if this isn’t in your original walkthrough, you can always conduct a health and safety inspection. This gives you an opportunity to prepare your crew for issues they need to be aware of.
2. Encourage and Require Attention to Basic Safety Principles. Concerns about chemical spills or dangerous situations are absolutely valid. However, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the most common on-the-job injuries in the commercial cleaning industry are sprains or muscle strains from a fall on the floor or a walkway. That makes it worth reviewing topics like wearing non-slip shoes, setting out “Wet Floor” signs, and not rushing.
3. Be Aware of Your Scheduling. It’s unfortunate, but the fact is that some people on your night cleaning crew are more at risk than others in certain situations. However, you can minimize that risk when you create your schedule.
4. Work in Groups of Two or More if Possible. Safety in numbers is real. If it’s at all possible, try to schedule teams of two or more for your night and overnight cleaning shifts. And while it may seem that some spaces don’t need more than one cleaner, you can always double up and get those spaces cleaned more quickly.
5. Make Sure First Aid is Available. Whether your night cleaning crew carries it with them, you keep one in the janitorial closet, or the facility has kits available, make sure everyone on your team has easy access to a first aid kit.
6. Train for Emergencies. In the event of an emergency, the chemical and emotional responses that happen in our bodies can make it hard to think clearly. However, good emergency training can bypass that confusion and help people understand what to do. The Red Cross offers numerous classes, including First Aid and CPR. If you want to take further steps, FEMA offers a class called “You Are the Help Until Help Arrives, ” which goes beyond basic first aid.
7. Train Your Team on Chemical Safety Procedures. There is so much that could be said here, and it’s not just for your night cleaning crew. Cleaning chemicals come with an array of potential issues, from skin irritation to breathing problems and more. OSHA has a wealth of information regarding workplace safety for janitorial teams, but here is the basic premise. Everyone on your team needs to understand how to interpret the Safety Data Sheets on cleaning products. Use color-coded tags if you need to. They also need to understand the importance of ventilation, especially in confined spaces. And they need to know what to do in the event of a spill, exposure, or other potentially hazardous situation.
8. Offer Self-Defense Classes. Self-defense isn’t only about fighting off an aggressor. That’s part of it, for sure, but there’s so much more involved in self-defense, much of which is especially valid for a night cleaning crew. A good instructor will go over issues like situational awareness, knowing how to recognize a potentially dangerous situation and what you can do to avoid it.
9. Make Communication Easier. Communication is great for safety reasons, but it also improves your overall effectiveness. Texting can work, but to streamline the process, use a communications app like Janitorial Manager’s built-in JM Connect.
Safety is always a serious issue, whether for your night cleaning crew, daytime employees, or your customers. The good news is that a large part of safety is simply awareness.
Harness the value of Janitorial Manager to streamline your cleaning operation like never before. Learn more today with a free discovery call and find out how to make your cleaning operation more efficient and cost effective!