How to get Employees to Keep the Office Clean

Maintaining a clean and organised workplace is essential for any organisation, as it can significantly impact employee productivity, morale, and overall business success. However, ensuring that the office remains tidy and clutter-free can be challenging, especially if employees don’t take responsibility for keeping their workspaces clean. You may already engage the services of a professional cleaning contractor, but it’s still important to make your staff accountable for cleaning up after themselves between visits. Here are some effective ways to engage and encourage employees to help keep your office clean.

Set Clear Expectations

The first step to getting employees to keep the office clean is to set clear expectations. It’s a really good idea to create a workplace cleaning policy that outlines the standards for cleanliness as well as what employees are expected to do to maintain a clean and organised workspace. Make sure that this policy is communicated effectively to all employees, including new employees when they start work at your business. Set guidelines for office cleanliness and hygiene and reinforce this with signage posted in prominent locations reminding employees to clean up after themselves and to keep their workspaces tidy. Explaining the benefits of maintaining a clean workplace will go a long way towards achieving it.

Create a Cleaning Schedule

An effective way to ensure that the office stays clean is to assign certain cleaning responsibilities to different employees. Create a cleaning schedule that outlines the tasks and responsibilities of each of them. Make sure to occasionally rotate these tasks to avoid boredom and resentment setting in. This can be done on a weekly or monthly basis, depending on the size of the office and the number of employees.

Provide the Necessary Tools and Supplies

Make sure that your office is well-stocked with the necessary cleaning tools and supplies. Provide bins in convenient locations and ensure that they are emptied regularly. Stock the kitchen, canteen or staff room with cleaning supplies, such as paper towels, disinfectant, and washing up liquid. Ensure that there is a vacuum cleaner and a mop available for floor cleaning. When employees have access to the tools they need, they are more likely to take responsibility for carrying out the tasks assigned to them.

Provide clear guidelines on how to use these supplies properly and safely, and make sure they are easily accessible. For more heavy duty tasks and regular professional-standard cleaning, consider hiring a cleaning service.

Lead by Example

Leadership sets the tone for workplace culture, and managers must lead by example when it comes to cleanliness. Set the tone and take the time to clean your workspace and common areas (such as the staff room or meeting room) yourself. When employees see their leaders prioritising cleanliness, they are more likely to follow suit!

Regular Communication

The key to ensuring that employees understand the importance of maintaining a clean and organised workplace is to communicate with them regularly. Take the time to remind them of the workplace cleaning policy whilst highlighting the importance of cleanliness for productivity and the good reputation of the business.

Encourage Team Work

Encourage collaboration among employees as a way to keep the office clean. This could involve setting up a system where employees take turns cleaning common areas or assigning each team member a specific task to complete each day, such as wiping down the kitchen counters or emptying the bins. When employees work together to keep the office clean, they are more likely to take pride in their workplace.

Make it Fun

Some people find that cleaning can be a chore, but it doesn’t have to be! Make it fun by turning it into a game or challenge. For example, set a timer and challenge employees to clean their workspace in under five minutes. Making cleaning a fun (and relatively short) activity can make it more enjoyable for everyone involved.

Provide Incentives that Celebrate Cleanliness

Providing incentives is an effective way to motivate employees to keep the office clean. For example, you could offer a prize for the cleanest workspace or the team that consistently maintains a high level of cleanliness. Incentives could also include recognition in team meetings or public acknowledgment of an employee’s efforts in cleanliness and hygiene.

Enforce Consequences

If employees consistently fail to keep their workspaces clean or adhere to the workplace cleaning policy, there should be consequences. You need to send a clear message that cleanliness is a non-negotiable aspect of the workplace culture. While it may seem harsh, enforcing consequences can be an effective way to get employees to take responsibility for keeping the office clean.

Emphasise Health and Safety

A clean workplace is essential for health and safety reasons. Emphasise the importance of maintaining a clean and healthy workspace to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria. Encourage employees to take responsibility for their own health and well-being by keeping their workspace clean and hygienic. Issue antibacterial wipes so that personal equipment can be sanitised regularly, reducing the risk of contracting viruses through contact.

Address Issues Promptly

If there are any cleanliness issues in your workplace, address them promptly. Spills should be cleaned immediately so reduce the risk of stains setting in. If any cleaning problems are resolved promptly, it can prevent them from escalating, and encourage employees to take responsibility for their own workspace.

Provide Training

Training can be provided to employees about proper cleaning techniques and hygiene practices. This can include how to properly sanitise surfaces, how to dispose of waste, and how to prevent the spread of germs. Make sure that all employees are aware of these guidelines.

Encourage Feedback

Encourage employees to provide feedback about the cleanliness of the office. This can be done through regular surveys or suggestion boxes. Listen to the feedback provided – the opinions of your staff are important and must be acknowledged. Of course, there is the danger that ‘too many cooks spoil the broth’ if you have a large workforce, and it could be easy for cleaning tasks to slip down the priority list if they’re busy. You may find it easier to employ a professional cleaning contractor to keep your workplace clean and sanitary.

At Brightr, we understand that we have an obligation to fulfil the agreement made with our customers to the best of our ability. Contact us here to arrange a fully comprehensive quote.

How do I get my employees to clean their desks?

Encouraging employees to keep their desks clean can contribute to a more organised and productive work environment. Here are some strategies you can employ to motivate your employees to clean their desks:

  • Ensure that you and other managers maintain clean desks. When employees see their managers prioritising cleaning personal spaces they’re more likely to do the same.
  • Communicate the importance of maintaining a clean workspace to your employees. Explain how a tidy desk can improve productivity, reduce stress, and create a positive impression on clients and visitors.
  • Supply employees with organisational tools such as file organisers, desk trays, and recycling bins to make it easier for them to keep their desks tidy.
  • Allow them time for desk cleaning sessions. Allocate a specific time during the week where employees can dedicate a few minutes to tidying up their desks.
  • Offer incentives or rewards for employees who consistently maintain clean desks. This could include small prizes, or even gift cards.
  • Offer tips on decluttering, proper storage techniques, and best practices for maintaining cleanliness.
  • Provide storage for employees’ personal effects. Bags and coats can make a space look cluttered, but if you provide storage for these items, they’ll be out of sight.
  • Regularly provide feedback to employees on the cleanliness of their desks. If necessary, address any issues or concerns about cleanliness directly and respectfully.
  • Lead with Empathy – understand that maintaining a clean desk may not always be easy for everyone, especially during busy periods. Be empathetic to individual circumstances and offer support when needed.

How do you coach a messy employee?

Coaching a messy employee requires a blend of understanding, communication, and guidance.

  • Understand that being messy might not be intentional or a reflection of the employee’s capabilities. Approach the situation with empathy and without judgment.
  • Schedule a private meeting with the employee to discuss the issues. This helps avoid embarrassment and allows for a candid conversation.
  • Explain how their messiness affects their work, team dynamics, and possibly even the company. Be specific about instances where their messiness has caused problems.
  • Give the employee an opportunity to share their side of the story. There might be underlying reasons for their behaviour, such as personal issues or challenges.
  • Clearly outline what is expected of them in terms of organisation and cleanliness in the workspace.
  • Offer help in organising their workspace. Let them know that you’re there to help them succeed.
  • Work together to develop a plan for improvement. Set achievable goals and track their progress.
  • Schedule follow-up meetings to check in on their progress and offer further guidance or adjustments to the plan if needed and offer feedback where necessary.
  • Celebrate milestones and improvements and provide positive reinforcement to encourage continued progress.
  • Changing habits takes time, so be patient and persistent in your coaching efforts. Encourage and reassure the employee that you’re there to support them throughout the process.

How do you deal with a disorganised workplace?

Dealing with a disorganised workplace can be a headache and you need to get a grip on it! There are several steps you can take to improve the situation:

  • Take a step back and assess the extent of the disorganisation. Identify specific areas that need improvement and the underlying causes.
  • Implement clear systems and processes for tasks, projects, and workflows. Define roles and responsibilities, set deadlines, and establish communication channels to ensure everyone is on the same page.
  • Encourage decluttering and organising of workspaces.
  • Help your team prioritize tasks to focus on what’s most important. Use tools to prioritise frameworks to help employees manage their workload effectively.
  • Encourage an environment of open communication and collaboration. Allow team members to share updates, ask for help when needed, and provide feedback on ways to improve processes.
  • Address any issues or concerns related to disorganisation promptly. Listen to feedback from employees and take proactive steps to resolve any underlying issues contributing to the disorganisation.
  • Recognise and celebrate improvements in organisation and productivity. Acknowledge the efforts of everyone who contributes to making the workplace more organised and efficient.
  • Continuously evaluate systems and processes and make adjustments as necessary to maintain organisation and efficiency in the workplace.

How do I tell my employees to keep my kitchen clean?

  • Addressing cleanliness in shared spaces like a kitchen can be delicate but important for maintaining a productive and comfortable work environment. But there are ways to deal with the issue in a constructive way:
  • Gather all your employees for a brief meeting. Ensure everyone has a chance to attend.
  • Begin the conversation by expressing appreciation for everyone’s efforts in maintaining the workspace and politely bring up the concern about the cleanliness of the kitchen. Avoid blaming or singling out individuals. Instead, focus on the collective responsibility.
  • Emphasise the importance of a clean kitchen for health, safety, and professional image. Mention that a clean environment contributes to everyone’s well-being and productivity.
  • Clearly communicate your expectations regarding cleanliness standards. Be specific about what needs to be done, such as washing dishes immediately after use, wiping down surfaces, and disposing of food properly.
  • Encourage employees to take ownership of the kitchen space. Remind them that it’s a shared area, and everyone’s contribution to cleanliness matters.
  • Make sure there are adequate cleaning supplies available in the kitchen. Encourage employees to use them and inform you if anything needs restocking.
  • If there are particular issues recurring in the kitchen, address them directly but tactfully. For instance, if there’s a problem with food left in the fridge for too long, discuss proper food storage and regular cleaning of the appliances.
  • Allow employees to share their thoughts and suggestions on how to maintain cleanliness in the kitchen. Encourage a collaborative approach to finding solutions.
  • Monitor the cleanliness of the kitchen regularly. Offer gentle reminders if cleanliness standards slip and provide positive feedback when improvements are noticed.