Restrooms matter. A lot. And your customers aren’t the only ones taking notice when restrooms don’t get cleaned. As it turns out, a dirty restroom could be impacting employee morale in your business. The fifth annual “Healthy Hand Washing Survey” by the Bradley Corporation found that 93% of Americans believe the condition of their workplace’s restroom indicates how that company values its workforce. That includes everything from clogged toilets to bad odors and even paper and soap dispensers that aren’t filled or just don’t work properly. In fact, the survey found that 41% of workers have had some kind of issue with their workplace restrooms.
If that isn’t bad enough, restroom concerns extend to your customers, too. Various surveys have found that customers will leave a business early or won’t come back if they have a bad restroom experience. And it seems the number of dissatisfied customers keeps growing.
There is some good news in all of this. You can fix it. Just because your restroom isn’t meeting expectations now doesn’t mean that it has to stay that way. A few (relatively) simple steps can help you clean your bathroom, reduce odors and retain customers and employees (sounds good, right?)!
- Clean and disinfect. First clean up obvious dirt and debris. Throw away trash, wipe down countertops, sinks, toilet seats and high-touch areas. Once you’ve cleaned, it’s time to disinfect, and there is a difference. Cleaning gets rid of the visible dirt while disinfecting kills germs and bacteria. So, after you’ve removed that visible dirt, grab your sanitizer and spray all of those surfaces. Read the instructions for proper dwell time (the amount of time the solution needs to sit on a surface before it’s wiped off) to ensure you’re using it properly.
- Empty the trash. While your disinfecting is dwelling is a great time to empty the trash cans. Make sure to put in clean liners when you’re done.
- Fill all dispensers. Every time you clean the bathroom, make sure to check that all toilet paper, paper towel, soap and other dispensers are fully loaded. Refill anything that looks low.
- Get that floor clean. Sweep up any visible dirt, then use a scrub brush to loosen anything that might be stuck-on (remember – that includes the dirt and germs you can’t see). Then you’ll want to mop and dry mop the floor and you’re good to go. REMEMBER to always place wet floor signs inside and outside of your bathroom when you’re cleaning the floor to prevent slips and falls.
- Find the source of your restroom odor and eliminate it. This is sometimes easier said than done and air freshener isn’t enough to do the trick. Generally, restroom odor comes from the bacteria in un-cleaned bodily fluids which can sometimes end up on the floor, baseboards, walls and even ceilings in your restrooms. To effectively get rid of those odors, you need to clean and scrub all surfaces of the restroom. Not sure of the source? Get a black light. Turn off all of the other lights in your restroom. If you see something glowing, it needs to be cleaned.
- Keep a set of eyes on the restroom. I don’t mean this in a creepy voyeurism way. Someone should be checking restrooms regularly to make sure there’s no mess or empty dispensers. Obviously the frequency will depend on the size of your workforce and whether your restroom is open to the public (i.e. in a restaurant or store.)