The Healthy Facilities Institute® (HFI) Educational Center and Website has issued a Leadership Brief, Five Tips to Effectively Use a Stopwatch During Green Cleaning, to help cleaning professionals improve and standardize task times while green cleaning.
“While adopting greener cleaning methods using non-chemical interventions or solutions validated by programs such as Green Seal, UL Environment, EPA’s Safer Choice, or others, is vital, standardizing task times for consistent, effective delivery and management of cleaning is equally important to enable sound business practice,” said Allen Rathey, president of the Healthy Facilities Institute (HFI).
Five Tips to Effectively Use a Stopwatch During Green Cleaning
1. Identify and isolate current, essential Green Cleaning tasks using a floor plan. This involves clearly delineating vital tasks performed by the cleaning worker in each area. This is management’s responsibility, not the worker’s.
2. Take photos of desired outcomes, where plainly visible, or document the target cleaning metric outcome such as desired range of ATP improvement (use a ‘percentage improved’ rather than a numerical goal). “Paint a picture” of the desired goal for each task.
3. Observe and time different workers performing the same task achieving desired outcomes to determine best practices. Be sure they are working ergonomically and at a safe pace.
4. Create video of high-performing workers, with their consent, and include associated task timing as a guide for others. Again, encourage a productive, comfortable, quality-not-quantity rate of cleaning.
5. Write down the times of each task documenting best practice, integrate it into your process or system, and use it as part of your training regimen.
Congratulations. You are on your way to creating a standardized, repeatable, time-indexed green cleaning process that can be managed and measured.
- Use ISSA’s “612 Cleaning Times Book” and also, in schools, “APPA’s Operational Guidelines for Educational Facilities: Custodial"
- Consider using an Android or Apple app to time tasks in the field, or an online stopwatch such as http://www.online-stopwatch.com or http://www.timeanddate.com/stopwatch