After having been cooped up in a stuffy office or workplace during a long Northeast Wisconsin winter, it’s nice to open the windows and let some fresh air in. It’s then that you usually notice it: the sun that’s shining brighter and longer than it has in months illuminates the dust and grime that have built up over several months. It’s time for a good spring cleaning.
But, even after the typical window washing, dusting and vacuuming, there are inevitably several areas around the workplace that get overlooked. While they may not get noticed by those who work in the environment every day, chances are they’ll be glaringly obvious to guests and potential customers who visit, leaving a poor impression.
Take a few minutes to print this list, then walk around your business to check the following areas that likely need a deeper cleaning.
Behind Printers and Copy Machines
Before you step away from that printer, take a look around. High performing copiers print many pages per minute, leaving tiny particles behind that accumulate around, under and behind printers.
Run your finger on top of baseboards and countertop backsplashes. Are they clean? The dust and grime that accumulate will find its way into HVAC systems and make the air you breathe less optimal.
Over the winter months, heating systems are in constant use, causing dust, allergens and other particles to adhere to heating vents and cold air exchange intakes. Also look up for vents located in the ceiling, such as those installed in bathrooms or kitchens.
Keep looking up. Does your business have acoustic tiles on the ceiling? The rough texture of most acoustic tiles is notorious for collecting dust, and those located near vents are prone to dark staining.
Ceiling Fan Blades
Operating ceiling fans in winter can help to drive rising warm air back down to where it’s needed. But any dust or particles in the air can stick to fan blades like glue, creating a swirling grimy eyesore.
If you haven’t noticed, fluorescent light fixtures commonly used in business settings are where bugs go to die. Additionally, light fixtures used on walls and desks usually accumulate dust that dulls their shine.
Run your hand along walls, especially those located behind open doors or other areas that see less traffic. You may be surprised how many dust particles adhere to vertical surfaces, especially if the walls are textured or wallpapered.
Also, run a cloth across the top of any picture frames hanging on the wall, and inspect the face of any artwork to see if the glass has a grimy film or fingerprints, or if the canvas needs a dusting.
Whether hard surface or carpet, the corners of stairways and stairwells accumulate salt, debris and anything else that may tag along on the bottom of someone’s shoes.
Switch Plates and Door Knobs
Illnesses are possible no matter the time of year. When’s the last time you sanitised one of the most commonly touched items in your facility? Research shows that contamination of just a single doorknob can help spread germs to an entire office within hours.
Who knows what may be lurking behind the refrigerator or under the microwave. Do you dare look?
Compare the front of your upholstered furniture to the back or bottom of a cushion. Is it dingy in comparison? Are there nasty stains that could benefit from a steam cleaning?
The base and castors of most office chairs easily become filthy during the winter months due to slush, debris and salt on the bottom of shoes.
Plants and greenery
Whether live or artificial, you may be alarmed at the dust and cobwebs clinging to your foliage. Exactly how old are those artificial flowers, anyway? And how many dead or dying leaves are you willing to tolerate on live plants? When cleaning or caring for them is too burdensome, sometimes replacing them is the best option.
Tops of modular furniture
Dust accumulates on top of partitions, especially on and in between items displayed on upper cabinets, such as personal mementos, awards and photos.
So, how did you do? Making sure all these areas within your business are clean can feel overwhelming. While requiring employees to keep their personal spaces clean is understood, asking them to set aside their normal duties to clean common areas can minimise productivity and morale.