What’s one of the first things people notice about a company’s headquarters? It’s right under their feet – floor surfaces.
That’s why even when you’re under pressure to keep costs down, you can’t afford to scrimp much when it comes to floor maintenance.
Old carpeting or worn-out hard flooring impacts how everyone – employees, visitors, potential clients and investors – views the company.
Companies need to pay attention to these three areas:
1. Keep the dirt out
The No. 1 way to preserve flooring and keep the building clean is limiting the amount of dirt tracked in.
While most facilities keep mats at main entrances, they don’t always lay mats at secondary entrances. Or they don’t replace a worn-out walkoff mat in a high-traffic area.
Daily foot traffic in areas like any side entrances should also be factored in. High-quality mats at all spots where people go in and out will extend the lifespan of your floors and save money. They also reduce housekeeping costs over the long haul.
2. Is Housekeeping up to the task?
Some housekeeping vendors and in-house crews don’t follow floor manufacturers’ recommendations for extra care.
For example: A housekeeping vendor may buff vinyl tile flooring quarterly when doing it monthly keeps the finish in good shape and prevents the surface from stripping.
Extra care applies to carpeting (still the most common flooring in commercial facilities). Shampoo and dry foam carpet-cleaning (also known as high-extraction cleaning) pulls out the ground-in dirt and dust that normal vacuuming can’t.
You’ll extend the lifespan of your carpeting by years potentially if you pay extra for deep cleaning, even if you only do it twice a year.
3. Shiny hard surfaces are a plus – but not slippery ones
Commercial properties and office buildings are leaning toward hard surfaces. They look more attractive and hold up better than carpeting, which saves money.
Hard surfaces also require cleaning and polishing which make floors slick temporarily. Slip, trip and fall accidents remain the most common worksite injury and many are the result of someone slipping on a recently mopped floor.
Housekeeping or facility management crews should aim to clean hard floors during periods of low or no occupancy if possible. Work carts should be equipped with multiple Wet Floor signs to alert employees and visitors to avoid an area.
People who wander into a marked area can still sue for slip-and-fall injuries, but in most cases, companies significantly reduce their liability using signage and obstacles.