If you work in a busy environment with lots of people, you’ve probably noticed how quickly colds, bugs and viruses travel around. Whilst it won’t be possible to eradicate all illness at work, there are measures you can take to limit it, the most important of which is making sure the facilities and surrounding environment are spotlessly clean. If you don’t think a hygienic workplace is important, these facts will change your mind:
• In 2017, sick days cost the UK economy a staggering £77.5 billion, a figure that grew 6.2% since the previous year.
• Sick days cause businesses to decrease in productivity by 54%.
• Sick leave due to poor hygiene in the work place costs the UK economy around £4 billion every year.
Clearly, having a clean workplace makes a big difference to the success of your business. The question is, do you know the places in your office where disease and germs can thrive? Dealing with the following hygiene hotspots will help to tackle staff sickness.
1. Bathrooms. Risk hotspots in bathrooms include toilets, flush handles and handles on both cubicles and the main door. Norovirus and similar bacteria can be found in these places, and can cause unpleasant diseases such as gastroenteritis. Germs are easily transferred from surface to hand but the spread of infection can be minimised with thorough cleaning
2. Reception area. So many people pass through the doors of your business, from staff to delivery drivers, that reception areas are high-risk. Door handles and communally used items such as mail franking machines should be cleaned regularly.
3. Shared desks. If your workplace encourages hot desking or desk sharing, there is a higher risk of germs being passed on. One study found that offices with fixed desk use recorded that desk surfaces had a 32% lower microbial activity than offices that encouraged hot desking.
4. Meeting rooms. The shared use of meeting rooms makes them a hotspot for bugs and viruses that are transferred through touch, such as the common cold or the flu virus.
5. Kitchen area. Food preparation areas can be a hotspot of infection for all sorts of germs, from E.Coli to Norovirus, and need to be cleaned to a very high standard.
Hiring a commercial cleaning service ensures that your office is being cleaned to a professional standard, which gives you peace of mind as an employer and helps to ensure that your staff aren’t falling ill at work or continuing to pass germs around. A healthy office equals a healthy business.