How Dirty Is Your Office?
Maintaining a clean office should be a priority. A dirty office can create a bad impression for guests, it can affect employee morale, it can make you and your employees sick and it could even lead to damaged equipment.
Most of us don’t have a real idea of how dirty our office is. Germs and dust tend to be the biggest culprits. Here are just a few facts on germs and dirt, the damage they could be doing and how you reduce build-ups.
Offices are breeding grounds for germs.
Some studies suggest that the average desk is 400 times dirtier than a toilet seat. A big reason behind this is that many of us eat at our desks and don’t thoroughly clean away the crumbs and spillages afterwards. Equipment such as keyboards may never get cleaned.
There’s then the issue of personal hygiene. As these alarming office hygiene stats reveal, only 61% of UK office workers wash their hands after going to the toilet. If you’re hot desking or sharing equipment, you could be sharing other people’s bacteria.
In many cases, mugs don’t even get cleaned properly. This is another place where bacteria can thrive.
A germ-infested office can result in you and your employees getting sick more often. More sick employees, means a less productive workforce.
A lot of offices are also very dusty.
This dust isn’t just unsightly, but also unhealthy. Dust attracts dust mites, which many people are allergic to. This can lead to skin irritation and sneezing. High levels of dust have also been linked to the development of respiratory issues such as asthma.
Dust could also be damaging your equipment. High levels of dust can speed up the degradation of paper. There’s also a high risk of computers crashing as a result of dust – dust can cause computers to overheat, which commonly leads to hard drive failure.
What you can do to keep your office clean?
- Hire professional cleaners. If you or your employees don’t have time to clean your office on a regular basis, outsourcing a cleaning company to come in once a week could help to keep dust and germs from building up.
- Keep your office ventilated. By opening a window or using an extractor fan, you can maintain a flow of air and prevent dust from building up.
- Don’t eat at your desk. This will prevent bacteria from building up as a result of food debris and sticky fingers. Some employers even make this company policy.
- Declutter. Having to clean around stuff is difficult and could demotivate you or your cleaners from giving your office the thorough cleaning that it needs.
- Promote personal hygiene with signage. Put a sign in the toilets telling people to wash their hands.
- Protect your equipment. The likes of keyboard covers can make keyboards easier to wipe clean, preventing bacteria from building up. Paperwork can meanwhile put in plastic sleeves of filing cabinets to prevent dust getting to it.