October 21, 2020
Why Office Hygiene is So Important: By the Numbers
Why Office Hygiene is So Important: By the Numbers
Wed, 21st October 2020
In light of the recent lockdown and COVID-19; the corporate world has become acutely aware of the importance of hygiene and stopping the spread of viruses and disease. We all know that it’s important to wear masks in the shops, maintain social distance, and sanitise our hands regularly but will people still be as conscious and aware months and even years down the line.
Regular professional cleaning, some easy tidying routines, and being conscious of where germs may be hiding can help protect you, your team, and your customers. Before we dive in, you must get the basics right. Have a look at our 3 Steps Towards Creating a COVID Safe Facility blog to find out 3 basics you should have in place to adjust to the new normal.
Here’s where to look out for germs and how you can do your bit to reduce the spread of diseases.
This one is the most obvious place for germs and bacteria to thrive. People work with keyboards daily with a lot of offices hot-desking or sharing spaces between several employees. A study by the University of Arizona discovered there are 400x more bacteria on the average keyboard than the average toilet seat. This is shocking information with many bacteria able to survive up to 24 hours on a single keyboard including two deadly drug-resistant types of bacteria; Enterococcus faecium and Staphylococcus aureus.
These bacteria usually find their way onto the keyboard through human contact as well as from coughs and sneezes. People also eat at their desks and bits of food can often find their way into the crevices beneath the keys.
Keyboards, on average, carry more than 3,295 bacteria per square inch. But how do you combat this level of grime? Especially when you work on a computer for 8 hours a day.
Luckily, all it takes is a few cleaning habits to reduce your risk significantly.
- Avoid sharing workspaces where possible or limit the number of people working on each station
- Give your keyboard a weekly clean, switch off your PC, turn it upside down and shake out any crumbs, then wipe it down with a slightly damp cloth.
- Before use, after use, and especially before eating it’s important to wash your hands thoroughly. A lot of bacteria find their way into your system when you touch your eyes or mouth. Avoid this where possible.
- Have a trained professional cleaning service that regularly cleans and tidies the office
Coffee mugs are another unexpected place for germs and bacteria to thrive. Offices often have a shared pool of mugs that guests and team members share. While dishwashers do a great job of cleaning mugs, the safest way to prevent diseases spreading is to have your own mug. 80% of common infections are caused by touch alone and many viruses can survive for up to 24 hours.
If you’re in an office where mugs are regularly cleaned using a dishwasher then you’re pretty safe. However, you can learn a few new cleaning habits to ensure you minimise all risk.
- Don’t share mugs
- Always wash your mug at the end of the day
- Leave your cleaned mug on your desk ready for the following day
- If you use bottles or travel mugs make sure to wash them thoroughly once a day
Handles and Buttons
Door handles, elevator buttons, photocopiers and coffee machines are all high touch points with everyone in the office frequently coming into contact with them. Photocopiers, for example, may get touched more than 300 times a day. In a large office with lots of employees, this can spread diseases and germs like wildfire. Once you start thinking of all the communal spaces it’s easy to see where germs can spread. Phones, office equipment, taps, handles, the list is endless.
The best way to combat germs in these high touch point areas is to clean them thoroughly and regularly. Keep anti-bac wipes or hand sanitiser nearby for people to regularly clean their hands and ensure your cleaning team us up to scratch with the latest cleaning techniques and equipment. Increased levels of cleaning can stretch your team’s resources and often requires a review of the facility, to see whether the introduction of new equipment might be able to save time in other areas. Equipment reviews aren’t don’t need to be complicated though, simply by changing vacuums can reduce the vacuuming time by up to four times, or by implementing a different mop can reduce mopping time by three times. The time freed up on these tasks can then help your team manage with increase cleaning in other areas.
The air you breathe is an invisible but important space to keep clean, especially in enclosed spaces. Indoor air quality can be up to 500% worse than the outdoors with small rooms, overcrowded spaces, and recycled air lowering the air quality. Air quality is something we are passionate about and is part of our complete 4D cleaning solution.
The air in your office is something that you can improve through quick, easy habits and cost-effective purchases.
- Keep air flowing in and out to promote circulation
- Your air quality is affected by dust and dirt so keeping your surfaces clean and tidy aids air quality
- Investing in indoor plants that respirate and enrich the office with clean air is another way to passively increase the quality of the air. Plants also make the office more relaxing and aesthetically appealing
- Invest in air purification systems and keep them in tip-top condition. Simple yet powerful air purification units which can run alongside existing air ventilation systems, are simple plug and go solutions that will physically remove dust, VOCs as well as harmful bacteria and viruses from the air.
This is just a handful of areas where dirt, grime, and diseases can thrive. Stay on top of your cleaning regime with Pura4D and you’ll reduce the risk of disease, cut down on time lost to sick leave, and create an environment that your team, customers, and visitors will love! For more information on Pura4D or to get an in-depth cleaning audit contact us today.