Evaluating Specialist Cleaning Contractors - Part 1
It is so easy to choose the lowest cost provider for a service that can appear to be basic and simple to carry out. For an experienced facilities manager.
Are the costs transparent?
Did the service providers give complete cost breakdowns demonstrating what the cleaning team were being paid, what was allocated for equipment and materials?
Was there enough money allocated to providing off-site management one of the key areas to ensuring a successful cleaning service?
Commercial cleaning is a mature and highly competitive market and as budgets rarely increase in current market conditions it is increasingly important to choose the service provider that will be in a position to provide or exceed the service level agreement and meet the key performance indicators. Once a provider has been chosen and does not meet the service level agreement (SLA) and requires replacing, it is increasingly common that the budget will not meet the costs of replacement providers’ who initially tendered correctly but were beaten by a lower cost bid that didn’t live up to its promises.
Recent Plimsoll reports that analyse the cleaning industry indicate up to 1/3 of contractors within the UK market are loss making, in many cases for at least 2 years and are chasing turnover to prevent collapse, this is especially the case with smaller companies suffering from not having the economies of scale of larger companies.
Therefore we recommend looking at the key metrics of the service provider’s business or business intelligence, can they tell you
How many contracts have they won and lost of what values over the last 12 months?
How many contracts and in what geographical areas do their account managers’ work with?
How many references can they provide for either a similar type of contract, size of contract or managed by the proposed account manager?
How many of their customers would provide a reference for their services at any given point in time?
How do they report service delivery? Is it a paper check sheet or have they moved onto accurate live reports to include, training records, CRB checks, reference checks, health and safety, accidents at work, KPI’s, correspondence?