That’s what people say, ‘oh I’m just a cleaner’ or, ‘that’s just our cleaner’.
But what does being a cleaner really mean? A quick dust down and running the vacuum around the office?
I went out with our cleaning team for a day to see what they really do in a day. I found out they work really, REALLY, hard.
Their day starts at 6.30 am, when they arrive at work and get ready for the day ahead. All dressed in their distinctive uniforms, looking smart, and professional and all with travel mugs of coffee in hand!
They stock their vans, making sure they have everything they could possibly need, you never know where the day may lead! They then check the run for the day, what jobs they have, what times the appointments are at, the names of the customers and the route to get to the properties. Covering such a wide area as we do, all of Gwynedd, into Anglesey and occasionally even further afield, it’s essential or team know where they are going!
The first job we had booked in for the day was a change-over clean (bet your thinking, easy! How hard can it be?). Well, I will tell you now, it was not an easy clean. The team were busy from the moment they arrived to the moment we finished, cleaning things so fast that they were a mere red blur, but everything looked and smelled amazing. They know where the dust hides, they see the things we don’t- they see finger prints on windows that I swear are invisible to the human eye! The other thing I found was our team are our frontline customer service representatives. They have the customers laughing and smiling and they ensure that they leave the property exactly how the customers want it. They answer queries about payments, cleaning products, equipment and offer up advice on a variety of issues, from decor to dry rot. Our cleaners know their stuff!
On the way to our next clean I ask about different products, ‘what’s this E.M.C plus’ I ask, ‘ah’ says the manager, ’that’s an alkaline cleaner, it’s made up of……..’ he listed chemicals and reactions that only a science teacher would understand, and that’s when I learnt our team really do know everything. I never knew how much knowledge goes in to cleaning, choosing the right product for the job and knowing the equipment like they do.
At the next job there’s a wooden floor. That’s what I would have seen, just a wooden floor. Well, the team tell me that this particular wooden floor is special wood and is unsealed, and therefore you must dry mop it using a specific product. I, stupidly, ask why, and hear all about expanding wood, joints, joists and linseed oil, it definitely takes a lot to be ‘just a cleaner’.
Our third, and my final, job of the day is an empty property that has seen some hard times fall upon it. I won’t discuss what was in there, but I learnt that our cleaners have a very strong stomach to do what they do. I ask how they clean things like this every day and they say ‘because someone will move in here, they deserve it to be a nice as it can be, it will be their home’ and that’s when I learnt, our team really care about our customers, about their job, about the quality of their work and about the people who will benefit from what they do. Our team have pride in their work and in themselves. Our team know more than I will probably ever know. Our team are certainly, 100% not ‘just cleaners’ they are amazing.