Man Writing 2

Creating a Facility Maintenance Program: Dos and Don’ts

canstockphoto22217883Developing a comprehensive approach to facility maintenance is not always an easy task to accomplish. While there are many best practices for creating a facility maintenance program, the path to finding and implementing a plan that meets the specific needs of your facility can be challenging. With efficiency as a common end goal, facilities are searching for ways to optimize opportunities without increasing costs. Here are some dos and don’ts to help you develop a maintenance plan that fits your facility.

Dos:

  • Expect to Inspect. There is always room for improvement. Pay attention to the areas in which your facility maintenance program could become better. By determining what changes need to be made, you could increase efficiency and reduce expenses.
  • Calculate Costs. Assess the specific needs in your facility and develop a plan to convert to more innovative, cost effective solutions. When evaluating your current expenses and researching other options, you’ll feel more empowered to make a decision in your maintenance program and potentially get more bang for your buck.
  • Outline Opportunities. Building an effective facility maintenance program requires weighing the pros and cons. Presenting various options and showcasing the advantages of a proposed program will help you establish a customized plan for your facility.

Don’ts

  • Rely on the Bare Minimum. You shouldn’t have to settle when it comes to the cleanliness of your facility. While your current maintenance program may be sufficient, there is always an opportunity to enhance it. When you analyze your program, you may discover new ways to achieve a higher level of clean.
  • Guesstimate. There’s no need to play the guessing game with your facility maintenance program. Many modern tools are available to you for free online to assist you in planning and executing the very best solution strategies.
  • Short-Change on Change. Every facility is unique and requires solutions customized to their specific needs. While modeling your maintenance plan off of another facility’s may be easy and effective, make sure you take the time to evaluate what’s best for your facility. Building an exclusive plan may present you with various new opportunities.

For more solutions or guidance on creating a facility maintenance program, visit betco.com to learn about our innovative resources and training sessions.

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Hunter is the Content Marketing Specialist at Betco.

If you have any questions, please visit http://www.betco.com, call (888) GO-BETCO or please contact us at welisten@betco.com

Foam Soaps Save Water

Clean Hands Affect Your Brand

glass cleaning 1Creating a home away from home is something that every healthcare facility strives to accomplish. Patients want to stay in a quiet, pleasant and safe environment. Most importantly, cleanliness and environmental hygiene in these facilities are critical to patient safety.

While thorough cleanliness is crucial to preventing the spread of infection, data shows that patients perceive a high-level of cleanliness as a prerequisite for safe, high-quality care. From restrooms to the entrance and lobby, a patient’s perception is impacted and a healthcare facility’s brand and reputation is affected.

In a healthcare environment, cross contamination is the number one concern for the healthcare facility, caregivers, patients and their families. With multiple touch points such as door handles, keyboards and sink faucets, it’s no wonder why hand hygiene compliance is a serious issue. Approximately 80% of all infections are transmitted by the hands.

How can you implement an effective hand hygiene program at your facility? The World Health Organization recommends 5 essential elements for a successful hand hygiene program.

Step 1 – Gaining Commitment from all operating areas of your facility is critical. All facility and staff are key advocates to reinforce this commitment.

Step 2 – Educating those chosen to be hand hygiene advocates on the impact of this implementation is the next step.

Step 3 – Create a Roadmap by surveying your facility for proper placement of both sanitizing and handwashing stations.

Step 4 – Implementation of the dispenser installation needs careful planning. Optimizing the educational function, or site zone, of the dispenser along with message reinforcement will greatly assist your facility campaign.

Step 5 – Developing a communication strategy to drive hand hygiene compliance is critical.

Healthcare facilities must focus on preventing cross contamination for the well-being of patients and healthcare workers. By regularly researching and determining the most effective cleaning practices, healthcare facilities will be able to achieve a higher level of clean, positively impacting the patients’ health and overall experience.

For more solutions or guidance to proper hand hygiene, visit betco.com to learn about our Compass Program.

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Hunter is the Content Marketing Specialist at Betco.

If you have any questions, please visit http://www.betco.com, call (888) GO-BETCO or please contact us at welisten@betco.com

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7 Smart Habits to Stay on Track

Startup Stock PhotosThe way we do things are constantly evolving. This can make keeping up with industry trends extremely time-consuming and challenging. New technologies, processes and programs are emerging all over the place and may have you wondering what you can do to stay on track in your industry. While these trends rapidly disseminate, there are several habits you can start now to stay up-to-date.

  1. Have a plan. Become aware of your strengths and weaknesses and focus on what goals you can build from them. Setting goals will give you something to work towards, furthering your abilities and skills.
  2. Hold yourself accountable. Once you establish your goals, make it your mission to achieve them. Put in the time and effort it takes to reach your objective. The end result will be well worth it!
  3. Read, listen and watch. Attending online webinars and onsite training sessions will expand your knowledge. Look for opportunities to engage in the latest and greatest trends in your industry.
  4. Back-up your knowledge with tools. There are various training programs that are available at no cost to you. Certifications will show your expertise and proficiency.
  5. Keep your skills current. Look out for the most relevant skill-sets in your industry and pursue opportunities to make them one of your strengths.
  6. Seek professional development opportunities. Building a network of like-minded individuals that encourage your professional growth can help you reach or even surpass your goals.
  7. Pay attention to updated materials within your industry. Minimize mistakes by ensuring you are utilizing the most current tools.

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Hunter is the Content Marketing Specialist at Betco.

If you have any questions, please visit http://www.betco.com, call (888) GO-BETCO or please contact us at welisten@betco.com.

Floor and Salt

Don’t Let Winter A-SALT Your Floors

Boots in FrostWinter is in full swing and is taking charge with snow, slush and ice. While bundling up and staying warm inside, make sure you don’t give your floors the cold shoulder. It’s important to be aware of the dangers that the winter elements can leave behind on both carpet and hard surface floors.

As people come and go in a facility they stomp, shake and dump snow, slush and salt on floors everywhere. This snowy, slushy mess doesn’t end after it dries and leaves behind un-melted rock salt. Stains as white as snow can be seen on all types of floor surfaces. While these stains are pesky and damaging, they are preventable and your floors are savable.

Salt stains are not harmful if attended to quickly. The faster you remove the moisture and chemicals, the less time they have to damage your floors. Keep absorbent towels or rags near your doors to clean up the messes as they occur, and a vacuum or broom to remove any dry residue.

Use a reliable matting system. A matting system acts as a first line of defense against tracked-in contaminants on your floors. Over 80% of dirt and residue are brought in by people entering a facility; a good entrance matting system can trap 90% of this dirt and debris that is brought in!

Prevention is the best defense. It’s important to keep in mind that all floor types are vulnerable during the winter. Using a daily maintenance cleaner is one of the most important steps to extend the life of your floors.

It is important to keep in mind that your floors are vulnerable during the winter. While there is danger afoot due to a combination of increased moisture and salt, remember to practice the above tips to avoid havoc on both carpet and hard surface floors.

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Hunter is the Content Marketing Specialist at Betco.

If you have any questions, please visit http://www.betco.com, call (888) GO-BETCO or please contact us at welisten@betco.com.

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‘Tis the Flu Season!

Washing HandsThe last thing anyone wants during the holiday season is the flu. During the hustle and bustle this time of year, it’s important to practice effective hand hygiene and protect your health so you can feel your best while shopping, traveling and celebrating. So how can you focus on spreading holiday cheer and not germs this flu season? Try some of these tips so you can stay merry and healthy.

Get the rest you need. Lack of sleep can affect your immune system and make you more susceptible to illness. After long days of running errands, traveling or attending a holiday party, be sure to give your body the rest it needs.

Sanitize your hands and your surroundings. While the spirit of the season may be all around us, so are numerous types of bacteria. Seats on a plane or bus, your desk at work and shopping carts are common places for you to pick-up unwanted germs. Hand washing can reduce the risk of respiratory infections by 20%, so protect yourself by washing your hands and sanitizing your surroundings before touching them.

If you’re not feeling well, stay in. You don’t feel like yourself when you’re sick. While it can be hard to miss out on some holiday fun, it’s important to put your health first. Let people know you won’t be able to attend a gathering if you’re feeling under the weather. They’ll understand and appreciate your mindfulness to allow them to spread cheer, not your germs.

If you are sick, don’t prepare food. Bacteria is not a favorable secret ingredient. It’s important to prevent cross-contamination since 80% of all infections are transmitted by hands. Be courteous of others and don’t contaminate your famous holiday dish with your illness.

Stay hydrated. Water helps your body transport nutrients to keep you energized and healthy. Nourish your body by following the 8×8 rule; drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day.

Take in holiday joy, not germs. Those cookies in the break room and bowl of roasted peanuts at the holiday party are tempting to pick up and eat, but sharing is not always caring when it comes to festive treats. Use the proper utensils when adding food to your plate and steer clear of food that has been touched by other people. Your appetite and your health will be satisfied.

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Hunter is the Content Marketing Specialist at Betco.

If you have any questions, please visit http://www.betco.com, call (888) GO-BETCO or please contact us at welisten@betco.com.

Earth Day 2016_Dear in Water

Why is Green Cleaning Important?

Green Cleaning means more than using “green” products. The success of a green cleaning program is dependent on numerous factors. While the selection of sustainable products is important, it will have little effect in the case of an inadequate cleaning regimen that leaves facilities dirty and the health of occupants, visitors and the environment at risk. A comprehensive green cleaning program should include sustainable options for chemicals, procedures, equipment, paper, liners, mops and matting.
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Hotel

Tips for Cleaning and Disinfection in Hotels

During winter the general public spends more time indoors due to colder temperatures and inclement weather. Places like airports, hotels and public transportation can become a breeding ground for illness-causing germs due to the increased number of people spending more time there. Hotel staff should take note of this increase in the spread of germs during cold and flu season and have a strong cleaning and disinfectant program to prevent guests and staff from becoming ill.

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classroom

Critical Germ Touchpoints in Education Facilities

When it comes to effective cleaning in school facilities, what most people think about first is the restrooms. In fact, studies have found that parents, when visiting a college or university their son or daughter is considering, invariably visit the restrooms to examine their cleanliness. The reasoning is: clean restrooms mean a well-run school; poorly maintained restrooms, can mean something far different.

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Easy Maintenance Can Extend Vacuum Life

Extend Vacuum Life with Easy Maintenance

Vacuum cleaners may not be the most expensive piece of equipment in your closet, but for many it is the most used and abused. Operators tend to run over the power cords, forget to change filters and bags and even run them into walls and down stairs. These kinds of neglect can lead to maintenance problems later and can shorten the vacuum’s life.

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Effective Floor Care Starts with Daily Maintenance

Effective Floor Care Starts with Daily Maintenance

The Betco U Certification Program offers three important components to floor care: daily maintenance, interim care, and restorative care. Of the three, daily maintenance is the most important. Not only does daily maintenance help keep the floor looking its very best every day, but properly performed, it can delay interim and restorative floor care, which are typically more costly and more labor intensive.

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modern bathroom

Improve Restroom Appearance by Cleaning For Health

In public and commercial settings like office buildings, restaurants, schools and healthcare facilities, restrooms are most frequently cited as the number one source of customer complaints and unsurprisingly one of the toughest areas for cleaning professionals to maintain. Cleaning for health and aesthetics are both important. Consumer perceptions of a facility’s restrooms can impact bottom lines, but restroom cleanliness is also very important to public health in general.

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Foam Soaps Save Water

Do Foam Soaps Save Water?

It often comes as a surprise to building owners that the typical restroom faucet can use as much as 2.5 gallons of water per minute. If used ten times in an hour, that’s 25 gallons of water going down the drain. Over the course of an eight hour day, water consumption can top 200+ gallons per faucet. There are very effective aerators available along with other water-reducing systems that work to reduce consumption, however, the amount of water used for hundreds of hand washings in a typical facility every day can be excessive.

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triclosan

EPA Denies Request for Triclosan Ban

The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) announced recently they denied a request to ban all use of the chemical, triclosan, and impose new regulations on releases of the antimicrobial pesticide into bodies of water.

Two environmental groups also petitioned the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) to ban triclosan in personal care products such as cosmetics and soap, as the EPA’s authority on antimicrobial products extends only to those not meant to be applied to the body. The FDA has yet to respond to their petition.

The EPA disagreed with the environmental groups asking for a ban on their claims that triclosan poses a danger to human health. Triclosan is claimed to interfere with endocrine systems of humans and animals, and can accumulate within the body at high levels. The agency cited recent risk assessments it conducted through its required re-evaluation of the chemical’s pesticide registration.

“Antimicrobial uses of triclosan meet the applicable statutory standards, and the petition and supporting comments did not provide sufficient evidence to significantly change those conclusions,” the leaders of the EPA’s water, pesticides and science and technology divisions wrote in their May 13 response to the environmental groups.

The EPA did say it would take a biological assessment to see if triclosan affects endangered species. If determined, it would require work with the Fish and Wildlife Service and the NOAA Fisheries Service to base a comprehensive study on triclosan’s ecological impact.

For more information on this announcement, click the link below:

Letter from US Environmental Protection Agency – Petition to Ban Triclosan

http://op.bna.com/env.nsf/id/dscz-9wmmny/$File/EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0548-0787-2.pdf

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Save With Restroom Water Conserving Technologies

Water-reducing technologies are available that conserve water effectively and surprisingly inexpensively.

California is plagued with its fourth consecutive year of unprecedented drought. With increasing levels of severity, the state has become dependent on new mandatory measures that aim to reduce water consumption by 25 percent across the board. However, it is becoming clear that additional, and much more stringent, measures may be needed. In fact, the Sierra snowpack recorded its lowest levels (5%) in April. Continue reading

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How to Handle Chemicals

Accidents happen. This is one reason why the U.S. Department of Labor continues to list cleaning and custodial work as one of the most dangerous jobs in the country, mainly due to the many accidents involving chemicals that occur each year.

A Few Tips to Stay Safe:

  • Keep a list of the cleaning chemicals your facility uses. The list should include details on each chemical, such as how many gallons (and multiple-gallon containers) are stored, where they are stored, and the potential hazards and necessary precautions.
  • Make sure employee’s  know exactly what the following “signal words” mean: Continue reading

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Hospitals – Bathroom VS Elevator

When most people think of hospitals they think sterile, but that’s not the case – hospitals are dirty places and hospital-acquired infections, like C. difficile, are a common occurrence. Everyday objects in hospitals—from white coats to ultrasound equipment—are well-known harbors’ of bacteria. But, what is one of the dirtiest touch points in a hospital … A new study in the journal Open Medicine has revealed a little-known germ hotspot: the hospital elevator button. Continue reading

Cleaning Market

Five Trends Impacting the Cleaning Market

Now more than ever keeping the environments we spend our time in clean has gained importance, and the products used are under greater review. The following trends that are impacting the cleaning market were complied by CleanLink based on Smithers Apex data. This data shows that consumers are now concerned with more than having a clean environment: They want to understand the product choices.

  1. Performance: Products which combine their efficiency with innovative features have an advantage in this marketplace. While it is essential to differentiate the pack on-shelf, the product itself should also have innovative functions to establish the product and brand as cleaning market leaders. Continue reading

Green House

Bio-Based Cleaning Chemicals: Myths and Realities

Like any new product, there are some misunderstandings and misconceptions surrounding bio-based cleaning chemicals. Below are some of the most common myths about bio-based products:

Myth: Bio-based cleaners are new.
Reality: While some are new, bio-based cleaning products actually date back to the 1930s. Manufacturers and distributors discovered that some of these products are ideal for use in schools and other settings frequented by individuals with compromised immune systems, those who are chemically sensitive, and those who suffer from multiple or life-threatening allergies.

Myth: Bio-based cleaners don’t work for serious applications. Continue reading