Even comparatively ‘small’ warehouses are large spaces, which makes the task of cleaning them feel absolutely daunting.
Keeping your warehouse in good shape is essential; small bits of debris can cause big accidents, and could affect the future of your business.
A smart environment will have positive effects on employee productivity, and allow people to take pride in their work. This article helps break down the task of cleaning your warehouse, to put it into more manageable chunks and facilitate a more methodological approach.
How often you clean your warehouse to a certain extent depends on use, but most spaces will require different levels of cleaning, to be done daily, weekly and monthly.
These cleans will most often be done after the work day is completed, but in some cases will be carried out first thing in the morning. A rota is the most basic way of ensuring this is completed effectively – the checklist form should be filled out with each clean, to ensure that each item is taken care of and potentially tired teams don’t forget anything.
While you may be wary of the additional expenses of regular cleaning, don’t see it as a loss, see it as an investment. A clean workplace will portray a positive company culture, not just to employees but to potential future business partners! It also enhances productivity and reduces time spent clearing up from mistakes.
Organisation is one of the keys to efficiency – if everyone knows where things are kept, and those things are clean and ready to use, you’re in a good position.
The main element of warehouses, their main use, is their vast interior space. This is often used for storing stock, but needs regular access.
Keeping this space clean is of the utmost importance. You’ll want to make sure that the floors are kept clear of obstacles such as pallets, or anything else that could either represent a tripping hazard or something that heavy machinery could knock into. Slippery floors need to be kept in good condition, with regular checks for damage.
As well as pallets, other hazards could be in the form of oil or other potentially slippery surfaces; signs and hazard warnings are essential here, especially if there’s a spillage that can’t be immediately cleaned.
Warehouse toilets can be sometimes overlooked, but as always, it’s essential that they’re kept clean. They can quickly become the dirtiest space in a workplace, so you should make it your goal to make and keep it the cleanest space.
As well as keeping surfaces squeaky clean and disinfected, check in places you wouldn’t usually look – behind basins, in the back of cupboards, under cisterns. If in doubt, spray with an antibacterial product, it won’t do any harm and will kill any bits of mold.
As it’s unlikely that they’ll be heated, this is an added concern with warehouse toilets – cold means it’ll be damp, and damp means that mildew and mold will attempt to gain a foothold.
Lots of warehouse work is reliant on the effective use of equipment, from forklift trucks to industrial scale insecticides. An important aspect of the warehouse cleaning list will be keeping this equipment pristine; while cleaners won’t be the ones to do services and safety checks on equipment, they should be trained on how to safely clean it, so as to not cause any damage in the process.
Exterior and access points
Some parts of exterior cleaning needs to be carried out less frequently, but it’s important nonetheless. Warehouse exteriors can get filthy; the walls and roof can become covered in bird muck and other detritus, which is not only unsightly but can lead to significant repair costs when drainage is blocked.
Clean this perhaps every month, and consider taking preventative measures such as bird spikes. This won’t stop the problem but should slow down how often it needs taking care of.
Outside spaces can also quickly fill up with litter and packaging; make sure that all access points are kept clear and checked daily – not only will this make it an easier place to work in, blocked entry and exit points are a health and safety hazard. If the warehouse sees heavy traffic, consider making these checks twice a day.
Warehouse work is labour intensive, and it’s important that staff have a safe and clean environment to eat lunch in and take short breaks. Treating staff badly only leads to a quicker turnover rate, meaning more training and less experienced teams of workers. Investing in your workers pays dividends in the long run.
The key element to the staff room will be the small kitchen area. Make sure that the kitchen is pristine – clean out the fridge at least once a week, taking out all the contents and wiping in all the corners, and make sure that any microwaves aren’t covered in food spatters inside.
Keep tea and coffee stock clean, and sugar bowls free of clumpy sugar. It doesn’t have to be fancy, far from it, but it’s demoralising to have to spend your 30 minute lunch break wading through dirty cups and a smelly fridge, so keep it clean at least.
Many warehouses also have office spaces for admin, and just because they’re not the main function of the site, it doesn’t make their role any less important – don’t make the mistake of overlooking them.
Regularly hallways and doors, but give staff the opportunity to clean their own desk areas – they may prefer to do things their own way, and IT equipment can be quite delicate.
A way to simplify cleaning that is often overlooked is to have many accessible bins located around the premises.
Depending on use, this should be emptied either daily or every other day, and will mean that the workplace remains far more manageable.
Implement these measures as soon as possible and the results will be surprising, bringing cleaning costs down and helping massively to maintain a respectable environment. Contact our team today for more information regarding our managed deep cleaning services for warehouses and industrial environments.