Category Archives: office cleaning

How to Keep Your Office Germ Free (with Cleaning Checklist)

sick employee holding head at officeThe amount of money lost by US employers is staggering; sick employees cost the US more than 500 billion every year. Any business owner or manager can attest to the fact that sick employees are a major disruption. Sick employees can attest to the fact that sick days are no fun and that germs can spread like wildfire through the office.

Fortunately, there are strategic ways to prevent the spread of germs and stop the transmission of flu, cold, strep, and other illnesses. The easiest way is to make disinfecting wipes available to employees. Wipes can be stored with cleaning supplies and in common areas where employees can use them to clean equipment.

Hand washing is the next line of defense. In busy offices where employees can’t get away, strategically-placed hand sanitizer is an easy way to prevent the spread of germs. Hand sanitizer should be put out in areas where employees have convenient access, such as common areas.

When even the best efforts to stem the flow of germs fails, a full workplace disinfection is the only solution. Office cleaning can be done during by internal staff during business hours (using the workplace disinfection checklist below) or completed by a commercial cleaning service after-hours. A commercial cleaning service tasked with an after-hours disinfection minimizes disruptions and ensures that the cleaning is done all-at-once or periodically to rid the office of germs.

Office Disinfection Checklist

  • ___ Wipe down door knobs (exterior & interior)
  • ___ Disinfect printer, scanner, and fax machine controls
  • ___ Wash candy bowls
  • ___ Clean desktops and staplers
  • ___ Disinfect phone cradle, handsets, and headsets
  • ___ Remove germs from every computer keyboard and mouse (use this step-by-step guide on disinfecting computer keyboard)
  • ___ Disinfect trash cans
  • ___ Wipe down office chairs
  • ___ Clean all conference room furniture, including countertops, tables, and chairs
  • ___ Sanitize the kitchen
    • Kitchen faucet
    • Kitchen appliances (toaster, microwave, stove, etc.)
    • Chairs and tables
    • Kitchen refrigerator (door, handle & interior)
    • Kitchen cabinet knobs
    • Dishwasher controls
  • ___ Disinfect the coffee maker (all handles and controls)
  • ___ Sanitize the bathroom
    • Faucets
    • Paper towel dispensers
    • Counters
    • Bathroom door handles
    • Hand dryer controls
    • Toilet seats and handles
    • Stall door handles
    • Stall garbage cans
    • Soap dispensers
    • Bathroom waste receptacles

Your Complete Commercial Office Cleaning Checklist

yellow caution sign that says "Caution wet floor" part of a safe workplaceKeeping your office space clean is more than just a labor of love; it’s also a matter of practicality, employee health and productivity, and maintaining a professional work space.  To achieve all of those goals, your commercial cleaning service or in-house cleaning crew should be working off of this list to keep your work space clean and productive.  If either crew is not living up to you (or your visitors’) expectations, it’s time to use this complete commercial office cleaning checklist when you start the process of choosing a new cleaning crew—and contacting each cleaning service for a quote.

Reception Area

  • Dust common areas
  • Clean cobwebs
  • Vacuum rugs
  • Vacuum or mop floors
  • Wipe down and sanitize phone
  • Clean top of desk
  • Clean computer screen

Conference Room

  • Dust common areas
  • Clean cobwebs
  • Wipe down tables
  • Vacuum or mop floors
  • Sanitize door knobs


  • Dust common areas
  • Clean cobwebs
  • Vacuum floors
  • Vacuum rugs
  • Wipe down and sanitize phones
  • Clean tops of desks
  • Clean computer screens
  • Sanitize handles (periodically)
  • Clean off top of cubicle walls (periodically)
  • Sanitize door knobs (periodically)


  • Wash dishes
  • Wipe down and sanitize countertops
  • “Elbow grease clean” your sink
  • Sanitize the faucet
  • Maintain your garbage disposal
  • Clean out refrigerator (periodically-let everyone know when so they can remove their items from the fridge!)
    • Wipe down every shelf
    • Pull out any drawers and scrub them out
    • Vacuum behind the refrigerator
    • Dust down the top of the refrigerator
    • Sanitize the door handle
    • Wipe down the front of the refrigerator
  • Mop the floor
  • Vacuum rugs
  • Clean down tables
  • Remove cobwebs & dust tops of cabinets (periodically)
  • Sanitize door knobs
  • Wash windows (periodically)
  • Clean the stove (periodically-if applicable)
    • Clean the oven
    • Wipe down the stove top
    • Sanitize all surfaces and handles
  • Clean out crumbs from the toaster and wipe down (periodically-don’t forget to unplug it first)
  • Make any repairs (tables, cabinets, chairs, etc.) to kitchen furniture and items (periodically)


  • Empty trash (main trash can and restroom stalls)
  • Putt new bags in trash cans
  • Wash down counters and mirrors
  • Refill soap, paper towels, toilet paper, and toilet seat liners/covers)
  • Clean toilets and urinals (bowl, seat, handle, and tank)
  • Disinfect handles (toilet and paper towel dispenser), door knobs, and faucets
  • Sweep and mop floor

What can a cleaning service do for your business?

The question, “what can a cleaning service do for your business?” is a loaded question with a two-fold answer. One answer is that a commercial cleaning service can keep your office and warehouse space organized, your restrooms clean and your tenants satisfied. If you hire a commercial cleaning service like ZBM Clean, you can also request preventative maintenance done around your building, ensuring that your HVAC unit lasts longer and your building condition is prime.

The second answer to the question is an itemized list of potential cleaning, organization, preventative maintenance and construction tasks that can be done at your primary building or rental commercial space. While the list for many commercial cleaning services would stop at cleaning and organization, ZBM professional commercial cleaners can also do preventative maintenance and construction tasks needed around your business, including:

  • cleaning your office kitchen,
  • window and blind cleaning,
  • dusting office cubicles and counters,
  • regular vacuuming,
  • floor cleaning and waxing,
  • parking lot maintenance,
  • refilling supplies in the restroom,
  • landscaping,
  • removing and replacing ceiling tiles,
  • fixing drywall patches,
  • painting walls,
  • fixing and repairing HVAC units,
  • building inner offices,
  • restroom repairs,
  • installing new interior and exterior doors,
  • other facility preventative maintenance.

This list of cleaning and preventative maintenance tasks can be customized to your business’ needs on a schedule you specify. And while this answer is a very long answer to a very common question, ZBM Cleaning can answer other common commercial cleaning questions about cleaning and preventative maintenance tasks with a simple phone call, and back their answer up with prompt and quality cleaning and preventative maintenance service.

4 Tips for Keeping Your Business Clean on a Budget

office that was kept clean on a budgetThere are a lot of compelling reasons to keep your business clean: employee productivity, reducing sick days, customer impressions of your business. Getting all those benefits can be a challenge on a small business budget, but the effort to keep your business clean on a budget is possible if you follow a few simple tips to keep your cleaning budget on course.

Involve your employees

To be clear: you don’t want your employees cleaning constantly instead of doing their jobs, but you can empower your employees to be an integral part of keeping your business clean. Lead the effort by setting a stellar example, and craft a clear plan to maintain your exterior and interior cleanliness. Once you’ve made a plan to keep your business clean, designate specific cleaning tasks to the appropriate departments and employees. Be very clear about who is the responsible party for each cleaning task so they are held accountable, and why the cleaning task needs to be accomplished on a regular basis. Make the initiative a company-wide effort.

Concentrate your cleaning budget on key areas

If your cleaning budget is tight, focus on key areas of your building: restrooms, entry way, kitchen, production floor—whatever area of your building is used often or is seen by clients and vendors. Schedule regular deep cleanings so you don’t get so far behind on your cleaning that you have to spend additional dollars to get your building clean.

Don’t just worry about the inside

No matter how tight your budget, cleanliness is not just about first impressions but about protecting yourself. Allocate part of your budget for keeping your parking lot and building exterior clean and kept to protect yourself from legal action in case of an accident. If you want to consolidate your expenses, hire a cleaning company that can handle your interior and exterior maintenance.

Hire a cleaning service during your off hours

We’ve given you tips to select the right company for your cleaning needs in a past blog post. Once you’ve established your criteria, contact a cleaning company that fits your needs (and your cleaning budget) for a free quote. To ensure that your business operations are not interrupted, request that all cleaning happen when you have a light staff on hand or when your business is empty.

Tips from the Pros: 5 Ways to Keep Your Office Clean

bright empty office indoor with computers after commercial cleaningThere is always room for improvement in business. Your building doesn’t have to be classified a pig sty to step up your commercial cleaning efforts. From your production floor to the office, take measures to make cleaning a top priority at your company—and get the professional-looking results that make the initiative worth the effort.

Identify your company’s cleaning needs

Before you begin cleaning or requesting anyone clean your building, do a complete evaluation of your facility. Identify areas that should be cleaned on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis and ways you can prevent damage to your facilities. For example, if you are noticing damage to flooring near your entryways, invest in quality mats to protect your building floors. Schedule regular floor cleanings as an additional prevention measure. As you do your evaluation, don’t forget to include exterior cleaning and maintenance needs on your list. Evaluate your needs, and the ability of your staff to handle those responsibilities.

Get your employees on board your cleaning plan

Once you’ve made a plan to keep your facilities clean, designate specific cleaning tasks to the appropriate departments and employees. Be very clear about who is the responsible party so they are held accountable, and why the cleaning task needs to be accomplished on a regular basis. Make the initiative a company-wide effort. Communicate regularly about your initiative, along with friendly tips for keeping the office and other facilities clean.

Clear clutter

Sick of the piles of paper that clutter the tops of desks and filing cabinets? Create an (organized) electronic storage system for all your paper documents. Talk to your IT staff about creating a regular back up schedule so you don’t lose any important data.

Ensure that you have the correct cleaning supplies

If you want your employees to maintain a clean workplace, make sure you have the correct cleaning supplies to get the job done. Stock cleaning wipes so employees can clean their computers and other electronics—especially when an illness is going through the building. Keep dish soap on hand for cleaning lunch plates and silverware. If you stock any cleaning supplies that can injure your employees if not used properly, establish protocols for safe use.

Hire a cleaning service during your off hours

Don’t compromise the ability of your staff to deliver the services or products you pay them for in your effort to keep your company clean. Evaluate your options for cleaning: does it make more cents (pun intended) to hire additional staff or outsource your cleaning to a professional commercial cleaning company. Use our tips to select the right company for your cleaning needs; if you need a company that provides commercial cleaning and exterior maintenance, add that to your criteria list. Once you’ve established your criteria, contact a cleaning company that fits your needs for a free quote. To ensure that your company operations are not interrupted, request that all cleaning tasks happen when you have a light staff on hand or after they’ve gone home.

Business Spring Cleaning Tips

cleaning serviceSpring may not seem like an occasion to cheer about at your business. After all it’s just another business day in Wisconsin, and business as usual. However, spring is an opportunity to clean out the clutter that has accumulated throughout the winter and get your office, shop and warehouse ready for all the business that comes your way.

Don’t feel like the brunt of your business spring cleaning needs to land squarely on one employee’s shoulders. After all, business spring cleaning is a task that should be done by every employee and coordinated with your commercial cleaning service for maximum effectiveness. A full spring cleaning should include, but not be limited, standard spring cleaning tips that keep your business running smoothly:

  1. Clean out the file cabinets. Determine what files need to kept for financial and business reasons, and shred excess papers from your file cabinets. For electronic files, delete old files, make sure that employees are following organization standards for your shared/common drive and your back-up system is regularly storing documents, graphics and financial records. When your system-wide electronic purging is complete, challenge your staff to do the same with their computers so they have a clean and organized PC as they do business.
  2. Clear off desks. Is the pile of papers on employee desks as tall as the staff? Though you’re all busy, set an hour or afternoon for spring cleaning desks and shared common cabinets. Bring in a shredder or large boxes for unneeded papers. Sort, organize and shred all unnecessary paper piles.
  3. Organize and inventory. In your warehouse and office, clean, sort and take inventory of office supplies, product and raw materials. Dust and take stock of what you have so you’re prepared to process orders and customer inquiries efficiently and expediently.
  4. Give the floors a professional cleaning. Spring means no more tracking snow, ice and salt across your warehouse and office floor. Take this opportunity to get your floors cleaned beyond regular vacuuming and an occasional spot clean. Hire a professional cleaning service to wax, polish and carpet clean your facility during business off hours.
  5. Keep your outside as maintained as your inside. If you own your building, or are have an agreement with your landlord to maintain the parking lot, pick up the parking lot, lawns and outside areas around your workplace. Hire a professional cleaning service to power wash the building, seal the parking lot and keep the exterior of your building looking professional and clean. Remember curb appeal matters when you’re dealing with a steady stream of customers, suppliers and community traffic.

To ensure that the interior and exterior of your building are part of the spring cleaning, hire a cleaning service that can make repairs, perform interior and exterior maintenance and clean your bathrooms, office space, warehouse and kitchen. With their assistance, your business spring cleaning can be a coordinated effort with a successful completion.

How to Create a Clean Workspace Your Employees Love

Is the pile on your desk taller than you are? With a few exceptions (very, very few exceptions), most employees thrive in a clean and functional workspace. Achieving that goal—a clean and functional business—is not one that comes without continual effort and work:

  • Keep your common areas and warehouse organized. This is as simple as having separate bins for your paper supplies, designated spaces for products and clean countertops. Make sure that you have the proper shelving and amount of shelving to accommodate functional organization of your products and supplies.
  • Designate cleaning duties. Be clear about who is responsible for cleaning up clutter in common areas such as by the printer and in the warehouse. Regularly clean during slow times to keep the clutter to a minimum.
  • Preventative maintenance & cleaning. Regular preventative maintenance and cleaning can not only keep the office and warehouse clean, but also prevent disrepair and breakdowns that can cause future shut downs and problems.
  • Hire professional cleaners. This can be done in one of two ways: by hiring an employee or professional cleaning service. Base your decision on payroll costs, training and orientation expenses and benefits versus the fixed cost of a cleaning service. Factor in the amount of work that needs to be done to keep your building and office clean. A professional cleaning service can perform as much—or as little—as you need done.
  • Purge excess items. While it’s tempting to keep extra parts “on hand” for future use, make sure you throw away parts and items that are not going to be used. If you don’t, the excess inventory can build up over time, jeopardizing your organization and minimizing your usable space.

The good news is that creating a clean and functional workspace is not a goal that needs to be accomplished alone. Contact a reputable, local commercial cleaning company in southeastern Wisconsin for information about pricing and scheduling so you can achieve your goal of a clean and functional business.

5 BIG Questions to Ask When Hiring a Cleaning Service

When hiring a cleaning company for your home or business, you’ve got questions about your residential or commercial cleaning service and what to expect. We understand, and have answers for you when it works for you—just like our cleaners who provide quality cleaning when you need it:

Do I have to be there when the cleaner is there?

No and yes. It’s up to you. Homeowners or business personnel do not have to be present when our cleaners come in for cleaning. We do ask that you secure pets or animals when our cleaners come in, and provide a secure entrance system. If we’re cleaning carpets or floors we prefer that you do not stay (or perhaps hide in your office and read a good book!) for safety reasons.  We don’t want you to slip on a wet floor or trip on a hose.

Who supplies cleaning products?

Our cleaning cost includes all chemicals and equipment.  However, if you have a specific cleaning product you want us to use, that would have to be provided by you.

How often does the cleaner come?

Our cleaners are flexible. We can set regular cleanings based on your schedule, or come in and clean before you have a family holiday or company event. For businesses, our cleaners are also available during your company’s off hours, giving you a clean office or work area for your employees when they arrive. Some of our accounts are served 7 days per week and some are upon request.  We work within your budgets!

Do they do whole-home or business cleanings every time?

What do you need? Our cleaners can clean only the bathrooms or floors, or give your home or business a deep, “white-glove” clean every time. We can also establish quarterly or annual cleanings of your duct work, windows and blinds.  You decide on your cleaning and maintenance needs and wants. We work with you to set the cleaning schedule and scope at a cost that fits your budget.

How can I set up a cleaning?

Give us a call or send us an email.  We’re here to serve you.

What other questions do you have for a cleaning service?

Are you taking advantage of your company down time?

Whether your employees are taking off for the holidays, or you are shutting your Wisconsin business down between Christmas and New Years, don’t just lock your doors without taking advantage of an empty building. Down time is prime time to give your commercial building that deep clean that can only be accomplished when everyone is out of their office, your tenants are on vacation, the machines are not running in the shop and your customers and delivery truck drivers are not stopping by.

You can also get maintenance and repairs done so your building is clean and repaired for the new year:

  • cleaning your office kitchen,
  • dusting office cubicles and counters,
  • floor cleaning and waxing,
  • parking lot maintenance,
  • landscaping,
  • removing and replacing ceiling tiles,
  • fixing drywall patches,
  • painting walls,
  • fixing and repairing HVAC units,
  • building inner offices,
  • restroom repairs,
  • installing new interior and exterior doors.

Call your local southeastern Wisconsin cleaning company to schedule down time cleaning for your commercial building or rental property. Your tenants, employees and shop workers will be amazed when they return to their office or shop in the new year.

Cracking Commercial Cleaning Service Myths

Commercial cleaning is a term associated with myths about almost every aspect of the industry: pricing, the scope of work and processes used by professional cleaning technicians. However, a clean business for your customers and employees is important, and so invaluable that it’s worth cracking those commercial cleaning service myths one by one:

An employee cleaning your business is cheaper. This myth is not always true, and in two different respects. Do your research when assigning cleaning a staff member in addition to their other jobs. Can you hire a cleaning service for cheaper? Is your staff member spending more time cleaning than working on tasks you need done for customers or smooth operations? A full evaluation of your staffing needs, and analysis of your financial resources, can prove that you are paying more for that staff member to clean than the cost of a cleaning service. The second part of this myth is that hiring a cleaning employee specifically for that purpose is not always cheaper. As a business owner, do your research. Often, the cost of salary and benefits exceeds the expense of a cleaning service.

Cleaning services only clean. Though this myth sounds obviously correct, the answer is surprisingly different. Many commercial cleaning services offer business maintenance services as well. For example, commercial cleaning services offer services such as parking lot maintenance, building exterior clean up and repair jobs throughout your warehouse or office.

Businesses have to supply the cleaning products. This myth is right and wrong. Though some businesses do supply their own cleaning products for professional cleaners, businesses can also opt to have the cost of cleaning products included in the cleaning service. In addition, businesses can also choose to hire the cleaners to restock products in restrooms and kitchens as well.

Commercial Cleaning Services don’t use green products. Absolutely untrue. ZBM professional office cleaning technicians are trained in traditional and earth-friendly practices and the use of advanced eco-friendly products and equipment to provide a variety of janitorial and building maintenance services. If your business is trying to reduce your impact on the environment, you can still hire a commercial cleaning service.

One more myth to crack: commercial cleaning services can also clean tenants’ office spaces and multiple business locations, not just one location or building. The truth is that commercial cleaning is dependent on your business: professional cleaning technicians come into your business on a schedule you specify to do the services your business needs for a cost that fits within your budget.