How long does it take to clean a 43000 square food building. - Cleaning Talk - Professional Cleaning and Restoration Forum
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post #1 of Old 10-29-2017, 08:10 AM Thread Starter
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Angry How long does it take to clean a 43000 square foot building.

Hey, I recently started working as a janitor for a really large company out here in southern California. I have never been a professional cleaner before. I am a little bit slower than a normal cleaner due to a chronic pain problem, but even being faster, I still would not be able to clean my half of a 43000 square foot building in 4 hours. Often times I have to stay late and work an hour or two for free in order to get my work done so that the customer does not complain. The building has two large cubicle areas, thirty individual offices, a receptionist area, three large stairwells to be vacuumed and swept and mopped. Three large conference rooms, one small conference room, a large break room, four large restrooms, and three really large production areas. No matter how fast I go, It takes me 1 hour to remove 60 trash can liners and replace them. Then an hour to an hour and a half to vacuum all carpets, they are dirty every day. It takes me an hour to backpack vacuum and mop one of the large production areas once a week. I have to move a lot of chairs because there are many individual workstations with chairs and trash cans to be moved to mop. The guy doing the trash downstairs has like 100 cans to empty daily and it usually takes him an hour and a half, then another half an hour or more in the large break room cleaning, mopping, and wiping down 15 large tables. The bathrooms take me 25 minutes each, that is not including the time it takes to detail the partitions once a week and deep clean them. I would have to be working so fast to get done that I would be breaking things and moving around like a madman. If I skip vacuuming to do my mopping work, the customer complains. If I skip mopping to do vacuuming the customer complains. They give two guys 4 hours a piece to clean 43000 square feet all needing vacuumed, dusted, mopped, and thoroughly cleaned each day. Then there is a guy who tests us constantly placing paperclips and odd trash in the conference rooms to check and see if we are vacuuming there every day. They throw used paper towels down the stairwells to see how long it takes to clean them. If we miss a paper clip for more than two days the customer calls our boss or his boss to complain. I am always on edge on the customer complaining and it is the fault of the company we work for not giving us enough time to clean properly. I had to skip sanitizing the restrooms on Friday, I just replaced the toilet paper, paper towels, and mopped. I had to clean out three large fridges and detail them and spend an hour cleaning a production area the customer complained about that my bosses crew supposedly cleaned on Monday and I still found dust bunnies behind doors and desks they never moved. I fixed the problem, but on my own time without pay. If I stay clocked in past four hours I get told off. But I also get told off if the work is not done. I don't know what to do. I'm thinking about asking for more time and if none is given then I will just put my notice in. The customer is very dissatisfied with our work and anoter worker that was not doing hardly any work and the boss took two months to fire them. He let this other person get away with leaving 2 hours early every day while staying clocked in for weeks. He has so many other buildings to manage that he only comes to our building when the customer complains, which is becoming an every other day occurrence these days. He is trying to pressure me but I am doing all I can do. I would just take over the job myself for 8 hours a day, but physically I can't work more than 6 hours before my medical condition catches up with me. I am probably 10 percent slower than a normal cleaner, but there is still too much to get done. I come in 10 minutes early most days to make up for my slowerness and I work non-stop for the entire time. I only stop to take a swig of water from time to time while I'm switching from one cleaning task to another. I waste no time. There isn't even enough time to properly clean and maintain the equipment. The boss came in one day and worked like he had smoked a hit of crack throwing trash cans all over the place doing the trash in 30 minutes sweating like crazy huffing and puffing. I doubt any human being could work like that each and every day without filing a workmans comp claim for something going bad on their body. What do you guys think? I read it takes 6 hours a day for two people to clean 43000 square feet.
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Last edited by Jerry1976; 10-29-2017 at 08:31 AM.
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post #2 of Old 10-29-2017, 08:25 AM Thread Starter
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Please forgive my grammar. I am just being lazy tonight. I read that a good cleaner can clean 3500 square feet an hour. So that would be 6-7 hours a piece for two good cleaners to cover 43000 square feet. The cleaner I have working with me now is only temporary. He is an excellent cleaner, but with his other day job and working at another site before he gets to my site, he is working almost 17 hours a day. He can't maintain that pace indefinitely. So when he misses a day due to burnout, the building suffers and stuff does not get done and the customer complains. I fear we might be on our last legs with this customer as we are still having problems 3 months into the contract. My other co-worker got yelled at by one of the customers employees for a production area literally not being swept or mopped one time in 2 months. She then got off her butt and finally cleaned it once and then she started leaving early. I finally had the boss divide up our areas because she was trying to get me to do all of her work. Once we divided the areas, her side kept on getting the complaints and my side didn't. So, finally the boss figured out who was the slacker. She was written up when he showed up one day 2 hours into the shift and she was AWOL. Then she quit on a Friday without notice. She texted the boss 2 hours into our shift that she was not appreciated and was not coming back. So I had to work the whole 8 hours on a bad leg and could barely walk by the end of the night. I couldn't get my extra work done because it took all the energy I had to do the regular work and I had to spend so much time detailing her neglected bathrooms. If I am going to do the job, I am going to do it right no matter how long it takes. That is when the customers workers stopped bothering me after they saw how clean her restrooms and break room was after I cleaned it. They realized who was the problem. I am the reason for some of the original complaints because I have never cleaned before and there is always a learning curve with any new trainee, but I learned quick. My boss came in and deep cleaned the restroom floors and missed the corners and got a complaint. So maybe no one at this company knows how to clean properly or they just don't have enough time in the contracts to do so. I really can't say. I am considering giving my two week notice soon because I simply can't keep up at this pace or work for free anymore. For ten an hour I can flip burgers or deliver pizza's and make more money without an entire building looming over my head each day. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. J

Last edited by Jerry1976; 10-29-2017 at 08:30 AM.
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post #3 of Old 10-30-2017, 06:03 PM
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Jerry, to be honest, think you are an impossible position. You will NEVER be able to do all that in such a short time. NO ONE could. I, too, have chronic pain issues, and work "around" that by resting briefly when it flares up. The big difference for me is that I do not work for anyone. I am my own boss. Only have to answer to myself. Perhaps you need to think about leaving THIS cleaning company, and trying another one who has more realistic goals.

By the way, your grammar was fine. In fact, I enjoyed reading your posts because they were so descriptive!!!

Your boss sounds like - well, kind of dumb. I dont care what you have read, one person cannot clean that large an area in that amount of time. One has to take into consideration the complexity of the job, and how much responsibility each worker has. IE: If there were NO bathrooms, that makes it easier. IF you didnt have to empty all the trash, this would make things go faster. You described a daty when your boss came to help out, and it sounds as if he DOES know - deep inside- that the amount of work is too much for so few people. In my opinion, it sounds like you and your co workers are being used....and perhaps a bit abused.

Let us know what happens, Jerry, and best of luck to you. The cleaning business CAN be a lot of fun, but not in your situation. Your situation is just STRESS.
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post #4 of Old 10-30-2017, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
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You might be right missannie. My boss told me they have another contract that the building is twice as large as this one and they are giving 2 workers three hours to complete the job. He said they can't keep anyone on that job. They just keep on replacing workers one after the other. In the early days, when I was doing all of the trash, it took me two and a half straight hours to empty and replace the liners on over 200 individual trash cans. If the trash was maybe taken out and the liners replace daily by the workers, perhaps there would be enough time to do the rest of the work. There is no day porter either. Just a guy who restocks the bathroom a few times a day, but he does no cleaning. It is all on us. This place generates tons of trash, especially on the production side of the building. What's a real shame is that a lot of people put a half used cup of coffee into a trash can liner that could have been re-used if not for the coffee inside of it. Sometimes the trash takes me just 30 minutes when there is only paper in the cans and I only have to replace a few liners. But there are many offices and cubicles where I have to zigzag and dig for the trash cans. I watched a Youtube vido on how to zigzag between desks and offices to be more efficient at removing trash. I have a whole system down to get the job done as fast as possible. Tonight, since I have neglected the vacuuming because I only used the hoky on Friday and skimped on the bathrooms, I will be detailing the bathrooms real good and deep vacuuming. What really slows things down are the tables in the conference rooms where there are tons of greasy finger prints on them. I have to wipe them down many times to get them fingerprint and streak free because the laminate is so cheap on them. If they were just plastic or glass, I could easily clean them with one good wipe down. It's like the fingerprints in grease are haunted and just keep on coming back. I have used Glance NA glass cleaner and we also have Alpha HP cleaner. We use Crew NA for the restrooms. I really hate to have to give my notice because I was out of work for over 4 years with a leg injury. I almost gave up on ever functioning again. I'm working a physical job against the advice of my pain doctor. And to be completely honest, I would not be able to handle this job without painkillers. I am on a small amount of painkillers and I have some long acting painkillers for the really bad days. The worst part about all this is that my circulation issues in my bad leg hurt way worse when I'm sitting in a chair then they do when I am standing, but I still can't stand longer than the 6 hour mark. I literally spend all of my free time in bed or with my leg elevated off the floor to mitigate pain. The first day of work I was scared to death and I was covered in sweat from just emptying trash and vacuuming. I have gotten a lot stronger from this job, but only to a point. I might have a talk with the boss about giving me a list of specific duties and then that is it, or maybe giving me an extra two hours a week paid time to take care of the production areas downstairs. I can handle the upstairs half of the building if I don't have to mess with the production areas. Any how, thanks for validating what I already knew. I knew it was not possible to get the work done in that amount of time and the boss says that we can take a 15 minute break lol. I told him there's no time for a break. I just don't understand who is bidding on these jobs. They need to be realistic. But if the customer drops our cleaning company, I will just move on to another form of work. I don't think I can handle doing cleaning long term. I might just look into pizza delivery and driving for Uber.

Last edited by Jerry1976; 10-30-2017 at 06:36 PM.
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post #5 of Old 10-31-2017, 09:16 AM
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Hi Jerry,
I too, injured my leg. Fractured the femur. I almost lost the leg. A good surgeon put it back together, but NO ONE expected me to walk normally again. I used a walker for 4 years and a cane for three more after that. I couldnt work as a nurse (RN). During my long recovery I slowly gained some strength by cleaning my own home. I hadnt been able to clean for quite a while so you can guess how grubby it was. Turned out I have a special talent for cleaning, and when I had fully recovered - 4 years ago - I began cleaning houses. I agree with you that having a physical job helps us. But - and this is important: If you are NOT enjoying your job, it is time to move on. You deserve to feel GOOD about your work, not always feeling like you did a half-a___ed job.

Your boss is just using people, and he onviously is not thinking about long-term profits! It is possible he is in big financial trouble, and feels he has to scrimp to maintain his business. That doesnt make it right, but it might explain what you are seeing.

Driving for Uber, delivering pizza - Jerry, those are not physical jobs. Sitting in a car all day is not good for anyone! I realize you live in pain - so do I. Mine is controlled by having an implanted pain pump. Oral drugs did nothing for me except make me stupid and groggy. This might be something for you to look into. The company that makes these pumps is called Medtronix. Google them. I have had mine for 10 years now, and my pain levels went down significantly.

Something I learned: If you have a physical disability, it is all too easy to sit around feeling sorry for yourself, or just being lazy due to pain. But what really helps us is moving about, bending, lifting, scrubbing, all physical activities. Maybe I cannot run. I can't! But I CAN walk, I CAN work and my house cleaning is excellent. This staying active, I promise you, is the secret to your recovering more than maybe your doctors think you sholuld. I am not some special person. Just an ordinary woman. I admit to being stubborn! I didnt want to give up, and somewhere along the way - actually, I learned this from an online support group I was in - I learned that distracting myself (from the pain) was very, very helpful. And forcing myself to get up and move about was just as helpful.

I love my work now. I am my own boss, I can pick and choose who I wish to work for. Because I have gotten a good reputation, I have little trouble finding new customers. I find mine online, most of the time. On Thumbtack, or Care.com. I can set my own hours, too. The only expenses were buying a good light weight vacuum cleaner, and basic supplies. Over time I got to be more picky about which products I use. Sure, I would make more being a nurse, but Florida treats nurses so badly, I dont want to! I dont know where you live, but perhaps house cleaners in YOUR area get paid well. Here, we make $15-25 an hour, and more likely it will be $15/hour. Many of my customers now pay me $20/hour simply because they dont want to use me. And of course, you DO have to pay for gas to get to and from job.

I dont know if this site allows one to send a private message or not. If it does, I'd love to hear from you privately, so we can discuss all this stuff more. This site isnt conducive to personal sharing - I am sure you have noticed that.
Annie in Florida
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post #6 of Old 10-31-2017, 06:55 PM Thread Starter
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You're right about staying active. For a long time I just bowed to the pain and stayed in a chair. It was like being in a prison cell. I was offered a spinal cord stimulator, but due to blood clotting problems, I am not a good candidate for any surgeries. The oral meds are fine. I have become acclimated to them and they do not affect my state of mind anymore. I don't take them until I am at work though so that by the time my shift is over the 4 hour half life is gone and I am no longer considered to be driving while intoxicated. I will not take them and then drive. I just have to pace myself because walking and climbing stairs is what tires out my leg the most. If I walk too far or climb too much then I am done no matter how many pills I take. My leg will swell and I will be limping like a gimp. Every night after my shift when I get home and take off my shoes before I re-dose my pain meds, I am barely able to walk. I look like an old cripple before the meds kick in. It has been like that since day one, so no amount of physical activity has improved this. I might look into cleaning houses. I too started by cleaning this house to get stronger. In the early days I used to get a heart rate of 150-160 beats per minute just from vacuuming. I would get a HR of at least 120-130 just standing up and chopping vegetables for dinner. I was in very bad shape from the lung damage that the blood clots caused. Now I am better but still get fast heart rate without my blood pressure medication. My company is one of the largest companies in the commercial cleaning industry. They are huge. It's not a small operation, so they are either unaware of what is happening, or they just don't care. My boss was promoted three months ago from a cleaner to a supervisor when my company fired the entire regional office in one swoop. They were losing contracts and got rid of everyone, even the human resources department. I guess they keep on firing management when the job doesn't get done as opposed to actually giving the workers enough time to complete their tasks. The facilities manager at the company I cleaned was impressed with all the work I got done last Friday. He thought we were getting faster. I told him, we are not getting faster, it's not possible to do all of the work in 4 hours. I told him I stayed an extra hour and forty minutes to complete the work. He then left me alone. I finally deep cleaned the bathrooms and wiped down all of the walls and partitions, deep vacuumed and spent 30 minutes detailing two large conference rooms. Vacuuming and dusting the chairs, vacuuming, cleaning large touch screen TV's, the desk, the food table, the large chalk boards. All is good now and today I will be kind of taking it easy. I did stay an extra 20 minutes again for free. I have to stop doing this, but I care about the customer. Any how, I will send you a PM later. Thanks for the support. J
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post #7 of Old 10-31-2017, 07:33 PM
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Yes. Send me a PM. I have a lot to say to you but feel it isnt appropriate for this site.

Your attitude is good, and that is what counts. I found out - the hard way - that thinking negatively only made things worse. Jerry, I went through serious hell, for many reasons which I will only explain privately. But here I am, 67 years old and in better health than I have been in for many years. Not that I consider myself to be totally well: I have my disability to consider, plus hypertension. For me, climbing stairs is a painstaking thing. My right leg cannot bend normally, so I take one step at a time. Frustrating!!!!!! I feel like an old lady, going so slow. Luckily, Florida is famous for having one story homes. I only have ONE customer who has stairs. Thank God.

If I were in your shoes, I would keep doing what you are doing: TRYING to do a good job. But - BIG "BUT" - I would also be looking for a new job. Either private house cleaning, or something else. You sound intelligent, Jerry. Dont sell yourself short by going the pizza delivery route or Uber driving. Your intelligence could get you something a whole lot better and more sataisfying. Plus something that wont keep you sitting all day! Maybe - ? There is something you could do online??? Are you a techie type who knows how to truly use a computer? (I am not!)

I used to love to dance. Oh, I loved dancing, a la Michael Jackson/Mick Jagger stuff. And I wasnt bad at it. Now I cannot dance hardly at all. I used to feel sorry for myself over this. I dont now, I just miss dancing. I have to remind myself - a lot - that the alternative route would have left me with only ONE leg. I have two - who knows for how long, but for now, I have both legs. That is something to be thankful for.

Lots more to say on all this but it will wait. Hope you are considering other options for work....as in "SOON".
Annie

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post #8 of Old 11-01-2017, 06:32 PM Thread Starter
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I too have to limp up the stairs with one leg. I can technically use my right leg very slowly, but if I climb with it, the leg will tire immediately and there will be no strength left in it for standing up. That is the only thing that has not improved. I have to climb the stairs only with my left leg and drag the right leg up behind it. I fear I am blowing out my knee in the good leg because it does twice the amount of lifting/climbing that the good leg does. It basically does everything for the bad leg. Any how, let me send you a PM later on tonight. I had to work an extra hour again last night and it just tore me up bigtime. J
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post #9 of Old 11-01-2017, 07:24 PM
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Sounds familiar. I am not sure where or how to find PM's here. Let me know, please, because I think we have a lot to say - privately. Stairs are my weak point, and I simply can NOT run. I broke my right hip as well as the femur. Lotta rehab, and a lot of pain. I got bursitis in the hip several years ago: the ortho doc told me to stop doing two mile walks because my hip just wasnt up to it. But, I CAN work, since movement at work is - well, easier and mostly non-repetitive. If things start to hurt a bit, I ease off and do something else. One of the things I love about my work now is that it is up to ME to notice what is dusty or dirty, and how to fix whatever isnt just right. Much of what I see, the owner doesnt even know is there. But I am a perfectionist of sorts. I never waste time, because I am all too well accustomed to living within a budget.

One of the hardest things for me is asking or telling customers I should be paid more. I know I am worth more that $15 an hour. And many of my current clients already upped me to $20/hour, simply to keep me. Any ideas there???

Jerry, listen. You gotta watch how much pain meds you are taking. It may not seem like much but youor body will react in its normal way: addiction to the drugs. Yes, what I get is a narcotic. Tiny doses, and yes, I am physically addicted, I am sure. But taking larger doses of oral meds will undoubtedly pack a much bigger punch when it comes to withdrawal. Nuff said about that here.
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post #10 of Old 11-02-2017, 12:17 AM
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Hi Jerry,
Nice to see you in this professional site. Yes, Janitorial services are in high bid for places of business. As far as your question is concerned, in my opinion, it is a tricky question, as it only depends on the job and location. The certified companies know how long it will take to clean your building with proper cleaning processes. There are a lot of variables that can affect the time of cleaning; however, I would say 2-4 hours is a guess that is safe to say. You are doing a great job. I have been into commercial cleaning services for 25 years ranging from office cleaning, carpet cleaning, green cleaning, floor cleaning and post construction clean up etc. For expert advice find my contact details at http://www.momentumjanitorial.com/contact-us

Momentum Janitorial Inc.
Premium provider of commercial janitorial services
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post #11 of Old 11-02-2017, 09:09 AM
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IMO: 2-4 hours is WAY too little time. Read his original post, detailing everything he is supposed to get done. It sounds impossible to me. Emptying the trash cans can take him an hour, because there are so many. How on earth can he fit in all the OTHER cleaning things? His boss is of no help, and his co-workers are in the same rocky boat. Just my guess, but I think Jerry picked a crummy company yo to work for. Most companies with a high employee turn-over rate are not doing what they should be doing, which is fostering good work habits, loyalty and PRIDE in accomplishing the companies work.

If I were in his shoes, I would first attempt to talk with the boss, to explain how I felt (over-worked and over-stressed - trying to get too much done in too little time). I would keep my tone neutral, and non hostile. Even the grumpiest boss may have a heart somewhere in him, but you wont know until you find out. If his response is negative all the way, it is time to leave that company. And find opne who cares about its workers.
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post #12 of Old 11-02-2017, 05:45 PM Thread Starter
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[quote=momentum;149906]Hi Jerry,
Nice to see you in this professional site. Yes, Janitorial services are in high bid for places of business. As far as your question is concerned, in my opinion, it is a tricky question, as it only depends on the job and location. The certified companies know how long it will take to clean your building with proper cleaning processes. There are a lot of variables that can affect the time of cleaning; however, I would say 2-4 hours is a guess that is safe to say. You are doing a great job. I have been into commercial cleaning services for 25 years ranging from office cleaning, carpet cleaning, green cleaning, floor cleaning and post construction clean up etc.

The time would be adequate if they allowed us to alternate. If I vacuumed three times a week and then detailed the floors the other two days, all would be good. I think that is what's in the contract. But the employees are very messy and when one crumb is not vacuumed up they complain to my boss. I will go in and detail the floors in the production room and that same night someone will spill coffee all over the floor and then complain that we aren't cleaning properly. Another issues is that the building still have production workers in there up until we are done cleaning. So, sometimes they make a mess in the break room or downstairs bathrooms and we get blamed for it even though we cleaned them properly. I'm not gonna take a before and after picture each night for this purpose. Also, on the days when all three large break rooms are being used for all day meetings, it takes a lot of time to detail them that takes time away from other duties. Tonight, for the first time since I've been working at this site, I'm going to almost completely skip vacuuming upstairs and use that hour and a half to mop one of the production rooms. I literally vacuumed every office last night. I did notice that a lot of the offices need to be dusted as dust is accumulating on the window ledges. I don't have time to get to that until next week though. Also, I need to do a deep wipe down of all of the desks that are made out of white plastic material that have stains on them. I need something with bleach to get them to shine again. I've been wanting to do this since the first day I came on the job three months ago, but I would need two good hours to do a really decent job on them. Last night was a terrible night for me health wise. I barely made it through the shift and opted to slow down rather than take more pain meds. My BP just went all crazy and I had to double up on Clonidine which can cause you to become really tired and lethargic. I have weird blood pressure that can be completely normal/low when I am sitting down all day. Then it will jump to 170/120 within a minute of standing up. I can feel it surging when I get pounding headache and start to go to the bathroom every 10 minutes. I actually worked three days straight with BP as high as 190/125. I am that dedicated to the job. I have not missed one day so far. Any how, I will check out your site. You sound pretty knowledgeable. I know all of the small offices and small cubicles and office clutter I have to work around with the vacuum cleaner also slow me down. The production rooms are rows and rows of clutter and desks. There are no big areas where we can just use a dust mop and a mop to get tone really fast. I have to move many, many chairs and clutter to clean. So much so that I stopped using a dust mop and vacuum the concrete floors with a backpack vacuum. It is more efficient. The production area gets dirty fast because it is like a factory and it does take more time to clean a factory type setting. These aren't buffed floors that you hit really fast with a dust mop and then a damp mop. My dust mops are almost stained with dirt after one cleaning and need to be washed. That is how dirty the production area is. Then the workers will spill coffee on the floor right after we clean them. It's almost like they need someone to follow them around all night cleaning up after them lol.
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post #13 of Old 11-02-2017, 07:24 PM
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Jerry. NI(X the bleach idea. It isnt safe for you to breathe in the fumes. Use a hydrogen peroxide all purpose cleaner. I use one made by Lyson and it works VERY well. It DOES have a bleaching effect, is totally safe and harmless. I ditched reaL bleach a long time ago and only use it if I find mold/mildew.

The suggestion you have of switching off duties makes sense. However, from what you have said, your boss wont support you workers in this. Maybe I am wrong. What would happen if you sat down with your boss and (carefully) told him what you are seeing and thinking?????? Your boss will have to be strong enough to back up his employees, if changes are made in the work routine.

Speaking as an RN, you probably hace stress-related labile hypertension. VERY common. I have it too. Are you on BP meds? I take Atenolol and Losartin, and they work very well.

I am waiting to hear from you privately. Seems we have much in common.

I will say this: I like your attitude. It is plain to me that you CARE about how you do your job. That is worth a LOT in this business, which, unfortunately, is filled with too many people just working at cleaning for the money. Caring about it means you will do a better job. Some people have the notion that cleaning is menial work, and therefore, less valuable. Hard work is what originally made this country great! There is NO shame in working hard at keeping a home, office, etc. etc., clean and sanitary. We cleaning people deserve more money, and more respect. This is yet another reason I work for myself. No boss. NO one to tell what I can and cannot do. If I make a mistake, I own up to it, and do what I can to fix it. Cleaning people who hold their heads high, make eye contact with others, and just simply do their jobs well, will gain more respect than someone who is slumped over, shoving a broom around, looking like they would like to be anywhere but there. Attitude DOES matter in this business, and having a good one - as you do - is actually priceless. Wish your boss knew that!
Annie
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post #14 of Old 11-17-2017, 06:34 PM
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Jerry, this is crazy, it is absolutely impossible for one person to do everything you listed in 4 hours! What you're describing is at least a full time job. My wife and I filled in for a couple of weeks at a ~20,000 sq. ft. tech office and it took us 2 hours (4 man hours) to do 4 large bathrooms, 1 small bathroom, 1 very large kitchen/breakroom, and about 12,000 sq. ft. of hard flooring. 2 other people did the 200+ garbage's, vacuum and dust and took about 2 hours each for that as well. And this was in a fairly clean building. To top it off, both our boss and the building manager were very easy going, we never got a complaint.

Normally my wife and I clean ~10,000 sq. ft. a night and it takes us 3-4 hours (6-8 man hours). We're paid by the job not by the hour, but it works out to roughly $16-$17/hour. Some small weekly jobs we've been paid as much as $25-$30/hour.

Unfortunately there are some contracts like this and there's not really anything you can do about it. It boils down to the fact that your boss isn't doing his job. He should be managing expectations and assuring his client that the contract terms are being met. If they aren't satisfied with that then they need to either pay more for additional service, or they need to hire another company. And if your boss can't do that, then he needs to get out of the cleaning business.

I can assure you that there are bosses and clients out there who either down right appreciate the work cleaners do, or at the very least, aren't constantly testing you and whining every time there's a spot of coffee on the floor. I wouldn't tolerate a work environment like that, it's not worth it. Maybe if they paid me $100/hour I'd put up with their crap LOL!
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post #15 of Old 11-17-2017, 06:47 PM
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Well said!!! We all, sometimes, take jobs that just do not work for us - or anyone. When we realize this, it is time to move on and stop being abused! There ARE clients who appreciate our work. They may be a bit hard to find, depending on where you live, and what the pay scales are there. But no one could do all the stuff you are being told to do. Time to move on.
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post #16 of Old 11-17-2017, 09:36 PM Thread Starter
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Last night two guys came into my freshly cleaned restrooms and pissed all over the seats. They didn't even bother to lift up the seats. These are grown men. One guy poured an entire cup of coffee into a clean trash can liner before he went home. The liner was empty cept for the coffee in it. I didn't change the liner for this, but the boss doesn't like that. I am cleaning now and there is a second shift there, so they always mess stuff up after it has been cleaned. I can't be there to mop up after people like they're little babies. I asked my boss if the building was too big to do in 4 hours a piece for two guys and guess what his response was lol. He said that if he came right from home, well rested, that he could do the entire building by himself in 6 hours. Well, let him do it in six hours and throw and slam equipment around like a mad man and ruin all of the joints in his body. That's how a company gets a ton or worker's comp claims. I hurt myself one night because I had to go so fast I wasn't paying attention to safety. Fun times. Once the building is cleaned on a regular basis, it is easier to maintain. The building is getting to that point finally and I am pre-tying 300 trash can liners at home and placing them in the cans on Monday. I then only have to remove the bags for the other four days. It takes me an hour or more to do this on Monday, but now removing the trash on the other days only takes me 15 minutes. Ten minutes if I really hustle. I use that extra time to do more work downstairs. I also use the toggle more. I don't vacuum as much and use the Hokey to do the rest. It's not perfect, but it looks good enough that no one complains and it only takes me 20 minutes to do all the offices like that. I sometimes skimp on the bathrooms not doing anything more than wiping the seats when they look good, and I mop willy nilly some nights and save 10 minutes. As long as it looks good enough no one complains. I don't change the mop water as much as I should and that saves me time. No one can tell as some of the floors are too old to even tell if they've been mopped or not. It's just mainly getting the dust off the floors and the coffee stains and to have the workers on the second shift actually see someone doing the work. The complaints have slowed down to a halt now that they can physically see me and my new partner doing the work. My new partner works days at the school district, so he has a ton of experience. He's like a machine and can cover a lot of ground. So the floors are so clean now that it doesn't take long to maintain them. I talked to the boss about me being slow and he said he is not going to fire me. He will let me make that decision if I find an easier job in the future. I am learning though from the new partner. He has gotten us better equipment that is making the job easier and faster. I still think we need 6 man hours a piece a day to make the building pristine, but to fudge it and make it look decent is now being done within the 4 hour a piece time-frame. We have had no complaints since the new guy started. I never had complaints about upstairs and this guy gets no complaints. So were all good for now at least.

Last edited by Jerry1976; 11-17-2017 at 09:41 PM.
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post #17 of Old 11-17-2017, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
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Also, the second shift workers are now sweeping their areas. Before they would just blow the debris out and expect the janitor's to clean it. It's not the janitor's job to sweep parts from the production workers work areas. They do that and we just quickly dust mop and mop now mostly in the aisle ways and not all of the individual work stations. If I can get the workers to just carry their trash can liners to the dumpster when they go home at night, it would save 20-30 minutes a day. Keeping a building clean is a team effort. It's not just one single person. If we had a better team effort, then we can definitely get done on time.
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post #18 of Old 11-19-2017, 09:35 AM
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My question is simple: why are you still working there????
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post #19 of Old 11-19-2017, 10:11 PM Thread Starter
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Another reason why I need to hang on into next year is to get the six months of janitorial experience in order to make myself more marketable to other companies. The only thing I have not learned how to do here is use a floor buffer/stripper or a carpet buffer. But I have learned a lot about the commercial cleaning industry.
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post #20 of Old 11-20-2017, 08:27 AM
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If I were in your shoes - and I HAVE been, in the past - I would start looking for a new job NOW, while still working there. Jerry, I too am disabled. I couldnt work at all for 5 years. I used a walker for 4 years, then a cane. I, too, live with pain. I have learned to ignore it as best as I can. I have handicapped license plates, and cannot climb stairs easily at all. I can only do stairs on step at a time, because my right leg does not bend much.

I think you should think hard about what sort of work you WANT to do next. And dont just accept any old job, because you wont be happy. Disabilities do limit us, but we do deserve to like our work. I have realized that at some point, I will want to do something other than cleaning. I may go back into Nursing, but here in Florida, that isnt a happy job. I have started thinking about what else I could do, and it is important that I LIKE what I do.
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