An unhygienic commercial kitchen can lead to poor food ratings, high rates of sickness, and increased costs for your business.
With 80% of communicable diseases passed on by your hands, it is easy to prevent the spread of germs and keep your costs down.
A professional kitchen cleaning service can help avoid added expenses but how do you choose the right restaurant cleaning company for your business?
Effects of a Dirty Kitchen
Your hospitality business, like many, is always busy. You may have a shortage of staff or a lack of systems in place which mean cleanliness doesn’t get given the priority it needs. But this could be detrimental to your business.
Poor Food Hygiene Ratings
A lot of businesses who receive a poor hygiene rating, do so due to a lack of documentation and cleanliness.
Consumers are willing to pay more for a five-star rating and the majority will check your food hygiene rating. Therefore, a poor food hygiene rating will cost you business.
And once your reputation is damaged due to a poor hygiene rating, you may lose some customers for good.
High Staff Turnover
The hospitality sector is infamous for having a high staff turnover and it has become a significant challenge due to Covid.
To attract potential candidates, you should show that employee wellbeing is a priority for you by having a clean environment.
A high staff turnover also creates a vicious cycle. With staff coming and going, cleaning will be inconsistent and there will be a lack of accountability which leads to germs spreading.
Customers Becoming Sick
Foodborne illness is a real problem for the food industry with 40% of foodborne diseases caused by germs from hands and 60% are linked to eating establishments and commercial caterers.
If a customer becomes ill because of food from your establishment then it is extremely unlikely they will be back. It is likely, however, that they will tell friends and family to stay away from your business which will cause you to lose out on revenue.
Changes in Customer Priorities
Consumers have become increasingly aware of hygiene due to Covid.
Many consumers still want to see signs of cleaning with 55% wanting venues to continue to have hygiene measures displayed.
Melissa Hockstad, CEO for the American Cleaning Institute, reports that increased cleanliness isn’t a fad but a behaviour that is now normal and will continue to be important to consumers.
Restaurants have already changed by implementing contactless technology, such as QR codes on tables that let customers scan the code for the menu. This means a member of staff doesn’t have to come near them to possibly spread germs and the customer doesn’t have to touch a physical menu which could also contain germs.
If customers think you’re not paying attention to cleanliness, they won’t hesitate to stay away.
A lack of cleanliness costs businesses in many ways. From an increase in sick pay due to employees spreading infections, to losing custom because of poor hygiene ratings.
Viruses can be reduced by more than 85% simply by improving cleanliness, so there is no reason why you can’t control hygiene in your premises and keep your costs down.
How Often Should a Commercial Kitchen be Deep Cleaned?
Some say it’s law that commercial kitchens have to be deep cleaned every six months but it doesn’t state this specifically in the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 legislation, however, your premises must be ‘safe and have an absence of risks to health’.
A kitchen deep cleaning should be carried out every few months at the least. Grease and dirt can clog up equipment such as your canopy that could spread germs onto the food.
If you have a consistent cleaning routine, then a deep clean won’t take as long or be as disgusting when you go to deep clean it.
What Does Restaurant Cleaning Services Entail?
Different restaurant cleaning companies may have a slightly different kitchen cleaning service. For example, some companies may clean not only the kitchen but also include a front of house service.
Generally, cleaning a restaurant will include:
• Canopy cleaner
• Restaurant equipment cleaning services
• Floor cleaning and mopping
• Removing waste
• Surface cleaning
• Washroom hygiene.
Whatever restaurant cleaning service you hire, they should create a customised plan to suit your business. This should include all areas that need cleaned, when they should be cleaned, and what cleaning products should be used.
When commercial kitchen cleaning is carried out, it should be done in a certain way to avoid cross-contamination. For example, a cleaner should not clean a raw food prep area and then use the same supplies to clean a cooked food prep area as this will spread germs.
A professional restaurant cleaning company will be aware of this and ensure their cleaning system ensures a high level of cleanliness.
Benefits of Professional Cleaning Services
You could hire your own cleaning staff to clean your commercial kitchen, or what often happens is that the chefs are left to do the cleaning.
There can be several issues with doing this.
If you hire your own cleaners, you have to go to the trouble of advertising, picking the right person, and retaining them.
It will mean higher recruitment costs and it could also mean higher employment costs.
Hiring a cleaning service means all your expenses are in a small fee which covers all of the expenses.
If you ask your chefs to carry out the cleaning of your kitchen (outside of cleaning as they go), this can mean cleaning is not given the attention it needs.
Chefs are very busy and adding more tasks to their job role will create more stress for them and leave them with little time to ensure the kitchen is clean.
Chefs may be experts with food, and they may have training in cleanliness, but they are not experts like the cleaners of a professional kitchen cleaning service.
A cleaning service means there is a specific person responsible for it who will ensure it is done.
A healthier and cleaner workplace has been proven to increase productivity. It helps people feel better about their surroundings and it also means it’s one more thing your employees don’t have to worry about doing.
Extends Equipment Life
The cleaning of equipment, such as industrial oven hoods, may be neglected if you don’t ensure it is cleaned regularly.
It not only will be caked with grime which could lead to the spread of bacteria, but it can also reduce its life or cause it to break, giving you added expense.
A regular deep clean of your kitchen equipment will ensure it lasts longer and provide better value for money.
Encourages Staff to Keep Clean
If staff are provided with a clean and healthy workplace, then they are more likely to keep it that way.
It should help them to take pride in their surroundings and understand that health and wellbeing is important to you.
When a clean culture is created, there are likely to be less infections and reduced costs.
How to Choose the Best Cleaning Company
There are many professional cleaning companies to choose from, especially in the London area.
Here is a list of things you should consider before choosing a professional cleaning company near you.
Check reviews of the commercial cleaning company. If the majority of customers are happy with the service, then it’s likely you will be too.
If there are any negative comments, check to see if the company has responded. If they have replied diplomatically then it shows they care about what their customers think and aren’t going to ignore you, should you have any problems.
How much you are able to spend on a kitchen cleaning service will be a big factor in who you choose.
Remember that if your restaurant is clean then you should see a whole host of benefits from this. It’s an investment and probably cheaper than hiring employees yourself.
Think about what professional cleaning services you actually need. Do you need them to do a regular clean, or do you need them to do a deep clean?
Can they clean kitchen appliances or can they keep track of your records?
Think about what you are willing to do yourself and make sure the cleaning service can do the rest.
Ask them for a list of references if they don’t have them on their website or if you want some more information.
Any reputable company should be happy to provide you with contacts who are willing to vouch for them.
Does the cleaning company have insurance to cover you should anything go wrong? What if one of their cleaners slips on your floor or some other mishap?
What amount of insurance cover do they have and is it enough to cover you?
6. Eco Friendly
This may not be high on your list but customers are willing to pay more for sustainable companies, plus it could save you money.
An environmentally friendly company should use eco products and practices. Eco products usually last longer which saves you money and are kinder to the health of your employees.
Are they a member of any organisations such as The British Institute of Cleaning Science (BICSc), the largest independent, professional body in the cleaning industry?
Being a member of this type of organisation will show they are trustworthy and have been assessed as being of a high quality.
8. Commercial Cleaners
Do they use agency staff or hire their own cleaners? Do they do checks on all their staff and provide them with up-to-date training? Are their cleaners in London near your business?
At StainlessCleans we provide the same staff and never use agency staff. This ensures a high-quality service. Using the same cleaner means they become familiar with your premises and become more efficient.
9. Cleaning Supplies
Will the cleaning company provide professional cleaning products, or do you have to provide these yourself? Some of them will need you to provide equipment such as vacuums and other items.
10. Site Survey
Do they charge for a site survey? Some cleaning companies charge just to have a look at your premises and let you know what you need. Others, like StainlessCleans, offer this for free.
Can they work the hours you need them to? Can they do multiple sites or weekend hours or provide early morning cleaners?
12. Customer Service
When you become a customer, do they provide you with a dedicated account manager? This would indicate that they provide a personalised service and that it will be easy communicating with them.
This should also mean they will regularly check the work of the cleaners to ensure a high standard is maintained.
How Much do Commercial Cleaning Companies Charge?
Professional cleaning costs and a customised cleaning service will vary in price depending on the company, your location, the size of your business, and various other factors. For example cleaning services in London will be more expensive than cleaning services in other parts of the UK.
Compare each cleaning service you are considering and see what the set price includes.
Does it include:
• Cleaners wage
• Holiday pay
• Contract management
• Cleaning products.
The fee should include all of this, so if it doesn’t then you’re not getting the best deal. You should ensure they charge a set amount and do not have added costs or charges outside of what you have been quoted.
At StainlessCleans, our London cleaning company, are offering a 15% discount for any of our cleaning packages because we understand how tight your budget can be and we want to ensure food premises are hygienic.
We’re also offering a 12-month free supply of UK Certified sanitiser cleaner and degreaser cleaner.
If you’d like to get this offer or to know more about our commercial cleaning services in London, contact us today.