In almost any office environment today, you’re likely to find a cleaning person or even a team of people who keep the office neat and tidy. Enlisting the help of in-house or third-party cleaning services is part and parcel of the entire office administration process.
Yet despite the best efforts of your cleaning services company and your regular office cleaning team, germs are faster and more efficient than anyone might realise. Not only are they invisible to the naked eye, they can also be transferred in any number of ways, from travelling through the air to creeping along unsanitized surfaces and even catching a ride with staff members on their hands, skin and clothing.
As providers of some of the most thorough cleaning services Johannesburg has to offer, we are all too familiar with the hotspots of germ activity in the average office workplace. Of course, the bathrooms are the number one culprit, but there are many other spots that most people would never assume to be dangerously dirty.
A recent study by Kimberly-Clark professional hygienists took a sample of 5000 swab samples from many different workspaces, and used the presence of ATP as an indicator of microbe activity, and therefore, contamination. ATP (adenosine tri-phosphate) is present in all animal, plant, bacterial, yeast and mould cells, making it the ideal measurement to detect organic materials that germs and microbes thrive on in the office. An ATP measurement of over 300 indicates high levels of contamination, and these are the items that scored 300 or more:
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While it may not be your responsibility to disinfect office public areas, you should be responsible for keeping your own private workspace as clean as possible – the study also showed that the computer mouse, keyboard, and desktop phones were hotbeds of organic material as well.
Even companies that use contract cleaning services should make an effort to inform and train staff about the dangers of bad hygiene practices in the workplace. While nobody can avoid germs entirely, hand-washing, detailed attention to germ-rich locations and regular use of hand sanitiser can reduce their rates of colds and flu by up to 80%, meaning more productivity and less sick leave.
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