A search on the US records census will show you that the amount of money being spent on Austin janitorial services has remained the same for several years but the amount of companies competing for that business has grown by 30%. The piece of the pie is the same but the competition is constantly growing.
How do Austin janitorial companies undercut each other by such large amounts? What makes an Austin janitorial company good, how do you know what your getting? How can I create an RFP (request for proposal) that will ensure a properly maintained facility? You want a clean office at a fair price with no added liability. This is how you do it.
Anyone can start an Austin janitorial business
Starting aa Austin janitorial company does not require much capital to get off the ground so there are a lot of mom and pop start up companies. Some basic janitorial supplies and chemicals, a vacuum, and a cleaning crew and you are in business. But there are many requirements to run a legitimate janitorial company. Becoming a corporation, getting business licenses, having adequate worker’s compensation, liability, and commercial auto insurances, as well as being bonded. Having experience and hiring experienced cleaners is key to a long term successful janitorial contract. There are many key factors to picking the right company:
Austin Janitorial Crews
Some Austin janitorial companies try to save money by paying salaries that don’t cover the actual amount of hours required to do the job properly. Employees can feel taken advantage of because their salaries do not cover minimum wage for the hours that are required to properly maintain the facility. This scenerio breeds resentment with the employee and often leads to inconsistent cleaning and sometimes lawsuits. You want to ensure proper wages are paid and should avoid hiring companies who sub contract their labor or pay less than minimum wage. Labor related lawsuits in Texas are on the rise and very costly to fight. It’s important that you ensure your janitorial provider is:
Hiring Actual Employees and Not Sub Contractors – Subcontractors are not covered under the company’s insurance. Taxes are not paid and the employee could be making less than minimum wage. Hiring sub contractors is one way janitorial providers cut their costs to undercut the competition, but it is a quick way to increase your liability and decrease your service levels.
Fully Insured – Make sure you check the certificate of insurance and verify coverage. Some companies require a verification of the janitorial providers workers compensation experience modification number. The higher the number the more claims the company has experienced which will give you insight into their safety track record. Usually the lower the number the more hands on the company’s management is.
Watch out! Because some companies get the certificates of insurance on them as the owners with no employees to save money, or even worse do not get insurance at all. Certificates can be faked. Look over the information carefully and make sure you are protected. You can call the insurance company to verify proper and valid coverage as well as coverage on employees. Should one of their employees get hurt you want to ensure they are covered or the liability could fall on the property owner. Asking the right questions and checking their information could save a big headache in the future.
Paying their employees correctly – Some companies require the service provider to show payroll records quarterly so they can verify the crews are being paid properly. It’s in your best interest for the janitorial staff to be paid the full amount budgeted for labor so you can get the most possible hours cleaning your facility. Many companies try to cut corners to make more money which can lead to issues in the service.
Austin Janitorial: About the Company
When you are selecting your service provider it’s important to learn as much about the company as you can. How long have they been in business? What experience do they have? Can you reach an English speaking person if you have an emergency? Are the owners or managers on call? Who will your contact person be? Who will be supervising your account? It is very important to check local references. I generally like to provide 10-12 local references when bidding on a janitorial contract. See what people have to say. Make a list of questions to ask when you call:
- How long has XYZ company been providing your janitorial services?
- What size is your facility?
- Are you happy with their service?
- Have you ever needed to call after hours for an emergency?
- Was someone available to help you?
- Do you get charged additional amounts that you don’t expect?
- Do the additional services such as floor waxing and carpet cleaning get done when they are supposed to?
- What do you think is the companies greatest asset? Their greatest challenge?
- Would you recommend their services to other people you know?
Understanding how other people feel about the company is a good way to determine what your experiences will be. You should call on at least 5 references. It’s easy to provide a few fake references but checking multiple will ensure more accurate information.