Your warehouse cleaning process is crucial to the efficiency of your business. When working within the food and drink industry, you must keep your hygiene standards as high as possible. Otherwise, you’ll be leaving your business wide open for cross-contamination and other potential issues.
A lot of businesses won’t be aware that their warehouse cleaning process needs addressing. That’s because they’re not aware of the hazards that are presented if you don’t regularly and thoroughly clean your premises. Don’t worry if you’re one of these people – this post has you covered.
We’ll run through everything you need to know about warehouse cleaning and what you can do to improve your current process.
- The Importance of Regular and Thorough Warehouse Cleaning
- The Dangers of Not Cleaning Your Warehouse Properly
- What Does the Typical Warehouse Cleaning Process Look Like?
- How Can You Improve Your Overall Warehouse Cleaning Process?
Fruit and vegetable production warehouses can become messy – quickly! So, you must stay on top of your cleaning process as the chances of accidents happening is maximised in a dirty working environment. With heavy machinery being operated and vehicles whizzing around the premises, the last thing you need is other hazards being maximised, isn’t it?
Also, fresh fruit and vegetables don’t have a particularly long shelf life even when looked after impeccably. If you’re processing food products in a dirty warehouse, you’re risking the freshness and quality of the product. Not only will this reduce it’s shelf life and quality dramatically, but it may also deem the product unfit for human consumption. If this happens regularly, it can be quite a waste of time and resources.
Upholding a rigorous warehouse cleaning routine engrains a high standard throughout the business. It’s all well and good being a shining example in your customer-facing outlets, but if the behind the scenes areas aren’t reflective of this, you’ll soon be found out. Nobody wants to be the business that’s known for putting on a false front.
Warehouse cleaning is often pushed down the priority list due to it being deemed laborious and tedious. That’s no reason to not address the issues that are in front of you! Although it’s tempting to continue cracking on with the jobs that are making you the most money, you can forget the basic principles of operating that will always prop your business up strongly. Cleaning must and always should be a firm priority.
Downtime is the result of events that hamper your operations – this could be partial or full, depending on the severity. It’s an operational managers nightmare having to explain to their seniors that they’re experiencing periods of downtime. When you can’t work at full pelt or are forced to halt all processes, the business can’t make any money and will be operating less profitably.
Not cleaning your warehouse properly and regularly makes accidents more likely to happen. And we’re not talking about small accidents either – these are big ones that can cause havoc internally. Whether it’s a team member falling and injuring themselves, or your products becoming contaminated, there are various consequences to not keeping your workplace spotless.
Contaminated products can bring your business to its knees – especially if they slip through the net and are consumed. By not cleaning your warehouse properly, you’re exposing your products to harmful bacteria that can spread rapidly. If your products become contaminated, they’ll then have to be disposed of adequately. This means that you’ll be losing money, wasting time and you’ll need to replace the items.
If somebody falls ill as a result of consuming a contaminated product, you’re likely to have a lawsuit on your hands. Usually, these lawsuits result in hefty compensation fees, a tarnished reputation and you’ll be at risk of being shut down. Once your reputation has been tarnished, it can prove difficult to overturn. To counter the risk of cross-contamination, you should stay on top of cleaning processes.
All businesses are different – which means that they’ll have differing warehouse cleaning processes in place. With industrial cleaning processes, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach that works for businesses across the board, as each site will differ from each other. Taking a further look into the industry, we believe that there are many businesses out there that are operating with an inadequate cleaning process.
Wipe Down All Surfaces
Fruit and vegetable products should all be handled differently, which means that surfaces should be regularly wiped down to stop products being ruined. However, we’d place a hefty bet that a lot of businesses try and cut corners with this one and will only do this a couple of times a day – when in fact, it should be done regularly and every time a different food product is being produced.
By not cleaning your surfaces down properly, you run the risk of exposing your products with foods that they shouldn’t be near. This can be fatal to your product range, as it’s not only harmful bacteria that can ruin your product range. Think about it, if people have allergies to certain products and you’re preparing other items with their residue left on there, it’s not safe practice, is it?
Clean the Floor
A sweep and a mop just won’t cut it we’re afraid. Plus, imagine trying to sweep and mop a large site by hand, you’d be there for days. In environments where time is money, you can’t afford to be wasting time by hand sweeping and mopping. Also, there’s no way that you’ll carry out an adequate job doing it like so.
Whether it’s spillages, vehicle oil leaks or dust, dirt and debris, the floor is arguably the messiest place in a warehouse – however, a lot of businesses don’t treat it as a priority. It’s usually the last thing that gets cleaned at the end of the day or between shifts. Due to it being viewed as a tedious and laborious task, a lot of people defer it and put it off. That way, there could be hazards exposed all shift and they won’t get cleaned until the very end – again, that’s not safe practice.
Clean When You “Need To”
A lot of businesses tend to take a reactive approach to cleaning their warehouses – rather than being proactive. If they can’t see mess or dust, it’s not there. These companies tend to only clean once somebody slips, or something goes wrong. If you’re aiming to operate as efficiently as possible, you need to rid yourself of this mindset and adopt a more proactive approach.
You should always clean your warehouse thoroughly, even if you don’t think it needs doing. A lot of harmful bacteria isn’t visible to the naked eye, so to be on the safe side you must disinfect and rigorously clean regularly. After all, when producing food products, you can never be too careful and it’s always better to be safe than sorry – for your own peace of mind at least.
Assign Set Times For Cleaning
By allocating regular windows of time for cleaning, your workforce will then be able to plan their workload a lot more accurately. Rather than trying to fit in cleaning as and when they can around their busy schedules, they’ll be able to have more structure to their working day. Plus, it’ll mean that you’re operating more productively, as workers will have mini-deadlines to meet between each cleaning window.
That way, you know for certain that your warehouse cleaning process is being treated as a priority. That’s where a lot of companies fall victim to not cleaning enough, they don’t allocate enough time for it. If it’s put in the calendar and enough time is given to carry out a thorough job, you can rest easy that your premises is being cleaned more than adequately.
Use the Right Equipment
As we mentioned earlier, if you’re trying to clean your floor with a hand brush and a mop – you’re not going to get the job done right and it would take forever. If you’re taking too long when cleaning, it means that you’re not spending as much time as you could be on the work that brings in money for the business.
By using the right equipment, you’ll speed up your cleaning process while still carrying out an industry-leading standard. Industrial floor cleaning machines can massively benefit your business. Depending on the size of your site and how dirty it is, there’s a range of machines that are suited to various industry spaces. If you’re looking to improve your warehouse cleaning process – an industrial floor cleaning machine is a VERY smart investment.
Which Industrial Floor Cleaning Machine Is Right For Your Business?
Within the food and drink industry, there are various types of businesses. From fruit and vegetable producers to supermarket distribution centres, all businesses are different. However, one thing that does remain the same is the fact that they all need to be as clean as possible to improve business efficiency.
By introducing an industrial floor cleaning machine to your business, you’ll be improving the standard of cleaning that’s carried out dramatically. But which one is right for your business? Don’t worry if you’re not sure, we’ve got you covered.
We’ve created a free guide that explains everything you need to know about industrial floor cleaning machines. From the benefits that they’ll bring to your business to product recommendations, it’s all in there to help you!
Waste no time and grab your copy today!