You don’t need to be Einstein to work out that the spread of most germs and bacteria in the workplace is caused by human contact with surfaces.
If you consider an average office space of around 150 sq metres, with a dozen employees, being serviced once per week by a professional office cleaner, the potential for cross-contamination is significant. Most workplace washrooms provide some form of handwashing solution that not only cleans but also sanitises but that’s only normally used when an employee uses the washrooms and hopefully washes their hands….not everyone does!
So consider this scenario. One of your work colleagues goes to the washroom and maybe they wash their hands but maybe they don’t. They then head to the kitchen and make themselves a cup of coffee. Just in that process, they are coming into contact with lots of surfaces that are ‘common’ to all other staff. They’ll grab the handle of the cupboard where the cups are, they grab the coffee jar, the fridge handle, the milk container, the drawer where the spoons are kept and on it goes until they’ve got their coffee and wandered off. Get the picture? What’s left is a Petrie Dish of germs and bacteria just waiting on the next unsuspecting employee to go through the same process only to pick up those germs and bacteria on their hands and off they go. Just think about where to from there. Back to your own workstation where you start to touch items and surfaces in your own work area. Multiply this situation by the number of people in the office and it’s any wonder common illnesses like colds and flu run rampant once one or two employees bring it to work. Your regular weekly office cleaning service, normally carried out on the weekend, is certainly going to help with sanitising surfaces but from Monday morning after opening the whole process starts again.
Of course, there is never going to be zero bacteria and germs unless you are working in a ‘clean room’ with incredibly rigid sanitising and hygiene processes. An operating theatre springs to mind for that level of hygiene but there are some measures that can be put in place to significantly reduce the risk in your workplace.
One measure that we believe has some real merit is the placement of ‘touch-free’ hand sanitisers, strategically located around the workplace. They can either be wall-mounted or free standing, which is my preference. A couple of these placed at the entry to the lunchroom or perhaps in the middle of the work area, will be convenient and easy. Employees can then just walk past, receive a spray of sanitiser that evaporates in seconds and 99.9% of bugs are gone. Just imagine the savings to the business if you could reduce absenteeism due to preventable illness. The cost of the system will pay for itself 100 x over. Typically a wall-mounted touch-free sanitiser is going to set you back around $60 and the free-standing unit just over $100. Worth thinking about if you are serious about saving money and keeping the team in good shape.