Buyer Beware – A Deal on Janitorial Services in Not a Good Deal

I just saw a disturbing post on linkedIn. It was from a commercial cleaning company offering a “deal” on their services. For any cleaning quote you receive, they promised to beat it by 10%. Do you see a problem with this? I certainly do.

The simplified formula for pricing cleaning services is:

  • time required to clean to your scope and standard
  • labour rate

That’s it. Of course, there are other factors such as overhead and profit margins but time and labour are the heart of any cleaning program estimate. A variety of prices can be provided on a bid depending on a contractor’s ability to accurately estimate the work required and of course, their desired profit. This typically results in a range of pricing which then leads to you looking at other factors in the bid such as company experience, longevity, services, references, etc. And hopefully, these other factors are weighted equally with price in your decision as choosing a service provider on price alone generally doesn’t end well.

Back to the “deal” being touted on the LinkedIn post . . . what do you think happens when a company offers a guaranteed 10% reduction? Firstly, they are offering you a price that is not of their making and is based on another company’s estimation. Secondly, they have no idea what that lowest bid includes and what type of cleaning standard and scope it includes. Accepting this kind of “deal” can only lead to two ( undesirable) outcomes for you: 

  1. After a few months, your 10% discounted price is increased when the cleaning company says they need more time/money to clean to the standard and scope as outlined in the contract.
  2. After a few months, you notice the standard and scope as outlined in the contract is not being met, you complain, nothing changes, and you are soon planning another bidding process to find a new cleaning company.

The old adage of “you get what you pay for” is true for most purchases, and rings especially true when shopping for janitorial services. The hamster wheel of cleaning looks like this; get a low-price, get bad service, search for a new cleaner, go with low-price, get bad service, etc., (you get the picture, right?).  If you’ve been on this wheel, it’s time to get off. Be buyer aware and you’ll save yourself time, money and frustration.

 

 

 

Kelly Kangles

Co-owner, grower and promoter of EFS Clean (Eco-Friendly Building Services) - Commercial Cleaning, based in beautiful Calgary, Alberta. A believer in clean, green buildings and instilling care for ourselves and everything around us. In addition to providing a full menu of top-notch cleaning services, EFS Clean is the authorized dealer for Ceiling Pro International in Alberta/Saskatchewan as ceiling cleaning specialists. Let us help you be clean and green. Contact us today.

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