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Good handwashing practice is one of the most important steps we can take to combat the spread of germs to others within the workplace. 

Many diseases and conditions are spread by not washing hands properly with soap and clean running water.

Germs on unwashed hands can be transferred to other areas within the workplace, like door handles, handrails, table tops, phones or laptops and transmitted your colleagues. This can lead to sickness as they will regularly touch their nose, eyes or mouth without knowing it.

Bacteria and germs are also spread through food and drink and some germs will multiply in certain foods.

Removing germs through good handwashing can help prevent stomach bugs, respiratory infections and according to the CDC, hand washing reduces the number of sick people with stomach bugs by 31% and the number of people with colds by 16-21%.

At ServiceMaster Clean, we’re big advocates for ensuring everyone knows about good hand washing practice.

The proper handwashing practice

Follow this simple guide to good hand washing to help remove as many germs as possible…

  • Wet your hands under warm clean running water
  • Apply soap and create a lather by rubbing your hands together – using regular soap as opposed to antibacterial is just as effective if used correctly
  • Spread the lather across your hands, onto the backs of your hands, in between your fingers for at least 20 seconds
  • With soapy hands, grip the fingers on each hand, clean in the creases of your thumbs and press your fingertips into your palms to get under your fingernails
  • Rinse your hands well under clean running water
  • Dry your hands well on a clean towel or air dryer and make sure they are completely dry!
  • Turn off the tap using your clean towel remember your dirty hands just turned the tap on
  • Dispose of the paper towel responsibly by recycling where you can

good handwashing

What about hand sanitiser?

Hand sanitisers are a great addition to your germ-killing arsenal! Most sanitisers do not kill all germs so they should be used as an additional resource rather than instead of a good hand wash.

With a good squirt of hand sanitiser in one palm, rub your hands together well and spread it over your hands and fingernails until it’s dry.

If you’ve experienced an outbreak of a virus in the office, you can always call on ServiceMaster Clean Contract Services to provide a deep-clean and fully sanitise of the property. Click here to find your local ServiceMaster Clean.

Considering we spend most of our lives at work, having a clean, germ-free office is important for many different reasons.

Let’s fight back against those pesky germs, have a cleaner and healthier office!

1.  Dirty Doors

Starting from the entrance to your office building, a door handle or door/lift button has a large number of bacteria, due to the number of people walking in and out of the building every day.

The door handle in your office that has the most germs is guaranteed to be the toilet door handle. A few surveys over the last few years have revealed that one in four of the UK population does not wash their hands after going to the toilet! YUCK!

TipUse anti-bacterial gel as much as you can.

2.  Filthy Fridge

With healthier eating becoming more popular, staff are starting to bring their own lunch into the office more and popping it into the office fridge.

A lot of staff then not surprisingly forget about what they put in the fridge, because instead, they feel like going out with their work colleagues.

The food is then left to go mouldy and the office fridge is one of those places that you just don’t think to clean.

Tip Introduce a fridge cleaning schedule to your employees to clean out unwanted food every week.

3.  Dusty Desk & Phone

The most amount of time in any office workers day is spent at their desk, so no wonder this area has the most germs throughout the whole of the office! Yes, even dirtier than the office toilets!

Your office phone can be the dirtiest item in the office, so keeping it clean is very important for a healthier workplace.

Another germ thriving culprit is your pen, the reason being a lot of us chew it! I am one of those pen chewing culprits, so shame on me!

Tip #1 Wipe your desk phone every morning with an anti-bacterial wipe.
Tip #2 Stop chewing your pen! I solemnly swear I will stop, only if you do as well though!

4.  Messy Mouse & Keyboard

Your mouse and keyboard alone can have more bacteria per square inch than a toilet seat!

If you work on a hot-desk, then the number of bacteria only increases and it isn’t just your bacteria! YUCK!

Tip Use anti-bacterial wipes or a cleaning spray, then wipe your keyboard and mouse with a clean tissue.

5.  Germ Riddling Rucksack

Yes, your rucksack has a surprising number of germs on it! The reasons for this being, your bag is put down all over the office, including sometimes the toilet floor.

Tip Keep hold of your bag until you get to your desk and clean your bag every so often at home.

6.  Mucky Mug

There is always that lonely mug that is sat on someone’s desk at the end of the day, while all his other mug friends are in the dishwasher, or all cleaned, sitting comfortably on the side.

That mug left on the desk is then used again the next day without being washed! That is a big no no and this particular person in the office needs to get out of this habit!

TipRinse your mug after every cuppa, and at the end of the day make sure it is put in the dishwasher or washed up!

7.  Germ Polluted Printer

Your printer and/or photocopier is used a lot during a day’s work by a numerous amount of people. So, the buttons on these items are riddling with germs by the end of the day!

TipJust give it a wipe again with an anti-bacterial wipe, after every time you use it. If you start this habit, others should follow you!

8. Water Cooler

The dirtiest thing in your office may surprise you, it is the water cooler! With this being used the most in the office and staff standing around chatting, germs are spread around the water cooler more than any other place in the office!

Tip – Just give the water cooler a wipe every day, especially the nozzle, just with a wet cloth.

Bonus Germ Hotspot – Gruesome Guests

A bonus germ hotspot for you is the guests that come to your office! You know your workers, their habits and how often they clean, but with guests, you have no idea!

The guest that has just walked through your door could have just been wrestling pigs in a pig-pen and only rinsed his hands and not washed them properly, therefore riddling with germs!

Tip Offer your guest a drink and hope they say yes so you can secretly go and wash your hands or use some anti-bacterial hand gel.

Here are ServiceMaster Clean UK we can take over your office cleaning and make sure all of these hotspots are cleaned thoroughly apart from the guests obviously!

To find your local ServiceMaster Clean UK click here.

Top 5 ways to declutter your workspace

We spend more time at work during our lifetime than we do at home. So, having a tidy workspace is important for morale, work productivity and efficiency.

There are some ways that you can keep your workspace tidy in an office and here are the top 5 for you to take away and implement in your office.

Workspace

1. Make your desk your own

If your company allows it, decorate your desk with photos of your family or a nice little desk plant. If you make your workspace as personal as you can, you are statistically more likely to increase your work productivity and enjoy your work life that little bit more.

2. File your documents

Having an effective filing system within your workspace is important to keep the clutter at a minimum. Use an in and out stacked tray system, however, don’t let this pile up too much as this will cause more desk clutter.

File away the completed documents in your company’s filing area, or if the paper is not needed, throw it in the recycling bin!

3. Have a home for everything

Having a home for everything like a pen pot here, personal items popped in your drawer and the use of the in/out tray will contribute towards a decluttered workspace. If you place certain things in different places though make sure you have remembered where you have put them, you don’t want to clutter up your desk to search for something!

4. Useful things should be in reach

If you have your pen pot over the other side of the desk and you have to lean over to get it and knock your morning coffee all over your paperwork, you have a bit of a problem here, don’t you!

Make sure all of the items you need are in an arm’s reach to where you are sitting, so, one you are not stretching and straining yourself and two to not knock over a drink or another item on your desk.

5. Keep it clean, to keep you keen

At the end of each day, all you need to do is give your desk a quick spray and wipe with a cleaning cloth. Then tidy your desk by stacking your paper neatly and taking your cups to the office kitchen. It takes no more than 5 minutes so you have no excuse!

For all of your office cleaning needs, contact your local ServiceMaster Clean today. Find your local office here.