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Seasonal Challenges of Housekeeping

Friday, July 29, 2016 10:58:18 AM Asia/Calcutta

Wet floors, damp indoors and odour are common manufacturing units. Rains also rake up hygiene issues in food related areas pressing for intense housekeeping service and delivery. In most cases, manual cleaning with wet or dry mop is resorted to at most places, issues related to pest, indoor air quality and washrooms increase.

Yadwin Sharma, Executive Housekeeper, Nidra Hotel Vadodara: Roaches and rains are synonymous and so are insects like flies and other crawling creatures. Their presence in indoor environment during this period is highly visible and to avoid infestation, increased pest control sessions are essential. Normally, we engage pest control services on a weekly basis but during the rainy reason we do it twice a week. Simple measures like sprinkling pest chemicals near the drainage area, ensuring there is no water logging in the surrounding areas and keeping a close watch on the possible entry points by feeding anti-insect powders go a long way in curtailing pest inflow.

Outsourcing pest services during rains is another option that we resort to. However, the choice of the pest service provider has to meet our expectations. Professional pest companies with trained manpower and supervision are engaged by us. When we hire a pest vendor, we are giving the responsibility of keeping our hotel pest free to them and if they fail to meet the parameters or report manpower shortage, we will have to look at better options. The local companies here are familiar with the standard of the hotel and we have had no problem in sourcing vendor companies.

The trained in-house housekeeping team at Nidra Hotel uses Diversey cleaning chemicals. Porta cleaning machines and vacuums are deployed for floor cleaning, scrubbling and polishing. Diversey chemicals are good easily accessible and hygienic.

Shamine, Quality control in charge, Kamaths Ourtimes Ice Creams Pvt. Ltd. Mumbai: No doubt, maintenance and hygiene schedules depend on the season but they also differ with the product being dealt with in the given premises. Food related premises have specific requirement to meet cleanliness and hygiene standards. Keeping everything clean is a must in an incre cream unit and difficult too. Moreover, if the cleaning is outsourced, tracking cleanliness and hygiene becomes problematic. There are times when I would need a minimum of seven housekeepers to maintain my premises but end up having only two. I think developing an in house team is much better b ut in a place like Mumbai with labour problems, outsourcing is the only option.

Outsourcing has its own woes. Firstly, it is task to monitor outsourced facility; secondly, being labour-oriented job, the efficiency varies from person to person and time to time and, thirdly, the weather also plays a big role in turning things rougher as we are handling a product that is so moist.

Over and above with high attrition, we have to repeatedly train the changing outsourced workers.

Our budget for housekeeping has never faltered but having enough manpower is a necessity that we are unable to meet. We have deployed high pressure jets, foaming machines and floor mops for general cleaning and use cleaning chemicals & liquid soap of Diversey. In high care areas, we have specific cleaning tools, vacuum cleaners and finally the steam cleaning machines.