Our office cleaner's name is Dani. She likes strong coffee, ginger cats, trailing plants and a good night out. But what else do we know about her?
Well, we know she is paid properly because she is on our payroll along with all our other colleagues. And we support the Brighton living wage.
Despite the rhetoric about cleaners being “essential workers” they are often not treated well.
According to the most recent figures from the Cleaners UK trade body, only 0.6% of cleaners are in employment status. This means that the vast majority of cleaners are on low pay or zero pay, or having to work a part-time or flexible contract.
Many employers don’t even see those who clean their workplace, let alone supervise them, as cleaning generally takes place out of office hours, the reality is that cleaning is often outsourced and subcontracted.
Cooperative arrangements between building owners, cleaning contractors and building tenants could go a long way towards lifting standards, making sure that the people responsible for the workplace know whether cleaners are getting paid enough and being given enough equipment, training and time to provide it. And not just the cleaners, it’s the IT support, the facilities contractors, the bringers of water…
Think not about how much value to extract from workers but about how much value to instil in them.
After all, we are relying on cleaners to keep us safe.
This is one of the many ways we fulfil our B Corp promises. Read more about the others here.