> Cleaning Industry News May 2008
KEY CLEANING MANAGEMENT CONSTANTLY ON THE MOVE
A recent survey by industrial analysts, Plimsoll publishing has recently
looked at the profile of business leaders operating in the UK cleaning
services market, and found that in 2007 a record 1106 new directors were
appointed to the top 1500 cleaning companies. But they are also staying
in the job for a much shorter time, on average they are moving after just
two years, which is amongst the quickest in the UK.
They found that the average director in the UK cleaning services market
is 51 years old and earns around £28,000 per annum. The youngest
director is aged just 21, whilst the oldest is 94. But the core band of
owners/directors is diminishing year on year as they sell up or retire.
They are being replaced by a new wave of management, who are free to
move on when the mood takes them. It is suggested that the industry's
business behaviour is heavily influenced by this style of management,
as the emphasis switches from financial prudence and long term vision,
to quick fix solutions.
Davis Pattison, Plimsoll's senior analyst on the project said "If
you are dealing with these companies, it goes unnoticed that new management
has been put in charge". He also said "I do not think that it
coincidence that a third of cleaning services companies are losing money
at the minute, as the cavalier management chase the kudos of sales.
"For these businesses, this is a blatantly unsustainable position,
potentially putting the business under severe financial pressure, at a
time when no cleaning company can afford any slip in their competitiveness.
Then, before the strategy falls apart, these individuals responsible can
easily slip away, their reputations intact, leaving others to pick up
and Hygiene Today.
THE CONTINUING HOSPITAL CLEANING WAR AGAINT MRSA and C.DIFFICILE
With the virulent hospital bug Clostridium difficile spores,
being resistant to a range of disinfectants including alcohol gels which
are one of the health service's recommended regular cleaning products,
a research team at the University
of Southampton, have undertaken a year long programme, to solve the
As this research has already shown that MRSA microbes were completely
eliminated within 90 minutes of contact with a copper surface, but remain
alive for up to three days on the regular stainless steel surfaces, they
have been testing the C.diff spores on copper surfaces, and results have
been very good. These spores can live in the environment for a long time
and are becoming a major cause of hospital acquired infections, despite
the recent £57,000,000 clean up of all hospitals ordered by the
The research team have established that copper inactivates the same c.diff
spores which are proving to be resistant to the standard hospital cleaning
programmes. The C.diff microbes placed on a copper alloy surface died
within one or two days, compared with a stainless steel surface, where
they were still alive after a week.
As a result of their work, the US
environmental protection agency has officially registered copper as
an antimicrobial agent, the first ever solid material to be so registered.
This allow products made from copper alloy
to be marketed in the US by firms making public health claims. In this
country, the Selly Oak Hospital in Birmingham has already replaced all
frequently touched surfaces in one ward with copper.
This includes door handles, grab rails, bathroom taps and light switches,
all of which can still be cleaned and disinfected as normal, but which
now have the benefit of antimicrobial