Cleaning company owner Emilia Ferenc has invested heavily to ensure her staff and processes are protected from Covid, writes JULENA DRUMI
Key workers in the front line of the battle against Covid-19 have been deserving of the thousands of column inches devoted to their bravery.
From the emergency services to beleaguered NHS staff, they have merited every single sentence highlighting their heroics in the face of the pandemic.
Spare a thought, too, though for those also at the sharp end but who have not been given the same kind of profile – the cleaning workers.
“It was not easy sending my staff into potentially very hazardous situations,” said Emilia Ferenc, managing director of Edinburgh-based commercial cleaning specialists Perfect Clean.
“When it all began, I realised we would be effectively working in ‘war zones’, having to cope with an invisible enemy. It is not something that any of us has had to deal with before and it was a very stressful time for us all.
“We would keep hearing about all the people dying or suffering so badly after contracting the virus and how so many businesses were having to close. The staff were anxious at the beginning, and I was worried about them going out onto jobs but assured them they were safe.
“We invested in a lot of PPE equipment as well as our knowledge of health and safety relating to Covid-19 to help ensure everyone was as protected as possible.
“We also learned more about bio-cleaning to make sure all our work was carried out according to all the regulations and industry standards.
“The front line workers in the NHS have been the heroes in all of this but I wonder if people have been thinking about the commercial cleaners and what it must be like going into workplaces to make them safe for people to return?”
As well as investing in machinery and materials and ATP Sanitation Monitoring Systems, Ms Ferenc also joined the British Institute of Cleaning Science (BICS) to ensure her staff were fully aware of the latest developments in the fight to contain coronavirus.
“We invested a lot but I think it has been money well spent,” she said.
“I also took out membership of the British Institute of Cleaning Science (BISC) so we had all the professional guidance available to us. The additional knowledge we have gained has helped fill the gap between cleaning and science and has helped us further improve our service delivery.
“We are coming through this now strengthened by the experience. We are more careful with everything we do as a business, from the chemicals we select to the machinery we use and the PPE we wear.”
The company is well established having been formed seven years ago in the capital by Ms Ferenc, who is hoping to expand nationwide post-lockdown.
“Covid has made us change our business strategy but I think it will give us more opportunities to win new clients in different sectors,” she said.
“It has encouraged me to think more openly as a business owner, which isn’t a bad thing. I think every business has had to look at itself and how it operates and assess how it can do things better and more efficiently.”
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