Who’s the best janitorial company in Calgary?

A picture of a modern minimalist office in need of a Janitorial company in Calgary
Photo by Cadeau Maestro

Why does it matter?

Choosing the best janitorial company in Calgary goes way beyond just getting good value for your money:

Hiring the wrong cleaning company can cost hundreds of thousands and end with lawsuits.

This goes way beyond just getting a good clean:

Anyone can clean, but not you need training to clean without causing damage.

Hiring the wrong crew will cost you:

A graphic of an analogue clock indicating working late

Time

    • Dealing with a problem contractor is like babysitting
    • The quotation process will need to be started again
A graphic of dollar signs representing the monitary cost

Money

    • Property damage
      • Damage to your property or fixtures
      • Flooding from neglect
      • Computer equipment damaged
    • Lost payments
    • New deposits
      • Many cleaning companies require a month’s payment up front
A graphic of a bending bar due to stress. The bar could also be viewed as a mouth in an unhappy position.

Stress

    • While seeing a bad cleaner leave can be a relief, the stress and emotional burden that led to that moment can be significant

The first step

Research the company.

      • Use Google to search the company’s name
      • Read through their About page on their website
      • Read through their Terms pages if available as well
      • Look at the company on LinkedIn

Make sure they offer what you need.  Check their website to see what kind of cleaning they talk about.  They will highlight the industries they service.

A tiled picture of Focus Window Cleaning, a Janitorial company in Calgary housecleaning on the left, window cleaning in the middle and industrial cleaning on the right
Focus Window Cleaning has designed cleaning systems for residential, office, medical, industrial, and retail clients.

The areas they service will be roughly broken up by your industry.  Such industries might be:

      • Office cleaning
      • Medical cleaning
      • Industrial or Manufacturing cleaning
      • School cleaning
      • Retail cleaning

Consider too if they have the capacity for your needs.

      • If you have 10 workers at 1 location, most companies can accommodate that
      • If you need the University of Calgary cleaned, you’re going to need a larger company with enough resources

What’s absolutely necessary?

Licensed

Why?

This means the company is operating in the open and are not afraid of legal compliance.  It’s an indicator of whether they play by the rules or not.  This is important if you expect them to play by the rules with you.

Insured for liability

Why?

You don’t want to be on the hook if the company causes damage or some loss such as:

          • Accidental flooding
          • Theft due to the door being left unlocked
          • Other damage to the property due to neglect

Bonded

Why?

When you pay a deposit, you know it will be completed.  If not, you can go after the bond.

Workers Compensation Coverage

Why?

If you or your company hires a contractor or subcontractor that does not have or may not be eligible for WCB, you may be responsible for providing coverage and paying premiums on their behalf. Providing coverage not only protects the worker, it also protects your company from potential lawsuits.

Source: https://www.wcb.ab.ca/insurance-and-premiums/types-of-coverage/coverage-for-contractors-and-subcontractors.html

Contracts and Work Orders

Why?

You want a company that can detail the job scope in a contract, so you know exactly what to expect like:

          • Which parts of the building are being cleaned?
            • How often?
          • Who’s providing cleaning supplies?
          • Who’s buying the consumables and what does that include?

A good contract and work order also indicates there may be better communication within a company. 

What’s important to you?

A graphic of a triangle representing the balance of price, quality and ethics as a focus in choosing a janitorial comapny in Calgary
Graphic by Focus Window Cleaning

There is always going to be a 3-way tug of war between:

      • Price
      • Quality
      • Ethics

Each has costs and benefits.

A graphic of dollar signs representing the monitary cost

Price

Sometimes, you need to focus on price because you don’t have much choice.

Paying $200/mo. vs. $450/mo. is a great ego boost in the moment, but it can cost dearly in the long run.

Pros:

      • Pay less
        • More room in your budget for other things
        • Dopamine kick from getting a good deal
        • More money to pay the bills
      • Practice negotiating skills
      • Practice patience skills

Cons:

      • Admin overhead
        • Quality control / Babysitting
          • Callbacks
          • Damage
          • Frustration
          • No shows / ghosting
          • Resentment from cleaning staff
          • Ultimately being dropped by the company when they can’t afford the contract

Price is always an easy target for good reason.  We only have so much room in our budgets, but I’m betting you didn’t decide to hire a cleaner because you wanted a babysitting job.

A graphic of a checkmark represents using quality as your focus in choosing a Janitorial company in Calgary

Quality

If your focus is quality, go with a company with good reviews or a good reputation.  Less reviews don’t necessarily mean the company is inexperienced or bad, they might just be too busy to ask for reviews.

Bad reviews which go unanswered or are dismissed by the company can be an indicator the company might struggle with accountability and follow through.

Pros:

      • Protects your brand
      • A clean organized space sends a message. A messy, disorganized space sends another message.
      • Fewer frustrations
      • When you ask for something, you can trust it will be done correctly.
      • A healthier environment

Cons:

      • Higher price
        • If you’re paying for an experienced company, they understand their costs.
      • Harder to find quality companies
        • Anyone can clean, but you need training to clean without causing damage.
A graphic of a weight scale, representing ethics or fairness in choosing a Janitorial company in Calgary

Ethics

If ethics are important to you, choose a company that treats their people well.

This will mean:

        • They pay their workers a living wage (currently $18.60/hr in Calgary)
        • Tips go directly to the workers
        • Staff, clients and prospects are treated with dignity, empathy and respect
        • They deliver on their promises
        • They train their people for growth
        • They design their systems with preservation of the environment in mind
        • They use empathy in their communication with staff, clients and especially bad reviews

Look for ethical cleaners in directories like BeLocal.  You can research the company by checking their job postings, you can also learn a lot about a company by reading their blog.  Word of mouth is also an excellent way to find an ethical company.

Pros:

        • Often the best quality of clean
        • Cleaning staff feels appreciated
        • It feels good to know the cleaning staff are being treated fairly
        • Less turnover of cleaning staff
          • This means your cleaners will typically get better and better

Cons:

        • An ethical company simply costs more to run due to:
          • Paying a living wage
          • Paying more for chemicals which aren’t harmful to people, plants, pets, and property
          • Paying for licensing and insurance
          • Training themselves and their staff

In Conclusion

Everyone is going to land somewhere between the 3 factors of Price, Quality and Ethics.  Leaning on one will change the others to some extent.

Whatever you choose, I hope this has helped lay out the costs and benefits to each focus.

If you have questions email hello@focuscleaners.com

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