1. Pre-qualify your options with a questionnaire that will assess the professionalism and capabilities of your candidates.

2. Get in touch with contractors and tell them they’ve been selected to bid.

3. Put together a bids package and give it to the contractors when you begin the facility walk-through. This should include a detailed list of required tasks. Other information to provide in the bid package might include:

  • Cleaning requirements intensity and frequency per area/task
  • Floor plan with general locations of each facility
  • Square footage with percent ratio of carpet to hard floor
  • Number of persons occupying the facility and whether they have desks
  • Number of daily visitors and how those visitors generally use the facility
  • How many restrooms or lunchrooms provided by the facility
  • Preference for environmentally  green responsible cleaning chemicals (if applicable)
  • Any special instructions
  • When daily cleaning should be completed
  • Whether restroom supplies should be included in the bid
  • Periodic cleaning (refinishing, deep cleaning, etc.)
  • When (date and time) the anticipated work will begin

Having this information up front will give contractors a better idea of their ability to service you, and keep you from forgetting to ask about specific details needed in your bid.

To avoid a horror story, it’s important to research the candidates selected for your bid.

Smart questions to ask your janitorial service bidders:

 Is this company franchised?

Franchisees usually receive important assistance and/or training from their franchisor. However, franchise fees increase the overhead costs that the franchisee must pay, which increases your cost, the ultimate cost. If the company isn’t honest and fair to their franchisees, they probably won’t be fair to you either.

 Does your company turn over contracts?

Make sure that your company will actually do the cleaning and not sell it to another company for the highest bid, or have other contracted workers come in and do the cleaning. Make sure your keys and codes are all in good hands all the time, with one consistent cleaning crew.

 How do you screen employees?

Full background checks? Competency tests? Certifications? Know how your chosen company plans on sourcing it’s workers. A good background check will typically run about $50 totally doable for most any company.

Can your provider directly fax proof of insurance and bond?

If you have valuable material held in your facility, either physical or electronic, make sure it’s insured against theft or damage by the company. Verify the company by calling the BBB.

 How do you make sure that floor stripping is minimized?

Floor stripping taking away the waxes from your floors by over cleaning or wear and tear can destroy your floors within a few years if not remedied. If a company can answer this question well, they probably know what they are doing. Make sure their answer is at least included in the bid.

The best way to stop floor stripping is by applying new finish when needed to prevent seepage.