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Global Cleaning 2014

| IN PRACTICE | SUSTAINABILITY Assessment of sustainability by management area Mean values for sustainability dimensions overallareaagement Objective Hospital A Economic Hospital A 5 5 4 4 Hospital BHospital B 3 Hospital C Hospital C 2 3 1 2 Communication and Verification Planning 10 0 Social Environmental Implementation Source: I. Pericin. Graph: Global Cleaning Source: I. Pericin. Graph: Global Cleaning Assessment of sustainability. Chart: Pericin Mean values for sustainability dimensions. Chart: Pericin cleaning industry in particular can make a real difference in terms all types of quality management system. Labels simplify commu- of social sustainability. Even though cleaning may involve nications, but they can be expensive and time-consuming. However, machines, even robots, the human touch is still an indelible part the fact that labels can augment the value of a service is demon- of the picture. In many locations, cleaning work is organized along strated by the number and variety of successful labels and certi- taylorist organizational principles, i.e. with a high division of labor, fications already established in the market. which follows the goal of systematically optimizing the technical organization of work. Social sustainability requires a balancing of Evaluating sustainability social forces and the creation of a viable, rewarding society.5 As part of his dissertation at the Institute for Facility Management Possible ways of moving towards that goal would be to: at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Ricki Austen Provide workers with ergonomically safe tools and implements, researched the sustainability of cleaning organizations at three in protective gear and non-toxic chemicals; hospitals in Switzerland in 2012, based on a Sustainability Check Optimize work conditions, e.g. increase wages to prevent for cleaning service providers developed by the author.7 cleaning personnel from becoming part of the working poor; In the Sustainability Check, the survey criteria are structured Enhance the attractiveness of the workplace and the work along the tasks of the hospital’s cleaning management in the itself, and encourage ownership, e.g. through empowerment, as management cycle (from goal definition to planning to is already the case in output-oriented cleaning or daytime implementation to verification and communication). The survey cleaning; comprises just under 50 questions. Promote social engagement beyond borders with development The test is based on self-evaluation by the officers in charge of aid, e.g. the Vebego Foundation (“Special responsibility cleaning at each hospital. For each aspect raised in a question, becomes visible through activities that are aimed at helping they have to indicate, on a scale from 0 to 5, the importance of this local communities to create and maintain liveable and worth- aspect in terms of the sustainability dimension. As an illustration while living conditions.(…) This way the projects are linked to of the type of questions asked, this is the first one of the ‘Goal’ the people and the expertise of Vebego, so that employees feel category: “Is sustainability a component of our mission statement, supported and the organization can grow.”)6 of our company strategy?” The findings of this preliminary test (fig. at the top of page 46) Labels and certifications showed that there is room for improvement in sustainability, Labels and certifications are helpful for implementing sustainability primarily in the area of communications. Where ‘Planning’ and measures and achieving sustainability goals. They underscore and ‘Implementation’ are concerned, the three hospitals consider validate the sustainable aspects of products, services, buildings themselves as tending towards acting sustainably with an aver- or businesses. age score of about 3.5. With regard to ‘Goals,’ Hospital A seems In the German-speaking region, the following labels/certifications quite far along, which is also reflected in ‘Communication’ and are of interest to the cleaning industry: A.I.S.E., Blue Angel, Blue ‘Verification.’ Competence (VDMA), DGNB/ÖGNI/ SGNI, EU Flower, Global The reality of sustainability where the organization and coordi- Reporting Initiative, Nordic Swan, Ecological Footprint, the Austrian nation of cleaning activities are concerned is also of great interest Environmental Label, Quality Association Facility Services (D) and for the three hospitals. It is worth noting here that sustainability 46 GLOBAL CLEANING | April 2014  


Global Cleaning 2014
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