With new technologies advancing the ease, accessibility, and proficiency with which the commercial cleaning industry provides services to the world, coupled with the fact that by 2023, revenue for the janitorial industry is projected to increase by $2 billion, it is not hard to see why the commercial industry is booming with innovators.
Swept CEO Michael Brown recently sat down with Dr. Matt Willis, Senior Director of Product & Engineering at SoftBank Robotics, to discuss technologies currently being used, and soon to be available to the janitorial industry, as well as the benefit of automation in terms of productivity, and helping the sacred bottom line.
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If you’re an owner of a commercial cleaning company, chances are that you’re always on the lookout for new ways to optimize your processes with new technology, new products, and new ways of doing business.
Within the last few years, the cleaning industry has been undergoing some pretty big changes. Innovative tools and processes are fundamentally changing the way business owners manage their companies. Heck, Swept Janitorial Software alone can completely transform the effort you need to put into managing your cleaning company, and how employees go about their day-to-day tasks.But innovation doesn’t stop there. Let’s have a look at;
4 New Technologies Changing the Janitorial Industry
We’re pretty sure everyone knew that technological advancement in cleaning robots wasn’t going to stop at the Roomba. As great as the lil floor cleaning robot is, there is certainly a lot of room for improvement. Which brings us to SoftBank Robotics.
Hot on the heels of the amazing humanoid robot Pepper, SoftBank Robotics announced just today that it has shipped 10,000 units of its new Janitorial robot Whiz. This fully teachable wide area cleaning robot works with cleaning company staff to remove tedious tasks (while not removing the need for human cleaners), and gives cleaners time to do even better work with their more complex jobs. Essentially it takes on the large surface areas that would take a human cleaner hours to clean. And with some pretty advanced engineering behind its clean white exterior, it definitely puts the Roomba to shame.
2. The Impact of Data
Metrics really do matter. A major innovation that janitorial companies are beginning to see the value in, is the use of data and metrics to improve their operations. From real-time information about supplies and scheduling, to the longer-term analysis of patterns and trends across the business, Janitorial companies are seeing the benefit of feeding data back into their processes.
The good news is that companies can utilize software (like our own Swept) to save time, effort and money. Alongside the workplace data generated from software, management solutions are on hand as well, and can give your team the ability to track their activity in meaningful ways, analyze it, come up with actionable solutions for common pain-points and problems, and even help prevent issues before they arise.
There’s always more data being created across your cleaning than you may realize. Finding a way to harness this information, and use it to drive business performance will be vital for success within this competitive industry.
3. Skills and Automation
The above mentioned Robotics is just the tip of the automation iceberg. There is a worldwide projected skilled labor shortage of 85.2 million by 2030. This could potentially limit organizational and economic growth. A 10% increase in cleaning jobs are expected in the United States from 2018 to 2028, faster than the average for all occupations, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
We need to creatively address potential labor supply challenges. Concentrating on employee benefits, promoting better training and development initiatives, and health and safety will lead to enhanced employee productivity and loyalty. In addition to this, embracing automation through management software, and emerging robotics technology ( Like SoftBank’s Whiz) may be more than a luxury, it may be a necessity. lucky for us, when it comes to automation, floor cleaning robotics is one of the fastest-growing categories of robotics.
Today’s commercial cleaning industry (and consumer) robots help provide consistent cleaning results, free up time so operators can focus on more valuable tasks, prioritize safety, and are easy to use.
When you consider the trajectory automation technologies in the past 10 years alone. We have been making progress in leaps and bounds…no more baby steps…
4. Sustainability & Green Tech
Believe it or not, the idea of Green Cleaning has been around since the early 90s. But it wasn’t until after the turn of the century that major strides had been made in terms of sustainable green cleaning products and tech. This coincided with the tightening of rules and regulations around what the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) would allow to fall under the label of Green certified products.
The practice of sustainability has not only been gaining in popularity, but has also been widely influencing many industries over the past decade. The general public becomes more and more aware of the carbon footprint, and other negative environmental impact of their own lifestyles, and moreso, major corporations. With that awareness, customer demands have been pushing companies to become more environmentally sustainable and green. Top concerns are healthier buildings, better health, and well-being of the occupants. In addition, green construction, e.g., net-zero buildings, will gain prominence as European Union (EU) directives require all new buildings to be nearly zero-energy by the end of 2020. Predictions show that this concept will also make its way to North America.
If you find the intersection of technology and the janitorial industry as fascinating as we do, be sure to check out our webinar Dr. Matt Willis, of SoftBank Robotics right here!
Swept is dedicated to highlighting stories that touch everyone in the janitorial industry. Having started as a commercial cleaning company ourselves, our hearts go well beyond the janitorial software we offer. Learn more about Swept’s cleaning company software here. And to keep up on all the trends in the janitorial services industry, subscribe to our blog!