Contract Performance Management is good news for property owners and managers and for the cleaning industry. When properly instigated, it provides sustainable contracts with measurable deliverables and a level playing field for service providers as it spells out and measures the expectations and required delivery standards over the life of a cleaning contract.
There’s an old saying that you can’t manage what you can’t measure, but how do you measure an intangible service, such as cleaning? Risk mitigation has fuelled a need for accountability and transparency of building service contracts and facility managers are now demanding to know what actually goes on in cleaning operations.
Performance management incorporates the introduction of exacting specifications for cleaning coupled with key performance measures (KPMs) for tasks, equipment, environmental performance, safety and training which, in turn, are audited to provide measurement through key performance indicators (KPIs). This ensures that there is a framework in place that accurately describes the work to be performed and how outcomes will be measured and quantified.
The team at FM Contract Solutions has developed and introduced comprehensive contract performance management systems and Performance management and Cleaning auditing Software that allow Facility Managers to monitor all aspects of Contract Service Delivery and ensure that contractors adequately address OH&S, risk management, environmental impact and sustainable work practices in line with sustainable purchasing guidelines. While some contractors may resist it, a more prescriptive approach will provide measurable outcomes and provide sustainable contracts that could mean the end of the industry price spiral.
FM Contract Solutions provides the tools to monitor contracts and engineers contract specifications with comprehensive descriptions of the services to be delivered and key performance drivers which enables clients to identify and correct inefficiencies, determine if adequate labour is being provided to perform the work and ensure maximum life of assets by accurately specifying the tasks and frequencies that are performed relative to the needs of the client, building use and floor-covering manufacturers’ recommendations.
Performance management systems that include electronic compliance monitoring and external auditing can also provide contractor performance benchmarking which can be compared to similar properties and contracts.
The upside for the industry is that the focus shifts away from lowest price to quality of service and value-for-money while the increased awareness of risk and the requirement for well documented and more transparent processes helps facilitate a non-adversarial relationship between building management and contractor. Rewards, such as contract extensions and better management practices which will flow through into other contracts, will make for more profitable and sustainable industry with longer contracts, sustainable business practices, sustainable workplaces and the elimination of illegal subcontracting.
Pricing and profitability of contract cleaning services constantly being driven downwards, yet dissatisfaction with cleaning has risen dramatically along with a rapidly declining perception of the professionalism and integrity of the industry.
The cleaning industry is an industry that needs change, but that change will not come from within. The adoption of contract performance management practices will certainly drive that change – change that is sorely needed for the betterment of the industry.