Facilities Management recently announced plans to change their custodial service schedules, reducing office cleanings from five times a week to two times a week.
According to Tony Robertson, assistant director of facilities, the schedule adjustments were made to better utilize the staff and to re-prioritize work to get tasks done more efficiently and effectively.
Robertson said that the department is not understaffed, but has just been trying to better organize to maximize their time and effort. Recently Facilities Management reduced their staff by one team. They have also put buildings into groups so staff teams are working in the same general area to save time.
“This is not a negative change,” Robertson said. “We want to work smarter, not harder. It makes more sense for public areas to be cleaned more thoroughly every day and for offices to be cleaned more thoroughly, but less frequently.”
Affected buildings’ offices include Asbury, Emison, East College, Roy O. West Library, Harrison, Julian, Olin, Peeler, the Ad Building, Admissions offices, the Charter House, the Union Building, the Green Center for the Performing Arts and Pulliam Center for Contemporary Media.
The changes in cleaning schedules will only affect offices. Schedules for public areas, classrooms and restrooms are to remain the same — they’re cleaned five times a week.
“I really think this is a win-win-win situation. Visitors can enjoy cleaner areas, the faculty’s offices will be cleaned more thoroughly and our staff can feel better about their work. They will have the opportunity to exhale and not have to hurry as much,” Robertson said.
Since the changes have been made Jan. 3, Facilities Management has received 2 phone calls asking about the changes and why offices were not cleaned, which Robertson accredits to a lack of communication.
The department has also received several emails praising the department’s decision to re-prioritize.
The department does not currently have any set plans for future changes.
“We are always looking to be better,” Robertson said. “This change was a big first step for us, I really think it is best for all. If changes will make things better, then we will make them.”