Monday, March 26, 2012



Wherever I go to work with BSCs, the one comment I always hear is "help me to increase my sales so I can add to my bottom line". Well, in this session I want to talk about the money that is in your company that will add to your bottom line without making one sale. Now, how can that be, you ask? I am going to tell you.

Finding hidden profits in your company is all about doing a periodic retuning of the accounts you presently service. I have for years used a simple process every 6 months to make sure that each account we have is running as efficiently as possible. You know what? We still miss some things. But let me give you some ideas on fine tuning the accounts you have. Not only are there profit dollars to be found but you will also create a much safer work environment for your cleaning staff which just might also reduce your workers compensation premiums.

1. Do you have current job specifications posted on the wall in each janitor's closet with a current date on them. Even if nothing has changed, I suggest you update the specifications with the current date. That tells your client you are on top of things.

2. Make sure you have a current book of MSD sheets. In this industry we sometimes change products that we use but forget to place the MSD sheet in the closet. By the way, if you are transporting any chemicals in your vehicles they also should have an MSD book.

3. Are the current company and client emergency phone numbers posted on the wall in each closet? Do you know how to get in touch with your client or your boss in the case of an emergency. I secured a large account one time because the building had a flood in the basement and when the client call my competitor, who was his contractor at the time, to get some help on the way, all the phone numbers listed were out of date or disconnected. I was happy to get the account plus I made sure our numbers were always up to date.

4. Do you have posted the emergency procedures for injuries to your staff? Who do they call, where do they take them for treatment? Do they have workers compensation accident report forms that can be completed ASAP?

5. Are all spray bottles properly labeled? Rosie's cleaner or Pete's spray buff is not a proper label. Fines from OSHA on this violation can run into the thousands of dollars.

6. Are all the keys properly marked and secured? Are all old keys properly disposed of?

Now, before I go on you may be wondering, how does this increase my bottom line? Well, let's see,
A. Not wasting time trying to figure out who to call will save you how many hours in the event of an emergency?
B. Not having huge fines from OSHA for improper labeling and out of date MSD sheets will save how many dollars?
C. Having keys properly marked and old ones disposed of saves how many dollars in lost time?
D. Having up to date job specifications saves how much time not cleaning what you don't need to clean and cleaning what you should clean?

Okay, let's go on.]

7. Is all equipment neat, clean, and safely working? Cords good, switches working, belts, brushes, bags, blocks in good working order?

8. Is the supply closet neat, clean, and in proper order? I had a customer tell me one time that was how he judged our work. If we couldn't keep our janitor's closet clean, how in the world could we keep his building clean? If your client should look in your janitor's closet today, what impression would he or she have of your organization?

9. Return all excess equipment and supplies to the warehouse. Now this can really add to your bottom line. We budgeted each account x dollars per month based on the dollar volume and other factors. Almost always we found that our staff did not need the entire amount and we could adjust the budget downward. When you take excess supplies and equipment back to the warehouse, that money goes right to the bottom line because it is now available for another job. By the way, that can include mop buckets, wringers, etc. as well as motorized equipment.

10. Has the cleaning schedule changed so that you can reduce budgeted hours? Also, it is a known fact that as the staff becomes more familiar with the facility they learn that hours can be reduced and by doing this six months review you can make the necessary budget adjustments.

Just think, if you can reduce 15 minutes a night on 10 five night per week accounts the equates to 54 hours per month. If your average wage is $10 plus 20% for taxes and insurances, you will save about $650 per month. That's nearly $8,000 per year. That, plus whatever you can save on supply and equipment costs. And what about the other intangibles like customer retention, insurance cost reductions due to increased safety etc. etc.?

Keep also in mind the chart I referred to in an earlier session when I discussed "It's only 5 minutes". If you missed it you can go to my web site at, click on the DVD icon, then go to the left of the page and you can download the chart FREE. Add that to the dollars above and you have some real money and as Yogi Berra said if you have money you can use it the same as cash.

I hope you will take the time to review your current accounts. I can almost assure you that you can increase your profits without increasing your sales.

Don't forget the BSCAI Executive Seminar coming up May 11 and 12 in Scottsdale, Arizona. I plan to be there and would like to meet as many of you as possible. You can register by going to

Till next time.

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