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What You Don't Know about Office Germs

Pro Clean

It’s no secret that germs in the workplace are everywhere. Germs and bacteria are in common areas, such as the kitchen and bathroom, break rooms, and conference rooms. However, what you may not realize is the sheer number of office germs in some of the places you may not even think about.

All types of germs are found in the workplace — bacteria, fungi, viruses, and protozoa. Some of the types that we come across are considered harmful germs and bacteria while others are helpful. However, to maintain a healthy workplace that minimizes the breeding of office germs, it’s important to clean with health first in mind. This is accomplished through specialized cleaning methods, such as ManageMen’s Operating System 1 (OS1) and green cleaning methods.

Your Desk May Have More Office Germs Than the Toilet

If you’re like many office workers, you likely work and eat at your desk every day. But, did you know that it may be a hotspot for office germs and bacteria? According to an article in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine:

“The typical office desk harbors more than 10 million bacteria, 400 times more germs than found on a standard toilet seat. High bacterial counts have been detected on elevator buttons, office phones, water fountains, computer keyboards, and vending machine buttons; particularly high viral counts were detected on desks, computer mice, and phones, especially in cubicles.”

According to research by Cleaning Services Group, a cleaning services company based in the United Kingdom, which was cited in an EHS Today article: “With 65 percent of office workers sharing phones and computers, and with a whopping 25,127 germs per square inch found on just a telephone, employers need to take cleanliness seriously.”

By the Numbers — Bacteria and Viruses

Here are some additional things you may not know about germs in the workplace. The Cleaning Services Group infographic shows:

  • One person carrying a virus can infect 50% of all employees and equipment in their vicinity within four hours;
  • 20% of employees don’t clean or wipe their computer mice;
  • 20% of office workers don’t clean or wipe their desks before eating;
  • 46% sanitize their keyboards less than once per month; and
  • 80% of infections spread via contaminated surfaces (not coughing or sneezing as many people think).

Furthermore, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says that handwashing education can help to reduce the spread of disease and illness in the community. Healthier employees (who have healthier families) who don’t contribute to the spread of office germs can help to reduce productivity loss due to absenteeism and “presenteeism.” According to the CDC Foundation, “productivity losses linked to absenteeism cost employers $225.8 billion (or $1,685 per employee).”

Are You Cleaning to Minimize Bad Workplace Germs?

At Pro Clean, our approach is to uphold the cleaning industry’s highest standards to keep your employees healthy and productive by removing harmful office germs and bacteria from your environment.

As the first company in Florida to receive the cleaning industry gold standard certification, ISSA’s Cleaning Industry Management Standard (CIMS) with honors, Pro Clean uses environmentally-responsible cleaning products, equipment, and processes to eliminate bacteria, viruses, and other germs in the workplace. This green approach helps us to reduce our environmental impact while achieving the best results for your organization.

Contact Pro Clean today to speak with one of our cleaning experts about how we can help you improve employee health and get a quote.