By Eleanor Blair
The provision of safe, hygienic and attractive washrooms is intrinsic to your brand’s image – nobody wants to be remembered as the business with lacking facilities.
Wherever a user is, high standards are expected from all washrooms as they can become a harbouring ground for potentially harmful bacteria.
Research conducted by Nielsen found that 92% of people favour word-of-mouth recommendations from family and friends over advertising; and with the new emergence of apps that allow users to rate washroom facilities this is particularly relevant when someone has come face to face with a washroom that’s substandard.
Social media provides the ability to share a photograph in seconds and the multitude of platforms with which to express their disgust – do you want your business to be affected by inadequate standards?
What leads to bad hygiene standards?
Poor hygiene standards can begin to occur from a myriad of items, some out of the control of the business if the washroom is regarded as high-traffic, but many are solved by a combination of vigilance and high quality washroom hygiene equipment.
Essential washroom hygiene equipment
A lack of soap in the soap dispensers can dissuade users from washing their hands – this leads to the spreading of germs across your business’ space.
No waste bins encourages littering. If the washroom is used by many people in between cleaner checks the overall atmosphere will be unsightly as rubbish mounts up; a lack of sanitary disposal bins can encourage users to flush their products, leading to potential expensive repairs for your business if the facilities are blocked or flooded.
Toilet roll holders
Toilet roll is arguably the most essential item within a washroom – if the rolls aren’t kept in a toilet paper dispenser they can end up cross-contaminated with bacteria from the toilet, or encourage theft.
Ensuring you have proper hand drying facilities is incredibly important as well, damp hands can spread up to a thousand times more bacteria than dry. There’s also the issue of water droplets on the floor from a lack of a hand drying facilities, leading to possible slips.
Air fresheners should be utilised where possible as the first thing users notice is the overall scent of the washroom; ominous odours may lead to users avoiding the facilities altogether or force them to make their visit faster by avoiding hand washing/drying. If your washroom promotes bad hygiene; your business promotes it too.
What you need to do to maintain a hygienic washroom
So, what’s the best way to combat poor hygiene in washrooms?
Ensure you’re offering the proper facilities required to provide a hygienic washroom environment, then you can rest assured that users will have a positive experience. There are varying levels of provision for different washrooms, but the basics you should provide for your users are toilet rolls, soap and proper hand drying facilities.
Effective hand drying
Hand dryers; whilst initial install can be expensive, can in the long term provide a lower carbon footprint compared to other hand drying methods and remove the need to restock.
If providing paper towels for the drying solution, a waste bin for the towels is essential. In large offices, with high numbers of staff visiting the washroom each day, using paper towels to dry their hands can lead to bins quickly overflowing – whereas a hand dryer can be easily installed and doesn’t create waste. In can also look stylish and enhance your washroom décor.
Toilet roll holders for busy washrooms
If your washroom is one that deals with a lot of traffic, consider using toilet roll dispensers that house either multiple or jumbo rolls to decrease the number of times they need to be replenished, and avoid awkward stall-to-stall requests when there’s no paper to be seen!
Reduce pressure on your cleaning team with waste bins
Waste bins are essential in ensuring your washroom maintains a hygienic and professional atmosphere. Some users may take the opportunity to go through their bags in bathrooms and discard any rubbish onto the nearest surface for the next person to deal with and paper towels may be left on the floor if no bin is provided. Sometimes rubbish is even flushed down the toilet, leading to expensive repair bills if a blockage is caused.
Ensuring your facilities have a waste bin encourages proper disposal, creating less of a burden on the cleaning staff and improving user experience in your washroom.
Encourage hand washing
Washing your hands is one of the most effective preventative measures you can take against the spread of germs. Soap is vital in this process to ensure hands are washed effectively.
Often physical soap bottles left on the side are at the risk of being pilfered and can be easily opened by anyone, leading to possible contamination or tampering with the contents.
A lockable, wall-mounted soap dispenser with a tamper proof system provides peace of mind, prevents theft and protects the contents from contamination – promoting good hand hygiene.
Harness the power of scent
Air fresheners, whilst more of a desirable product as opposed to essential, are still important. Before your user turns on the light the first thing they will notice is the odour of the washroom. If the smell is unpleasant, the facilities may be avoided or hand washing and drying hurried to make their visit as quick as possible.
Malodours will make the user immediately associate your washroom with uncleanliness and poor hygiene standards, which in turn reflects badly on your business. By supplying the area with a discreet wall-mounted automatic air freshener you can ensure users won’t need to feel rushed and uncomfortable in the washroom.
Are your washrooms fitted with the correct equipment?
There’s certainly no denying that washroom hygiene is incredibly important. Staff illness leads to reduced productivity and its estimated employees missing work due to being sick costs the UK economy billions each year.
Your washroom is also an extension of your organisation and brand image. Promote healthy, hygienic practices alongside your values and your customers, employees and visitors to your premises will thank you.
Contact Dudley Industries
Here at Dudley Industries we pride ourselves on manufacturing high quality, hard wearing and hygiene-focused washroom products, whilst retaining a stylish and modern feel.