A passion for sustainable cleaning practices has seen Nuwan Kumarasiri take the initiative on a number of green operational and marketing fronts that, in turn, have given our industry much needed kudos. The principal of Brisbane-based Spick & Span commercial property maintenance, he has made significant research and development technology investments that complement his cleaning services business.
With a slogan ‘One call cleans it all’, Spick & Span was established by Kumarasiri in 2007. It offers office, commercial and industrial cleaning services with its core business focused on CBD office sites and high rise apartment body corporate clients.
“I am constantly looking for innovative technology that will allow us to deliver the most sustainable cleaning and hygiene results,” stated Kumarasiri. “And I am also keen to promote publicly our industry’s commitment to a better environment in any way I can,” he added.
Kumarasiri is well equipped to being a ‘public face’ of the cleaning industry in that he has a Bachelor of Commerce (Griffith University), is a Workplace Health & Safety Officer (WHSO), and holds a certificate III in asset maintenance (cleaning). Interesting Kumarasiri has also undertaken a green cleaning course at the Brisbane Metropolitan TAFE.
One of his more recent public outings was a speaking engagement at the Council of Small Business of Australia’s (COSBOA) National Small Business Summit, held mid-June 2010. Kumarasiri’s topic was ‘Small, green and clean: using sustainable business practices to save money and drive growth’.
“I was the only executive from the cleaning industry talking at this event but I felt it important that such a large industry as ours be represented and be heard for the valuable input we can give,” Kumarasiri emphasised.
One accolade of which he is particularly proud was being short-listed for the 2009 Queensland EPA’s Sustainable Industries Award. “Spick & Span was the only cleaning company to be recognised in this very important arena,” noted Kumarasiri.
Spick & Span is growing on the services front and from just the one employee some three years ago the company now employs 10 full-time staff. At this easily managed size, Kumarasiri is able to ensure high standards of training as well as delivering quality cleaning results.
He encourages all of his team to reach Certificate III in Asset Maintenance and to take a genuine interest in their green cleaning practices.
“We use recognised green chemical brands and look to machines that are not only environmentally-friendly but can also give us a competitive edge,” said Kumarasiri.
Those units include the Kershki graffiti machine and a large capacity industrial steam cleaner.
“We really have two arms to our business, the contracting of cleaning services and the importation and distribution of niche equipment. That has meant international trips to source the right gear and the marketing investment in industry trade shows such as Ausclean and Logov.net,” Kumarasiri explained.
“Those two parts of our business are quite complementary and they fit our strategy of targeting more local government work, notably the removal of graffiti and the cleaning of pavements.”
Spick & Span is a member of the External Cleaning Industry Association (ECIA) and holds the appropriate water efficient operator ticket.
Kumarasiri is very marketing savvy, particularly in the area of media – print, radio and television – gaining significant exposure for his business in South East Queensland’s media.
Apart from the media thrust, Spick & Span relies on word of mouth referrals from satisfied clients, a web site and corporate brochure.
“The cleaning industry offers us enormous scope for growth but it will be controlled by employing only our people who are skilled and committed. We place much store in ensuring all the team are paid award rates and conditions as a minimum.
“Client satisfaction and retention are most important,” added Kumarasiri