Survey reveals burnout among cleaning professionals

New report reveals challenges and perceptions of more than 1700 cleaning professionals.

CloroxPro released its 2023 Clean Index report, which reflects the current challenges and perceptions of more than 1700 cleaning professionals and consumers and unveils key shifts in year-over-year industry trends.

From staffing shortages to increased workloads and not having enough time for training, cleaning professionals continue to face high turnover and burnout, according to the US-based report, which surveyed more than 700 cleaning professionals and more than 1000 consumers.

In fact, nearly nine out of ten (87 per cent) cleaning professionals have personally experienced burnout in the last two years, highlighting the industry’s need to focus on employee wellness and retention to remain diligent in its role to safeguard public health.

While consumer confidence in the cleanliness of public spaces has increased 23 per cent since last year, cleaning professionals are feeling less confident year-over-year in their ability to prevent the spread of illness-causing germs, exacerbating staffing challenges.

Cleaning professionals’ confidence fell nearly 5 per cent compared to last year, with the largest confidence drop among building-service contractors (-15 per cent vs. 2022).

The primary drivers of declining confidence were cited as a lack of training programs (22 per cent, +9 per cent vs. 2022) and more public scrutiny of cleaning practices (20 per cent, + 6 per cent vs. 2022).

Findings also reveal that while most cleaning professionals agree that eco-conscious cleaners and disinfectants are important to use, adoption continues to lag.

Cleaning professionals cite their top concerns for switching to eco-conscious cleaners as increased cost (78 per cent), uncertainty of cleaning effectiveness (67 per cent) and compromised efficiency of cleaning (58 per cent).

“The challenges uncovered by the 2023 Clean Index survey reinforce how much responsibility is placed on cleaning professionals, and the need to ensure they have the tools and support to confidently create clean and healthy public spaces,” said Kyra de St. Paer, senior director of marketing at CloroxPro.

2023 Clean Index findings:

Burnout is prevalent

  • Cleaning professionals are facing burnout because of high turnover and continued staffing shortages, resulting in a cycle of longer hours and less time for training.
    • 61 per cent say hiring issues and short staffing are leading contributors to staff burnout.
    • 44 per cent say not enough time for training is a leading contributor to staff burnout.
    • 40 per cent say long hours are a leading contributor to staff burnout. 

A crisis in confidence

  • Compared to 2022, cleaning professionals’ confidence in their own ability to keep the areas they manage clean and disinfected fell nearly 5 per cent, with building service contractor confidence falling 15 per cent.
    • 22 per cent cite lack of training programs as a top reason cleaning professionals are less confident.
    • 20 per cent cite public scrutiny of cleaning practices as a top reason cleaning professionals are less confident.

Green cleaning interest/adoption gap

  • Three in four (75 per cent) cleaning professionals agree that using that eco-conscious cleaners/disinfectants in public spaces is important, but adoption continues to lag.
  • Factors preventing cleaning professionals from switching to eco-conscious cleaners and disinfectants include:
    • 78 per cent increased cost
    • 67 per cent uncertainty of cleaning effectiveness
    • 58 per cent compromised efficiency of cleaning
    • 56 per cent limited product availability on market
    • 52 per cent preference for traditional solutions

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