Solves this Pain: Equipment is sometimes not operating correctly when needed. Equipment may be difficult to get to the right building or zone at the right time. Equipment is not being used effectively.
Differentiator: Your company keeps equipment running cost effectively.
You take co-management responsibility for cleaning equipment readiness, scheduling, proper use, evaluation and in certain cases, movement of equipment. This is accomplished through preventive maintenance, job scheduling, providing fill-in equipment options, data monitoring and equipment logistical management. You keep data on all types of cleaning equipment and use that data to recommend efficiency changes. You assure warranty compliance through on-going training and appropriate chemistry use. You provide robust leasing, rental and seasonal-use packages.
Culture Changes: Requires a mental shift from being a seller and servicer of equipment to being a manager, trainer and facilitator of timely cleaning/floorcare results.
Opportunities: Establishes co-management of equipment and data monitoring. Provides access to data. Establishes subject-matter expert status. Provides efficient repair routing schedules.
Automation & Efficiency
Solves this Pain: Many cleaning departments are built around low-efficiency systems for two reasons: First, they provide the lowest-entry-cost option in most cases. Second, there may have been failures to effectively either utilize or maintain equipment in the past, so purchases have gravited to the simplest systems.
Differentiator: Your company analyzes data gathered about each cleaning system and applies automation improvements on a priority basis as capital becomes available.
You share responsibility with the customer for making sure equipment lasts and is used to best advantage on a daily basis.
Culture Changes: Requires mentally taking an on-going responsibility for the successful use of automated equipment. Requires thinking of the entire range of automation, not just traditional cleaning machines. Staff must be ready to emphasize productivity and fewer workers, or greater work load accomplished.
Opportunities: The process involves recording data on processes and current equipment, allowing your company to know what the prospect or customer needs are. Elevates your salespersons to working on a co-management level by providing needed data systems.
Public Facilities, Schools & Universities
Solves this Pain: For going on two decades, educational cleaning budgets have been targets. Now, there is a backlash against how these cuts have been negative in their impact to cleanliness, air quality, health, odor control and building surface longevity. You can help reverse these trends at current budget levels.
Differentiator: Your company can specialize in the USP of bringing back clean and healthy buildings without breaking the new normal in public and higher education cleaning budgets.
Beginning with the Iterative Cleaning Feedback Loop, you begin assessing and prioritizing the most important areas for improvement directly with building stakeholders. You also, when possible, meet with members of parent-teacher groups to solicit supportive data.
Using this data, you provide directives, by topic matter, for improving productivity with three to five new “protocols” per semester. Summer becomes a staging, experimentation and reinforcement period as buildings are refurbished. These new protocols will involve any or all of the following: 1. Improved cleaning methods, 2. more effective equipment, 3. retraining, or 4. restructuring cleaning strategies.
Culture Changes: Requires a commitment to executing training and monitoring of building-by-building satisfaction data, performance data, effectiveness data and results. Salespersons spend less time searching for leads and more time developing expanded programs with fewer educational facilities where these principles fall in line with their cultures and needs.
Opportunities: Once begun, documenting and reporting data to school boards, principals and parent groups entrenches the system and continues to solicit their active involvement. Better retention, less bidding and better margins based on demonstrable performance improve the value of these high-volume customers.
Solves this Pain: Restaurants, like most businesses, prefer to single-source purchases rather than having multiple vendors for related line items. This provides an opportunity to combine three areas that food suppliers generally do not, warewashing, paper consumables and cleaning/disinfecting.
Differentiator: Your company focuses on the 54% of the restaurant industry that is independently (non-chain) owned.
This USP has entry-level barriers in that serious warewashing capabilities require expertise and access to both chemistry and dish systems. However, a number of jan/san distributors have these capabilities, but have often utilized them as an add-on, or almost a separate division.
The opportunity with this USP comes from combining expertise in all three areas, and adequate personnel and knowledge in the warewashing topic matter to be truly useful to the independent restaurant. If you do not have at least the beginnings of this competency in your distributorship, or cannot bring in the high-level expertise and vendor resources for your area, this USP is an unlikely match.
Culture Changes: Assuming you have a warewashing division now, there is sometimes a shift in thinking required to have this function work seamlessly as part of the overall selling function. If there have been departmental separations, combining the triad of paper consumables, jan/san supplies and systems and warewashing will be essential to success. That is the new thing you are offering independent restaurant owners and managers.
Opportunities: The restaurant industry in general has grown exponentially since the 1970s. Although chains are once again growing after the recession, and independents are level to decreasing, there is still a huge market, almost $800 billion according to the National Restaurant Association. Assuming equivalent average sales per unit, independents would represent about $432 billion. By combining two related expertises, your services could become a better fit with independents than buying from those who sell them food, an expertise with almost no connection to jan/san, paper consumables or warewashing.
NOTE: Combining this USP with conversion to Automatic Inventory Management could provide an even more effective package with delivery cost pickups for the distributor.
Right Sizing for Productivity
Solves this Pain: Facility maintenance departments often under-utilize automation, and are underproductive because of that weakness. This provides an opening for finding the right automated systems, leading with artificial intelligence when appropriate and taking responsibility for co-managing overall productivity.
Differentiator: Your company is a subject matter expert in selecting and leveraging the best automation for maximum productivity in a given building with a particular staff. This includes both simple and highly mechanized automated systems as well as becoming a leader in artificial intelligence systems as they come on-line.
Your customer-facing people understand how to factor improvements in productivity and how to gather the data on existing systems and methods to determine current baseline productivity. Overall, you provide the service of “right-sizing” the fit of technology to the building and staff. This process may take several years of incremental capital expenditures by the customer. You take responsibility for assessing the next three steps to take in any given half-year and document efficiency gains.
Culture Changes: Requires a selling mindset of applying appropriate technology for the customer, not necessarily the latest technology or automation being promoted by manufacturers. Also requires a commitment to record keeping and reporting. A CRM or task management-system may be helpful.
Opportunities: The opportunity to assess current automation in light of labor costs and results achieved can be appealing to prospects. Encompassing all types of automation, small and large, can help build a better relationship. Composing and helping to train and execute both a data-gathering and long-term improvement plan can support customer retention and allow for wider margins on consumables.