Keeping your c-store clean is one of the easiest ways to draw in customers and encourage them to come back again. It is important to take these steps to make sure that your employees are taking care of your store the right way. Cleaning does not have to be a hassle, instead take some of the following easy measures to ensure that it is done correctly every single time.
Get a System and Stick to It
Keeping your c-store clean can seem like a hassle if you do not have a system in place that delegates tasks and makes sure that things are being taken care of in a timely manner.
Have a routine for different dayparts.
Depending on what time of day it is there should be certain tasks that need to be completed. In the morning, your coffee bar and breakfast area should be maintained and kept tidy. Once breakfast is over the area should be cleaned completely. Then the area should be prepared for lunch.
Post procedures and cleaning tasks.
In case employees forget you should have signs and laminated handouts with the cleaning procedures and tasks clearly listed out. They should be in a convenient area where employees can look at in case they need a refresher or if they want to double check their work. This keeps you from being bombarded with questions and can help employees do their best work.
Properly label supplies.
Supplies should also be labeled with the correct name, ingredients, uses, and warning signs. If you just have a blue chemical in a spray bottle employees could think it is window cleaner or a variety of other chemicals. Having properly labeled equipment prevents any confusion from occurring.
Use Multitasking Tools
When deciding on what cleaning equipment to purchase you want to get tools that you will be able to use in different areas of your store. Having one machine for just one area is not cost-effective. Items like floor cleaning tools should be for both bathrooms and the store-front. You should also be aware of the cleaning products and solutions you are purchasing. Make sure that you have cleansers that work for multiple areas so you are not having to re-stock too many different kinds of items. This can often lead to not having the right cleaning product when you need it. Having one central cleaner for counters in all parts of your store can simplify your entire cleaning process.
Inform Employees of Proper Procedures
You should not expect your employees to know exactly how to clean your store. When training them to teach them about the different cleaning products and tools and show them how to use them properly. You should also make sure that the proper protective gear is readily available. This can range anywhere from gloves and protective eye-wear to color-coded towels so employees do not accidentally cross-contaminate cleaning products. Having protective gear can help employees gain confidence and be able to better complete the tasks they are assigned.
Don't Forget These Commonly Overlooked Areas
When cleaning your c-store you will most likely have the floors clean, the bathroom sparkling, and the shelves tidy and stocked. But there are other areas that are frequently overlooked.
Keep welcome mat and rugs vacuumed and washed if there are any visible spots or stains
Keep windows streak and print free
Wash and sanitize doors and handles
Check for water stains, spider webs, and other debris weekly
Make sure that ceilings look clean and presentable and do not have dusty or rusty items hanging from them
Food Service stations
The areas behind and under machines are often overlooked
Soda fountain buttons should be wiped and the areas around the machine should be checked and wiped if sticky
Areas should be swept frequently if food falling is a consistent issue
This area should be kept neat and tidy all day long and free from trash and other debris often left behind
Twice a day counter and register should be sanitized and completely wiped down
Do not forget to wipe down pens used for signing receipts since these are also frequently touched
Overall, taking time to create a seamless system to clean your store is easy. Write a list of tasks that need to be completed, hourly, daily, weekly, and monthly. Discuss with employees about what tasks they need to complete during their shifts and explain to them the proper ways of completing those tasks. Keep in mind overlooked areas and do your best to give your tools and cleaning products multiple tasks in order to cut down costs. This way customers keep using your store because they believe it is the cleanest and safest choice to get their food and beverage items.