Why You Can’t Have Green Cleaning Without Good Training

July 23, 2015 | Written By:

Custodial training goes beyond the immediate benefits it grants to custodial staff. Yes, a good training program educates personnel, helps them to perform their work better, understand why green cleaning is healthier, and keeps them from making dangerous mistakes. But strong training programs can do so much more. They help engage a workforce, bring value to the profession and make cleaning staff happier and more satisfied in their jobs. Training promotes buy-in for green choices, reduces turnover and encourages engagement with the broader school community. In a truly sustainable green cleaning program, good training is absolutely paramount.

That’s why we’re so excited about the panel on Training and Workforce Engagement that will be part of the Green Clean Schools Summit later this month. It’s also why we’re teaming up with ISSA and The Ashkin Group to support Green Apple Day of Service.

Green Apple Day of Service
Green Apple Day of Service is a national day presented by the USGBC’s Center for Schools that encourages schools to embark on projects that make their schools healthier places. Last year, 3,800 community events were held across the globe, spotlighting efforts to make schools healthier — from energy audits to recycling projects. This year, we’re teaming up to help schools improve and promote their custodial training programs as a key aspect of the school’s sustainability programs. It falls on September 26.

Your school can register to become involved in this important Day of Service by registering its custodial training program. This will bring publicity and attention to your training efforts, and give your department incentive to improve or certify its training program.

Lucas Wendt, sales executive with the Facility Services Program at ISSA, knows firsthand how important training is for a successful green cleaning program. He manages ISSA’s Cleaning Industry Training Standard, which is helping to elevate training programs by certifying staff, verifying training programs and facilities, improving trainers and setting an industry standard.

Wendt is optimistic about what Green Apple Day of Service can do for school custodial departments and the cleaning industry in general. “This day of service can show that these schools have a sense of pride and are keeping up to standards and allows them to show what type of practice they are using to keep their school district clean,” said Wendt.

If your school wants to get involved in Green Apple Day of Service by registering its training program, fill out the registration form on the official website.

The Green Clean Schools Summit that will take place next week in Seattle will feature a panel on training and workforce engagement. This panel will explore the important role that training plays in the success of a school’s green cleaning program. Wendt will be a speaker on that panel, and will discuss how schools can benefit from ISSA’s CITS program and to speak in general about the value that comes from training workers.

When it comes to training, Wendt believes the key to success is straightforward. “Always give your staff compliments and tell them when they are following the training practices,” he advises. “By giving them the certification they realize my job means more than being a janitor; they are the frontline workers.”

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