Ah, winter. It’s that magical time of the year when everyone in your Columbus office starts sniffling, sneezing, and spreading the germy cheer. And when you think of germ-ridden hotspots around the office, your mind probably immediately flies to smartphones, doorknobs, and, of course, office restrooms.
But you’d be wrong. Turns out, your office has some dirty secrets of its own. A study by the research group Kimberly-Clark Professional swabbed over 5,000 offices of all walks and discovered that some unexpected places are the true bastions of bacteria.
The swabs were analyzed to measure levels of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), a molecule found in all animal, vegetable, bacteria, yeast, and mold cells. If a surface has a substantial amount of ATP, chances are that bacteria and viruses are alive and well.
So without further ado, let’s take a look at what the study found to be the filthiest spots in your office.
1. Break Room Sink Faucet Handles
Hands down, your office’s break room sink is the biggest germ factory. 75 percent of all break room sink handles in the survey racked up ATP counts of over 300, which means contamination in this seemingly innocuous area is seriously high. Though your employees touch the faucet handles to wash up, they may just be dirtying their hands in the process.
2. Microwave Door Handles
Lunchtime. Your employees file in and out of the break room. Some heat up last night’s leftovers in the microwave; others reach into the fridge for the kombucha tea they bought from the Clintonville Community Market before nuking their wrap. But little do they know that the microwave door handle is among the grimiest surfaces in the office.
And when you think about it, it makes sense that 48 percent of microwave door handles would have obscene levels of ATP. There’s a good chance that employees touch food, then the door handle without first washing their hands. Over time, those little specks of food debris can fester. Before you reach for a bleach wipe, check out the post, “Two Men & A Vacuum Conquer Kitchen Cleaning.”
Keyboards: we use them every day, but seldom do they get cleaned. Naturally, they are breeding grounds for germs, food crumbs, and other gross substances (especially if your employees bite their nails while they work). In the study, over 27 percent of office keyboards had ATP levels of 300 or higher.
Tips for Columbus Office Cleaning and Keeping Germs at Bay
By raising awareness of these highly contaminated areas and implementing these tips, you can cut the spread of cold, flu, and other viruses in your Columbus office:
- Clean those keyboards. Power down computers before you start in. Turn the keyboard over to shake out loose morsels and debris. You can use compressed air to blast out crumbs, too. Use a disinfectant wipe to clean the keys and sides of the keyboard.
- Inform employees about germy hotbeds. Make sure to encourage hygienic practices.
- Sanitize like you mean it. Keep hand sanitizer dispensers around the office, especially in high-traffic areas like break rooms or outside conference rooms.
- Encourage employees to clean after themselves. Keep disinfectant wipes around so employees can quickly clean their desks and keyboards.
- Make sure the break room is cleaned regularly. Sanitize sink faucet handles, microwave door handles, and fridge handles each day. To get ideas about which cleaning solutions to use, check out our post, “How to Pick Safe Cleaning Solutions for Your Home or Office.”
Don’t Have Time to Fuss with Contaminated Office Surfaces? Leave the Cleaning to the Pros
It can be tempting to turn to industrial-grade disinfectants when you’re a germaphobe with a business to run. But those harsh chemicals can be rough on your office, wreak havoc on the environment and take a toll on your workers’ health.
The health and safety of our clients is tantamount, which is why we only use green cleaning products. But just because these products are safe doesn’t mean they can’t fight germs. So when you want to save time without sacrificing your office’s safety or cleanliness, give us a call at 614-300-7970 to get an office cleaning quote or to schedule a free consultation.