Amana Living has provided a full range of aged care services to the community in Western Australia since 1962. With 750 beds, it is one of WA’s largest not-for-profit providers of residential aged care accommodation, respite, transition care, retirement living and in-home care services with facilities across metropolitan Perth, Australind, Kalgoorlie and Albany.

When the organisation embarked on a major project to standardise and streamline its cleaning systems, it chose to partner with Rubbermaid Commercial Products (RCP) and capitalise on their superior HYGEN Microfibre technology.

Amana Living undertook a rigorous and wide-ranging review of its cleaning services to standardise its Hotel Service systems. By standardising cleaning practices the organisation would ensure hygienic results were consistently achieved across its 13 residential aged care facilities to enrich the health, wellbeing and experience of residents. Amana Living conducted a three-month trial of the Rubbermaid Commercial Products (RCP) HYGEN
Microfibre system, alongside two other alternative systems – steam cleaning and their existing traditional wet mop.

The objective of the project, led by Hotel Services Manager Anthony Heslop, was to find the right cleaning solution to deliver time and productivity efficiencies, improved cleaning performance, durability and return on investment. Above all, the solution needed to positively contribute to creating a safe and hygienic living and working environment for residents and staff alike.

The trial audited the cleaning performance of the different cleaning solutions, benchmarked against industry standards for cleaning and healthcare (i). Microfibre out-performed the current and alternative methods with audit results above 95 percent (ii). Productivity and time efficiency gains were also observed, and the Environmental cleaning services staff provided feedback about their preferred solution. Overall, Rubbermaid’s HYGEN Launderable Microfibre system scored 177/180 (98%) and was the preferred option by staff (ii).

“From a time-efficiency, productivity perspective, the HYGEN system was significantly better,” explained Hotel Services Manager, Anthony Heslop.
“All staff expressed an increased level of personal satisfaction and pride with the new equipment. They have been able to increase their productivity and the quality of work within time frames they previously felt were unrealistic.” Following a thorough evaluation process, Amana Living was confident the HYGEN Launderable Microfibre system would support their business goals and RCP was able to provide a surprising level of on-going local support not often provided by all suppliers.

Amana Living chose to implement the Rubbermaid HYGEN Launderable Microfibre system across the organisation. The system included the HYGEN Microfibre Cloths and mops, high capacity cleaning carts, the high and low dusting equipment and cleaning hardware.

“The products work together as a system, and fitted with how we wanted to operate the service,” Heslop said.

Durability has been a major benefit. Amana Living has been able to launder and reuse the cloths and pads hundreds of times, without impacting the efficacy of the microfibre technology.

“The system has been used for more than 18 months across the business. We haven’t needed to replace any of the cloths to date,” he added.

The local Rubbermaid Commercial Products team supported the roll-out and provide ongoing customer support. “The beauty of the Rubbermaid system is the support is right here. In the West, we are used to ‘waiting a while’, as most things usually take a few days or weeks to come from the East. The RCP team is here to support us locally, which makes a big difference.”

The system was very easy to roll-out as part of the new standardised cleaning protocols. The entire solution was implemented within six months, with a new site roll-out every fortnight. Amana Living managed the change management process internally, with the support of Rubbermaid training resources, ensuring a smooth and positive transition.

“It was a big change for us and yet there was really no resistance to what we were doing. The roll-out was well-executed and our staff have taken to the system extremely well.”

Staff can now clean more efficiently, and achieve more consistent hygienic results. “Because the HYGEN microfibre lifts and removes the soiling, rather than just moving it around, over time our rooms are increasingly easier to clean,” he said.

In terms of productivity and quantifiable financial returns, the trial showed that the HYGEN Microfibre solution would potentially allow Amana Living to increase the frequency of cleaning by 150 per cent in some environments – from one clean per week to 2.5 cleans per week, without any corresponding increase in labour cost.

“All of the back and forth travel time system. We pre-soak (charge) the cloths which provides everything we need to completely clean each room, without walking back and forth to the trolley. To achieve the same productivity with the previous equipment would have cost in excess of $70,000 in extra staff and shifts, with no guarantee of improved cleaning outcomes.”

The reduced water usage inherent in the HYGEN system has delivered many benefits, including reduced costs and risk of injury associated with lifting heavy buckets. Amana Living calculated the reduction in water equated to around 600 litres per day.

“In terms of reduced water usage, the conservative projections were we would save about 218,000L per year, which means that is 218,000kg of water our staff don’t need to lift.”

“We haven’t had a work cover claim related to cleaning since we rolled out the HYGEN system. There have been no repetitive strain injuries, no rotator cuff injuries. It’s no longer an issue (iii)”

The health and safety of Amana Living’s residents is paramount. Most of the flooring is vinyl so a fast drying mop system addresses the slip hazard associated with mopping. “Many residents have impaired mobility so fall prevention is a critical imperative for us. Using the Rubbermaid HYGEN Microfi bre flat mop, floors are clean and dry in a matter of minutes. Previously, with a traditional wet mop, floors could take three to four times longer to dry.” Improved staff morale has also been a strong indicator of success for Amana Living. “Our staff appreciate the consistent results they
can achieve in a smaller time frame. Our staff are customer-facing and are highly visible to residents as they work. They’re effectively doing what they’ve always done – just faster with better results, so they no longer fear scrutiny about cleaning time and quality.”

“Since implementing the Rubbermaid Commercial Products HYGEN Microfi bre system, Amana Living hasn’t received one workers’ compensation claim related to cleaning. There have been no repetitive strain injuries, no rotator cuff injuries. It’s no longer an issue.”

“RCP were integral to the standardisation of our internal cleaning practises, their local support and world-class cleaning technologies and products were keys to our success.”

Hotel Services Manager
Amana Living

(i) Cleaning standards for Victorian health facilities Aug 2011
(ii) Amana Living Cleaning Trial Final Report, August 2015
(iii) as at June 2017

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