Keeping a large venue or arena clean and inviting is a monumental undertaking. Some arenas can seat the entire population of a large town. These dedicated sports fans, loyal band followers, or even cleaning convention attendees will track in unwanted soils with them. They will eat and drink and spill – like all of us. Some will use the public facilities and sometimes not as respectfully as they would in their own homes. Some people will intentionally or unintentionally leave their discarded items strewn about the venue. And they will do all of this in the span of a few short hours.
Even so, the task of keeping large venues clean and inviting is not impossible. In fact, with the right planning and execution, it can be attainable, sustainable, and even profitable. Whether you’re a BSC, Facility Manager, or Director of Operations for a large venue or arena, the goal is the same – keep them coming back for more. In this blog, we’ll provide helpful planning tips on how to keep large venues clean and inviting through good communication and the creation of a well-thought-through cleaning action plan.
Define What Clean Looks Like
This is the most important decision you will make. We all know that cleaning standards differ from a large venue or arena to a computer chip manufacturer’s clean room to a hospital’s surgical suite. So, be realistic when defining what clean looks like for your venue. Your definition of clean must be attainable, measurable, and sustainable. Some key things to consider when defining clean for your venue are:
- Pre-event cleaning: What is the clean state or neutral state of the facility before an event? What types of cleaning need to happen during preparation for an event?
- Event cleaning: What constitutes clean and inviting during an event (e.g. empty trash cans, inviting and clean smelling restrooms, paper supplies, non-sticky seats, and hard surfaces, etc.)?
- Post-event cleaning: After you bring the facility back to neutral, what will you do to leave it better than you found it?
- Daily maintenance: What does day-to-day clean look like for non-event days?
Create a Cleaning and Maintenance Action Plan
Without a well-researched and thoughtful action plan, the enormity and complexity of large venue/arena cleaning may result in a major hit to your bottom line. If your restrooms are disastrous or uninviting during an event because you’re understaffed, it may result in the loss of some patrons permanently – no matter the quality of the attraction. Creating and executing an action plan will help to ensure that every stakeholder is on the same page and invested in the same measurable and attainable goals for the facility.
Create a cleaning and maintenance action plan.
Resources and Planning
When creating your action plan, carefully consider the manpower and supplies needed for each area or zone and task. Having set processes with attainable and measurable goals in place for each area and task leaves no question of what is expected. Divide resources and needs into areas or zones like the following:
As mentioned, keeping the restrooms clean and inviting is one of the most important tasks you will take on for cleaning large venues or arenas. But it can also be the toughest. Restrooms can become soiled quickly. Soiled restrooms may also harbor disease and harmful pathogens. Therefore, it’s important that you spend the necessary time to consider the following:
- How many restrooms and how many fixtures per restroom? How many team members are needed before, during, and after an event? Depending on the size and scope of an event, some companies choose to staff two team members per restroom to ensure that the facility is kept clean and inviting during events.
- What methods will you employ to clean them?
- What products will you use? Will you make an effort to use eco-friendly products and supplies? Are the products safe for your cleaning staff and patrons?
Stadium and arena seating areas are vast, and they’re exposed to all manners of elements and abuses before, during, and after events. Some considerations for seating area cleaning include:
- Will you need workers collecting larger trash items? Will you need workers with blowers to clear the debris from the upper rows downward to the bottom for collection?
- How will you remove sticky food and drink spills from the hard surfaces?
Pay special attention to stadium seats.
Keeping the grounds clean and inviting is yet another important and monumental undertaking, but not impossible with the right planning. Overflowing trash cans and debris strewn about the grounds can be unattractive and unwelcoming. So, make sure the action plan accounts for a dedicated team for waste management before, during, and after the event. Some additional considerations include:
- How many team members will be needed to ensure trash cans and litter remain under control during and after an event?
- How will the waste be collected and transported?
- Will you create and participate in a sustainable recycling plan? If so, how will you execute it?
These areas of a large venue are also extremely important. BSCs and/or venue managers usually choose to put a dedicated team on these areas as well. Keeping the VIPs happy is key to an organization’s success. Likewise, keeping the day-to-day operations staff in a clean and safe environment is key to a successful operation.
Careful consideration of every task is needed if you are to be successful in keeping a large venue clean and inviting. Using the wrong products or harsh cleaning chemicals could have a negative impact on your staff and your patrons. In fact, a recent study suggests that exposure to cleaning products at work and at home can be akin to smoking 20 cigarettes per day. But there are affordable and effective alternatives to traditional harsh cleaning chemicals like chlorine bleach. A PathoSans on-site generation system generates safe, effective, and non-toxic cleaners and disinfectants onsite and on demand. All that’s needed is softened tap water, table salt, and a little electricity (electrochemically activated water or ECAs) to create an all-purpose cleaning solution and a powerful yet safe disinfectant. (To learn more, click here.)
Execute, Analyze, Adjust, Repeat
Once you have the right plan, take the time to assemble the right team. Make sure your management team is well prepared yet flexible enough to calmly handle whatever may be thrown their way. Having the cleaning action plan with clearly defined, attainable, and measurable expectations will provide a roadmap for success. Once your plan has been executed, make sure you analyze the results. How did the team and the plan perform? Are there opportunities for improvement? Reflect on what went well and what didn’t. Then, adjust, rinse, and repeat until you are consistently keeping your large venue or arena clean and inviting, no matter what may be thrown your way.