ARROW ARE GOING FOR GOLD

Joining only 25% of IIC (Investor in Customers®) clients to achieve Gold status, we have listened and acted on feedback we received from customers, our employees and management team – making an ongoing commitment to continuous improvement.

Sandy Bryson, Director at Investor in Customers commented: “After narrowly missing out on a Gold award from IIC last year, the team at Arrow has worked extremely hard to implement the changes recommended in their 2017 assessment and further improve its customer experience. I am delighted these efforts have been recognised by Arrow’s customers and staff in their 2018 assessment results. Not only have Arrow now achieved our Gold award, their customer scores are “Gold” across all of IIC’s metrics: 4 principles and 16 themes. This is an exceptional performance, and I know the Arrow team is committed to continue to improve over the next 12 months.”

Delighted with the results, our Managing Director Bruce Blackledge said:
“As a customer-centric organisation, our customers are at the heart of everything we do. Undertaking our second externally validated feedback assessment was therefore highly important to us to ensure we gained reliable results to work with.
Achieving Gold in this assessment was a result we are exceptionally pleased with. Over the past 12 months, a great deal of work has gone into refining our service and making many incremental improvements to deliver greater value and satisfaction to our customers. The feedback we have

received from participants evidences that this has clearly paid off. However, our commitment to continuous improvement does not stop, and we will continue to seek innovative ways to deliver customer service excellence in the future.”

When you are responsible for the cleaning of large, high-footfall areas, you need to be sure that you are investing in not only the best tool for the job, but the one that will actually increase your efficiencies across the board.

When it comes to choosing a vacuum cleaner, there are two options: traditional, mains-powered corded, or the lighter, more flexible cordless alternative. It is fair to say that pretty much everyone is acquainted with the functionality of corded vacuums.

However, when it comes to the benefits of the cordless alternatives, you may not be aware of how useful and effective they are. Read on to find out the top 3 business benefits of using cordless vacuums to improve health & safety, increase flexibility and have a positive impact on your time and budget.

Decrease Risk

When using a heavy corded vacuum, cleaning teams may find they are unable to move quickly from one area to another without the need to plug and unplug. Traditional vacuum cleaners also raise the injury risk for cleaners having to pull them up stairways and lift them onto raised levels within auditoriums, cinemas and the like. Trailing cords are also a trip hazard for both the operative, and in 24 hour premises, for other staff and visitors too. This is not the case with a Makita cordless vacuum. Astonishingly light, and free from the restraints of being plugged into a wall, battery powered devices from Makita make short work of stairways and space restricted areas. Cleaning operatives are equipped to complete a thorough clean without unnecessary risk.

Increased Flexibility

Light and compact, Makita vacuums give cleaning operatives the ability to clean hard to reach spots, corners and behind furniture and/or appliances quickly and effectively. Additional flexibility comes from the choice of accessories, nozzles, brushes and telescopic pipes which are also available.

Eliminating the need to struggle to raise and balance a vacuum to a level where effective cleaning is possible, the Makita Back Pack Vacuum DVC 260 is light enough to be carried like a rucksack, making every space accessible. This means that operatives no longer have to compromise on service delivery because a) the cord won’t reach, or b) the vacuum is too heavy to lift and position.

If a handheld stick vacuum is better for the area you are trying to clean then the 18v DCL181 model with a range of accessories, excellent suction power and light, ergonomic design is ideal. Quiet to run too it is perfect for cleaning 24 hour offices.

Cost and time saving

You may assume that a battery powered vacuum will be spending a lot of time being charged when it could be in use. Your main investment when buying an item from Makita is in its batteries. With an unbeatable charge time, all Makita 18v Li-ion batteries are quick to charge and power the devices for an impressive amount of time to allow you more time to get on with the job. After the initial investment, your batteries will then charge around 200 different Makita devices.

Visit our web shop to see our latest Makita offers or to find out more about our range of battery powered vacuums contact Arrow on response@arrowcounty.com or phone 01743 283600.

Challenge Arrow to Solve Your Cleaning Problem at Work

 

Win the solution to your problem and £100 worth of cleaning products for yourself.

 

The Manchester Cleaning Show is taking place on 11th and 12th April this year and we will be showcasing some of our most innovative solutions to cleaning problems at work.

 

In the run up to, and during the show, we are challenging you to come up with a cleaning problem at work that you think can’t be solved. We will pick a winner at random and not only offer a solution but award the person who submitted the challenge £100 of cleaning products from Arrow County Supplies for their personal use.

 

To enter simply add the #ChallengeArrow to Twitter or LinkedIn and include @ArrowCounty. Alternatively some along to the Manchester Cleaning Show and post your suggestion in the box on our stand.

 

For full T&Cs, see below.

 

‘Challenge Arrow’ Terms and Conditions

 

  1. The promoter is: Arrow County Supplies Ltd (company no. 06355141) whose registered office is at Arrow House, Longden Road, Shrewsbury, SY3 9AE
  2. The competition is open to residents of the United Kingdom aged 18 years or over except employees of Arrow County Supplies and their close relatives and anyone otherwise connected with the organisation or judging of the competition.
  3. There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.
  4. By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating his/her agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions.
  5. Route to entry for the competition and details of how to enter are via Twitter and LinkedIn as well as in person at the Arrow County stand at the Manchester Cleaning Show.
  6. Only one entry will be accepted per person. Multiple entries from the same person will be disqualified.
  7. Closing date for entry will be 5pm on 12th April 2018. After this date the no further entries to the competition will be permitted.
  8. No responsibility can be accepted for entries not received for whatever reason.
  9. The rules of the competition and how to enter are as follows:

State any cleaning problem you have at work on Twitter or LinkedIn and add hashtag #challengearrow and @arrowcounty.

Post your entry in the box at the Arrow County stand at the Manchester Cleaning Show.

  1. The promoter reserves the right to cancel or amend the competition and these terms and conditions without notice in the event of a catastrophe, war, civil or military disturbance, act of God or any actual or anticipated breach of any applicable law or regulation or any other event outside of the promoter’s control. Any changes to the competition will be notified to entrants as soon as possible by the promoter.
  2. The promoter is not responsible for inaccurate prize details supplied to any entrant by any third party connected with this competition.
  3. There will be one prize is as follows: The single winner will receive a solution to their work cleaning problem and £100 of cleaning products for their personal use from Arrow County Supplies web shop.

The prize is as stated and no cash or other alternatives will be offered. The prizes are not transferable. Prizes are subject to availability and we reserve the right to substitute any prize with another of equivalent value without giving notice.

  1. The single winner will be chosen at random.
  2. The winner will be notified by email and/or DM on Twitter/LinkedIn and/or letter within 28 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 14 days of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner.
  3. The promoter will notify the winner when and where the prize can be collected / is delivered.
  4. The promoter’s decision in respect of all matters to do with the competition will be final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  5. By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating his/her agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions.
  6. The competition and these terms and conditions will be governed by English law and any disputes will be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England.
  7. The winner agrees to the use of his/her name and image in any publicity material, as well as their entry.
  8. Any personal data relating to the winner or any other entrants will be used by Arrow County Supplies to supply them with relevant cleaning product or service information and will not be disclosed to a third party.
  9. The winner’s name will be available 28 days after closing date by emailing the following address: marketing@arrowcounty.com
  10. Entry into the competition will be deemed as acceptance of these terms and conditions.
  11. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with The Manchester Cleaning Show or Twitter, LinkedIn or any other Social Network. You are providing your information to Arrow County Supplies and not to any other party. The information provided will be used in conjunction with the following Privacy Policy found at http://arrowcounty.com.
  12. Arrow County Supplies decision as to those able to take part and selection of winners is final. No correspondence relating to the competition will be entered into.

Arrow County Supplies shall have the right, at its sole discretion and at any time, to change or modify these terms and conditions, such change shall be effective immediately upon posting to this webpage.

Arrow County Supplies also reserves the right to cancel the competition if circumstances arise outside of its control.

Cleaning innovation and supplies company Arrow County Supplies has been awarded the Investor in Customers (IIC) Silver accreditation for delivering brilliant customer service.

This award follows an independent assessment carried out by Investor in Customers, a customer experience agency where a business is rated and benchmarked on four key areas which includes understanding customer needs, meeting customer needs, delighting customers and loyalty.

Undertaking the assessment in July 2017, Arrow wanted to understand if what they were doing for their customers was meeting their needs and expectations. By carrying out an assessment by an experienced external body like IIC, the company was presented with reliable and valuable feedback.

The results combine the feedback from Arrow’s customers, employees and senior management and Arrow achieved an overall score of 7.88 out of a possible 10, which is a Silver accreditation.

For a first external review, this is an accomplished performance and demonstrates Arrow’s capability to deliver excellence within customer service.

Bruce Blackledge, Managing Director at Arrow County Supplies comments on the results: “We are a customer-centric organisation and customers are at the heart of everything we do, so we thought it was very important to get feedback from an external expert to ensure we gained reliable results to work on.

“We are thrilled with the results for our first assessment. As part of our commitment to continuous improvement, we are already in the process of reviewing the feedback we have been given to ensure we make the most of this opportunity and put our plans in place to deliver further customer service excellence.”

Sandy Bryson, Director at IIC, commented: “For a first assessment this is a great result and clearly demonstrates that Arrow County Supplies truly care about the customer service they provide. Whilst this is still work in progress, the foundations are in place to build on these results and I have no doubt that they will achieve gold in their next assessment.”

 

Here are a few comments from the results:

“I am always very happy with the excellent service and products supplied”

“Overall Arrow County provide a fantastic service. The staff are always willing to help. Deliveries are on time and communication is excellent”

“They are a very reliable company.  They always deliver on time and update me about any problems/ situations with my order.”

 

For more information about the Investor in Customers accreditation and survey process, please visit their website at www.investorincustomers.com

Cleaning and Hygiene Products Supplier to Staffordshire County Council

Arrow County Supplies, the national distributor of cleaning and hygiene products has recently won the contract for supply of Cleaning materials and consumables at Staffordshire County Council, worth £1.2M over 4 years.

The contract will allow Arrow County Supplies to provide cleaning and hygiene products to all Staffordshire County Council facilities, including Schools and Academies, Leisure Centres and Public buildings, totalling over 1000 sites. Commencing in April 2017, the contract lasts for 4 years and is the start of an exciting partnership for Arrow and the Council.

Arrow County Supplies were awarded the contract based on their extensive cleaning expertise, experience working with other County Councils and effective service model.

Bruce Blackledge, Managing Director at Arrow County Supplies comments:

“We’re very excited to have won the Staffordshire County Council contract and we believe it will be the start of a great partnership. Our team will work tirelessly to ensure we provide the best possible service to the council and its facilities, as well as going providing additional value through expert advice, training and innovation”.

Arrow County Supplies are experts in hygiene and cleanliness solutions. Based in Shrewsbury, they have been serving a wide range of sectors including Healthcare, Education, Facilities Management, Public Sector and Food Manufacturing for over 40 years.

 

There has been a steady rise in public concern about the environment with many organisations moving to eco friendly cleaning products, but do they deliver spotless cleaning results?

In 2014, the Guardian reported that Eco-friendly cleaning is trending in the commercial sector and this has proved to be the case with more and more cleaning companies advertising eco-friendly cleaning services 1.

What does eco-friendly really mean? In cleaning products, there are several standards that are claimed to represent true eco-friendly cleaning but these differing endorsements can be confusing and mean very different things in terms of eco standards. Most eco-friendly cleaning solutions contain chemicals, but are still very environmentally friendly as the solutions are made up of natural resources and they address the way the whole product is manufactured, rather than just the solution within.

Cradle to cradle eco-friendly cleaning products

The most rigorous standard for measuring the environmental impact of products is called cradle to cradle.

Quality is defined by five criteria categories:-

Material Health

Product ingredients are inventoried throughout the supply chain and evaluated for impact on human and environmental health. The criteria at each level build towards the expectation of eliminating all toxic and unidentified chemicals and becoming nutrients for a safe, continuous cycle.

Material Reutilisation

Products are designed either to biodegrade safely as a biological nutrient or to be recycled into new products as a technical nutrient. At each level continued progress must be made towards increasing the recovery of materials and keeping them in continuous cycles.

Renewable Energy and Carbon Management

The criteria at each level build towards the expectation of carbon neutrality and powering all operations with 100% renewable energy.

Water Stewardship

Processes are designed to regard water as a precious resource for all living things. At each level, progress is made towards cleaning up effluent to drinking water standards.

Social Fairness and Biodiversity

Company operations are designed to celebrate all people and natural systems and progress is made towards having a wholly beneficial impact on the people and the planet.

 

A true eco-friendly commercial cleaning product

So, what we are looking for is safe, green, powerful, practical, cost effective eco-friendly commercial cleaning products that are as effective as anything we use today. Cradle to cradle ensures these products exist and are readily available today such as the Quick and Easy range of eco-friendly cleaning solutions.  Quick & Easy, complies to the new standard of environmental sustainability – Cradle to Cradle certification. All of Quick & Easy’s ingredients are safe for people and nature, containing ingredients from plant origin with proven high biodegradability and manufactured with 100% renewable energy.

The products are proven to be just as powerful as any traditional chemical cleaners.

Eco-friendly commercial cleaning products

Quick service restaurant kitchen deep cleaning has to be fast and efficient. With 24 hour up time running requirements of many outlets, it often also has to happen whilst a cooking service is maintained. Continuous orders at drive-through windows and at the counter can overwhelm employees if they don’t have the right processes and tools to clean quickly and effectively.

Here are 5 ideas and areas to focus on when carrying out kitchen deep cleaning: –

1. Incorporate deep cleaning into your health and safety responsibilities. Deep cleaning can be a real chore for your staff. If deep cleaning is presented as a routine exercise, that has to be done, motivations can waiver and standards may slip. So presenting kitchen deep cleaning as part of staff health and safety responsibilities, where staff are typically already well trained, can make the exercise more meaningful. One element to emphasise is staff welfare in this regard. A build up of contaminates can be detrimental to staff as well as customers and floor debris for example can lead to a slip and trip incidents.

2. Work from the top down. With the intensity of activity in a quick service restaurant, cooking materials are spreading everywhere from emulsified cooking oils in the air to food particles being kicked or transported on footwear. Once these materials settle they then form a thin film attracting and retaining dust and other contaminates which in themselves can harbour bacteria. Working from the top down means that any contaminates that fall during the cleaning process will be picked up by cleaning procedures at a lower level. Ensure all open cooking equipment and preparation surfaces are covered in advance to prevent contamination. Your cleaning products supplier may be able to advise you on special tools available to reach inaccessible areas.

3. Select the right cleaning product for the task in hand. For kitchen deep cleaning, it is essential to select the right cleaning agent for the contaminate you are trying to clean and for the material that the surface to be cleaned is made of. You might need expert advice to help you with this as different cleaning products if used on the wrong surface can damage these surfaces irreparably. Your cleaning products supplier should offer you a free assessment service to help you select the right products and hone your procedures to be ultra-efficient.

4. Use eco friendly commercial cleaning products and clean sustainably. Many businesses with regular cleaning and deep cleaning requirements often ignore a requirement to be more sustainable in their cleaning in the mistaken belief that eco friendly commercial cleaning products are more expensive to use. This simply isn’t the case any more with modern eco friendly cleaning products like Quick and Easy offering cost effective solutions but using only natural chemicals and fully recyclable packaging.

5. Concentrate on the floors. Cleaning kitchen floors properly during kitchen deep cleaning is the most important area to concentrate on. Gravity ensures that most contaminates and residue of other cleaning activity will end up and get moved around floors. Clean floors are also the key to preventing the many of slip-and-fall accidents that take place in restaurants every year. To get your floors clean and safe for your employees, your team has to remove the food particles and grease that hit the ground during service and other cleaning procedures. Again selecting the right product and cleaning, tools and procedures here is vital.

Kitchen deep cleaning in quick service restaurants presents a particular challenge for all involved because of the relentless demands of this business environment. However, with the right products, procedures, tools and staff commitment and motivation it can be executed quickly and efficiently so that the business can maintain high standards and concentrate on serving customers.

 

New Call-to-action

Now on Facebook

A good cleaning service enables successful shopping centres to have high levels of footfall, high frequency of footfall and high conversion from footfall to sales.

With shopping centres and retail destinations having a myriad of leisure experiences from shopping and dining to exercise, relaxation and entertainment, there are few single factors that can affect these 3 key measures of success more than cleanliness.

Cleanliness has a major effect on the whole customer experience. When asked what would negatively impact their perception, more people reported unclean restrooms (95 per cent) and unpleasant odours (92 per cent) than poor customer service (90 per cent). These were followed by dirty floors, spills or stains, dusty surfaces and dirty glass and windows. In another study, just over a half (52 per cent) have avoided a business altogether because it looked dirty from the outside.

So a top notch cleaning service really matters. Facilities management companies must think broadly about all issues to compete for the cleaning contracts of these complex organisations not just the core cleaning service.

3 areas that are often forgotten by FMs to excel at providing cleaning service are: –

Innovation

Always be on the lookout for news ways of doing things, innovative companies are coming up with new solutions for common problems all the time. A good example would be dealing with roof leaks. Roof leaks in public areas cause a potential hazard and require quick containment of the unwanted invasive liquid. Arrow County created a bespoke product to deal with this challenge, a maintenance and cleaning product combined.

Service and continuity of supply

Good partnerships are essential for the provision of a high level cleaning service. Whatever service levels that are offered by your cleaning consumables suppliers will be directly passed through and reflected in service level achieved by an FM company. Make partnerships as opposed to contracts for supply and look for partners who deliver a high level of service and are prepared to go the extra mile. Suppliers who will carry out assessment to save money and provide immediate account response to your day to day challenges will underpin excellent overall service levels.

Tracking the end customer’s view

Although the direct customer of FM companies is important i.e. the shopping centre management company, understanding their customers can be just as important to delivering a great cleaning service. Try and access information and feedback on the overall performance of the centre and always react swiftly and efficiently to any end customer feedback on cleanliness. Look for the main signs that the end customer will use to judge performance.

In a large yet highly competitive market it’s these often-forgotten factors that can be the difference between a good and an excellent cleaning service.

New Call-to-action

99 percent of retail customers are influenced by poor cleanliness. Retailers can use cleaning services strategically to enhance the customer experience and increase brand loyalty, whilst driving operational cost savings and efficiency, this from a well regarded industry white paper.

The thing about lack of cleanliness is that it sticks in the mind with a persistence that is difficult to budge, whereas poor customer service can be rectified in an instance by a behavioural change.

Fitting rooms, washrooms, payment areas and even the scent in the air can affect how people perceive a retail business. Since first impressions create customer loyalty, it is time to look at how effective your retail centre cleaning is. When one place is dirty, patrons may assume the rest of the location is as well, resulting in poor customer experiences.

The industry white paper reveals cleanliness affects the entire shopping process. People will always prefer a cleaner retail facility over a dirty one, but sometimes the level of cleanliness can have an affect they do not even realise. First impressions are developed the moment customers walk through the doors. An overall tidy retail centre can be the inviting element that gets the shopping process moving. Once first impressions are made outside of the retail outlets themselves, the quality of cleaning done will influence the likelihood of entry into stores and the time spent within.

So, the importance of the overall customer experience goes beyond good customer service. The study, carried out by market research firm Harris Interactive, found that 99 percent of consumers said poor cleanliness would negatively affect their perception of a retail environment with unclean washrooms and unpleasant odours rated higher than poor customer service.

One national retailer, achieved significant cost savings across its national estate through outsourcing its cleaning services. This customer-facing brand with over 250 stores, the importance of cleanliness and how this could impact on the whole customer experience. Choose trusted suppliers of services and janitorial supplies to deliver to a set standard.

According to a survey conducted by ISSA – The Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association, 95 percent of shoppers reported that unclean restrooms and unpleasant odours would influence their shopping decisions along with, dirty floors, spills or stains, dirty shopping carts and other factors.

“Shoppers want to feel comfortable when visiting a retail environment and ensuring that the environment is clean and healthy is a crucial part.”, says Dan Wagner, ISSA’s Director of Facility Service Programs.

“The janitorial landscape has changed dramatically in the last five years. We are entering a new normal for cleaning standards in retail facilities management. Retail brands need to be aware of this under-budgeted area and ensure all retail areas are meeting brand standards”

So, the evidence from good research sources is clear. Cleanliness in a shopping environment can be more important than customer service in a shopper’s experience and ultimately willingness to buy and come back. The key to retail centre cleanliness, is through finding good partners both in services and janitorial supplies, who can demonstrate they share an understanding of the shoppers needs.

New Call-to-action

We all have a responsibility to the planet and sustainability is increasingly an issue in all of our daily lives, both personally and professionally. Certain issues about eco friendly cleaning and eco cleaning products have become the popular understandings of cleaning sustainability and these issues, although probably once with some foundation, are no longer true and it’s time to consign them to history.

They cost more

Once a cleaning organisation starts to measure its true costs (through costs in use) and stops measuring by price alone then a reasoned debate can be held about the relative costs of various inputs such as cleaning chemicals. It is true that non eco cleaning products on average have slightly lower price points however the value story goes much deeper than that.

If we look at the situation holistically, eco cleaning products can provide a greater economic benefit than traditional chemical cleaners because they reduce labour costs and protect surfaces and buildings over time.

Chemical cleaning products are only effective during the few seconds of actual cleaning. Following cleaning, the surfaces start to become soiled again, requiring more frequent cleaning leading to higher labour costs and more chemical usage.

Eco cleaning products have beneficial bacteria that continue to breakdown soiling on the surface area after cleaning, leading to less frequent applications and all cleaned areas look cleaner for longer.

They don’t work as well

It has long been thought by many that eco friendly cleaning products are not as effective as traditional cleaning chemicals.

Let’s cut to the chase. Both eco friendly cleaning products and non eco friendly ones use chemicals that are effective. The difference is that non eco friendly cleaning products use manufactured chemicals that occur naturally in our environment whereas traditional cleaning chemicals are formulated in a lab. Most traditional cleaning chemical cocktails have formulated surfactants which helps to disperse dirt and grime. These surfactants however do not naturally break down and cause problems further down the line when they are washed away with waste water. The natural surfactants in eco friendly cleaning products degrade naturally once discarded. So cleaning efficacy is powerful and comparable with eco friendly products with the added sustainability advantages.

Eco friendly cleaning products are a great area of innovation and new ideas are being brought to market all the time such as foam spray heads on dispensers for exact dosing, reducing over use and cost.

They are not backed by research or standards

Eco friendly cleaning products are no longer a niche area for small altruistic start-up businesses. The big manufacturers have realised that there are large future markets for these products and are starting to invest heavily in research and development. This means that today’s eco friendly cleaning products are probably some of the most advanced cleaning agents available in terms of research investment.

Industry standards are progressing as well to take into account the whole lifecycle of the products including transport and packaging. This new standard “cradle to cradle” is what to look out for to guarantee real sustainable credentials.

In short, pre-conceived ideas need to be updated, eco friendly commercial cleaning can be cheaper with more advanced well researched products, delivering comparable cleaning performance and a sustainable future for us all.

New Call-to-action