Who you are and what do you do?
My name is Robert Trewick and I lead the Operations team at NJC, covering horizontal, vertical and specialist cleaning, and support services. My priority is delivering service excellence through operational leadership, developing high performing teams and building collaborative relationships, ensuring our customers are at the centre of everything.
What does your job involve?
I have wide responsibilities, but leadership of all operational employees is at the heart, including effective resource management, development, coaching and performance management. I provide direction and expertise to the team by promoting NJC strategies, best business practices and embracing new technologies and systems to ensure that NJC is at the forefront of the industry. I also ensure appropriate plans and contingencies are in place and address issues that inhibit effective collaboration.
What has been your experience of working throughout the Covid-19 pandemic?
In a word “Crazy”! It has been so busy, as the lockdown happened so quickly. We needed to disperse our teams quickly to ensure they were safe, whilst meeting the evolving needs of our customers throughout the crisis. Making sure that people are connected and stay in touch has been critical and maintaining those human interactions that we take for granted daily, whatever the daily rhythm might be. Most importantly for our colleagues, their mental health matters, and they need support, activity and even just some attention.
Our cleaning regimes have changed from the removal of dirt and debris to a disinfection process, using proven disinfectants to help stop the spread of coronavirus in the workplace. Many of our customers are requiring enhanced daily cleaning, particularly of high touch point surfaces, to help keep their building safe. We have responded very quickly to confirmed cases of Covid-19 in our customers’ buildings, providing specialist disinfection services, including electrostatic spraying.
Now that companies are starting to return to their offices, what are the main challenges that they face and how are you able to help them?
We all, understandably, now need to think about how to keep building users safe as facilities and estates reopen. A lot of returning employees want assurances that their workplace is fit for the current situation so we are working with our customers to prepare for reoccupation of safe, clean and welcoming offices.
Through our use of technology and our Specialist Cleaning team’s expertise, our customers can access evidence of the programmes we have in place. Businesses require a thorough, evidenced cleaning regime that is well communicated and diligently undertaken to get back to business as smoothly as possible. NJC can provide this.
What are the most common questions you receive from customers, and how are NJC able to support them?
Through the crisis we have received numerous questions from customers and have been giving guidance. Unsurprisingly, we have had many detailed questions about our recommended restart cleaning regimes, and the use of electrostatic spraying or fogging. We have also been supporting customers with risk assessments, particularly RAMS in the event of a confirmed Covid-19 case.
Maintaining good hand hygiene is extremely important to minimise risks, including washing hands with soap and water, or alcohol hand sanitiser, before eating and drinking, and after coughing, sneezing, and going to the toilet. We have been able to support our customers with products, including branded automatic sanitiser stations as well as signage to remind employees.
Social distancing is important and, as habits are difficult to break, needs constant reminder. Again, we are supporting our customers with signage and screens as they reconfigure their workplaces.
With face covering now compulsory on public transport, waste procedures and waste disposal is an important area, particularly in London where so many workers rely on buses and trains.
What is your favourite thing about your job?
Working with the range of people from all backgrounds on a daily basis. NJC is a people business and from the beginning has excelled in growing individuals from front line operatives into senior managers. We have a proven track record of succession planning and I love seeing our people grow. Key to this is understanding the issues that affect successful collaboration, solving these and providing individuals with a clear pathway.
What do you anticipate will be the greatest lasting change to commercial cleaning and support services as a result of the pandemic?
That is a tough one!
Dynamic cleaning I think, where cleaning specifications and regimes change to meet evolving requirements due to risk, PHE guidance, building usage and occupancy levels. Today we are cleaning offices and building common areas with virucidal cleaning products, with high touch points such as building entry doors, lift call buttons, door handles, stairwell railings, washrooms and shower rooms being cleaned at an increased frequency.
How would you sum up NJC in 3 words?
Exciting, Rewarding, Positive.