Start by comparing your standards to other departments. Even seemingly unrelated departments such as custodial and security have a lot to teach one another. Chances are good that there are ways in which your processes overlap and ways in which your methodology could be improved. Some things to consider when benchmarking your custodial program against internal departments:
– Access to more and better information. How does the quality of your information stack up against their information? Compare building drawings, facility usage metrics, complaint logs, etc.
– Performance-based incentives for employees. Do other departments have them? If so, what are they and can they be replicated in your custodial programs?
– Training programs. These almost surely exist in other departments and are a great way to improve the quality/efficiency of your custodial program.
– Employee accountability. How do other departments monitor their employees’ activity?
– Use of technology. How do other departments process their inspections? Work orders? Technology plays an important role in these decisions.
Over time, you’ll develop relationships between other departments. Once established, these relationships give you accountability and provide a free resource for analyzing and improving performance. If done correctly, custodial benchmarking between internal departments should grow into lasting relationships that consistently yield results for everyone involved.
Indeed, one of the best results you may discover is the ability to share resources. Whether it be manpower, best practices, or data, all of them give your custodial organization a competitive edge against the outsource option. As we discussed in last week’s article, the market drives competition and consistently pushes custodial contractors to benchmark their performance. Therefore it is absolutely vital that, at the very least, an in-house custodial organizations benchmark against other internal departments. By doing so, you begin to recreate the greater marketplace and give yourself a more competitive edge.
Of course, no system is perfect. In our next article, we’ll discuss the limitations and challenges of benchmarking against other departments.