The future of cleaning for office-based businesses

As Australia looks to adapt to the ‘new normal’, employers have never had to be more mindful of hygiene standards. In order to welcome workforces back, it’s imperative that organisations establish good hygiene practises in office environments while doing all they can to help stop the spread of germs.

The more we open up, the more the scrutiny will intensify on the responsibility of employers to help protect staff and teams from germs while they are in their care. There’s no denying that the last two years have forever changed how we live and work. While it’s important to look back and reflect on what we can learn from past behaviour and protocols, it’s equally as important that we look ahead to the future. What does the future of cleaning and hygiene look like for professional services and those that work in office environments? Let’s discuss.

Staying informed is here to stay

The latest research from Reckitt shows that 74 per cent of Australian consumers are still concerned about germs1. When looking further afield to businesses overseas, Reckitt research demonstrates that 85 per cent of businesses in other markets believe that having the right products and protocols in place for cleaning and disinfection is a very important part of their responsibility at work, yet seven in 10 do not have any particular specialist knowledge in this field2.

While SARS CoV-2 virus mostly spreads through particles and droplets in the air3 a number of other infectious diseases such as gastrointestinal infections, like Salmonella, and respiratory infections such as influenza, are known for spreading from person to person via contaminated hands4.

A study conducted overseas looked at the bacterial diversity of over 90 office spaces, and found bacterial contamination of chairs, phones, computer mouses, computer keyboards and desktops, with chairs and phones being the most contaminated surfaces5. All of these hotspots are what we call high-traffic, high-touch surfaces. The federal government’s Department of Health provides guidance on how to appropriately clean and disinfect these types of surfaces6. These guidelines should be coupled with social distancing, masks if required and ensuring good airflow throughout indoor spaces.

A good, science-backed targeted hygiene program will take into consideration all the places in an office environment that need the most attention. It’s important to note that there is no one size fits all program. It should be tailored to the office’s specific facilities, configurations, while taking into consideration the number of people using the space and whether they are hot desking or not, for example.

It’s all about timing

After a cleaning and disinfection program has been established that caters to your office’s specific needs and risk level, aside from compliance, one of the most important aspects of minimising the spread of germs, is how often and when a hotspot is cleaned and disinfected – that is the crux of Targeted Hygiene.

The key thing to remember is that helping keep people protected in the office workplace isn’t a set and forget responsibility. A thorough cleaning and disinfection program that takes a targeted approach should be reviewed regularly to ensure compliance, that it’s keeping up with government health advice, and that necessary adjustments are made based on foot traffic or any changes to the space’s design or facilities. It’s all about cleaning smarter, not just harder.

Implementing protocols may help employees feel more confident about returning to the office knowing their employer is one step ahead when it comes to helping protect them in these tumultuous times.

About Dettol® Pro Solutions

Reckitt’s Dettol Pro Solutions harnesses the power of the same trusted Dettol products to help protect businesses and public spaces from the spread of germs. In today’s world, consumers have increased hygiene expectations which makes germ-protection more critical than ever. The comprehensive approach from Dettol Pro Solutions incorporates protocols and training, Dettol and Dettol branded marketing materials and signage. Dettol Pro Solutions empowers businesses to demonstrate to their staff and customers a commitment to providing a trusted standard for protection. Shop same Dettol, now for your business at Winc.

This article was written by Dr Lisa Ackerley, Director of Medical and Scientific Engagement, Hygiene, at Dettol Pro Solutions

1 Reckitt Toluna Tracker, Wave 16 (6/7/2021-6/13/2021)

2 B2B SME U&A Study, December 2020

3 CDC 2021 ‘How COVID-19 Spreads’ <>.


5. Hewitt, K. M., Gerba, C. P., Maxwell, S, L. & Kelley, S. T. 2012. Office space bacterial abundance and diversity in three metropolitan areas. PLOS One, 7 (5), e378