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The Details - November 2016

Take the Guesswork Out of Restroom Maintenance

When it comes to restroom cleanliness, empty paper towel dispensers, full trash cans spilling onto the floor, and empty or non-functioning soap dispensers are just a few of the potential problems that can occur. For attractions, this can lead to unhappy guests. Improving technology can help make these frustrations a thing of the past.

So says Jimy Baynum, market development director for SCA, a hygiene and forest products company that offers products in around 100 countries under about 20 brand names. He’s quite familiar with the impact of poorly maintained restrooms on guests. “What we hear from clients is washrooms are generally where we make our first and last impression. Usually, the first thing visitors do is to go to the toilet and if they stay for a full day, it means about five more visits that day. The more satisfied the guests are, the more likely they are to recommend the park and make a [return visit].”

He asserts that often long lines are attributable to poor maintenance, such as missing toilet paper or uncleaned facilities. Traditionally, custodial employees continually traverse the facility checking for problems. Now, wireless technologies can take the guesswork out of the process. Baynum uses one of SCA’s hygiene products to explain how this is accomplished. “When customers install the Tork EasyCube system, they use smart dispensers with optical sensors that measure supply levels and wirelessly transmit the dispensers’ status in real-time to a web application for analysis,” he says. “The sensors transmit data to the router every five minutes and, in turn, the router delivers information to the application every seven minutes via cell signal.”

To access this data, the cleaning staff and management can log into the application with a mobile device and see the status of each bathroom’s supply needs, down to individual stalls. Such systems also signal when rush periods occur at certain restrooms and adjust the supply and cleanup operations accordingly. The sensors’ batteries have a five-year lifespan.

Baynum points out the time such efficiency saves allows custodial staffs to tackle other crucial tasks, like cleaning toilets and wash basins, mopping up spills, or policing trash dropped by guests after a parade.

He also observes products, like Tork EasyCube, that result in clean, well-stocked, and well-maintained restrooms lead not only to more-satisfied guests, but also to happier staff: “It provides a tangible way for cleaning staff members to see the impact they can make, helping them work smarter, not harder, all while boosting their morale.”