Cleaning firms freshen up with ratings scheme

Initial Retail Cleaning has launched a new scheme based on categorising
competencies to help managers evaluate and utilise the skills and experience of
their staff. The Door to Success programme is being delivered first to the
company’s district managers and will be extended to all staff who manage

The scheme centres around district managers assessing the site managers who
report directly to them and being responsible for categorising them according
to competence. Using a combination of test papers to determine levels of skill
and knowledge, evaluation based on customer input and their own objective
assessment of individuals’ performance, district managers will award an overall
score to their subordinates. Scores will be translated into bronze (basic),
silver (intermediate) and gold (advanced) categories of competence, with
corresponding certificates being awarded to the site managers.

"Door to Success works in two ways," said support services
manager, Valerie Dale. "It give us a good analysis of training needs and
it gives us information on succession planning. We prefer to promote from
within when opportunities arise. If, for example, a site manager leaves and
we’ve got a gold-rated individual in that area we can identify a successor and
it’s a good way of encouraging promotion from within."

As a company accredited to IIP, Initial Retail Cleaning sees the initiative
as a way of getting everyone working towards a common objective to help it
achieve its business goals and strengthening its commitment to investing in its
employees. "We’re trying to show managers that under IIP part of their
role is to train and develop their own staff. We want them to recognise
people’s potential and use them as an asset."

In addition to developing district managers and promoting their involvement
in training and development, Door to Success is designed to reward employees
for their levels of achievement and motivate them to progress to a higher
category. Site managers receive a bronze, silver or gold certificate along with
a letter from managing director, Peter Lloyd, praising their attainment and
reaffirming his personal commitment to their advancement. "We have a
talented, intelligent and motivated workforce," Lloyd said. "Door to
Success enables us to benefit from our staff’s best qualities and encourages
them to grow with the company."

No financial incentives are attached to the scheme but there is scope to
introduce bonuses or other monetary awards if the company wishes. "It’s
purely motivational at present and not linked to pay," Dale explained.
"Employees see their certificates as proof that they have a level of skill
and are competent in a particular field. We may develop the scheme further and
introduce badges but it depends on how much employees will gain from that in
terms of motivation."

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