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What is housekeeping? Good housekeeping means having no unnecessary items lying about and keeping all necessary items in their proper places.


What's so important about housekeeping?
Think about what could happen if a bunch of oily rags suddenly caught fire one night, or if in an emergency, employees couldn't get out of the work area safely because aisles were cluttered. Imagine those same employees unable to get out of the building because of a blocked exit. Experience has shown that good housekeeping is an essential part of any company's health and safety program.

What are the benefits of good housekeeping at work?
Good housekeeping at work benefits both employers and employees alike. Good housekeeping can:

• Eliminate clutter which is a common cause of accidents, such as slips, trips, and falls
• Reduce the chances of harmful materials entering the body (e.g., dusts, vapors)
• Improve productivity - the right tools and materials for the job will be easy to find
• Improve the company's image - good housekeeping reflects a well-run business
• Helps the company to keep its inventory to a minimum, making it easier to keep an accurate count of inventories
• Helps the company to make the best use of its space
• Make the workplace neat, comfortable and pleasant – not a dangerous eyesore

How to improve housekeeping in the workplace.
Good housekeeping requires effort and teamwork, but it's worth it. Here are some general pointers:

• Follow safe work procedures and the requirements of the law
• Keep work areas clean, doorways and aisles clear
• Keep floors clean, dry and in good condition
• Stack and store items and work materials safely in approved, clearly labelled containers in designated storage areas only
• Use proper waste containers
• Keep sprinklers, fire alarms and fire extinguishers clear
• Clean up spills and leaks of any type quickly and properly
• Clean and store tools, items and equipment properly
• Fix or report broken or damaged tools, equipment, etc.
• Keep lighting sources clean and clear
• Follow general maintenance requirements

For more information on housekeeping-related training classes, check out DiVal Safety's Training Classes.