Royal Centre Vancouver
November 25, 2021
Warrington PCI Management (WPM) are introducing a best-in-class cleaning
program across their portfolio. Even in buildings with very high visual cleaning
quality, surface contamination can be a lingering issue. With the support and
advice of an independent cleaning expert, WPM significantly improved their
cleaning-for-health performance in a test building, in 35 days.
This case study is about the Royal Centre Building in the heart of the business
and retail district of Vancouver. Built in 1973, the 589,000 sq ft, 37 floor Class
A facility is LEED certified. The building is managed by WPM who hired DCS
Global (DCS) to conduct certified cleaning inspection and hygiene audits.
The contract cleaner is Bee-Clean Building Maintenance with Neil Thomson
heading up the team.
WPM works with clients “to maximize the return on the property through
achieving rental rate targets, ensuring tenant satisfaction, scrutinizing
operating expenses and continually improving the physical asset through
sound operational management.”
DCS has created the Clean + SAFE© program which provides detailed cleaning
specifications, protocols and third party auditing services for cleaning during a
pandemic and beyond. Clean + SAFE© has been introduced in over 300 buildings across Canada.
Issues & Opportunities
Like most downtown office towers during the pandemic, occupancy levels in
the Royal Bank center have been low. Planning ahead for re occupancy, WPM
wanted to benchmark visual and hygiene cleaning quality and to ensure that
common touchpoints are not only clean looking, but safe to touch.
Surveys show that major concerns around a return to the workplace are
vaccination levels, the ability to social distance, personal hygiene measures
(including masks) and cleanliness (air and surface quality). Some WPM tenants
were asking for reassurance around the effectiveness of the cleaning program.
“The health and
safety of our
and employees is
that people have
around hygiene and
safety, and decided
to be proactive,
hygiene testing and
said Adam Spear,
WPM is initially implementing the DCS Clean + SAFE© program in 14 buildings, which includes detailed documents for the contract cleaners, a property manager’s guide, and Clean + SAFE© building certification when specified cleaning and hygiene standards are met and sustained.
Public health agencies have identified surface transmission of COVID-19 as
a risk. However this risk can be easily mitigated with the proper cleaning
chemicals, frequency and techniques, without increasing the money spent on evening or nighttime cleaning.
Cleaning quality is subjective at the best of times and generally requires
independent experts to provide an objective, qualified opinion. DCS uses
numerical visual cleaning standards and scientific hygiene testing to quantifyresults and drive continuous improvement.
Scope of Work
DCS starts projects by talking to property management to agree on the workscope, review objectives and understand cleaning opportunities and issues. For these audits DCS created a plan to inspect 15% to 20% of random common area spaces, based on the building size and layout.
The initial visit included both a visual inspection and hygiene audit. This visit
was conducted without prior knowledge of the cleaning contractor, after
nightly cleaning had been completed, but before most of the occupants arrive in the morning. The visual inspection uses APPA standards (refined by DCS) and ATP swab tests which measure biological residue (which can potentially host pathogens).
After the initial visit DCS provided a written report on findings, methodology and recommendations and briefed the property manager and contract cleaners. The second and third hygiene audits were conducted with the cleaning contractor to identify deficiencies and discuss improvements to process and techniques. The third report (and collaborative discussion) highlighted progress to date and identified ongoing areas for improvement.
Findings & Results
As expected, the initial average hygiene ATP testing score for the building was relatively poor (366). This is normal for the first time ATP tests are done in a building. Cleaning staff have been trained to look for and remove soil, and accurate hygiene data on touchpoints is new information.
After a review of the initial results with property management, DCS conducted training with the Bee-Clean team on the
Clean + Safe© sanitization process. The second audit was conducted on Sept 16th alongside Bee-Clean. As expected,
hygiene results had improved significantly, with a cumulative score of 108.
The final audit during this phase of testing, was conducted (with Bee-Clean) on October 5. It demonstrated that improved hygiene quality had quickly become the norm, even after just a few weeks. The enhanced results were achieved through demonstrations, discussions and training, no additional cleaning staff were deployed, and no additional cleaning costs were incurred.
|ATP Score Range||Classification||Sept. 1||Sept. 16||Oct. 5|
|0-200||Clean + Safe||44%||82%||85%|
|201 – 500||Caution||17%||16%||13%|
No facility needs to (or is expected to) score 100% on audits unless it is for a special purpose like food processing or health care. There are thousands of touchpoints in a large office building.
DCS awards Clean + SAFE© status after a careful review of cleaning results and risks. A key determinant is the number of tests scoring at or below 100, which increased from 28% to 67%. Royal Center will now be awarded DCS Clean + Safe© certification with quarterly hygiene audits ensuring critical hygiene cleaning standards are maintained.
The visual inspection turned up exceptional cleaning results. Bee-Clean is an established, world-class organization with
a reputation for quality work. APPA scoring came in at 1.2, with 1.0 classified as excellent and 5.0 as unacceptable. Most
organizations set their own cleaning standards and KPIs, however a passing score is generally considered to be 2.
It is very common to see low occupancy buildings achieve very high visual standards. Fewer people equals less traffic and less dirt, and in some cases contractors recleaning already spotless surfaces. In buildings where cleaning staff and work loading have not changed significantly from before the pandemic, this also provides an opportunity to reduce short-term cleaning costs.
There are a number of benefits to WPM, tenants, the building owner and the contract cleaner from this program.
WPM has numerical proof that visual cleaning quality is very high, which contributes to their brand and the brand of the building. Visible soil creates concerns about hygiene and safety amongst the occupants.
The cleaning staff immediately understood the issues and process around cleaning-for-health. Improvements in hygiene quality and will continue to be verified through ongoing audits to prevent a return to old cleaning habits.
WPM has shown a high degree of due diligence and duty-of-care aroundcleaning. The risk of surface transmission of COVID-19 (as well as seasonal flu and common colds) has been significantly reduced in the building.
WPM now have independent, science-based, quantifiable data to support tenant care and concern messages. As part of the overall program, Royal Centre has now been certified by DCS as Clean + Safe©, which will be included in signage and messaging.
The program, testing and new cleaning protocols can be used to support the ESG targets of WPM, tenants and the building owner. Building health and safety, and the wellbeing of occupants has been enhanced. Clean + SAFE© includes recommendations for chemicals and equipment to improve environmental performance. Hygiene testing by independent experts also supports good governance practices.
WPM and Bee-Clean have quantifiable benchmarks to support continuous improvement. This data also allows buildings across the portfolio to be compared for cleaning quality, regardless of the cleaning contractor.
About WPM and DCS
WPM is a Vancouver based company with over 30 years’ experience providing real estate services focused on property
management, leasing, strata management, and asset management. WPM’s management portfolio is almost entirely in
Metro Vancouver and WPM is focused on being Vancouver’s premier 3rd party property manager through an entrepreneurial approach, institutional-quality management, local market knowledge, experience and relationships
The DCS team are comprised of cleaning subject matter experts (ex-janitorial contractor professionals) with over 20 years of experience acting as trusted, independent advisors:
• supporting leading facility and property management companies
• national scope and local expertise
• over 300 buildings and approximately 60 million square feet over the last 12 months
• commercial real estate, education, transportation, retail and public sector clients
• our values: honesty, integrity, fairness, transparency respect
DCS sponsored and co-authored the 2021 BOMA Canada Pandemic Guide and supported a number of industry pandemic committees. The Clean + SAFE© program is copyrighted.
DCS understands your pain points and has solutions. If you need expert support to structure, manage and/or audit cleaning services DCS can help.
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