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Our Rapid Employee of the Season – Summer 2018

Every quarter our head office team is given the opportunity to nominate one of their colleagues to be crowned Employee of the Season. We ask everyone to only vote for someone who they feel has gone above and beyond in their role during that season and really deserves to win this esteemed title.

Who was the summer 2018 winner?

Our Accounts Assistant, Laura Virtue, was the clear winner this quarter with 10 votes! Here are some of the great things that her colleagues had to say about her…

  • Laura has great attendance, she is such a positive person and has grown in confidence and productivity over the past 6 months. She’s a great team player too!
  • Laura is such a genuine, nice person who is a pleasure to work with, never met someone so happy.
  • Every day she makes me laugh and makes working here even more enjoyable.
  • She is always positive, upbeat and willing to go the extra mile.
  • Laura is very helpful and I personally find her a great support to myself and my role. Every office needs a Laura! 😊
  • She is so helpful and always chirpy.
  • She has never been in a grumpy mood always helpful in work and beyond; a great credit to the accounts department and extremely courteous.
  • She’s hard working, reliable and always has a smile on her face.
  • She is always pleasant and smiling, any requests are dealt with timely and without fuss.
  • She is always in on time, rarely off sick and willing to help out in any area that she can.

Laura is a very deserved winner, someone who is clearly held in high esteem by her colleagues. Congratulations Laura and keep up the good work!

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Our Latest Rapid Superstar – Quarter 2 of 2018

Last week, we had the privilege of meeting the winners of this quarter’s Superstar Award – Carla Pais and Nuno Pereira. Carla and Nuno work on two of our sites, EValue and Florco; they been highly valued Rapid employees since 2015.

Jeff Whitton, Rapid’s Managing Director (far right) and Peter Soares (third from left), Rapid’s Contracts Manager, went to EValue’s site in Newbury. They spoke to Eilidh Huntley, EValue’s Office Manager (third from right) who gave this glowing feedback on Carla and Nuno’s work…

“We are delighted that Carla & Nuno have been nominated for this award. Carla and Nuno are both extremely hard workers, they are reliable and take great pride in their work. They go that extra mile to genuinely care about us as a client – reporting anything that they see that isn’t right before it could potentially become a greater problem e.g. leaks in the toilet/problems with the dishwasher etc. They are great ambassadors for Rapid Clean and we wish them both well.”

Congratulations to Carla and Nuno and thank you both for your continued commitment to Rapid Clean. All of the other Superstar nominees will have received a small gift in the post last week.

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Macmillan Coffee Morning Success

Bringing millions of people together for coffee and cake, Macmillan Cancer Support’s World’s Biggest Coffee Morning has become a British institution over the years – with thousands of events happening up and down the country.

On Thursday 4th October we hosted a Macmillan Coffee Morning to help raise vital funds for people living with cancer. As a company, we have long been a supporter of Macmillan. In 2015 we raised a total of £5188.33 through various sponsored and fundraising events.

Last week’s coffee morning was instigated by Sue Smitz, our Credit Controller, who did a fantastic job of rallying the troops. Our office staff were encouraged to bring in their favourite bakes as well as some pennies to purchase them. Our thanks go to Sue for organising such a successful event.

Speaking after the event, Sue said:

“We really enjoyed doing our bit for this year’s Coffee Morning. It was great to get people together, have a nibble and a natter and raise money for Macmillan at the same time. I am pleased to confirm that we raised £107.37 from the coffee morning last week. Thanks to all the bakers for supplying the delicious goodies and thank you to everyone for the generous donations!”

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Rapid Superstar Nominations – Quarter 2 of 2018

We have a number of excellent cleaning operatives who have been nominated to win our Superstar Award this quarter. Every person mentioned below has one thing in common: they go above and beyond in their role and their line manager wants to publicly recognise them for their hard work. 

Ecaterina-Giorgiana Raban who cleans Brakes and Bright Water Inn as nominated by Craig Love

“The customer has asked for Ecaterina to be recognised for her impeccable standards and reliability, welcoming attitude and work ethic! She is an excellent cleaner really conscientious, especially as the customer wont sign the audit off unless its 100%!”

Sirlei Rodrigues who cleans Twogether Creative as nominated by Angela Knox

“The customer speaks very highly of Sirlei and she does a tremendous job for us with no problems at all. Audit results are always high.”

Anna Blaszczyk who cleans The Huntsman as nominated by Solomon Adadevoh

“Anna is a valuable member of the team. She works to cover extra hours and is always willing to go the extra mile. When Donald the supervisor was off, she stepped up and made sure the job was done without any complaints. She is a real superstar in my eyes.”

Marie Charloton who cleans Stericycle and Point to Point as nominated by Bernice Anim

“Marie is an outstanding member of staff and has helped at many sites. She also helped deep clean toilets at Prisym and South lake School which received really good feedback. I wish more people were like her!”

Mutiat Jayeola who cleans Camberwell Leisure as nominated by Ingrid Antonio

“Mutiat is one of my supervisors who understands what it takes to lead a team. She is willing to change her own shift times and to help to arrange cover and goes over and above expectations. This individual truly deserves the recognition.”

Carla Pais and Nuno Pereira who clean E-Value and Florco as nominated by Peter Soares

“Carla and Nuno work together to deliver a very good service. They’re reliable, hard workers and are really appreciated by the clients and managers! I know the customer is as keen as me to have them recognised.”

Priscilla Baodu who cleans Jarvis Homes, Harpenden Lawn Tennis Club and Inn on the Green as nominated by Sabeeh Tahir

“Priscilla is really good at her job! Her attendance is brilliant and she makes sure we deliver the cleaning as per schedule. If the client asks her for additional, one off help then she is always happy to oblige. All clients she works with give compliments about her and she has an excellent working relationship with them.”

Scott Parnell who cleans Thames Club as nominated by Diana Marothy

“Since Scott started working at the Thames club, I have had lots of positive comments about him from the customer. He is reliable, honest and is doing a brilliant job.”

Shobha Rana Thapa who cleans Cherrywood Community Childcare as nominated by Goran Velinovski

“Shobha is a very good member of staff and is always reliable; she never lets me down. Communication is good, she is honest and is a hard worker.”

Jana Subashi who cleans Axon as nominated by Aga Skupien

“Jana is extremely helpful, kind and goes above and beyond to satisfy the customer.”

Every person mentioned will receive a letter and voucher as a thank you for their commitment to Rapid but there can only be one winner. We will let you know who that winner is in due course…

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Rapid’s Summer Fun Day and Employee of the Season

Thankfully the fabulous weather continued for Rapid’s Summer Fun Day last Friday. We organise regular socials during the year, seeing them as a great opportunity to bring together all of our teams and this was no exception.

The barbecue was fired up to ensure we all had enough energy for the annual sports day.

Before embarking on the sports, we announced the winners of Rapid’s Employee of the Season award. Every season we ask all head office employees to anonymously vote for the colleague who they feel has gone over and above in their role during the previous few months.

We often find that more than one person wins, but this season it was a three-way tie!

Our first winner was Amy Moughal who has been working for Rapid since November 2017 as Accounts Assistant. This is what Amy’s colleagues had to say about her:

“She’s a lovely person to work with. Whenever I need help with anything she goes out of her way to do so with a smile as well.”

“Amy is hard working, very knowledgeable in her role & and is always happy to help others where she can.”

“Amy gets things done on time and is very efficient.”

Our second winner was Eddie-Lawrence Kalule who has worked in many roles over the 15 years he has been with Rapid. This is what his colleagues had to say about him:

“He is always supportive of his team no matter how stretched he is with other things. He always look after the clients/company and employees. He never wants to lose any customers/staff and always goes the extra mile. I personally call him MR RAPID!” 

“He’s had a difficult few months and he still motivates his team and helps where possible.”

“He is so good and he is always there when I need help.”

Last but not least was Bernice Anim who has worked as a Contracts Manager at Rapid for the last 11 years. This is what her colleagues said about her:

“She has really low termination rates and just gets on with it without any fuss.  Bernice is really popular in the office and every RM that has looked after her say that she is a pleasure to work with.”

“She is a clever lady, hard worker, positive person, great communicator and she helps everyone!”

“Bernice is a pleasure to work with. I always know that anything asked of her will get done and she runs her area proficiently and without fuss. She is always willing to go the extra mile for others and she genuinely cares.”

Then it was time for rounders…

I don’t think there has ever been so many competitive people on one field!

Good fun was definitely had by all.

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Why Choose Contract Cleaning?

Like most service providers, we make contact with potential customers on a daily basis. We are often surprised to find that many companies have never considered outsourcing their cleaning requirements and may not be familiar with the advantages of contract cleaning.

In our experience there are 3 common reasons why companies are reluctant to take the leap from in-house to contract cleaning. You may have even given one or all of these responses yourself:

1. Contract cleaning is too expensive

If you currently have more than 2 hours of cleaning per day, then you might be surprised to find that contract cleaning could be a cost-effective solution for you. When comparing costs, it is worth considering that an in-house cleaner will require you to pay for sick cover, holiday cover, maternity leave and National Insurance. Over time, all of these add up. Outsourcing to a contract cleaning provider will also result in no more last-minute searches for a cover-cleaner or worse still, having to carry out the cleaning yourself when you have so many other jobs to get on with.

Taking away the hassle of managing staff and dealing with time-consuming personnel issues, has the knock on effect of reducing your costs and enabling your company to run more efficiently. Russell Thornton, from Tiffin Girls’ School, discovered the hidden benefits to outsourcing his cleaning needs:

“Since Rapid took on the role of overseeing the cleaning staff, I have had more time to prioritise other areas of my daily responsibilities and can rely on Rapid to ensure there is adequate staff at all times”.

A large cleaning contractor is likely to benefit from buying chemicals and equipment in bulk. Any good supplier will usually pass these savings onto their customers – another cost reduction for you.

2. I am happy with my cleaner and don’t want to change

If you currently employ a cleaner who is providing a good service, it is very simple for the cleaning company to take over as employer. At Rapid, we are always keen to hire cleaners who have been recommended to us and in certain circumstances, the current TUPE (Transfer of Undertakings Protection of Employment) law will require us to do just that.  This law also states that the cleaning staff must be hired under the same pay and terms and conditions.

3. I don’t want to be tied into a contract

There are a lot of initial overheads involved in taking on a new site: equipment; training; advertising of staff; time etc. Of course there is likely to be a contract but this has its advantages to you as the customer – a promise of what the cleaning company will commit to providing, written down and signed by both parties.

In this industry, contracts tend to have a duration of between 1 and 3 years, sometimes longer; at Rapid, we work on a 12 month term. You should find that any decent cleaning provider will have an exit clause for poor performance, protecting you as the customer. At Rapid, we work on a 14 day improvement notice if you are unhappy with our performance.

Making a change to the familiar is always a daunting prospect but hopefully this has helped you to better understand the advantages to contract cleaning and the benefits that this service could make to your company.

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The Winner of Our Superstar Award is…

We had a special visitor to head office last week – the winner of our Superstar Award for quarter 1 of 2018. Maxwell Ampaw was nominated by his Contracts Manager, Bernice Anim and we received some very positive feedback from his places of work.

BJP Insurance

“Maxwell is polite, friendly and always gets the job done.”

The Pines School

“I think Maxwell is great – he is always cheerful and full of smiles which amazes me as our classrooms often look like wild beasts have rampaged through them in the day! Nothing is too much trouble for him and his good humour is a welcome tonic at the end of the day. He is also a great learner and completely deserves the Superstar award!”

What can we add to that? Congratulations Maxwell, you are clearly a huge asset to the Rapid team. We appreciate your hard-working attitude and loyalty to Rapid.

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Rapid Superstar Nominations – Quarter 1 of 2018

We love to give credit where it’s due at Rapid and our long-standing Rapid Superstar Award is the perfect opportunity to do just that.

Our operations department has nominated the employee who they feel has gone above and beyond in their role during quarter 1 of 2018. Sadly only one person can win but each person nominated will receive a gift voucher to show how much we appreciate them.

To follow is a list of those nominated and the reasons why…

Lidia Rusin from Bowman House Business Centre – nominated by Contracts Manager Peter Soares

“She’s reliable and keeps the standards very high, as always and the customer is really happy. Lidia is a Super Star!”

Edimauro De Sales from Softcat – nominated by Contracts Manager Diana Marothy

“He is very reliable and a very hard worker. He helps to run this big contract so well.”

Anna Ostaszewska from Okanargon Ltd & Axon – nominated by Contracts Manager Aga Skupien

“Anna is always reliable and willing to help. She’s a very friendly person and an amazing team member.”

Maxwell Ampaw from The Pines School, Floreat Education Academies Trust & BJP Insurance Brokers – nominated by Contracts Manager Bernice Anim

“Maxwell has delivered marvellous good quality cleaning. He has stepped in and covered for Pine School when one of their in-house cleaners was taken sick, he washed the school carpets during the deep clean, he covered for an employee at BJP when they were sick and also covered for another employee when they were admitted to the hospital. He did not only cover but did a good quality job. He deserves praise on this occasion.”

Caranfil Nistor from Farley Hill School – nominated by Contracts Manager Zoran Marikov

“He is a good person and he always doing a good job, no matter how hard the job is.”

Madaline Diatta from Westmill Foods – nominated by Regional Manager Eddie-Lawrence Kalule

“Madaline is a site supervisor who takes full responsibility of the site including recruiting, inducting, and training new recruits. Last month she went the further mile by volunteering to be on site supervising subcontractors on her day off, without asking for any extra pay. She really deserves my vote.”

Ann Marie Scott from Welbeck Street – nominated by Contracts Manager Ingrid Antonio 

“Ann Marie works over and above what is required. She is always on hand to help at short notice and gives up her weekends.”

Rosemary Hamilton from Tiffin Girls School – nominated by Contracts Manager Sabeeh Tahir

“She works at Tiffin Girls School as a supervisor. She is very hard working and very supportive towards staff and the client. We have been short staffed due to recruitment issues, but she has done anything and everything to ensure that the client is happy. Rosemary is our back bone for the contract at Tiffin Girls School.”

Marciene Lopes Martins from MMD Shipping – nominated by Regional Manager Andy Hollister

“Marcien worked previously on another site for me but didn’t like the new company that took over from us. As I was experiencing problems with the cleaner at MMD shipping I recognised Marcien was the answer. Marcien is a lovely lady who can’t do enough for me and has turned the office around with exceptional results.”

Philip Fozie from Micklands School – nominated by Contracts Manager Angela Knox

“He has worked for us for some time and since I joined rapid clean, Philip has helped me massively and is always keen to help if asked. Philip is very hard working and has great relationships with the clients and the operatives. He definitely has my vote!”

Nathan Vye from Carlisle Fluid Technologies – nominated by Contracts Manager Craig Love

“He stepped up to the plate and covered my area while I was out of the business for three weeks due to illness and annual leave. He carried out some audits, covered sites, dropped off stock and followed up on concerns by visiting the sites on the day of the complaint.”

Millicent Akomea Omane from Anytime Fitness, Welwyn Garden City – nominated by Contracts Manager Solomon Adadevoh

“This lady, since working for us at this gym, has managed to almost eliminate complaints from the site. She always keeps her cool in challenging circumstances and gets the job done. I think she is worth recognising.”

Millicent Kabu from the George and Dragon – nominated by Dominic Diawuo

“Millicent’s dedication to work is second to none. Her workplace is in a remote part of town, where the bus system is not consistent. Her commitment to go to work even in the most unfavourable conditions and circumstances is admirable and commendable.”

Congratulations to all those nominated this quarter. The winner will be announced shortly.

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Annual Company Meeting and the Latest Employee(s) of the Season

Every year at the end of April we invite our head office team to a company meeting. This year over 30 of us gathered at the very beautiful South Hill Park for lunch and to give everyone an overview of the last 12 months as well as our aims for 2018/19.

Over the last 12 months our head office team has gained 10 new employees, the majority of whom are in  brand new roles created due to a year of exceptional growth.

We started the afternoon with a quiz. Questions ranged from ‘How many times has Monique unloaded the dishwasher in the last 12 months?‘ (clue: it’s been a rare occurrence) to ‘What age is our oldest cleaner?‘ (FYI 83!).

There were some intense moments.

The competitive spirit was definitely flowing!

We also took the opportunity to announce the winner of our Employee of the Season as nominated by colleagues. This season we had three people who came out on top.

First up was Becki Lee, our HR Administrator who joined us in October 2017. It didn’t take long for Becki to make an impression on her colleagues…

“Becki is thoughtful in her work, more than happy to help where she can and is always a joy to be around.”

“She’s brilliant at her job. Gets things done effectively and on time. Very thorough and attentive.”

“Lovely colleague who is very helpful when needed…and she bakes the best cakes!”

Sabeeh Tahir is also a relative ‘newbie’ to Rapid, joining our Operations team in December 2017. He’s a great asset to the team and clearly his colleagues agree…

“Very good guy. Always happy and willing to help.”

“A very calming influence. A great team player!”

“Sabeeh is most helpful when I am asking questions regarding his contract and he is very efficient in answering queries I have for him.”

Last but not least is Gareth Love who has been a Rapid employee since August 2004. Gareth is a popular member of the team and in fact this is the second time he has been crowned ‘Employee of the Season’. His colleagues certainly had some good things to say about him…

“It’s great to have a colleague that you can trust to get the important things sorted, without fuss. Gareth is humble, a laugh and will always offer to help, regardless of the situation.”

“If I ask him for any help I have never known him to say he is too busy or NO.”

“Overall a very positive person and I think he is a great asset to Rapid.”

Gareth was clearly on a winning streak that day as he also won the Directors’ Award for Continuous Improvement. This is what Jeff, Rapid’s Managing Director had to say about Gareth.

“Gareth has worked for Rapid for many years, responsible for taking on our first few contracts on the south coast. He has been a big part of developing that geography over the years. When considering candidates for the directors’ award this year we looked at both a commitment to teamwork and continual improvement – Gareth has excelled in both of these areas! Not only has he done a great job in motivating and developing his own team, he has always been the first to offer help in other regions.”

Well done to our three very worthy winners.Thank you to all of our customers and employees who have helped make the last 12 months a success for Rapid. Our aim every year is to ensure that we continually improve our service offering by reinvesting in people, technology and business systems.

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5 Ways to Save Money on Your Cleaning Bill

You may have read this title and thought ‘Why would a cleaning company be encouraging customers to reduce the amount they are spending?’ At Rapid we are committed to offering our customers better value for money which includes finding ways to save money on your cleaning bill.

Some of the proactive ways we are helping customers to reduce monthly costs is by using micro-fibre cloths (requiring less chemicals) and investing in specialist equipment which reduces the time spent cleaning e.g scrubber dryers.

If you are are already a Rapid customer or simply a company looking to reduce your costs, here are 5 simple ways you can reduce your cleaning costs further: (more…)

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