The 2018 Winter Olympic Games are now in the history books. In the aftermath, organizers are looking at every little detail to see what can be improved for the 2020 Summer games. One of the things they will look at are laundry services. SMEs trying to decide between professional uniform services and DIY uniforms could learn a lesson or two from Olympic organizers.
This year, Olympic athletes were responsible for handling their own laundry using commercial washing machines and dryers. This is in stark contrast to previous years when professionals handled laundry. So what can SMEs learn from the 2018 Winter games? For starters, they can learn the following five reasons uniform service makes sense:
1. Doing Laundry Is Time-Consuming
Olympic athletes already have busy enough schedules between training and competing. Throw in having to do their own laundry and the athletes are really strapped for time. The fact is that doing laundry is time-consuming.
A business that handles its own uniforms in-house is investing time that could be put to other things. Likewise, expecting employees to wash their own uniforms is expecting them to put time and effort into a work-related task for which they are not being paid. In either case, the most effective use of precious time is not being practiced by keeping uniforms in-house.
2. Doing the Laundry Costs Money
Another thing the Olympic athletes learned is just how costly it is to do laundry in coin-operated machines. It should be obvious, but you don’t realize how expensive water, electricity, and laundry detergent are until you start paying for it out-of-pocket. The same is true for business uniforms.
Keeping uniforms in-house costs something. It costs professional linen companies like Alsco as well, but it tends to cost them less because of their bulk purchasing power. On average, a professional uniform service can process uniforms more cheaply than a company that does it in-house.
3. Uniforms Often Need Mending
If an Olympic athlete notices damage to uniform, he or she either has to fix it or send it out to someone with mending skills. So it goes in the business environment. And let’s face it, work uniforms can wear out rather quickly. The professional uniform service takes care of mending with no extra effort required by the client. SMEs choosing to keep uniforms in-house have to handle mending themselves.
4. Uniform Replacement Is Costly
There are times when damage to an athlete’s uniform is such that it cannot be fixed. That means costly replacement. A lot of athletes at the 2018 games learned this lesson the hard way. Even if an athlete’s Olympic Committee pays for a new uniform, it cost somebody something.
When SMEs outsource uniforms, service providers handle replacement. The overall cost of replacement is undoubtedly passed on to customers in the long run, but the expense is less thanks to the provider’s bulk purchasing power.
5. Uniforms Are Logistics-Heavy
Finally, keeping track of hundreds or thousands of uniforms is logistics-heavy whether you are talking the Olympic Games or daily business. Who has time for that kind of logistics? Professional laundry services do. It is something they are uniquely equipped to address with systems custom-designed for their industry.
SMEs can certainly buy their own uniforms and either wash them in-house or require employees to take them home for washing. Either way, handling uniforms in-house comes with a whole host of issues that can easily detract from the company’s core mission. As such, professional uniform services make a lot of sense for a lot of businesses.