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Challenges and opportunities facing the contract cleaning market

The UK contract cleaning market continues to be supported by high levels of spending in the public sector, despite challenging headwinds in the commercial cleaning market in 2022, according to MTW Research.

MTW’s analysis of more than 90 leading contract cleaning providers with more than £3 billion of sales found that whilst the industry remains in relatively good health, there are some challenges in the market with some companies able to outperform the market whilst others face more difficult headwinds in relation to rising labour, material and energy costs.

The research states that over 52 per cent of contract cleaners reported rapid growth in the last 12 months, reflecting a sector offering healthy growth opportunities for those companies able to identify key growth trends in an increasingly complex market. A further 23 per cent of cleaning providers reported more limited growth, underlining polarising market trends in late 2022.

The Autumn budget pledged an additional £3 billion for the NHS to 2025, underpinning rising resource spending by the NHS, demand for contract cleaning services; and boosting opportunities for suppliers to the contract cleaning market. Prior to the Autumn Statement, Health resource spending was set to rise by 33 per cent to 2026, with Education also providing further growth with budgets rising by 27 per cent in the next five years. MTW points to Health and Education end use sectors as key growth opportunities for contract cleaning market suppliers in the next three to four years before austerity measures begin to bite.

In a new 70-page report MTW identifies the façade/window cleaning sector as regaining share in late 2022 whilst office cleaning activities have also regained share in 2022 though remain below 2019 levels. The report discusses exciting differentiation opportunities for contract cleaning providers in several commercial cleaning markets, driving margin opportunities, linked to hybrid working, technology and strategic integration. Growth in specialised cleaning continues to outperform other product sectors in the contract cleaning market in 2022, according to MTW.

The report includes more than 30 charts and identifies key contract cleaning trends, not least the legacy impact of Covid on working practices, hybrid working and the ways in which these trends impact on cleaning contractors and the equipment used. Retail and office cleaning sectors are identified as particularly fast paced according to MTW, having to adapt rapidly to myriad changing market conditions and influences, with these two sectors alone contributing more than £1.5 billion of sales in 2023.

The detailed analysis provides a forecast of market size and trends to 2026, asserting that the underlying fundamentals in contract cleaning trends remain reasonably strong with revenue set to outperform the overall UK economy in most sectors of the market in 2022 and 2023.

With healthcare demand now ‘normalising’ after a meteoric rise in share during 2020 and 2021, MTW points to an increasingly complex contract cleaning market in 2022. The report highlights a clear need for companies to identify and address the ongoing fundamental market shift and avoid the rising number of pitfalls at present.

Webinar: How to control the flow of people and parcels through your facility – 23 November at 11am

According to Pitney Bowes Parcel Shipping Index, worldwide parcel volume is likely to double in the next five years, with the UK showing the highest increase in carrier revenue of all 13 countries in the Index.

Alongside a huge uptake in the volume of parcel volume and spend, post pandemic, the adoption of hybrid working patterns means that FMs need to find ways to enable staff to book / host collaborative meetings in available workspaces and to find desk, office and parking spaces by utilising automation and data capture to enable site governance.

Yet a recent survey by FMJ in partnership with Pitney Bowes found that 20 per cent of recipients are still using manual paper-based visitor systems, which doesn’t fit with their top priority – to maintain a safe and operational environment.

This overwhelming reliance on paper-based systems is causing many respondents bottlenecks, resulting in a lack of efficiently in logging and tracking packages and people coming into the organisation.

In this webinar, Gary Abbott Director of Business Development and Stuart Bushaway, Head of Dealers Operations and FM Relationships at Pitney Bowes will outline the main findings of the two surveys and what this could mean for FMs.  This will be followed by a discussion, chaired by FMJ Editor Sara Bean comprising Wayne Young – Facilities Manager, Just Eat Takeaway.com & Simi Gandhi-Whitaker, Strategic Technology Director, Connected Workspace, Mitie.

Register for the webinar here.

About Sarah OBeirne

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