Many years ago, being identified as a cleaner was quite damaging to one’s self-esteem. But in recent times, cleaning has grown rapidly to become a big business.
Whether it is cleaning the highways or tidying homes or offices, there are hundreds of companies spread across the different parts of the country serving this purpose. And there is still space for more.
How to Start a Cleaning Company in Nigeria
If you are interested in learning the process of starting a cleaning company, then you are on the right page.
Currently, the cleaning industry is one of the largest employers of cheap labour in the country and one of the reasons why this is so is because the barrier of entry to this job is very low and a lot of people need help with cleaning.
The first step is defining your target market. You may want to cater to homes, organizations, school, private companies, builders, and event planners.
The next step is funding, however, a cleaning business is one of the easiest to start because it requires little capital and you can manage the business while holding down a full-time job.
But the low barrier of entry into the cleaning business makes the competition high. However, the demand for cleaning services makes it worthwhile.
Some of the opportunities in the cleaning space include:
Commercial Cleaning Services
This opportunity is available in large commercial buildings that require frequent cleaning. These companies usually look to cleaning companies to meet their cleaning need. If you can secure a long-term contract with any of these companies it can really give your business a boost. You can also work with medical facilities and educational apparatus/facilities
House Cleaning Services
This service involves the cleaning of homes, pools, or gardens for clients. It is easy to find opportunity in this space and you don’t need many staff and equipment to get the work done. However, you may be competing with individuals that offer cheaper cleaning service than your company.
Specialized Cleaning Services
This specialized service involves a specific set of tasks like window cleaning, vehicle cleaning, sofa cleaning, duct cleaning, or carpet cleaning. It offers you selective work and also pays extremely well since it is a specialized field.
Below is a list of steps required to start:
1. Carry out a market research
Typically, market research enables you to understand and prepare yourself for both the opportunity and challenges of business. You can also discover information on what the industry looks like, your strongest competitors, and the cost of cleaning services.
2. Decide on the business type
After, the feasibility study, you should be able to decide on the type of cleaning service that best suits you. There is a wide range of available cleaning services. There are those that are specialized in cleaning up chemicals while there are others that are involved in cleaning up waste products of production companies and recycling them.
Other cleaning services include:
- House Cleaning Services
- Commercial Cleaning Services
- Specialized Cleaning Services
The facilities/equipment needed include:
- Cleaning Chemicals
- Cleaning products for tougher stains
- Detergent and Laundry soap)
- Hand towels
- Micro-fibre clothes that come in varying colors
- Mops of different kinds
- Trash can liners
- Vacuum cleaner
3. Raise capital
Although you don’t need a large capital to get started, you still have to raise the necessary funds to start your cleaning business.
Generally, starting a house cleaning business is cheaper than a commercial or specialized cleaning service because the specialized service requires special equipment which usually cost a lot of money.
4. Hire staff
You will need people to help you execute your cleaning jobs. However, you don’t need to employ on a full-time basis. The wise thing to do is to employ these staff based on contract, not monthly payments since your jobs with your clients are on a contract basis.
5. Spread the word
There is the need to market your business to prospective clients because nobody will contact if you don’t do this.
You can approach organizations that need your service. Also, you advertise on television or radio station, use of fliers, business cards, and other local media as well.
Here are some reasons why you should start a cleaning business
Generally, cleaning business requires low capital outlay especially when you start with the domestic/residential service. At this stage, you require a vacuum cleaner, a couple of brooms, and an equipment trolley.
Excellent part-time option
People mostly prefer to get their houses cleaned in their presence, which goes on to create a lot of job opportunities on the weekends for individuals and businesses venturing into janitorial services; making this ideal for people who already have a day job.
Minimal office space
At the initial stage, you don’t need a large office, you just need a small space where you can keep your cleaning equipment. Buequipmentrow you will need to find an office space where you keep your equipment and possibly meet with clients.
However, there are challenges associated with the cleaning business. For instance, you need to find your clients, manage funds, hiring and many other activities.
Also, there are existing professional cleaning services which make the business highly competitive.
Additionally, there are issues of non-paying clients. Often times, in business there will always be clients that don’t pay up their balances. However, this can be solved by collecting a 70% upfront payment in this industry.
Generally, you should site your company strategically. Your office can be located very close to your targeted customers or prospective clients. This will enable you to monitor your current clients and you can also reach out to prospective customers.
Also, when your business is located close to your customers, it gives you the opportunity to know your customers better and discover other opportunities in the vicinity.
Overall, cleaning service can be a very lucrative business if you know the right thing to do. Reading this post and following the given steps is certainly one of the right things to do.