Recent Commercial Posts

Tips for Running a Brick-and-Mortar Business: Innovative Tactics to Keep Your Physical Business Relevant In a Digital World

6/29/2021 (Permalink)

storefront of a brick-and-mortar business with door sign reading yes we are open Brick-and-mortar businesses face hardship in the digital age, yet offer unique value to consumers that keep physical stores alive in today's economy.

The COVID-19 pandemic triggered a turning point for e-commerce with unprecedented growth when consumers and businesses largely went digital to meet changing social dynamics. However, the rise of e-commerce does not necessarily mean the end of brick-and-mortar, as consumers still have shopping preferences that they prefer to do in-person. 

Brick-and-mortar businesses have the opportunity to meet consumer desires but need to adopt tactics to meet modern consumer behavior and capitalize on the 65% of American shopping budgets that are still spent in-store. This article outlines essential strategies and tips that can assist brick-and-mortar companies that are looking to stay relevant to consumers in an increasingly digital world.

Create a Digital Presence

Even if the main focus of your business is your brick-and-mortar presence, physical retailers need to integrate both an on and offline presence. Your primary directive may be in-person sales, but your businesses still need to be visible and available online. 

Having a strong digital presence can provide deep insights into your customer preferences with the wide variety of digital analytics that can be gathered through online channels, social media, your websites, and even an email marketing campaign. An essential checklist for creating a digital presence includes:

  • Optimizing your website for visibility and mobile use.
  • Creating an active social media strategy and producing content for all online channels that encourages consumer engagement.
  • Designing a newsletter and email marketing campaign that provides additional value and insight into your products and business operations.

Step Up Your Customer Service Game

One of the greatest benefits to consumers who shop in physical stores is great face-to-face customer service, and the opportunity to build a shopping experience that your consumers are sure to remember. To capitalize on the valuable resource of customer experience, businesses need to refocus on customer service strategies that deliver and meet consumer expectations. This includes:

  • Maintaining a safe and clean environment.
  • Adopting new transaction and checkout processes that accommodate touchless interactions and digital payment options.
  • Providing added value through sales and coupons that compel customers to make purchases.
  • Designing personalized shopping experiences that are curated to their target audience. Examples of his may include:
    • Allowing customers to make in-store purchases but shipping the product to their residence. 
    • Providing superb customer engagement with friendly, highly knowledgeable, and trained staff.
    • Ensuring that the store is organized, comfortable, and easy to navigate.
    • Providing digital options for customers to provide feedback.
    • Creating easy-to-use return policies and customer service channels for questions and concerns about products.

Stay Current With Industry Trends

Staying up to date on industry trends can give your business insight into what your consumer preferences are, as well as what your competitors are doing to outperform you. Competitor analysis can provide deep insight into how your consumers react to changes being made and can be used to leverage critical decisions that impact how your consumers perceive, engage with, and make purchases from your business. 

Harnessing the use of big data as a resource can also support smart decision-making. Data can provide insight into your target market and beyond, opening up opportunities to find and define consumer demographics and dynamics. Data can be gathered from your online presence and website, social channels, competitive research, and more, and can be leveraged to critically think about your consumers, develop and test strategies, and support critical decision making. 

Take Pride In Your Store’s Appearance

One of the hallmark values of in-store shopping is the experience the consumer has within your store. Cleanliness is a top priority for customers, it is essential to keep your brick-and-mortar in safe and clean good repair. This may include: 

  • Creating a checklist for the most common places that need cleaning and setting a schedule to ensure that these areas are regularly maintained. This includes restrooms and high-touch surfaces such as door handles and check-out areas. 
  • Ensuring that the building itself is in good repair. This may include:
    • Replacing HVAC air filters and cleaning ducts.
    • Upkeep plumbing, mold remediation, and water damage repair from leaks.
    • Replacing burned-out interior and exterior light bulbs.
    • Inspect the property for signs of rodent or pest damage.
    • Replacing cracked or broken windows or mirrors and keeping them clean.
  • Having a safety and sanitation plan for recovering from unfortunate events or natural disasters. This may include using commercial services for fire restoration or storm damage and cleanup.

In addition to the essentials of cleanliness and safety, brick-and-mortar businesses may also consider how to arrange their store to best accommodate the consumer’s needs. Examples may include:

  • Comfortable sitting, waiting, and congregating areas outside of dressing rooms, or for customers that may need to wait while a product is being prepared.
  • Highly trained staff and information desks that can assist consumers with essential questions about products and services.
  • Open display areas where customers can engage with products and easily learn about them. 
  • Added value through expert advice or classes with a representative of the company.

A store’s atmosphere and layout will also impact consumer buying patterns. The aesthetics and design of your store are essential to the customer’s experience. The aesthetic and signage of your brick-and-mortar location should showcase your brand and image, and needs to be easy to navigate so consumers can efficiently find what they need.

Host In-Store Events

According to a survey on event marketing, 91% of overperforming businesses place great emphasis on live events as a form of marketing, and 87% of C-suite executives are leaning into and planning to invest in events in the future. Events are a cornerstone in experiential marketing that is defining the future of brick-and-mortar retail. 

In-store events directly engage customers and can create valuable memories, insight into offerings, and brand experiences. Events are an excellent way to showcase a new product or rollout, create social media buzz, and provide consumers what they are looking for most: a great experience.

Events may include launch parties, holiday and milestone celebrations, sales and coupon offerings, meet-up groups, classes, and workshops. Creating a great in-store event is more than putting out party tables and decor — it should have a specific focus and goal that creates value for the customer. 

Create a Customer Loyalty Program

A survey conducted on consumer mindsets and customer loyalty showed that:

  • 51% of respondents enjoyed loyalty programs and noted that loyalty programs encouraged them to “like” the brand or company more.
  • 49% of respondents felt they get significant value from loyalty programs.
  • 46% of loyalty programs make the respondents feel like an exclusive group of valuable customers.
  • 40% of respondents noted that loyalty programs were a key decision-maker for them to choose that specific retailer or brand.

Customer loyalty programs can be a great addition to a brand’s digital presence through the use of apps, email marketing, and providing a great experience. Creating a valuable loyalty program should incorporate the use of consumer data to ensure the program delivers the greatest value and can be utilized in tandem with other digital and in-store event marketing efforts.

7 Ways to Prepare Your Business for Extreme Weather

6/29/2021 (Permalink)

men boarding up windows in front of a store With a disaster plan, open communication, safety systems, proper insurance, and disaster resources you can equip your business for extreme weather.

Small business owners have a lot to juggle and one critical aspect is extreme weather preparation. A United States Federal Reserve small business survey found that 40% of small businesses do not reopen after experiencing a major disaster. As a small business owner, it is important to consider the different ways that a large disaster can hurt your business.

A continuity plan outlines the different measures you have in place to ensure that your business stays operating. Creating a continuity plan for your small business is a good safety blanket. Businesses need to consider all of the ways to prepare their business for extreme weather to protect their business, employees, and customers. Below is a list of different methods for doing so.

1.  Protect Your Employees

Your business is not the only aspect at risk for extreme weather. First and foremost, you need to think about what you can do to protect your employees. The first step to this is assessing your risks. Different areas are more susceptible to different types of extreme weather. Analyze the extreme weather risks where your business is located. You can utilize the online National Risk Index for Natural Hazards (NRI) for better insight into the different types of extreme weather your business may be exposed to. Once you have an understanding of your risks, then you can better plan for the following:

    • Creating an evacuation procedure: Your evacuation procedure should fluctuate depending on the type of extreme weather. Extreme weather can be frightening and stressful — be sure to write down your evacuation procedure and keep it in an accessible area;
    • Establishing onsite and offsite meeting areas: You should determine both onsite and offsite meeting areas. If there was a building fire, you would want to evacuate the building. But if there was a tornado, you would want to get down into the basement or storm cellar. Consider creating a map of the building with arrows pointing where to go in case of each respective risk;
  • Create a disaster supply kit: In some cases, staying in the business may be the safest option. Be sure to build or purchase a disaster supply kit that includes things like food, water, flashlights/batteries, maps, flares, and a first aid kit. Be sure to place this in a safe, accessible place.

2. Install Safety Systems to Protect Your Property

It is good to be prepared for any type of weather, but you should prioritize safety systems based on what you’re at risk for. Consider the following safety systems:

  • Storm shutters: Storm shutters can be used to protect your windows from being broken by flying objects during high winds;
  • Surge protectors: A surge protector helps protect your electronics from power surges that can occur during extreme weather; 
  • Generators/backup power supply: Extreme weather can often take down power poles leaving entire neighborhoods and cities without power. When you have a generator or some form of backup power supply, you can reduce potential downtime and make your business a viable place to wait out the storm;
  • Storm cellar: When you have a storm cellar, you and your employees (and potentially customers) all have a place to hide out and wait out the storm in a more secured area;
  • Secured tarps: If you store any of your inventory outdoors, you may want to get tarps to protect your inventory from the elements;
  • Utilize building treatments and materials: There are treatments and materials like double pane glass, fire-retardant wood, and weather-resistant roofing to better equip your building to withstand weather and natural disasters.

3. Secure Important Documents

If you have boxes upon boxes of important business documents, or you rely heavily on digital data, you will want to be sure to backup your documents. Extreme weather may damage or destroy important documents entirely. Listed below are several options for securing important documents:

  • Use a scanner and make digital copies;
  • Utilize cloud storage;
  • Make physical copies and store offsite.

4. Educate Your Employees On Safety Procedures

Spend time educating your employees on the different safety procedures that you have in place. This should be a new-hire requirement and you can also schedule recurring safety procedure meetings to keep employees prepared. 

It can be a good idea to have drills to go through what an actual emergency would look like and what employees should do. Training videos are also another viable option for educating your employees. Consider getting your safety procedures in writing as well and supplying your employees with them. 

5. Communication Is Key

If your workplace becomes unsafe, you want to be sure that you can communicate that with your staff and your customers. Sending out mass emails or mass texts can be a great way to send weather warnings, and having clearly labeled exits and other signage can help direct employees and customers if they are in the store when extreme weather strikes. It is a good idea to use a loudspeaker to issue instructions for your customers and staff to follow. Social media can also be a good tool for communicating. You can post weather warnings and store closure warnings. 

In the case that a powerline is knocked down, try to communicate via text message. Text messages do not operate in the same way that phone calls do, so in a pinch, you are more likely to get ahold of someone with a text message than a phone call.

6. Review Your Company’s Insurance Policy

Be sure you have a good understanding of what your insurance policy covers and what it does not. All businesses need liability insurance and that will generally cover things like customers, staff, and property damage. Liability insurance doesn’t cover any operational losses and in some cases, you may need additional coverage for natural disaster protection. 

For the least amount out of pocket, assess your risk for specific types of extreme weather and purchase additional coverage where you are most susceptible. You should consider getting business interruption insurance to protect against loss of income after a disaster.

7. Know What to Do After a Storm

Different storms cause different types and amounts of damage. After a natural disaster, there are certain things to consider before reopening. As soon as the storm clears, you will want to document everything for an insurance claim. During this time you’ll want to communicate with your staff, customers, and any stakeholders in your business. Once you have talked to your insurance company, you may need to use different restoration and repair services — for example:

Be sure to keep all track of all of your restoration and repair expenses for insurance and tax purposes. If you are in a situation where you can’t afford to pay for out-of-pocket repairs, there are several organizations and sites designed to help small businesses with disaster relief — a few examples are:

The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA).

Top 5 Causes of Commercial Property Damage and How to Prevent Them

6/29/2021 (Permalink)

surveillance camera in a store aisle. Commercial property damage is almost inevitable in the many ways it can occur. However, there are ways to reduce the amount of damage done.

Even though residential and commercial properties are both at risk of property damage, how to prevent either from happening will be two different experiences. Businesses have to protect their merchandise, employees, storefront, and everything in between, whereas homeowners, must protect their families, their homes, and personal belongings. 

This doesn’t go to say that commercial properties have more at stake than residential properties. However, it does mean that the steps they have to take to prevent damage from occurring can be more tedious than those protecting their homes. 

Let’s take a closer look at the top five reasons why damage to commercial property occurs and how to prevent it. 

1. Theft and Burglary

Unfortunately, business theft and burglary aren’t uncommon. One study conducted found that external theft and shoplifting make up 35.5% of lost sales. Another study surveying 24 different shoplifters discovered that 29% of them found it was “very easy” to steal from a business. In fact, 8.8% of small businesses were victims of burglary in 2016.

The difference between theft and burglary is easy to identify. Theft is “the act of stealing” or “an unlawful taking,” whereas burglary is “the act of breaking and entering a dwelling at night to commit a felony (such as theft).” However, it is important to note that burglary can happen at any time of the day, not just at night. 

Those who burglarize a business often leave behind commercial property damage. Luckily there are ways to prevent damage to your commercial property caused by thieves and burglars.  

What to Do About It

Here are burglary prevention tips that every commercial property owner should know:

  • Double-check that every entry point is locked before closing down for the day;
  • Hide your safe in a secure location;
  • Install more light fixtures around your building; 
  • Invest in more security cameras both in and outside of your business;
  • Keep track of the keys/only let trusted personnel have access to the keys;
  • Keep the premises tidy;
  • Move valuable inventory away from the windows;
  • Replace traditional glass in the windows and doors with shatterproof glass.

Another way to deter burglars is by giving people the illusion that someone is still occupying the building. This can be done by posting a photo of you in the building after hours on your social media or leaving a light on. 

2. Water Damage

If your commercial property is an area that is prone to storms and flooding, then you may be all too familiar with water damage. Even using too much water in your facility can cause leaks, drainage issues, and water spillage. This is why it’s important to take preventative measures and limit your building’s water consumption by investing in commercial water-saving technology. 

If your property has already been impacted by water damage, then you may want to consider looking into flooding and water damage restoration services. Doing so not only improves the appearance of your building but can help prevent these issues from occurring in the future as well. 

What to Do About It

You can’t prevent storms from happening, but you can prepare your business for the next case of extreme weather. This includes:

  • Installing safety systems like structural support, surge protectors, storm shutters, and backup generators;
  • Securing important documents in a high and dry location;
  • Communicating with employees and customers if your store is not safe;
  • Having easy access to details of your company’s insurance policy. 

Educating your employees on your business’s continuity plan is another great way to help them understand how to recover from a natural disaster

3. Smoke/Fire Damage

There are multiple ways in which a fire may break out in your business — kitchen fires, fires outside of your business, or even electrical fires. Structural damage, smoke/soot damage to the walls, scorch marks, and a lingering smell of smoke can cause business owners to shut down until the fire damage restoration process is complete. Which, depending on the severity of the damage, can take days or even weeks. This is why it is crucial to have fire safety protocols set in place. 

What to Do About It 

As a business owner, it is your duty to create an emergency plan that helps you prepare for unexpected occurrences such as fires. Some things to consider adding to your fire safety plan include:

  • Ensuring windows can be opened and screens can be removed;
  • Frequently checking for damaged or overloaded electrical outlets, cords, and cables;
  • Keeping flammable materials away from electrical equipment;
  • Maintaining the cleanliness of the workspace and equipment;
  • Making sure smoke alarms and fire sprinklers work properly;
  • Never leave portable heating devices unattended;
  • Planning and practicing escape routes and posting them clearly around the building. 

4. Wind Damage

Wind and hail damage can be sudden, yet impactful. Fallen trees, shattered windows, and missing shingles are common results of severe wind and hail. Some insurance plans will cover the damage, but it is up to you as a business owner to set a plan in place that helps reduce the impact. 

What to Do About It

The weather itself can’t be prevented. But you can follow the below tips to help reduce the amount of damage done to your property. 

  • Educate your employees on wind and hail safety — instructing them to stay away from the windows during an intense wind storm;
  • Inspect the roof for damage after storms and make repairs as needed;
  • Install impact-resistant windows;
  • Make sure any loose equipment left outdoors is secure.

5. Vandalism

Vandalism is “damage done to someone else’s property, simply for the sake of causing damage.” Typically, those who partake in vandalism do so with the malicious intent of defacing personal property — not to steal. The most common types of vandalism that occur on commercial properties include:

  • Billboard defacement;
  • Broken windows;
  • Sign damage;
  • Spray painting;
  • Trash dumping. 

What to Do About It

The ways to prevent vandalism from happening are similar to those that can help prevent theft and/or burglary:

  • Increase the number of surveillance cameras outside of the building;
  • Repair any weaknesses in the exterior of your building (holes in fences, burnt light bulbs, and remove any foliage blocking security cameras);
  • Use anti-graffiti paint on the building’s exterior;
  • Build a great relationship with local authorities.

Not every cause of damage can be prevented, but there are ways you can reduce the amount of damage that is done. Following the steps above can help ensure that your commercial property takes on less damage — even during the biggest storms.

Prevent Storm Damage to Your Commercial Property

6/22/2021 (Permalink)

flooded warehouse after a storm Powerful storms such as tropical storms or hurricanes have the potential to cause major damage like flooding.

Storms are sometimes things you know are coming, thanks to advances in meteorology. Local weathermen are a lot more accurate than they used to be. Then again, many storms still happen without much warning, if any. In either case, you need to practice a preventative approach in regard to storm damage. Doing so helps you make sure you enjoy business continuity, and that's possible thanks to specific tips you can use to prevent or at least minimize storm damage to any commercial property you own or are responsible for.


Keep Your Records Maintained

You need to keep well-maintained records of every single installation, improvement, and repair that is made to your specific property. Even when your property doesn't actually show signs of damage, you should still document its overall condition prior to storms happening. This will help you file any necessary insurance claims. Take photos of your property, especially of the roof. Be sure you get images of the flashing and edges of your roof, but also go inside and get pictures of the ceiling that is immediately underneath the roof. 
Clean Your Commercial Building's Gutters and Roof

Debris that is left on top of the roof can result in damage when there is a storm. Maintain a routine cleaning schedule in order to manage risks such as these. This is particularly important if your property has an easily punctured single-ply roof. Open drains and gutters need routine cleaning in order to prevent the roof from flooding. 
Don't Neglect Maintenance Appointments

Routine appointments with a residential roofing service provider keep the roof over your home in great shape. The same applies to commercial properties. Routine inspections and any necessary corresponding maintenance will help keep your commercial property roof in great shape. Loose seams and small punctures can quickly turn into much bigger issues when there's a storm. Finding, identifying, and repairing small issues in advance helps to minimize the risks involved with leaks. 
Stay Current With Your Insurance Premiums

You should ideally consult your insurance provider at least once each year to be sure that your commercial insurance premiums are current and up to date. The last thing you want after storm damage is a claim that gets delayed or even denied since the policy isn't where it's supposed to be. 
Why This All Matters

If you fail to keep up the roof of your commercial property, the consequences can be severe. At a minimum, a leaking roof creates slip and fall hazards inside your building that pose a risk to employees and customers alike. You could even wind up having to close your business until the structure is repaired enough to be open to the public again. If that happens, you'll still have overhead to pay, and possibly employees, but no sales or revenue generation to offset it, much less make money.

The even worse consequences can be far more drastic. Failing to keep your roof up to par might void certain clauses in your insurance, resulting in denied claims or even loss of coverage that you need to legally operate your business to start with. Furthermore, if you're leasing a building from someone, not caring for the property could result in a breach of your rental agreement, risking eviction.

On top of all that, the less you take care of your roof, the less it takes care of you. Leaks and issues will happen more and more often, resulting in more wasted time and money, along with interruptions to your business. It all adds up to a total roof replacement when you could have otherwise had more years before you needed to face that expense again. 
After a Storm

When the day comes that a storm does hit, you need to check out your roof as soon as you safely can. If you're in the building during the storm, you might be able to start checking the ceiling immediately under the roof during and just after the storm. Look for wet spots on the ceiling and any signs or sounds that might indicate leaks have happened.

Don't go up on your roof immediately, especially if it's still raining. Wet surfaces make ladders and roofing very dangerous places to be, and it's not worth risking your own health or life, or that of any of your employees. Even a flat roof, common to commercial structures, is still dangerous when wet. Also, if it's water-logged or has puddles, then the extra weight of a person might be enough for it to sag or collapse.

As soon as you can, though, get up there to look for obvious damage. Even if you see nothing, have a roofing professional also come by to take a look. If there is damage after a storm, it's best to find it quickly for two reasons. First, the service provider can possibly patch it until more permanent fixes can be applied. Second, you can make your insurance claim faster and get the funds or reimbursement for the work that needs to be done. 
In Conclusion

Following damage prevention tips like these can make life much easier for you if you're a commercial property owner. Then again, this is Florida, so storm damage is pretty much inevitable, no matter how much you get ready for it.

For the best in storm damage restoration service, contact the industry professionals of SERVPRO of University, SE Orlando.

SERVPRO Commercial Cleaning Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic

6/22/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO technicians getting prepared before a COVID-19 cleaning job Professionalism is a must when it comes to any kind of response to the pandemic. Our employees have the tools they need to do the job properly.

COVID-19 is an incredibly dangerous virus. The virus seemingly came out of nowhere. This dangerous virus began to harm humans in Asia and then rapidly spread to other parts of the globe a short time later. In the United States alone, hundreds of thousands of people have died as a result of the pandemic. While this is scary, there is very good news. It is possible to take steps to combat this virus. Proven techniques that are recommended by health officials have many benefits. They can help reduce the risk of infection and make it easier for everyone to avoid getting sick.


Working With SERVPRO Commercial Cleaning Services

SERVPRO Commercial Cleaning Services is one company more than ready to step up and help with the process of keeping people safe during the ongoing pandemic. At our company, this is what we do on a daily basis. That is why we have many happy clients who continue to hire us to help with this important process. There are many reasons to hire us.

These include:

  • Professional service.
  • Ease of booking,
  • The right cleaning products,
  • and years of experience.

True Professionalism

Professionalism is a must when it comes to any kind of response to the pandemic. At our company, we provide the kind of vetted help that you need to make it all work out for everyone at your site. Our employees are highly trained. Each one is given the tools they need to do the job properly before they show up at your venue. We take the time to make sure that all of our employees fully understand the guidelines set forth by the CDC from the very first day. This means that all of our employees know exactly how to adhere to the guidelines set forth by the most important health agency in the world.

Our bioremediation services are done in accordance with all necessary policies and procedures that have been set up to keep people safe. This means you'll have interiors that have been properly sanitized, disinfected, and thoroughly cleaned once we're done with the process. This is one of the many reasons why our company has been called on by so many businesses and community leaders in Orlando, Florida to keep workers, customers, and all visitors safe from the threat of COVID-19.

Easy of Booking

At our company, we know you're busy. We know that you're dealing with lots of things at the same time. This is something we understand very well. We're also very busy helping other companies keep their employees and clients safe. We also know that our clients want to have a convenient service. This is why we offer our services on a twenty-four hour, seven days a week basis. That makes it easy to book our services when it is most convenient for any of our clients. If there's a sudden issue such as an outbreak locally, we're also here for you.

We can come to your door when you need us in response to changing conditions. That means you can have your interior spaces cleaned and ready for action again as soon as we're done. We'll be there to help with the process and get it all up and running normally as soon as possible. That is our guarantee to all of our clients.


Effective Cleaning Products

Officials at the CDC recommend the use of hospital-grade disinfectants. This has been shown to work on all surfaces in order to reduce the risk of transmission of the virus. When we come to your door, this is exactly what we bring with us. The cleaning products that we use are cleaning products that meet the standard required by the CDC. They are designed to carry the EPA-registered emerging pathogens claims. That will ensure that you are making it easy to protect all of your employees as well as your business clients as they come to your spaces. We follow all protocols set up by the CDC. We all follow all guidelines set up by local authorities to protect people.


Uniquely Prepared

With years of experience in this highly important field, we at SERVPRO Commercial Cleaning Services are fully prepared to step up and help all clients. We know exactly how to clean and disinfect any private or public space. Our company has been dealing with the process of removing biological contaminants for many years. We move beyond the ordinary scope provided by janitorial services. With our skilled guidance at your side, you'll know exactly how to cope with the pandemic. We will show you what has to be done right now. We'll also demonstrate what must be done on a routine basis in order to meet all necessary CDC-issued guidelines.

This is our promise to our clients in the middle of a pandemic.

Repairing Water Damaged Wood in Commercial Properties

5/27/2021 (Permalink)

empty office with tables, chairs, and wood flooring If your commercial property has wood flooring, knowing what steps to take after a water damage event can help save your flooring.

Water damage can happen to anyone. One minute your property is fine; the next, it's a soggy mess with water leaking through the roof and walls. It's important to know how to fix this problem and get your commercial property back up and running as soon as possible.
In this article, we will discuss what you need to do when repairing water-damaged wood in commercial properties so that you can get back up on your feet quickly!


Water Damage on Commercial Property: What Is It?


Water damage can happen anywhere, including commercial properties. The first thing to know is that when any water gets into your property, it's not just the carpet and floors that will get ruined.

It would be best if you also looked for signs of mold growth on walls or ceilings, which signifies more serious potential health effects.

The second thing you should do if there has been an episode of flooding in the building, contact a professional restoration company who will have all the equipment necessary to fix this problem quickly! 


How To Repair Water Damaged Wood In Commercial Properties


Once you've contacted these professionals, they'll be able to come out and assess how difficult the situation is before coming up with a plan of action and will be able to do the work promptly.

The next step is clean up which involves drying out all wet materials and removing any water-logged items from the property as soon as possible! If you try to salvage stained or damaged furnishings, likely, they'll never look good again, so just throw them away - many stores specialize in this kind of thing for your convenience.

It also goes without saying that if you have heavy furniture near surfaces touching the water, move it at least three feet back before letting anyone dry these areas with fans.

Now we can get into some serious restoration: After everything has been dried thoroughly (at least 48 hours!), sand patches where mold might grow and then use a dehumidifier to prevent any recurrence of the problem.

Next, remove all stickers that contain polyvinyl chloride (PVC), which can release toxic gases when heated. This includes some adhesive labels on items such as canned goods or furniture legs.

Finally, spray surfaces with an extra-strength mold killer before painting over water stains or replacing damaged boards; it takes about two weeks for DIYers to finish these steps, so be patient!

When professionals undertake restoration work in commercial properties, they often have more tools than amateurs like you and me. They may apply fungicides after removing old sealant from wood decks made out of synthetic materials since dampness usually causes problems. 


Different Types of Wood and The Effects of Water Damage


Just as different types of wood react differently to water, the same goes for finishes. It is crucial to match your finish with the type of wood you are using to withstand contact with moisture and doesn't peel or chip away from exposure to rain or wet ground. 


Wood Types/Water Damage

 *Oak - The best materials for refinishing oak are natural oil-based stains like tung oil because they have a tough surface film that resists moisture penetration. You can also use wax if you want a glossy look!

If you need an extra layer of protection, apply either varnish or polyurethane on top before applying the final coat (or mixed), which will be just as durable but won't provide the same level of transparency.

*Cedar - Cedar is a softer wood, and so it's best to use oil-based products as they'll penetrate the surface more deeply, meaning you can get away with fewer coats!

*Maple - Maple has a fairly soft texture, too, making it difficult for water to seep in deep enough to cause any damage unless there are cracks that allow moisture inside. That means if you refinish maple using oil-based stains like tung oil, one should be enough to make it waterproof.

*Pine - Pine contains more sap than oak or maple, so it can't take as much moisture before being damaged and has an uneven grain pattern which can cause problems with absorption when using oil-based products (so use them sparingly). The best thing to do for pine is to apply varnish on top after applying stain! 


Professional Equipment Used to Restore Wood from Water Damage

 Deep-Clean - This process will remove any minerals, dirt, and water from the wood before you can refinish it. It's an expensive option but well worth it if your damage is severe enough to need it!

Sanding - A very important part of the restoration process for all species of woods as this removes deep scratches or gouges to prepare them for stain/finishing products. The sandpaper grit ranges from 220 (very coarse) to 800 (extra fine).

Staining - After sanding, use a rag dipped in tung oil. Wipe the wood down gently with long strokes until the desired color has been achieved, then quickly follow up by wiping over the surface with mineral spirits, so drips don't form.

Refinishing- This is ultimately the process that will give you a beautiful, finished product. There are many different products out there, but an oil-based polyurethane will work just fine for most commercial properties!

There are many ways to handle water damage to wood in commercial properties. In many cases, the wood can be restored or replaced. Water-damaged wood can be sanded and restored to its original state. If the finish has been stripped, it will need to be refinished. There are several different options and ways to handle restorations.

Maintaining Control of Infectious Diseases in the Workplace

5/27/2021 (Permalink)

seated man sneezing near onlooking female coworkers Avoid contact with sick individuals and stay away from public places where there may be an increased risk of infection by airborne transmissions.

What Are Infectious Diseases?

 The World Health Organization reports that communicable diseases caused by microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, and viruses are the major cause of death in the world. The WHO also estimates that these types of infections account for about 2 million deaths annually.

To reduce this number, we must first understand how they spread and control them in the workplace. 


Infectious Disease Control

 Infectious disease control is preventing and controlling infectious diseases to reduce or eliminate their harmful effects. This includes both occupational health and public health, which work together with a common goal: To protect people from illness caused by microorganisms that they may come across at work or as part of daily life. 


The primary methods for preventing infectious diseases in the workplace are:

 
  • Hand hygiene
  • Vaccinations
  • Proper use of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)


A solid rule to follow is that if you think you might touch your nose, mouth, or eyes before washing your hands, you should wash them.

This is an important precaution because these are the parts of our body that are most likely to become infected with bacteria and other organisms.

 


The Importance of Infection Control in the Workplace

 It is important to take precautions in the workplace because many infectious diseases can be transmitted by coming into contact with blood, other bodily fluids, or items contaminated with these substances.

Awareness is the key to maintaining control of infectious diseases in the workplace and preventing them from spreading. 


Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) includes gloves, masks, and eye goggles/face shields. The type of PPE will depend on the exposure risk. For example, if you're working with a known pathogen, then gloves and possibly eye protection are necessary to prevent contamination from occurring during contact. 


The steps for donning your PPE properly include:

 -Make sure all clothing is removed before putting on any personal protective equipment.
-Put on the gloves and make sure they fit.
-Take off your rings, watches, bracelets, or anything else that can't be worn inside PPE before putting it on.
-Wear any items such as boots or gloves first, then put on the other layers.
-Attach your mask by tying it around your head or slipping over your nose and mouth where it will stay in place with elastic bands at either side of the top of the face shield to hold tight against your forehead. 


How Infectious Diseases Are Classified

 Infectious diseases can be classified into two categories: non-communicable diseases and infectious diseases. Communicable diseases are transmitted from person-to-person while non-communicable diseases are not contagious or passed on from one person to another.

This article will focus on communicable infectious diseases in the workplace, including their prevention, symptoms, transmission methods, and treatments.

Viruses, bacteria, and fungi cause infectious diseases. Viruses can be transmitted in droplets or fluids from coughing, sneezing, or spitting. Bacteria may be spread through contact with a wound of an infected person and the ingestion of contaminated food and water. Fungi can also contaminate foods that have been left out. 


Ways to Prevent Infectious Diseases

 The first step for prevention is to maintain a safe and clean work environment by following these simple steps: 
  • Wash hands with soap or disinfectant, especially after touching common areas such as handles, keyboards, etc.
  • Clean surfaces that are touched frequently, including doorknobs and desks.
  • Store food in the refrigerator/freezer and, if necessary, in a clean area.
  • It is best not to eat at your desk or while working on the computer.

No one wants to get sick! These simple steps will go a long way towards preventing infection from common infectious diseases such as colds, flu, and norovirus, among others.


The second step is for people who have been diagnosed with an infectious disease to:

  • Not return to work until the illness has gone away.
  • Follow any instructions from your doctor to prevent the spread of infection.


If a person is exhibiting symptoms, they should stay home from school or work to not pass on whatever it is they have to others.


The third step is for immune-compromised people, such as those with HIV:

  • Stay away from public places where there may be an increased risk of infection by airborne transmissions, like shopping malls or theaters.
  • Take precautions when coming into contact with other people, including avoiding touching hands and surfaces that might have been contaminated.


The fourth step is for people who are not immune-compromised, such as those without HIV:

  • Avoid contact with sick individuals and stay away from public places where there may be an increased risk of infection by airborne transmissions like shopping malls or theaters.
  • Wash hands thoroughly after touching a surface that may have been contaminated, such as a shopping cart handle, a door handle, a computer keyboard.
  • Avoid making contact with others if they are sick. If you must make contact with someone who is sick, wash your hands thoroughly first and refrain from touching surfaces that may have been contaminated.


The fifth step would be for people in the workplace:

Make sure all employees feel confident about recognizing symptoms of the disease
Cover mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.

To take precautions against disease-spreading mosquitoes, people can take measures to reduce contact with them:

Stay inside during evening hours, dusk-dawn, where mosquitoes are most active. Take steps to avoid mosquito bites, like use mosquito repellent.
Drain or cover containers that hold water, as mosquitoes need standing water to reproduce.

By understanding the importance of controlling infectious diseases in the workplace, we can prevent the spread of diseases.

Preventing Mold Growth in Orlando Commercial Properties

5/27/2021 (Permalink)

messy office with mold and water stains on walls Mold that is left untreated can cause significant damage to your commercial property in Orlando

Mold is a common problem that plagues many Orlando commercial properties. It can result in significant damages, as well as lost revenue for the property's owner. To prevent mold from growing in a commercial building, it's essential to take specific steps. 


What Kinds of Mold Grows in Florida's Commercial Buildings?


In Florida and other hot states, there are a few common types of mold that will grow in commercial buildings: 


Aspergillus - Aspergillus is amongst the most commonly found mold species and thrives indoors in the right environment.

Stachybotrys atra - This type of mold can grow in buildings that are damp and humid.

Penicillium - This is one of the most common molds found indoors and growing on many surfaces from carpets, clothing, food products like cheese, bread to building materials.


To prevent mold growth in your office, follow these steps:


Keep humidity levels below 60% by using a humidifier or dehumidifier. Heating and air conditioning systems should be installed to regulate the temperature for optimal indoor comfort with a range of 65°F (18.33°C) - 75°F (23.89°C).

Avoid overuse of ventilation units which can cause condensation on surfaces where water may collect if it's cold outside or too humid indoors.
Be sure that all floors are clean before leaving them wet from mop bucket water spills. Wipe down any upholstery furniture and carpets regularly, so dust collects less inside. Clean windowsills, window seats, vents, and other areas.

 

Commercial Buildings: What Can Cause Mold Growth


Mold can also grow in a variety of areas, but they thrive on warm and humid surfaces. This is why it's essential to wipe down all upholstery furniture and carpets regularly, so dust collects less inside the building.

Windowsills allow moisture from rain or snow into your buildings, where it can collect for days before evaporating back out again, which means if you have leaks around windowsill seals, then mold will form quickly as a result.
Ventilation systems that are not adequately designed or cleaned also contribute to humidity levels increasing indoors.

Some tips to prevent potential mold growth at home or work include keeping humidity levels below 60% using a humidifier or dehumidifier.
Also, be sure to use a dehumidifier and clean out the ducts regularly. Be sure that your building has good ventilation and that the heat is not making it too humid.

Mold can grow in Orlando commercial properties if there are leaks around windowsill seals, inadequate ventilation systems, or high humidity levels. It's always best to practice prevention to don't have to deal with mold growth later. 


Steps To Take to Prevent Mold Growth


Remove any musty odors or leaks contributing to the growth of mold. Install quality air conditioning and heating systems so if there are excess moisture levels in the building due to flooding or heavy rains. They will be able to properly escape from the building without becoming trapped and causing more moisture problems down the line.

Other steps you should take to prevent mold and mildew growth are installing a high-quality, tight grout sealant in the seams of your building's foundation. You'll also want to remove any stagnant water sources that may be present on your property or nearby it.

This includes puddles from storm runoff or other potential hazards like ponds without lids. Finally, make sure there is proper ventilation for all drywall joints so moisture doesn't get trapped behind them - this can lead to more severe problems down the line if not caught early enough. 


Removing Mold from Commercial Buildings

 The Florida humid climate is perfect for the growth of mold and mildew. Mold typically grows in damp areas with a lack of air circulation, like bathrooms or kitchens with poor ventilation.

It's essential to take preventative measures against these types of infestations so they don't spread throughout your commercial building and make it uninhabitable.

One way you can do this is by keeping moist surfaces dry as much as possible. If this isn't possible, try using an appropriate surface cleaner that will kill any living organisms trying to live on wet materials such as tile grout sealant or disinfecting wipes explicitly designed for killing mold spores around sinks and drains.

It would be best if you refrained from cleaning up spills yourself; instead, contact professionals trained in commercial mold removal.

Additionally, it would help if you washed out any sponges or mop heads used to clean and disinfect surfaces that may contact water after use. It's important for these materials not to be reused because they could quickly become a breeding ground for bacteria and fungus spores.

These simple precautions will go far in preventing mold growth and its related damages on Orlando commercial properties throughout Central Florida.

Protect against lost revenue due to downtime periods caused by these issues properties throughout Central Florida and protect against lost revenue generated by downtime periods due to these issues.

Commercial Sprinkler Floods in Orlando, FL

2/1/2021 (Permalink)

sprinkler head with flames in the background Although a sprinkler system can help minimize the potential overall damage from a fire, the aftermath of flood damage still needs to be addressed.

A typical business owner in Orlando, FL, doesn’t spend time pondering the effects of catastrophic flooding due to fire sprinklers being activated. However, it’s a problem that can quickly get out of control and cost tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage. The obvious solution to the problem is prevention, but you first need to know what causes the issues.

Reasons For Accidental Activation

Contrary to popular belief, modern sprinkler systems aren’t activated by fire alarms or smoke from burnt food in an employee breakroom. They instead have to be subjected to extreme heat that will either burst the red liquid bulb or melt the metal sensor. However, there are cases where they will activate accidentally, and the following are common reasons for this to happen:

Sprinkler heads being used as hangers

Improper installation

Vandalization

Factory accidents

Immediate Steps To Mitigate Losses

In an emergency flooding situation, the first critical step is to turn off the water. In an office or factory setting, it’s important to have multiple designated employees who know how to do this. Once the water is shut off, cleanup can begin. Hundreds of gallons of water can be released in a short period of time, so water damage to floors, walls, and machinery happens quickly. The most thorough plan is to contact a water restoration company, which will be able to correctly dry each surface and reduce mold risk.

Long Term Approach

Once the initial cleanup is underway, the next step is to contact the insurance company and prevent the problem from ever occurring again. Employees must be trained to never touch or hang anything near a sprinkler head, and ideal placement for them is in a location difficult for a person or machine to accidentally contact.

Flooding in your business can seem overwhelming. However, there are steps you can take to prevent and minimize damage. A good water restoration company will have your facility looking “Like it never even happened.”