Scott Campbell, Global Product Manager, Hydro Systems
This year, much like 2020, has been another busy one for building service contractors (BSCs) and in-house cleaning teams. Facility managers and owners were tasked with upholding cleanliness as foot traffic rose in places like hotels, restaurants, airports and retail stores. Their employees had to learn new cleaning processes, incorporate various cleaners and disinfectants into their routines and become accustomed to cleaning in the presence of building visitors.
The COVID-19 pandemic has truly transformed the way the public thinks about cleanliness in commercial facilities. Their standards are high and it’s likely that cleanliness will continue to be a deciding factor for customers in 2022. So, what does this mean for the dispensing market in 2022? Read on to learn more about the factors that will drive the need for reliable and accurate chemical dispensers.
Key Factors Shaping Dispensing
There are numerous trends that will shape the dispensing market, including:
- The state of the supply chain. A 2021 report from HNY Research forecasted growth with a CAGR of 3.8% from 2020 to 2027 in the industrial cleaning chemicals market. This is good news for the dispensing market, of course, but one of the biggest questions is whether the supply chain will be able to keep up with the fluctuating demands associated with the pandemic. High demand and panic buying led to major shortages of cleaning and disinfecting products in spring 2020 and the supply chain is still being impacted today.Pre-pandemic, facility and supply chain managers knew how to estimate their cleaning chemical needs in the short term without a lot of major what-ifs. What’s trickier for them today is managing supply chain needs in the face of genuine uncertainties, like whether cases will rise or fall in their local communities and whether their facility occupancy levels will remain normal or take a dip.
While the number or type of cleaning chemicals that a particular facility is using may shift due to supply chain problems, having dispensers on site can ensure that cleaning is consistent. This is because dispensers are designed to achieve the necessary dilution ratio for these different chemicals, allowing employees to thoroughly remove soils and pathogens from surfaces.
- The need for greater transparency. Increasingly, facility managers need a clear picture of their day-to-day operations in order to reduce costs, curb consumption and limit lapses in cleanliness and compliance. The demand for connected solutions has never been greater. These smart dispensers enable remote access to processes such as dishwashing and laundry, allowing managers to make changes without being on site. Insightful reports highlight chemical usage, site production (racks or loads washed), and alarms and can offer recommendations based on any patterns that emerge. IoT-enabled dispensers also alert managers to alarms or abnormal conditions so that these can be addressed as soon as possible so as not to put cleanliness at risk or create costly operational issues.
- The ongoing labor shortage. It’s no secret that the labor shortage is affecting many industries. The American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA) notes that the pandemic has set back the hospitality job market by at least 10 years. BSCs and facilities with in-house cleaning teams are both struggling to hire workers. Additionally, roles that now include cleaning tasks, like restaurant managers, line cooks and retail workers, are also understaffed.
Staff shortages as well as high turnover across numerous industries will drive the need for solutions that make cleaning easier, safer and more effective, like dispensers. Training employees to use dispensers is a quick process. Organizations that are operating with leaner teams will appreciate the helping hand that dispensers provide, as they won’t have to rely on employees to mix chemicals correctly. This equipment can also encourage workers to clean on a regular basis because it simplifies and speeds up the process of preparing cleaning solutions.
A Bright Future for Dispensing
The outlook for dispensing in 2022 is bullish despite the uncertainties that many organizations still face as the pandemic continues. To seamlessly implement dispensers into your operation, it’s important to partner with a manufacturer that has an established, expansive dispensing products portfolio and can guide you on selection, installation and troubleshooting if issues do arise. With reliable and accurate dispensers in place – either mounted on a wall, connected to dishwashing machines or installed alongside your laundry equipment – you and your team can clean with confidence, and in turn give your customers peace of mind about your business’s cleanliness standards.