Skip to content
A Model Office Hygiene Policy – Setting Standards for a Cleaner Workspace - Unilever Professional India

A Model Office Hygiene Policy – Setting Standards for a Cleaner Workspace

Maintaining hygiene in public areas is crucial to workers' health. Offices are bustling environments where employees, clients, and guests constantly interact. The importance of a clean and sanitary space cannot be overstated. 

An office hygiene policy ensures everyone understands their responsibilities in keeping an office clean and hygienic. It’s a roadmap for cleaning staff and instils a sense of responsibility among all office occupants. 

Keeping offices clean is a collaborative effort, so everyone can work safely and efficiently. This article guides office housekeeping teams to create a policy that ensures everyone remains clean, healthy, and productive.

The Importance of Office Hygiene

Cleanliness plays an integral role in ensuring the safety and efficiency of the workspace. A commitment to maintaining a pristine office environment reaps benefits, such as a reduced risk of illness. Failure to adhere to hygiene policies can affect everything from the company’s image to workers’ health.

Health Implications

Offices can quickly become hotspots for the spread of germs. Without proper cleaning and sanitation, these spaces can facilitate the rapid transmission of illnesses, from common colds to more severe conditions. Regular, thorough cleaning, especially of high-touch surfaces, is pivotal in curtailing the spread of pathogens.

A clean environment promotes overall wellness. Employees working in a hygienic space are less likely to suffer from allergies, respiratory issues, or other ailments caused by accumulated dust or mould. Healthy employees are more productive - they’re less likely to take sick days.

Professional Appearance

An office's cleanliness reflects the company's values and work ethics. A meticulously maintained environment conveys the organisation's commitment to excellence and attention to detail. 

Conversely, a disorganised or dirty office can tarnish the company's image, suggesting negligence or apathy. A dirty office also affects morale - no-one wants to work in an unclean environment.

First impressions are lasting, and often play a pivotal role in securing partnerships or closing deals. Clients or visitors entering a pristine office establishes trust and sets a positive tone for subsequent interactions. It showcases a company's professionalism and dedication, creating a favourable environment for collaboration and growth.

Role of an Office Hygiene Policy

Office hygiene policies are comprehensive documents that guide cleaning professionals and involve those working in the office in the pursuit of a clean and safe environment. 

Establishing Clear Guidelines

A well-defined policy clearly outlines the standards to be met. This could range from how frequently the office carpets should be vacuumed to the protocols for sanitising communal kitchen areas. By setting these benchmarks, there's no ambiguity about the level of cleanliness expected.

Different departments might have different needs; for instance, the cleaning regimen for an IT department (with lots of sensitive electronic equipment) might differ from that of a general workspace. An office hygiene policy ensures that every department maintains a consistent standard of cleanliness.


Everyone needs to know their part for an office hygiene policy to be effective. This goes beyond just the cleaning staff. Employees must understand their roles in maintaining personal workspace hygiene, while managers might be tasked with ensuring team compliance.

Simply having a policy isn't enough - ensuring its effective implementation is crucial. Regular checks, evaluations, and feedback sessions can help assess the policy's success and areas of improvement.

Continuous Improvement

A policy is only as good as its implementation. Regular training sessions equip employees with the knowledge to adhere to hygiene standards. Additionally, awareness programs highlight the importance of cleanliness, making it a collective effort rather than just the responsibility of the cleaning staff.

As new research emerges and health guidelines are updated, it's crucial that the office hygiene policy reflects these changes. Regular reviews and updates ensure the policy remains relevant and effective.

Example Policies for an Office Cleanliness and Hygiene Program

Note: these are examples that housekeeping staff could include in their own policy - this is not a comprehensive list. Always tailor hygiene policies to the workspace.

Daily Cleaning Routines

Objective: Maintain the cleanliness and sanitation of high-traffic areas to ensure a safe environment for all employees.

Guidelines for Housekeepers:

  • Clean and disinfect all door knobs and handles daily.
  • Sanitise workstations, especially shared equipment like printers and fax machines.
  • Ensure kitchen areas are cleaned after each mealtime, focusing on countertops, sinks, and appliances.

Weekly/Monthly Cleaning Tasks

Objective: Address areas that require deeper cleaning or less frequent attention, ensuring comprehensive sanitation over time.


  • Deep clean carpets in communal areas on a weekly basis.
  • Clean and sanitise AC vents on a monthly basis.
  • Dust light fixtures and inspect for malfunctioning bulbs monthly.

Personal Workspace Hygiene

Objective: Promote personal responsibility in maintaining a tidy and clean workspace.

Guidelines for Employees:

  • Organise and declutter your desk daily, disposing of unnecessary items.
  • Use provided storage solutions to keep personal items and stationery organised.
  • Report any spills or damages to housekeeping immediately.

Restroom Etiquette and Maintenance

Objective: Ensure clean, functional, and well-stocked restrooms for all employees and visitors.

Etiquette and Maintenance Instructions:

  • Flush after each use and report any plumbing issues immediately.
  • Check and replenish essential supplies like soap, toilet paper, and hand sanitiser daily.
  • Maintain a checklist in each restroom for cleaners to sign off after every cleaning session.

Food Handling and Storage

Objective: Safeguard against contamination and promote best practices in handling and storing food.

Kitchen Guidelines:

  • Clean up after each meal or snack. Dispose of food waste in the designated bins.
  • Use designated storage areas for personal food items, labelling them with your name and date.
  • Ensure refrigerators are cleaned out weekly, discarding old or expired items.

Handling Illnesses

Objective: Minimise the spread of illnesses within the office and promote a healthy environment.


  • Employees showing symptoms of contagious illnesses are encouraged to work from home or take sick leave.
  • Ensure hand sanitisers and disinfecting wipes are available in communal areas.
  • Conduct yearly awareness sessions on best practices for preventing the spread of illnesses.
Previous article How Clean Is Too Clean – A Guide to Ensure Your Hotel Doesn’t Feel Like A Hospital
Next article Comprehensive Office Cleaning Duties List - Daily to Monthly Tasks