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May 26, 2017 Residential Cleaning Connection Newsletter
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 Volume 8  |  Issue 5 


Let’s Talk: An Interview with ISSA Executive Director John Barrett


ARCSI, A Division of ISSA is nearing the six-month anniversary of its merger with ISSA. We thought it was a good time to sit down with John Barrett, the Executive Director of ISSA, to chat about the merger and the future of ARCSI. (Pictured at left sitting left to right: John Barrett and Ernie Hartong. Standing from l to r: Tom Stewart, Jeff Lange and David Sikes.)


ARCSI: What do you think has been the most significant benefit of this merger for ARCSI members?

JB: From the perspective of ISSA, we hope that the members of ARCSI see increased value in our partnership and the way that they can signal the value by joining and renewing their membership. It's also our hope that the value of the partnership is tangible. The world is incredibly competitive and it's our hope that the companies look to ARCSI to secure a competitive advantage.


Truth be told, we have just gotten started. ARCSI is the first association to merge with ISSA and we have been working very hard to identify areas and associations we can invest in for the benefit of our diverse and growing membership.


ARCSI: How do you think the merger has benefited ISSA?

JB: Our mission at ISSA is to change the way the world views cleaning and ultimately to bring together the global cleaning community.


ARCSI has brought a vast amount of insight into the residential cleaning market. This was not an area of expertise that we had at ISSA before the merger. We are getting up to speed thanks to the generous energy and enthusiasm shared by the ARCSI staff, Council and membership. It is helping us to understand the needs of the residential cleaning community and what we can do to serve that class of members. We are delighted and grateful for the privilege to represent and be the voice for the residential cleaning community.


ARCSI: What do you see as the next steps for ARCSI and ISSA?

JB: The staff teams at ISSA and ARCSI are knee deep in the next steps. When we started this process, we had to define goals and objectives. That part has been done. Now we have identified a series of tactics to grow membership, certifications and training – and that will be where you see the next tangible benefits. It is a priority for us to seek other partnerships that are highly complementary to ARCSI and further strengthen the benefits, resources and connection with the residential cleaning community.


ARCSI: Where do you see the ISSA in say 5 or 10 years?

JB: Our vision for the extended future is consistent with our global strategies. The cleaning community around the world is not very different from our own. In fact, they are very similar. But in many countries, they don't have an association representing them and there isn't a global voice. We want to bring together the residential cleaning community across the globe and extend our influence in those communities.


ARCSI: Do you have anything you would like to share with the Residential Cleaning members of ISSA?

JB: I want to applaud the leadership of this group. It's been incredibly positive and energizing to work with a group that is so dedicated to their members. The members and the board are absolutely enthusiastic about helping other members reach their goals. The commitment exhibited by the members of the residential cleaning community to their peers is refreshing and we hope that we can expand the reach of this group. We are thrilled to have this opportunity.





Registration Open for the ISSA/INTERCLEAN
& ISSA Convention

The ARCSI Annual Cleaning Convention is now part of the ISSA/INTERCLEAN® North America Trade Show and ISSA Convention, to be held September 10-14, 2017, in Las Vegas, NV. Registration and housing are now open!


Mark your calendar for this year's event:

  • Welcome Reception:
    September 10
  • Education Days:
    September 11-14
  • Trade Show Exhibits:
    September 12-14
  • Chairman's Gala:
    September 13

So Much New in 2017


The action kicks off on Sunday, September 10, with a First-Time Attendee Orientation and a Welcome Reception at Bally’s. Plus so much more, including:

  • New schedule: The show now runs from Monday – Thursday to give you more time to explore even more of the show floor, but plan to come early so you don't miss out on the Sunday evening events!

  • New Residential Cleaning Connection registration package: The Residential Cleaning Connection package is $249 and includes all the ARCSI and ISSA seminars and workshops, the keynote speakers, the Trade Show floor and the evening networking receptions.

  • 60+ education workshops and seminars from ISSA and ARCSI, A Division of ISSA.

  • New Residential Pavilion spotlighting products and services of interest to you. The pavilion will be in an easy-to-find location – right next to the ISSA Resource Center.

Register Today


During the registration process, select the Residential Cleaning Connection Package. This package includes all of the same value-packed events you are used to — and more!


Please note: The Residential Cleaning Connection package is $249. The package includes all of the ARCSI and ISSA seminars and workshops, the keynote speakers, the Trade Show floor and the evening networking receptions.


ARCSI Hotel Headquarters


Make your reservations today to be sure you are at the right location for all of the evening events!


Bally’s Las Vegas
3645 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Phone: 702-967-4111



Residential Cleaning Connection Package 
 Book Hotel  |  Register Now



The ISSA Convention from an Attendee’s Perspective

By Alison Palmer


Have you registered for the upcoming ISSA/ARCSI Show yet? You may still be making up your mind, especially if you are new to the association. I’m here to tell you what a terrific experience this will be, both for you personally – and especially for your business.


In 2006 when ARCSI was a very young association, they sent me a postcard. It was the first time I had heard of them. I hemmed and hawed about whether I should go. The program sounded absolutely awesome, but I would be going alone into a group where I knew no one. That’s pretty daunting for many people. My very wise brother said to me that I should try it. “What’s the worst that could happen?” he asked. If it was awful, I was still in a great city, with lots to do, and I needed a break from my business.


Well, there was no worst-case scenario. From the moment I arrived at the hotel, I was standing in line to register and overheard a conversation about housecleaning between the people ahead of me in line. I gathered up all my courage and asked if they were there with ARCSI. WOW! From then on, I was gathered into the group. I was welcomed, I found peers with whom I could discuss the frustrations of owning my own cleaning business. And that was only in the registration line! At the Welcome Reception on the opening night, I was introduced to so many more people just like myself. (Thank goodness for name tags!) How wonderful to discover that they had the same concerns as I had.


The next few days were a rich experience. I chose many seminars to attend and I learned SO much. There were speakers about specific cleaning issues as well as plenty of information about management, leadership, employee relations, marketing and so much more.


The trade show floor is like Disney World for cleaning people! You will have three days to explore. My advice is:

  1. Wear comfortable shoes.
  2. Wear comfortable shoes.
  3. Wear comfortable shoes!

You will receive a map of the trade show floor in your registration packet. Take some time in your hotel room the night before to study the map so you can visit the booths that really interest you. Otherwise you will wander up one aisle and down the next going from one shiny object to another. If you really need to find a perfect vacuum cleaner, then target those booths. There will be many of them. If you need a great soap scum remover, there will be manufacturers who will talk you through the science of that, give you some free samples, and swipe your badge so they can contact you at your office after the show.


There will be a special area on the show floor this year dedicated to residential cleaning. The ARCSI booth will be there along with vendors that specialize in products, equipment, and services aimed at residential cleaners. 


In the classroom area, there is a Members’ Lounge. It is a great place to meet friends, sit for a while, and just take a break. You can also browse the entries into the Professional Image Awards and cast your vote for things like Best Uniform, Best Logo, Best Vehicle Graphics and Best Website. ARCSI members like to start early in the morning and continue well into the night, so a short rest will help.


You will find Evening Roundtables on the schedule – they are not to be missed! They spark lively discussions for sharing of experience and expertise. Priceless! Plus, they offer another chance to rest your feet!


The ARCSI convention is packed full of variety, information, friends, experts, fun and much more. We have taken polls after our previous conventions and asked what the best part is. The answer is NETWORKING! So, get off the fence and make the best decision you can make for your business in 2017. Register for the ISSA/ARCSI convention in Las Vegas in September. Bring LOTS of business cards. If you have any questions or need some encouragement, feel free to contact me by email:


See you in Vegas!




Get Your HCT in 2017

The HCT Certification sets you and your company apart. It differentiates you from other residential cleaning companies in your market as professional and knowledgeable.


"I took the HCT class last year in Chicago, it was so worth it.
You will learn so much and it give to a great feeling of
accomplishment as well as being certified.

-- John Winter, Dawn to Dusk Cleaning Services, Shelby Township, MI


The House Cleaning Technician (HCT) certification program teaches cleaning technicians how to go about doing just that. Becoming certified gives you the knowledge to be the best cleaner possible. Certified House Cleaning Techs understand all the surfaces they will find in clients' homes, how to clean them and (almost more importantly) how NOT to clean them.


Offered by the IICRC accredited school, the Institute for Service Excellence, the course is taught by Bruce Vance, ISE.








How to Hire the Best Employees

By Mel Kleiman


What is the most important buying decision you'll ever make? An expensive piece of cleaning equipment? A new payroll system? Does something else come to mind?
Well, no matter what it is, there is a proven system that ensures you make the best decision and get the most value in return for your investment. It's in use worldwide to purchase everything from paperclips to airplanes and, yet, this system is routinely ignored when it comes to making what is truly the most important buying decision every residential cleaning company owner or manager ever faces: Who gets hired.


A couple of reasons for this oversight come to mind. The first is that few owners or managers realize the standardized practices in use for purchasing also comprise an efficient, effective employee hiring system. Also at play is a reluctance to systemize hiring in the mistaken belief that it's not possible to choose human capital in the same way we acquire other products and services. This is why most hiring decisions still hinge instead on the result of gut-instinct interviews—in spite of the fact that interviews are proven to be only 8% more reliable than flipping a coin!


It's time to take a page out of your purchasing procedures manual and start "buying" employees with the same care and concern as you procure new equipment.


Spell Out Your Purchasing Specifications


Be it a vacuum cleaner or a new staff member, you can't get what you need if you don't know exactly what you need it to do. That’s why your purchasing specs for that new employee should go beyond the basic job description and spell out:


1. The mental and physical capacities needed. Do you need or someone with a degree or simply a GED? Does the applicant need to be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound or just be able to lift, carry, and use the necessary equipment?


2. The innate attitudes that ensure the employee likes the job and your customers like the employee. The 4 major factors critical to success on any job are:

  • Information
  • Intelligence
  • Skill
  • Attitude

Of these factors, the Harvard Business School found that the first 3 account for only 7% of success, while attitude accounts for the remaining 93%. That's why savvy employers hire for attitude and train for skills.


3. The personality traits best suited for the job. Does the job call for a person who is competitive or a team player? The people responsible for cleaning homes should have a natural propensity for attention to detail. On the other hand, your managers should be big picture thinkers.


4. The specific skills you need. Does the ideal candidate need to be bilingual or strong enough to lift and carry 25 pounds repeatedly throughout the day? If the answer is yes, design a test to make sure they really can do what they say they can do.


Solicit Interest


With the specifications in hand, the purchasing agent issues a Solicitation of Interest to find out who might provide the required products or services. This is analogous to advertising your job opening and, just like a good purchasing agent, you should use every possible resource.


Ask for referrals from employees, customers and vendors. Advertise on job boards, your website and on Craigslist. Call the good people who used to work for you and see if they might want to come back. (The worst they could say is "no," and then you can ask if they know of anyone who might be interested.)


Evaluate Bidders' Qualifications


In the purchasing world, a qualified bidder is "an entity that has the capability to perform the contract requirements." In the hiring world, this is the heart and soul of an effective and efficient employee selection system. It comprises a series of simple, logical steps that reduce employee turnover by ensuring better hiring decisions.


The first step is a telephone prescreen to determine if applicants meet the most basic hiring criteria. There's no point in taking the time to see anyone in person who doesn't pass this screening step.


For those who pass the pre-screen, conduct the appropriate tests to determine if applicants meet the rest of the requirements called out in your specs. The first tests are for the required skills and capacities.


For those who pass this screen, standardized attitude and/or personality tests are also widely available to help identify those people best suited to the job. 

Issue Your Request for Proposal (RFP)


At this point, the purchasing agent invites qualified vendors to submit their proposals. Similarly, you have identified a group of people you want to invite in for the big test: the interview.


There are several steps to conducting an effective interview and the first is to tell the applicant up front what is going to happen and what you want them to do. Above all, you want the person to be honest with you.



There are several steps to conducting an effective interview
and the first is to tell the applicant up front what is going
to happen and what you want them to do.
Above all, you want the person to be honest with you.



You can accomplish this by saying something like: "I'm going to be honest and open with you about this job and I hope you will be open and honest with me. It doesn't matter if you've ever been fired or had trouble with a boss before. As long as you tell me, we can take it under consideration. But, if you don't tell me and we find a problem when we run your background check, I can't hire you. Do you understand what it is I want?" Now the applicant is positioned to tell you the truth when you start asking questions.


The second step is the interview itself. The interviewers who get the best results use structured interview question sets. By asking every applicant the same questions, they're able to compare apples-to-apples and make the best hiring decisions.


Conduct Your Bid Analysis


Now our purchasing agent will enter all the information from the proposals submitted into some kind of spreadsheet in order to analyze the data and make a decision. This is where you gather up all the information you've collected about each applicant and do the same.


When making a final decision about who to hire, there are 4 things to consider:

  • Test results should count for 30%
  • The interview should count for 30%
  • References should count for 30% (once thoroughly checked)
  • Your personal perception should count for 10% (because no matter how hard you try to eliminate your biases, they may still be there)

If the applicant scores poorly on any one of the criteria, it's worth 100% and eliminates the applicant. On the other hand, a fantastic rating in any one of these areas can't, on its own, get someone hired. When you find good-to-great ratings in all four areas, you've found the right person for the job.


Make the Award & Letters of Regret


At this point, our purchasing agent may issue a contract to the winning bidder. This document will spell out all the terms and conditions as well as the rights and obligations of both parties. The applicant's signed and dated employment application form should cover all these issues, however, when you "award" the job you'll want to spell out a few things to avoid the misunderstandings, disappointments, and assumptions that can lead to that person walking out on you or termination for cause.


First, tell the successful candidate why you chose him or her. Explain how the person's capacities, attitudes, personality traits and skills are a good match for the job. When you set expectations early in this way, the person will either meet your standards or opt out by declining your offer.


Second, make sure the person understands all the terms and conditions of the offer: the position, earnings, start date and any contingencies, such as a drug test.


Third, make sure the person knows the grounds for termination by reviewing all job-related rules. Finally, don't forget to notify the other candidates that you have decided to hire someone else. Thank them for applying and the time they invested and wish them well.


Every job applicant knows your job is to "buy" the best applicant you can. Do what works. Use purchasing policies and procedures to decide who gets hired and watch your organization thrive.


Certified Speaking Professional Mel Kleiman is North America's foremost authority on how to recruit, select and retain hourly employees and president of Humetrics. Kleiman is a speaker in this year’s Residential Cleaning Connection track at the 2017 ISSA/INTERCLEAN and ISSA Convention.


One Thing That Matters When Chasing Elusive Employee Engagement

While engagement has many contributing factors, foundational feelings of contribution, trust, and altruism are all derived from one thing—human relationships.


Companies are constantly chasing the costly “white rabbit” of employee engagement. America’s disengaged workforce is costing companies $450 billion to $550 billion annually (Gallup), making the “feeling” of disengagement an actual financial loss. The reason most companies are falling short on the engagement front is a lack of focus on human relationships.


Read the full article.




Google Is Getting into the Job Listing Business

From Cleaning Business Today


New tool for job seekers and employers set to roll out in the next few weeks
Google is set to launch a jobs search engine in the US in the coming weeks. CEO Sundar Pichai gave a glimpse of the new tool in the company's recent developers conference, I/O.


Read the full article.






ARCSI & ISSA Launch Benchmarking Survey

Chance for You to Measure Your Performance, Increase Your Profitability


All Residential Cleaning members of ISSA are encouraged to participate in the first-ever ISSA/ARCSI Residential Cleaning Benchmarking Survey. Benchmark your company in this survey from ARCSI and ISSA to find out – and gain access to key insights – you can use to highlight your competitive advantages, uncover opportunities for improvement, and ultimately boost your profitability.


The results of this survey will provide an enhanced understanding of the key benchmarks for residential cleaning companies. Our industry continues to grow and change and this survey can provide invaluable insight into current trends as well as identify future changes.


Why should you participate?

  • Gain access to operational and financial metrics for residential cleaning companies
  • Compare your company to other services in the industry -- and your market
  • Identify efficiency gaps
  • Understand the financial impact of opportunities that may exist for you.

Ready to get started?






ISSA and the Canadian Sanitation Supply Association (CSSA) are pleased to announce they have joined forces effective April 1, 2017, to form ISSA Canada to better serve the Canadian cleaning and janitorial community.


Similar to the merger with ARCSI, all existing CSSA members are now members of ISSA Canada. All ISSA Canada members now have access to ISSA member benefits, including expanded educational opportunities, market exposure, networking opportunities, business tools and data, and other industry information.


“ISSA’s continued vision is to change the way the world views cleaning, “says ISSA Executive Director John Barrett. “The creation of ISSA Canada allows ISSA to increase its membership and expand the association’s geographical footprint in North America while spreading our message that cleaning is an investment in human health, the environment, and an improved bottom line.”





ISSA Receives U.S. EPA SmartWay Affiliate Challenge Award

ISSA joins an elite group of SmartWay affiliates recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a 2017 SmartWay Affiliate Challenge Honoree. EPA recognized ISSA as part of its Earth Day celebrations.


The SmartWay Affiliate Challenge is a national program developed by EPA to acknowledge organizations that do an exceptional job of supporting policies and advancing practices that reduce harmful pollution from freight activities. These affiliates serve as role models for other SmartWay affiliates and partners. ISSA is one of nine organizations nationwide to receive this honor, and the only cleaning industry association to do so. 







HomeAdvisor Recognizes 7 Cleaning Companies with “Best of” Awards

HomeAdvisor recognized 7 residential cleaning companies with the “Best of HomeAdvisor Award” for 2017. The award is presented to the top-rated pros that exemplify quality practices and premier services are bestowed this prestigious award!

ARCSI recipients of the 2017 Best of HomeAdvisor Award are:

  • Clean Sweep of AMERICA, Inc., Rita West Ellsworth
  • We Clean Houses, Lyle Tomkins
  • Sparklean, Inc., Mandy Jordan
  • MOG Improvement Services, LLC, Victor H. Aponte
  • Sunshine Maid Corporation, Norma Corrales
  • Kustom Kleaning, LLC, Tiffany Rouse
  • Best Clean Ever, LLC, Francois Youakim

Find Out More About HomeAdvisor at Special June 20 Hot Topic Tuesday


Every 3 seconds a new customer comes to HomeAdvisor looking for a pro. Will they find you company when they do? Let us help maximize your online presence and connect you to more customers.


With HomeAdvisor Pro membership, it’s easy to:

  • Connect to serious homeowners
  • Receive local, targeted leads
  • Access your account from anywhere

To get started, click here or email us for more information at




Free Publicity for Your Cleaning Company with Cleanify

Cleanify Magazine loves featuring top-rated, independently owned, local house cleaning services, and we would like to write an article about your cleaning company. Free publicity can help to spread the word about your services and is a great way to shine a spotlight on your company. This is a free service that we’re offering to all ARCSI members. If you’d like to have an article written about your company, please let us know.


What is Cleanify Magazine?


We like to call ourselves the official magazine of clean. We’re currently online-only but are looking to publish print copies of our editions soon. We feature in-depth profiles of local mom and pop cleaning companies and like to highlight organizations that are making a difference through cleaning. We also promote sustainable green cleaning solutions.


Our audience lives on both sides of the cleaning equation—busy consumers (professionals, families, realtors, property managers, vacation rental hosts, etc.) who are in need of cleaning services, and the professional cleaning business owners who can provide those services.


Cleanify Magazine is associated with, a top destination for people who are looking to book cleaning appointments. We partner with thousands of local cleaning companies across the U.S. and Canada to provide high quality cleaning services to customers. Listing your cleaning company on is completely free. When your cleaning company is listed, customers can book you online, 24x7, and we handle the scheduling and payments for you. You receive real job offers—not leads — from us whenever customers in your area request a clean. The customer is charged a convenience fee to cover our costs, but you do not pay us anything. You get paid instantly with our system for automatic invoicing and collection—no more hassling the customer to leave a check for you. The customer can also leave you a tip via our online payment system.


These are some example profiles we’ve written about cleaning companies over the last few months:

We’d love to hear from you and set up time to hear your story so that we can write an article about your company. Please let us know if you’d like to have an article written about your company.






Welcome to

Residential Members


  • Kellie Brackin, My Maid Day, Plano, Texas 
  • Micahel Burns, Intellegent Cleaning Products, Bernalillo, New Mexico 
  • Latasha Cunningham, Dava 4 Maid Cleaning Services, Buffalo, New York 
  • April DeCenzo, VIP Serivces, Omaha, Nebraska 
  • Stephanie DiVittorio, The Clean Queen, Belleville, Illinois 
  • Devonne Edwards, Frontline Janitorial, Largo, Maryland 
  • Sandria Elrod-Iqbal, Maid for Delivery
  • Lecia Fall, Tip Top Cleaning Solutions, Charlotte, North Carolina 
  • Jamila Fanfair, Shield Cleaning Company, New York, New York 
  • Roni Flanders, Molly Maids Greensboro & High Point, Greensboro, North Carolina 
  • Lenair Henriquez, Customer’s Choice Janitorial Service, Hernando, Florida 
  • Gema Iglesias, Gemas Cleaning Service, Silver Spring, Maryland 
  • Sherece Lane-Upton, Ballerina Professional Cleaning, Austell, Georgia 
  • Maria Lanucara, Italian Home Cleaning Service, Dover, New Jersey 
  • Mike Lund, All County Cleaning, Felton, Delaware 
  • Shemry Maraia, The Cleaners, Rockville, Rhode Island 
  • Karina Neff, Maximaids, Springfield, Virginia 
  • Sandra Nunes, Creating Time, Toronto, Ontario 
  • Bola Olagbegi, My Sparkling Maid, Duluth, Georgia 
  • Steve Pierce, Life Maid Easy FL, Vero Beach, Florida
  • Kenneth Rasnick, Cleaning by Design, Saint Johns, Florida 
  • Sandra Sheppard, Happy House Cleaning, Cumberland, Virginia 
  • Dan Smith, Home Maid Better, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 
  • Susan Strayer, Simply Pure Home, Franklin, Tennessee 
  • Bibiana Suaava, Cleaning with Aloha, Ewa Beach, Hawaii 
  • Maria Surla, Visiting Maids, Melissa, Texas 
  • Mary Tacket, Added Touch Cleaning, Xenia, Ohio 
  • Lynn Thoele, Sparkle Plenty Professional Cleaners, Maplewood, Minnesota 
  • Pursarth Tuladhar, Cleanify, San Francisco, California 
  • Evonne Valpon, Goldstar Services, West Fargo, North Dakota 
  • Diego Vieira, iFresh Services, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 
  • Pamela Williams, Lake Life Is MAID, Riverside, Texas 
  • Ginger Wilson, Love My Maids, Arlington, Texas





Let’s Talk: An Interview with ISSA Executive Director John Barrett

Registration Open for the ISSA/INTERCLEAN & ISSA Convention

The ISSA Convention from an Attendee’s Perspective

Get Your HCT in 2017

How to Hire the Best Employees

One Thing That Matters When Chasing Elusive Employee Engagement

Google Is Getting into the Job Listing Business

ARCSI & ISSA Launch Benchmarking Survey


ISSA Receives U.S. EPA SmartWay Affiliate Challenge Award

HomeAdvisor Recognizes 7 Cleaning Companies with “Best of” Awards

Free Publicity for Your Cleaning Company with Cleanify

Welcome to New ISSA Residential Members

























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