Squeaky Clean: Janitorial Services

A lady who is the janitor of the building working for an outside Janitorial Service Company.

Common Tips about Insurance and Risk Management for Janitorial Service Companies

The differences between Janitorial Service and Commercial Cleaning Companies may be slight, but they make the risks involved in operating these businesses quite different. Janitorial Service Companies primarily deal with the daily and weekly ongoing cleaning of a facility. Commercial Cleaning Companies are regularly scheduled, but may come to a facility once or twice a year to perform specific deep cleaning. Because of these differences, the type of equipment used by the employees is drastically different and the nature of the work is different as well. Janitorial Service Companies have needs that are specific to each individual business and each individual property being cleaned. Here are five types of insurance policies every janitorial service company should have, three risks most companies face, and three additional tips for Janitorial Service Business Owners.

Cleaning Station for a Janitorial Service Company

General Liability Insurance

General Liability will cover your businesses liability to third parties for damages involving bodily injury and property damage. A common example of a need for this policy is a customer slipping and falling in a retail store after an employee of a janitorial service company has mopped the floor.  The liability of this injury is with the janitorial service company and not with the retail store. This is why it is always best to clean the facilities when the business is open to the public. In most cases it is even better to clean the facility in the evening and not right before the business opens.

Workers Compensation for Janitorial Service Companies

Workers Compensation Insurance is required by law for most janitorial service companies in most states. The workers compensation system is governed by the state governments in the United States. For this reason, the laws may be drastically different from state to state. Some states have exclusions that allow some businesses not to carry this coverage depending upon several factors. It is best to check with the governing body within the state or states you operate in to make sure you are within compliance of the workers compensation system within your state or states.

Inland Marine Insurance

Janitorial Service Companies have lots of specialized equipment. This equipment is typically used and stored at a third party site. If you have a bare bones package of commercial insurance, these pieces of equipment are typically not covered under a basic general liability policy. When the equipment is being transported away from the businesses physical location and when the equipment is being used by the employees at a third party site, the business is liable for any damages to the equipment while being used off site. If a business has equipment that your business depends on and the business does not have enough cash on hand to replace that equipment quickly, the business needs to secure an inland marine insurance policy.

Employee Dishonesty Coverage for Janitorial Service Companies

The nature of the janitorial service industry requires employees to work at a third party location with little to no supervision. No matter how trustworthy a group of employees are, the temptation to steal from a business is too great for many people. This can include employees stealing products from a retail store you are cleaning in the evenings, but it can also include your employee stealing a purse of a customer at a business your business is cleaning. In relation to this risk, it is important to remember that things go missing and when things go missing it is common to blame the cleaning crew. In addition to securing an employee dishonesty insurance policy it is important to be prepared for a day when you or your employees are accused of theft when it did not occur. The perception of the customer is equal to or more important than the truth. In some cases, a situation where your employees are accused of theft can have an enormous impact on your business in the form of Better Business Bureau, Google, and Facebook Reviews. Depending upon the amount of theft that takes place their may be negative press about your business. Depending upon the type of policy you decide to purchase, an employee dishonesty policy can help with the cost to hire a public relations agency to repair the damage to the businesses reputation. No matter the severity of the situation, it is more likely a janitorial service company should secure a employee dishonesty insurance policy.

Commercial Auto Insurance

If you have employees who operate vehicles as a part of their job, you need to secure some form of commercial auto insurance. If you own vehicles and the employees drive those vehicles when on the clock, than you can purchase just a standard commercial auto policy. If you have employees who operate their own vehicles or vehicles you rent for them to use, than you need to secure a Hired and Non-owned Auto Insurance Policy. This type of coverage will cover a business for the liability the business faces when the employees are using a vehicle while on the clock. Even if your employees have their own personal auto policy in place the damages caused by a wreck when they are on the clock are the liability of the business. Even if the employee is at fault or is breaking the law by speeding or breaking another law.

Insurance Quote for a Janitorial Service Company

Common Risks for Janitorial Service Companies

In the Janitorial Service Industry, it is important to not only secure proper insurance coverage, but it is equally important to take the proper precautions to not have to use those policies frequently.  There are many things that are unique to each individual business and each individual location your business operates, but there are several risks that all janitorial service companies face. Here are three risks you should prepare for in order to keep your business and your employees safe.

Slips, Trips, and Falls

Slips, Trips, and Falls are a risk that many different types of businesses face. The Janitorial Service Industry faces an elevated risk of slips, trips, and falls because of the exposure to the general public at many of the third party locations that are cleaned.  Mopping is a huge concern, especially if your employees are cleaning the facility in the morning shortly before customers have access to the building. Training your employees to be aware of this issue and to properly prepare the facility to prevent slips, trips, and falls can have an enormous impact on the amount and severity of insurance claims within you business.

Driving Risk for Janitorial Service Companies

Not all janitorial service companies have employees who operate a vehicle as part of their job duties. Anything you can do to limit or eliminate the amount of time your employees are behind the wheel will lower the amount and severity of insurance claims and lower what you pay for insurance premium. It is important to take some additional time during the quoting process to inform your insurance agent exactly how much and what types of driving your employees do while on the clock. If you rush through this process, your agent may not secure this coverage or they may secure the wrong type of coverage for your business. This can cause a claim to not be covered.

Employee Theft

Unfortunately employee theft is a reality of the janitorial service industry. Some of the accusations are founded, but many are not. Your business is an easy target for blame when something shows up missing at a business. It is important for your business to take theft seriously, but it is equally important to be prepared for the day when your employees are falsely accused of stealing. There are insurance policies to help with the damage caused by this risk, but a small amount of prevention can help stop this from becoming a problem in the first place.

Wet floor with wet floor warning sign for safety is common at most Janitorial Service Companies.

Additional Tips for Janitorial Service Business Owners

Know Your Risks in the Janitorial Service Industry

Every business has risks that are unique to that business. When you add in the fact that your business more than likely operates at multiple third party locations, there are many risks that are unique to you and your business. Having a plan in place for these issues is important.

In the Janitorial Service Industry, risks include injuries to you or your employees from slips, trips, and falls; as well as exposure to dangerous chemicals. You may face , damage to your client’s property, and accidents occurring while traveling to and from work locations. Even a minor injury can turn into costly lawsuits.

Buy Insurance Based on Value, Not on Price

When an accident occurs, no business ever wants to be under insured. In insurance, like many things in life, you get what you pay for. The cheapest coverage is rarely the best policy to have when an accident occurs. At the same time, the most expensive policies may cause you to over pay for coverage you more than likely do not need. This will tie up cash flow that may be need for other business purposes. Take some additional time to speak with your agent about what is important to you when insuring your business. The more honest you are with your agent, the more likely they are to pair your business with the ideal policy.

Classify Your Business Properly for Janitorial Service

In the Janitorial Service Industry, there are numerous classification codes depending upon the scope of your business. Making sure your business is in the right code will clear up many situations that may be come headaches either when an accident occurs or during the end of term audit.

Partner with an Independent Agent who Knows Your Business

Like many aspects of your business, it is important to work with someone that knows your industry. An independent agent is ideal because they are not tied to one or a select few carriers. An independent agent can shop around your policy and make carriers compete for your business. This is where a company like Janisure is ideal because not only our we an independent agency, but our agents specialize in insurance for Janitorial Service Companies. These agents know what issues businesses in this industry face, and how to find the best package of insurance policies to meet your businesses unique needs.


Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies

Risk Management in relation to Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies .

What are the differences between Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies?

When comparing a Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies, it is important to define what exactly each are. While they are similar businesses, from a risk management perspective they do have some distinct differences. This is why they are classified differently for insurance purposes and why a business owner in one or both of these industries should think about the unique risks each type of business faces. Here is a description of what exactly these businesses are and how a business owner should prepare their insurance and risk management plans for ultimate success.

Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies

What is a Janitorial Services Business?

A janitorial services business provides basic cleaning maintenance to the interior of premises for commercial and industrial clients. These services are typically provided on a daily, weekly, or biweekly basis.  Activities include in this type of service include taking out the trash, sanitizing the bathrooms, kitchens, and break rooms so the business is ready to receive employees and customers. The contract may also call for regular vacuuming and dusting of furniture or bookshelves. Commonly it is an exclusion for janitorial services companies to come in contact with computers or other electronic devices. If your business does interact with electronics, it is important to tell your insurance agent. Electronics are frequently exclude from many insurance packages in this industry.

What is a Commercial Cleaning Company?

Commercial cleaning service companies handle more in-depth and heavier cleaning tasks.  These services occur on a regular basis throughout the year, but not on a daily or weekly basis. These types of services likely include carpet cleaning, power washing, window washing, tile and grout cleaning or even furniture and upholstery cleaning.

How are Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies different?  

The main difference between Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies is the frequency of the service and the detail with which each service entails. Janitorial services deals more with the regular maintenance and cleanliness of the facility where commercial cleaning deals more with periodical deep cleaning of a facility.

What do Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies need to be concerned about from a risk management stand point?

Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies both face risks related to the work the employees do on a daily basis. Three areas  both janitorial services and commercial cleaning companies face risk are related to employee driving exposure, common general liability claims, and employee dishonesty.

Employee driving exposure results when a business has more than one facility that employees travel to throughout the work day. The time employees spend travelling from job to job is time the business is responsible for the liability to third parties for damage that occurs in traffic accidents.

Common general liability claims results most often from slips, trips, and falls that occur as a result of the cleaning activity taking place. Cleaning after hours eliminates many of these risks, but if your employees do clean facilities when they are open to the public, it is important to train your employees well about how to warn customers of a tripping hazards. It is always more important to prevent a trip from happening in the first place than to try to limit the damage after an incident has taken place.

Employee dishonesty is the final common risk Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies face. The employees frequently work at a third party facility when none or few of the businesses employees are present. Often times there are few or only one of the cleaning companies employees present. Unfortunately, this lack of supervision is too much of a tempting situation for many employees. Preparing for the day when your employee steals from a client will go a long way towards the success of your business when this situation does occur. Securing a comprehensive insurance package will help your business with the costs of such a situation. It is equally important to be prepared for the day when your employees are innocent and being accused  of theft. When something shows up missing, the cleaning crew who is here by themselves after hours are an easy target for blame. Establishing a deep relationship with both your employees and your clients in order to deal with these situations in order to get the best outcome for all parties involved.

What types of Insurance do Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies Businesses need?

The risks faced by Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies are all unique to each and every business, but there are certain insurance policies that all businesses in this industry should consider.

✓ General Liability Insurance
✓ Business Personal Property
✓ Hired and Non-Owned Auto
✓ Workers Compensation Insurance
✓ Commercial Crime/Employee Dishonesty
✓ Inland Marine Coverage

Partnering with an experienced independent insurance agent is a great way to limit the time it takes to find insurance coverage and insures that your agent is getting you the best value for your insurance coverage. Independent insurance agents are not tied to one carrier, this allows them to acquire a quote from multiple carriers and make those carriers compete for your business. If executed properly, an independent agent should be able to get your business better coverage at the most competitive rates around. Also, they can give you insight into the positives and negatives of each carrier that a captive agent cannot tell you about their carrier.

Common Classification codes for Janitorial Services Vs. Commercial Cleaning Companies 


SIC Business Insurance Codes:

  • 7349: Building Cleaning and Maintenance Services

NAICS Liability Classifications:

  • 561720: Janitorial Services
  • 561210: Facilities Support Services
  • 561790: Other Services to Building and Dwellings

Business ISO General Liability:

  • 96816: Janitorial Services

Common Workers Compensation Class Codes:

  • 9014: Janitorial Services by Contractors—No Window Cleaning Above Ground Floor

Insurance Policies for Janitorial Services Companies

5 Types of Insurance every Commercial Cleaning or Janitorial Services Company Should Have.

Janitorial services companies provide basic cleaning services to the interior of premises for commercial and industrial clients. Some operations provide exclusive services for one client only, while others have a number of regular clients or offer services to the public on an “as needed” basis.  Typical services include the removal of trash from all areas of the premises, cleaning restrooms, dusting and regular vacuuming, mopping or sweeping of floors. Other services may include cleaning of eating areas, carpet cleaning, floor polishing, cleaning of drapery and window washing. With all of services that are provided come unique risks each business faces. Here are five insurance policies that all businesses in this industry need.


General Liability 

General Liability Insurance is a type of insurance coverage designed to protect a business from basic liabilities the business faces to third parties injured by the actions of a business.  Third parties include customers, vendors, and random people who are damaged because of the actions of a business or its employees.

Workers Compensation

Workers Compensation Insurance is like General Liability Insurance in that it deals with the liability a business may face related to injuries, but it deals with injuries to the businesses employees and not third parties. Because the workers compensation system provides benefits to both injured employees and employers, it is frequently referred to as the ‘exclusive remedy’.  The benefit an employee receives as a part of the exclusive remedy is that medical expenses and some lost wages are paid while they are hurt and not able to work. The employer benefits from the fact they cannot be sued for injuries that occur on the job, but are a result of normal operate procedures.

Inland Marine

Commercial Cleaning Companies have a lot of equipment the employees use on a daily basis. Much of this equipment can be extremely expensive and is not commonly used by businesses outside of the cleaning industry.  This equipment is essential to the work the business does. It is also fairly expensive. An inland marine insurance policy can help your business protect the specialized equipment you use when it is damaged and you are not able to use it.

Commercial Crime (Employee Dishonesty)

Commercial Crime (Employee Dishonesty) Insurance protects a business against dishonest and criminal actions over your employees.  These acts are not covered under general liability, professional liability, or property insurance. Damage that is included under this type of policy include damage to business property, employee fraud, and theft of your property. Most policies also cover theft of your client’s property.

Hired and Non-Owned Auto

Many janitorial services companies have employees who have to drive to two or more locations throughout the work day. The time that these employees spend behind the wheel is time that the business is liable for accidents that occur while the employee is on company time. A Hired and Non-owned Auto policy will cover your business for the liability it faces for damages that occur during car accidents that are the fault of your employee.

The Squeaky Clean Blog by Janisure covers all your insurance needs for businesses in the commercial cleaning and janitorial services industry.

Common Classification Codes used by Commercial Cleaning and Janitorial Services Companies.

SIC Business Insurance Codes:

  • 7349: Building Cleaning and Maintenance Services

NAICS Liability Classifications:

  • 561720: Janitorial Services
  • 561210: Facilities Support Services
  • 561790: Other Services to Building and Dwellings

Business ISO General Liability:

  • 96816: Janitorial Services

Common Workers Compensation Class Codes:

  • 9014: Janitorial Services by Contractors—No Window Cleaning Above Ground Floor