Warehousing & Logistics - How to minimize costs | Nilfisk Official Website

A guide to comparing cleaning equipment

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Determining your TCO and ROI

For the people who hold the purse strings, the upfront price tag of new cleaning equipment is usually the sticking point. But, the upfront cost is not a good indicator of the total cost of ownership (TCO) or return on investment (ROI), especially because cleaning equipment can easily last 5 to 8 years or longer. In fact labour can make up 65-85% of the cost of cleaning when all factors are taken into consideration, compared to equipment which accounts for 3-10% 1.

Since labour accounts for up to 85% of cleaning costs, the biggest savings will come from labour savings. The following examples shows some guidelines for equipment productivity, which you can use to estimate your labour savings.

Cleaning method examples

Wet mop vs. walk-behind scrubber dryer vs. ride-on scrubber dryer*

How many square meters do you want to clean per hour (est.)?

Suggested cleaning method:

See our Scrubber dryers

Manual cleaning methods vs. walk-behind sweeper vs. ride-on sweeper*

How many square meters do you want to clean per hour (est.)?

Suggested cleaning method:

See our sweepers

*Note: These are just a few examples of equipment that’s frequently used in warehouse and distribution facilities.
There are many other options available. A Nilfisk cleaning expert can help you calculate your ROI based on your unique needs.

Large Warehouse Example


The example and calculations below show that in a large warehouse (which are becoming more common), upgrading from smaller ride-on machines to larger ones can save you around £30,000 in labour costs every year!

In the drop down menu to right you see the calculations of labour required to clean the warehouse every week for 52 weeks.
  • Warehouse size: 40,000 square metres (with a total of 30,000 square metres of floor space)

  • Current cleaning equipment: 76 cm ride-on sweeper, 91 cm ride-on scrubber dryer

  • Recommended cleaning equipment: 195 cm ride-on sweeper, 152 cm ride-on scrubber dryer

  • Cleaning schedule: Using a ride-on sweeper five times a week and a ride-on scrubber dryer once a week

  • Full-burden labour cost: £15 per hour

1. Calculation for current cleaning equipment

Sweeping with a 76 cm ride-on sweeper = 30,000 m² (area) / 3,042 m²/h (productivity rate of machine) = 9.8 hours x 5 times per week = 49 hours

Scrubbing with a 91 cm ride-on scrubber dryer = 30,000 m² / 2,350 m²/h = 12.7 hours

Total cleaning time per week: 61.7 hours

2. Calculation for proposed cleaning equipment

Sweeping with a 195 cm ride-on sweeper = 30,000 m² / 9,869 m²/h = 3 hours x 5 = 15 hours

Scrubbing with a 152 ride-on scrubber dryer = 30,000 m² / 5,187 m²/h = 5.7 hours

Total cleaning time per week: 20.7 hours

3. Savings

Cleaning time savings per week = 41 hours

Cleaning time savings per year = 41 x 52 = 2,132 hours

Labour cost savings per year = 2,132 x £15* = £31,980

*Hourly full-burden labour cost

These are just a few examples of equipment that’s frequently used in warehouse and distribution facilities. There are many other options available. A Nilfisk cleaning expert can help you calculate your ROI based on your unique needs. In addition to floorcare solutions we also offer industrial vacuum cleaners and pressure washers.

Find out how we can help you optimise the cleaning in your warehousing or logistics facility

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