A worker shortage puts a small cleaning business in a crunch

Demand for cleaning services is rising, but that doesn’t mean everyone who provides them can meet it.


March 23, 2020

Photo credit: Daniel van Appen on Unsplash

We asked readers to tell us about how their businesses are coping with the coronavirus. We’re featuring highlights of those conversations here.

The coronavirus pandemic has created a stream of new demand for cleaning companies — especially those that disinfect properties.

But Edward Rodriguez’s company, Hip Maids, is struggling to meet the demand. School closures have forced parents who can’t work from home to choose between caring for their kids and supporting their families financially.

That leaves Rodriguez facing a shortage of workers. He’s thinking about tapping into the SBA’s loan-assistance program to cover employee salaries, and trying to find a pipeline for new employees (college students are 1 possibility).

Hip Maids’ services are typically in high demand during the summer moving season, but the spread of the pandemic has made future revenue trends difficult to forecast. Across the company’s existing contracts, Rodriguez says 30% of the revenue is secure, but the remaining 70% could be gone in a worst-case scenario.

He’s ready for a range of outcomes. Ultimately, he says, “we have been through so many life-changing events before as a society and came out on top. This too shall pass.”

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