The robots are coming?

Why tech doesn’t overtake talent when it comes to commercial property window cleaning, according to NSS Group’s Commercial Director, Eugene Boyle.

According to the latest research, the robot window cleaning market is set for sky-high growth and we’re also seeing innovations with drones in places such as Latvia. However, while tech is improving standards in the industry, employing, training and nurturing the right people remains the secret to success.

Last month saw the release of a market report on window cleaning robots, which shows a rise in the popularity of technology-led solutions to window cleaning, but this isn’t without its issues. Technology should be embraced within the industry to create efficiencies, improve visibility and enhance customer service, but it won’t replace the experience and intuition of a properly trained window cleaning operative.

Ingenuity should be applauded, although the technology isn’t without its challenges. The reports show that property owners and managers cannot rely on the automated systems to complete the standard of work achieved from a human workforce. Setbacks show dirt left in the corners of windows and fascias of the building not being reached by the robots’ various tools, such as spinning brushes and vacuums.

Over time, this build-up can cause serious issues for high-level building maintenance. The perception of the cleanliness of a building is often just as important in maintaining a brand’s reputation as the actual condition.

New technologies

Automation and AI will always grab the headlines, but we already have technology at our fingertips which has the ability to transform the way we work within specialist high- level window cleaning and wider maintenance services.

We’ve invested heavily to ensure a seamless and effective service for our own customers with technology to schedule jobs, enhance reporting and provide visibility of data to our business and the organisations we work with. Some technologies should absolutely be embraced.

Investing in people

To maintain the professional standards of the high-level window cleaning business, we need to invest in the people who have chosen this profession, through ongoing training, long term development and rewarding hard work through good pay and excellent working conditions.


As a business, we directly employ our operatives because we want to invest in their progress and develop their career within the industry. With a focus on ensuring each of our team can be the best that they can, we in turn create a fantastic culture and better cleaning results out in the field. Ultimately, delivering service is about the commitment and quality of the people: our people have empathy, intuition and customer service which is yet to be rivalled by any technology.

Health and safety

Technology can also be used to uphold safety standards through training and reporting. Working at height carries risks and a thorough, human approach should be made towards health and safety. Working the safest way possible is always our number one priority whenever we approach a job, and we are fully accredited to the Occupational Health and Safety (ISO18001) standard.

The commercial window cleaning sector should focus efforts on dedicated testing and assessment. We employ a team of three health and safety managers who oversee this across the company and hold the business to account in implementing the highest possible standards – alongside a no blame culture.

The future

So, will we see more robot window cleaning around the UK’s property portfolios?

This type of ingenuity, however futuristic, will almost certainly lead to new, workable solutions that will in time revolutionise our industry – that needs to happen if facilities management capabilities are to keep pace with continued innovation in technology and commercial property management.

For the moment, we should embrace the opportunity to integrate new technologies, systems and tools that enable our teams to improve their output, we need to ensure the technology we use enhances quality and services, rather than being attracted to quick-to-market yet poor-quality alternatives. The combination of the best technology alongside talented and dedicated people is the real secret to setting new standards in the sector. C M Y CM MY CY CMY K

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76