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Empower Commercial Cleaning Professionals with Autonomous Mobile Robots

February 22, 2023 1:37 PM by Tennant Company

Posted in Innovation & Technology Robotic Cleaning Machines Industry News & Trends

The market size of U.S. janitorial services is expected to reach nearly $100 billion in 2023, up approximately $40 billion from a decade ago, according to research firm Statista. Furthermore, the firm reports that the number of janitors and cleaners working in the U.S. increased by nearly 50,000 over the last few years.

As employees return to more in-person work and consumers shop and dine in-person more frequently, they want assurance that the buildings they frequent meet higher standards for public health.

That task falls on the business service contractors (BSCs), environmental services (EVS), facility managers, and their professional cleaning crews.

Statements of work and the scope of cleaning contracts reflect this heightened industry expectation while also looking for ways to reduce costs, making the professional cleaning landscape more and more competitive.

That means BSCs and facility managers can't afford to lose their current commercial cleaning professionals. With ongoing labor shortages, it's more important than ever to have employee engagement strategies that empower cleaners and professional development initiatives to increase employee productivity, safety, and retention.

Cleaning professional

Both efforts will require company executives, BSCs, and facility managers to think differently about employee empowerment and professional development for commercial cleaning professionals.

What Commercial Cleaning Professionals Want

Commercial cleaning professionals work in various indoor settings—airports, offices, schools, healthcare facilities, shopping malls, warehouses, etc. Often, they work nights and weekends to make these settings clean, sanitary, and inviting for employees and visitors.

Their work can be physically taxing, especially if the cleaner is lifting heavy objects and operating heavy equipment. This, on top of the frequent bending, sweeping, and scrubbing intensifies the job's physical demands.

Like all employees, commercial cleaning professionals want to feel safe, productive and happy. They want to know that their work has value and that their company will invest in their success. This is where employee empowerment and professional development come into play.

While cleaning professionals understand the rigors of the job, the turnover rate (~200% for the janitorial industry) remains exceptionally high.

So, what can businesses do to keep employees engaged and loyal to your company?

Empowerment and Professional Development

T380AMR in education

High turnover and labor shortages make effectively implementing modern tools and employee empowerment strategies a major initiative for most organizations.

However, implementing robotics is one strategy leading businesses, and executives use to improve engagement, employee empowerment, and up-skilling their staff. In addition, autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) are revolutionizing cleaning and how businesses can meet rising customer expectations and cost pressures.

Rather than displacing cleaners, intelligent business leaders are using AMRs to work alongside humans—leaving the professional cleaners to do the high-value tasks only humans can do.

AMRs won't make human cleaners obsolete, as not all tasks are fully automatable. However, robotic floor cleaners can be trained to perform repetitive and redundant tasks which take the pressure off cleaners. This allows human cleaners more time to put their effort and attention into jobs that make a more significant impact.

Cleaning professionals who work along AMRs, now have more time to expand their skill set to include robot training and management. In addition, robotic cleaners allow staff to better manage their time, and accomplish more than they could before. This means they are happier and less stressed compared to the current environment when most have more tasks that can reasonably be done well in the time allowed.

This more meaningful work and productivity savings can increase employee engagement and retention while also helping reduce the overall cost of cleaning and the impact of turnover.

Watch this video to see what your employee can do while a robotic scrubber cleans the floor.

Incorporate a Tennant AMR into your Operation

Tennant offers a range of robotic floor scrubbers powered by field-tested, vision-based BrainOS® artificial intelligence and robotic technology. They are currently being used in a wide range of complex industries to clean while avoiding people and obstacles. Incorporating robotic floor cleaning machines into your operation can help you reduce the cost to clean, enhance your facility's image, maintain health and safety standards, and ease equipment operation and maintenance.

Tennant robotic scrubbers:

  • Monitor cleaning performance
  • Provide key metrics with both daily and weekly reporting
  • Support employee and facility safety with on-board safety measures like cameras and sensors

The compact T380AMR robotic floor scrubber autonomously cleans floors, even in tight aisles and small space.


The T7AMR robotic floor scrubber reduces the amount of detergent and water needed with optional ec-H20 NanoClean® technology.


The T16AMR robotic floor scrubber is an industrial-sized solution that reduces the amount of detergent and water needed with optional ec-H20 NanoClean® technology.

Automate the Large Spaces, Mechanize the Small Spaces

In every large facility that can use AMRs to improve up cleaning, there’s also small spaces like restrooms, narrow aisles and entryways that aren’t well suited for larger cleaning equipment. That’s where the mechanized mop comes in. Our light weight i-mop® Lite walk-behind floor scrubber is easy to maneuver—making it the ideal cleaning tool for tight spaces.

Want to learn more about how robotic floor cleaning can increase productivity, safety, retention, and employee engagement in your industry? Download our e-book, The Path to Autonomous Floor Cleaning, which is specifically tailored for aviation, healthcare, warehouse, education, and retail operations.

Contact us for information on how Tennant can help you empower commercial cleaning professionals.


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