Playbook for University and Educational Facilities

Background

OrangeQC's inspection software helps custodial and facility teams measure, track, and report their cleaning and maintenance quality.

This Playbook will provide you with the best practices and recommendations for implementing OrangeQC at your university, K–12 school district, or other educational facility. 

Expectations

Most of our educational customers are up and running on OrangeQC well before the end of the 30-day free trial. This assumes that you have at least a basic inspection process in place, such as on paper, email, or another software tool.

If you do not have an inspection process in place, we strongly recommend starting with the basics and creating a paper-based inspection inside of Excel for your team to complete.

Before You Get Started

  1. Do you have an existing inspection process and have a firm idea of what you are looking to achieve? We recommend outlining three primary goals for your inspection process, such as:
    1. Improved reporting and accountability to stakeholders
    2. Desire to track and continuously improve
    3. Realtime alerting of issues to your team
  2. Do you have a team member (possibly yourself) who is responsible for quality control in your organization? Who is it?
  3. Is there someone on your team who can take responsibility of the rollout and implementation? (If not, OrangeQC can provide guidance and introductions to industry consultants to handle the implementation on your behalf.)
  4. Does your team already have smartphones or tablets? If not, please coordinate with your IT department so devices can be purchased. For education teams, we strongly recommend either the Apple iPhone or iPad.

Option A: Recommended Setup

For smaller institutions, or those with under 100 buildings, we recommend a flat "Area Hierarchy." Think of your OrangeQC Area Hierarchy as a series of folders. The areas and parts of campus are simply a series of folders within folders.

  1. Create your OrangeQC account with your organization name at the top.
  2. Your subdomain URL (Account Name) should be short and memorable. We advise using the same domain name as your email address. For example, if your email is john.smith@abcuniversity.edu then your subdomain URL should be abcuniversity.
  3. Each building will be one Site. Remember that all your buildings are arranged within your organization, so you do not need to create another folder for your organization (such as "ABC University"). Instead, create Building 1, Building 2, etc.
  4. (Optional) Within each building, create sub-areas for each Floor. While not required, we do recommend including this level in your Area Hierarchy since it provides you with improved reporting and visibility into areas to improve.
  5. Create an Inspection Form for each Area Type. You should have one inspection form for common area types such as Classroom, Restrooms, Multipurpose Spaces, etc. Most teams have approximately 20 different inspection forms, with each form containing 10–30 line items each.
    1. We do not recommend creating unique inspection forms for each and every building on campus. This is incredibly time-consuming and will be a burden to update as your process evolves over time. If there are line items that don't apply in certain buildings, the inspector can easily swipe them off to the side.
    2. If you would like to use existing inspection form templates, please see the APPA sample forms we discuss at the bottom of this guide. APPA has already created an extensive library of area types and recommended line items.
  6. Assign the relevant inspection forms to each Floor within each Building. If a location does not have that area type, do not assign the form to that location.

Important: Most teams complete the above steps in a devoted afternoon (for smaller institutions) or over a few days for larger institutions. If you find yourself taking longer than a week, please contact OrangeQC to help point you in the right direction.

Option B: Alternative Setup (Multi-Campus or Multi-Team)

Since OrangeQC's Area Hierarchy is flexible, we can also support more complex organizations. The following alternative setup will introduce a layer between the top of your Area Hierarchy and the Buildings.

Important: The Area Hierarchy should reflect the organization's primary reporting "view."

This approach is commonly used in the following scenarios:

  • Your organization has more than 100 buildings, so having them in one large list is cumbersome.
  • You have multiple campuses or geographically arranged properties such as a North Campus and South Campus, each of which have their own set of buildings.
  • You have a different primary reporting need other than the buildings, for example Classroom Management buildings versus Student Housing & Dining buildings.
    • If you have two completely separate teams with no overlap, then each team should be set up as two separate OrangeQC accounts, rather than hosted inside of one large account. For example, if your Classroom Management team is completely separate from House and Dining, they should each have their own account.

The areas and parts of campus are simply a series of folders within folders, but in this example we'll introduce another folder to organize your account.

  1. Create your OrangeQC account with your organization name at the top.
  2. Your subdomain URL (Account Name) should be short and memorable. We advise using the same domain name as your email address. For example, if your email is john.smith@abcuniversity.edu then your subdomain URL should be abcuniversity.
  3. Create a Site for each relevant grouping of facilities. Below are several example of sites you would create, each would act as a folder:
    1. Campuses: North Campus, Engineering Campus, South Campus, Research Park.
    2. Geographical Regions: Chicago, Champaign, IL and Bloomington.
    3. Teams: Classroom Facilities, Housing and Dining, Landscaping. Or Custodial and Maintenance.
  4. Within each Site from Step 3, create Building sub-areas.
  5. (Optional) Within each building, create sub-areas for each Floor. While not required, we do recommend including this level in your Area Hierarchy since it provides you with improved reporting and visibility into areas to improve.
  6. Create an Inspection Form for each Area Type. You should have one inspection form for common area types such as Classroom, Restrooms, Multipurpose Spaces, etc. Most teams have approximately 20 different inspection forms, with each form containing 10–30 line items each.
    1. We do not recommend creating unique inspection forms for each building on campus. This is incredibly time consuming and will be a burden to update as your process evolves over time. If there are line items that don't apply in certain buildings, the inspector can easily swipe them off to the side.
    2. If you would like to use existing inspection form templates, please see the APPA sample forms we discuss at the bottom of this guide. APPA has already created an extensive library of area types and recommended line items.
  7. Assign the relevant inspection forms to each Floor within each Building. If a location does not have that area type, do not assign the form to that location.

Additional Reading and Resources

APPA provides extensive best practices, sample inspection forms, and much more to their members. The APPA Custodial book is one of the top-referenced materials, and can be purchased directly from the APPA Store.

We've written extensively about best practices for educational facilities on our blog, including:

OrangeQC collaborates with a network of industry leaders and consultants who can implement OrangeQC and best practices within your organization. If you are dealing with a challenging environment or process, please contact us and we'll introduce you to the resources that can help!

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