In October, 2016, Vornado Realty Trust announced that its Board of Trustees had approved a tax-free spin-off of its Washington, DC business, known as Vornado/Charles E. Smith, and that it had entered into a definitive agreement to merge SpinCo with the operating company and certain select assets of The JBG Companies, a leading Washington, DC real estate company.
The spin-off was finalized in July, 2017, and the combined company, JBG Smith Properties, became the largest, market-leading, best-in-class, pure-play Washington, DC real estate company.
As a part of the spin-off, BMS was honored by the opportunity to assume the janitorial and architectural restoration contracts for the 23 new JBG Smith buildings not currently serviced by BMS. BMS would handle the janitorial portion, and its subsidiary, Hastings Architectural Restoration, would handle the architectural restoration. As a part of the agreement, BMS would roll out its services to all 23 buildings during the first 90 days of the executed agreement. This transition timeframe would require detailed planning, goal setting and swift execution.
BMS immediately set out to establish a process, timeline and deliverables for the project to ensure seamless implementation without impacting service levels to our existing clients. In addition, the transition team, including BMS managers and business partner and product supplier Daycon Products, Inc., met weekly to review progress and maintain the flow of communication.
THE 13-STEP PROCESS
- Kick Off Meeting
Meet with property management to review the transition process, set expectations, and learn nuances of the buildings.
Perform quality inspections of each building before commencing janitorial and maintenance service.
- Launch Plan Creation
Create a customized cleaning plan for each building and tenant, based on findings from inspections and meetings.
- Tenant Meetings
Meet with tenants to discuss their cleaning requirements.
- Host Client Breakfast
Conduct a breakfast event to meet and greet our new clients.
Ensure all BMS plans and schedules are communicated through the proper channels at all times.
- Staff Onboarding
Hire as needed, and train staff. BMS hires in compliance with laws, vetting existing staff to ensure compliance. As a result, BMS replaced 70% of existing staff with newly hired employees.
- BMS Service Launch
Launch services and conduct detailed cleanings to bring buildings up to our set standards.
- Work Order Transition
Transition janitorial staff of the buildings onto the building work order system.
- Ongoing Training
Provide daily and ongoing training to staff as needed to ensure any kinks in service are rapidly fixed.
Conduct quality inspections 30 days after building maintenance service has commenced.
- Client Feedback
Solicit 30-day and 90-day feedback from management and tenants.
- Ongoing Service Plan
Provide plans to maintain levels of service and partnership communications going forward.
THE PROOF IS IN THE RESULTS
BMS tracked scores of pre- and post-inspections using the CleanTelligent quality inspection program, and saw a 13% improvement in post-inspection scores vs. pre-inspection. We solicited feedback, including tenant surveys and 30 day follow up meetings with property management. The results were overwhelmingly positive.
“The BMS team worked for months to ensure the transition went smoothly. They communicated frequently and had plans in place to ensure a seamless transition.”
“We have seen a high frequency of in person drop-in visits and phone calls from the BMS staff, as opposed to emails. We like knowing they are present to survey staff accountability and cleanliness of buildings.”
“I have been through janitorial transitions before and it is one of the most difficult vendors to transition. The BMS transition was seamless and thorough.”
“We were pleased with BMS’s unique approach of providing detailed quality control inspections, including pictures, both before and after the start of service.”
“We have been very pleased with your entire team’s attention to detail and communication through the transition.”
“BMS met with the tenants before and after the transition to ensure their needs were being met. They were transparent about the process and did a great job communicating.”
“I expected to have a few issues during the weekend of the transition, but there were none. It went very smoothly.”
“BMS planning was thorough. The whole team met with us several weeks before the transition to go over the process and answer any questions.”
A Solid Backbone = Solid Service
This transition couldn’t have rolled out as smoothly, or successfully, in the given timeframe if BMS did not already have a robust and solid infrastructure in place to support the requirements. The BMS Center of Service Excellence is the company’s backbone and what differentiates us. It includes having formal processes and staffing in 5 key areas: Quality Control, Training, Client Services, Sustainability and Specialty Services. The JBG Smith project is a shining example of this program’s success.