Winter storms and cold weather can be tricky to navigate as a commercial property manager or a commercial facility manager, especially if you are starting a new partnership with a snow and ice removal contractor.
Keep reading to find out how you can prepare for winter in the Midwest by partnering with the right contractor for your commercial property’s needs.
Does Your Snow and Ice Removal Contractor Work Primarily with Commercial Properties?
Commercial property and facility managers should seek to partner with a snow and ice removal provider that specializes in working with commercial facilities. A snow and ice management provider that extensively, if not exclusively, works with commercial clients will have a dedicated commercial fleet of equipment that can efficiently contend with nearly all scenarios of inclement weather events, lot sizes and ground surfaces. It is imperative that this specialized provider expertly understands and communicates how inclement weather conditions, air and ground temperatures are anticipated to impact all ground and elevated surfaces. A real-time, detailed plan must be readily available that explains how and when surfaces will be treated to ensure safe passage.
The needs of a commercial, retail, industrial, or municipal property are vastly different than those of a residential client. Commercial properties tend to be much larger than residential properties. A commercial snow and ice removal contractor has experience with the requirements of larger properties and have equipment fleets that are better suited for severe weather conditions.
What Unique Contributing Factors Will Affect Snow and Ice Removal at Our Commercial Facility?
Sooner or later, you will be faced with an abundance of ice and snow. Winter preparation starts with finding a commercial snow removal provider who meets your specific needs. When communicating with current or potential snow and ice management companies, you may want to consider the following:
- Roughly how many people and vehicles enter and leave your facility?
- What times of day is the free flow of traffic of critical importance to your business?
- Does the property have any unusual characteristics that may require special attention during and following winter weather events?
- What codes, ordinances, and regulations do you need to follow to ensure compliance?
Can The Contractor Meet the ‘Critical Start Time’ Requirements of Your Property?
‘Critical start times’ are defined as any segment of time in which you absolutely need your facility to be clear of snow and ice accumulations. A reputable commercial ice and snow removal company will provide a detailed, executable plan and be responsive to the customer’s needs.
High traffic, high-intensity use of commercial facilities often centers around a few critical parts of the day. Consider which windows of time each day your organization needs access to the property to be open no matter what. These could be times when employees need access to the property in order to start and leave shifts. Or it could be times when important deliveries or pickups are made. When you’re working with a commercial snow removal provider, make sure to communicate ‘critical start times’.
Does Our Property Have Any Hidden Hazards?
Property managers should consider potential winter hazards to make sure their commercial property is safe for employees and customers. Drainage systems in parking lots should be checked to ensure water is flowing properly. This reduces the risk of pooling water that can freeze and become a safety hazard. Snow stakes can help identify objects such as curb lines, hydrants, and entrance boundaries that may easily become hidden under the snow. A reputable snow and ice management provider will offer to walk the property and site-check any of these potential dangers. Remember, the job of a professional snow removal contractor isn’t just to do the job, but to protect and educate the client.
What Unique Requirements Does This Property Have?
Commercial clients can have specific needs that differ from those of residential clients. For some facilities, even a brief closure due to extreme weather is unacceptable. One of the most common examples of these types of organizations is hospitals. A medical facility may have a “zero tolerance” policy that would require their snow and ice management partner company to be at the property before a potential weather event begins – applying preemptive treatments in advance of any snow or ice accumulation. But any type of commercial property may have special needs that require aggressive levels of service. The staff and customers of the facility may be present as the weather event begins, so it’s important that their needs are taken into consideration.
While 24/7 winter weather management might sound challenging, fortunately any commercially focused snow removal company will understand these requirements. Commercial snow removal companies are accustomed to managing requirements such as critical start times and zero tolerance policies, and have the equipment, labor, and experience necessary to successfully meet or exceed this level of service expectation.
Ensure Proper Maintenance Year Round
Commercial property and facility managers have an important responsibility to prepare for winter. This responsibility revolves around accessibility, aesthetics and safety. Winter in the Midwest can be a challenging time for commercial facilities due to sometimes volatile and sudden climate change. Fortunately, a bit of preparation goes a long way. This starts with providing regular maintenance and care to the property. A trusted, expert commercial grounds management partner can provide guidance throughout the year to avoid headaches when the seasons turn.
Dedicated commercial snow and ice management providers will have a commercial fleet of equipment specialized for non-residential properties. They will have the know-how to make smart decisions that prolong the life of your parking lot and walks. And they will positively impact your organization by improving safety and accessibility for your employees, customers, and vendors.
Ready to start your winter preparation for your commercial facility? Diaz Group LLC can help. We’re a family-owned business with well over 30 years of combined experience. We can provide you with reliable services, including snow and ice management, for you and your commercial facilities. Communication, safety and preparedness are our number one priorities!
Be sure to contact us if you’re in the Midwest and need help this winter!