Commercial building wanting to buy there own WFP

Hello all.
I need some advice. after 17 years in business i bought a WFP system in the spring and have been using it on all my commercial and some residential.
one building i have is 4 story over 1500 panes of glass. they are set up on quarterly cleaning.
when i called them for their fall cleaning they said after watching us last time with the wfp cart they are thinking of buying their own system and just doing it in house.
can anyone give me some good arguments to give them why it would be better to stick with a professional window cleaning company.

It’s really no different than a residential customer buying a bucket and a squeegee and saying they want to clean their own windows from now on. The problem will be [B]they still have to do the work. [/B]This issue is magnified and complicated when it comes to training someone, then that person quits and the next person doesn’t know how to use the equipment, they end up damaging it, doing the job wrong. They end up with a 5,000.00 piece of equipment gathering dust somewhere in the corner of their warehouse. The reason they are considering purchasing their own system is because they’ve seen you, a professional, make it look easy. It is…to us, because we use it everyday.

Try giving that same equipment to a janitor, with no experience, who is only going to use it once every three months, then he moves on to another company, then a new janitor takes over, sees the equipment and goes “what’s this?”, “How does it work?”…you get the picture?

Just wait till they start leaving spots all over the glass.

Great post!

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I HELPED one of my college accounts buy their own wfp last summer. They have yet to use it. They still hire me to do all the work I usually do, but they were going to use it in the summers to get buildings that weren’t the priority. Offer to buy it back from them when they don’t end up having time or manpower to do it. You are the pro. We know that this job is harder than it looks or else everyone would be doing it. I think if they are going to buy one either way: recommend a system, wish them luck, and call them every once in a while to check in. It takes a lot of practice to wfp really well. I don’t think it will last.

Figure what the job pays per year, buy a pole from wcra, mark up the price so that you profit the same amount you would off a year doing the job, then let them have the issues we all know they will have with the wfp set up for the first year, and by the next time you think about it, they will be calling you for quarterly service again… You can probably even use their pole. :wink:

I realize that we are coming up with ways to help overcome Todd’s current obstacle. But I also have to be honest, there is a reason we have wfp setups… because they are EASY to use.

If someone is going to spend the money they will [U]surely[/U] spend some time and stumble upon one of the 20,000 “informative youtube videos.”

[B]I’m wondering[/B] if the account is ‘exterior only.’ Are these “[I]lowly, inexperienced, turnover ridden, janitors[/I]” doing the inside?
(my bet is yes… and if not, THEN you can use the ‘technique’ argument.)

So EZ a janitor can do it.

Thank you for your input. I do agree that anyone who invest in this type of system would do some research on how to use it properly.
my arguments will be as follows.
although not as hard to operate as a squeegee there is still a learning curve and if the system is only being used every 3 months that learning curve will probably not be learned (not enough use with the equipment )and just as you are getting the hang of it you have to put it away for 3 months and all that was learned will probably be forgotten.
second is these machines are meant to be used and if it is only used only 3 or 4 times a year your filters will be damaged and have to be replaced more often which will add cost to bottom line.
and last of all the liability.
manipulating a 50 foot pole is no easy task and if not done properly will more than than not cause injuries to the operator increasing cost to bottom line
and if one would lose control of the pole replacing a $2000 pole is the least of the worries because that pole will probably come down on something or someone again adding cost to the bottom line.
this is why they should leave it to the professionals.
any other input would be helpful because i am going to meet with them by the end of this week.

I have had a few of these in house deals lately

my bet is they will listen with a look that says they are just being polite.

then they will restate what they said intially

its about saving a buck, they are lost for now mindset wise, they want to save that buck and their mind is set on saving that expense.

if you recover it after meeting with them, please let us know.

I know this is somewhat off subject but maybe if we never take the WF cart out of the van then it won’t look so easy.

It creates an illusion and seems more expensive.

Im with Bruce on this one and sadly it’s not a good thing for ya

There is a reason a local Janitorial company sells some type of WFP around here, hoping some of these large building maintenance crews will bite. There is also a reason why Costco has a cheap cart for sale and why some Janitorial companies now offer window “washing”. It looks super easy!
“Hey, spray water on glass, walk away… SWEET!!” “Now we don’t have to pay that guy all that money!”

But, just like the burger joints around here that use their Low pay hourly employee’s to wet and squeegee half dried glass they will believe they are saving money. In reality, we know they are not. By the time you pay the cost of employee’s, take them away from the job they were really hired to do and have them do a really cruddy job washing windows… what do you end up with? Maybe, just maybe breaking even. I would venture to say probably losing a little money and have a cruddy looking establishment.
Same outcome just a different scenario. JMO


Mark it up and sell them one… Ill toss you 10% off for a buffer as well :slight_smile:

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