The latest figures released by the British Cleaning Council announced that the cleaning industry contributes over £24 billion to the UK economy.
Market research company, Firedog Research compiled this report for the BCC. In addition to being a substantial net contributor to the UK economy, the cleaning industry is also one of its biggest employers, with over 700,000 people.
Wage growth in the sector is higher than the national average, with a growth of 6.4% compared to a national average of 2.3%.
Further encouraging statistics from the report show that turnover has increased by 21% since the recession of 2010, greater than all economy growth in which turnover increased by just 17%.
The good news for small business start-ups in the cleaning industry is that the number of new businesses increased by 12% from 4380 to 4910 between 2014 and 2015. This is great progress considering the average rate of growth in all other sectors for new business start-ups was just 9%.
During this period the number of businesses that ceased trading rose from 3600 to 3725 between 2014 and 2015 – an increase of 3%, much lower than UK average of 9.4%. Industry growth in Employment grew 9.5% – or 84,000. This was greater than the rest of the economy’s 5.5% growth.
The survey also highlights that the number of foreign born people working in the industry is larger than the national average at 23% compared to a UK average of 17%.
Workers in the cleaning industry are more likely to hold lower levels of qualifications than other sectors. A third of the workforce do not hold a level two qualification compared to just 13% across the economy. However, future predictions shows that there will be a shift towards more people gaining higher qualifications. By 2024, 50% of people employed in the industry are expected to be qualified at level four and above, whilst the proportion of people with no formal qualifications is expected to fall to 4%.
Simon Hollingbery, British Cleaning Council chairman, said: “The BCC is very proud that it is able to carry out this important research on behalf of the industry. It gives us a good benchmark of where we are, and it will help businesses plan for the future. There’s very encouraging signs in the turnover and growth figures, and we need to keep working hard to make sure people in the industry get those higher qualifications. Overall I’m very pleased with the report, and we can go forward with renewed optimism for the future.”