We recently wrote about the ultimate guide to office kitchen cleaning. The kitchen is one of the biggest parts of a cleaning job, and it’s one of the most important, too. There’s a lot of work – but it’s mostly straightforward when you have a plan.

There’s just one little thing, though… the fridge.

Your average office fridge clean-out email is usually a passive-aggressive masterpiece, written by an office admin, tired of sniff-testing the milk. Or by a manager who just dipped a finger into a blueish-green pot of fur that used to be yoghurt.

Either that, or an out-and-out rage email, frantically and hastily given the “send to all” treatment.

Think exclamation marks typed so fast, there’s some ones tagged onto the end!!!11

Think CAPITALS!!!! BOLD TEXT!!!

On the other hand, cleaning out the office fridge without consulting anyone is a pretty high-risk move. What if a funky jar of seemingly inedible goo gets thrown out – and ends up being your colleague’s 140-year-old family sourdough starter, in transit from their nana’s funeral?

Okay, that’s a big stretch (and it’s a story from an episode of Brooklyn Nine-Nine). But you get the picture – you might have weird stuff hanging out in the office fridge that’s super important to people. There might be insulin in there, or foods you’ve not encountered before and assume are “off”. Giving your team the opportunity to rescue their pots and food tubs from being chucked out is always going to be welcome, too.

Read more – How to Keep the Office Fridge Fresh and Clean

Beyond that, it’s just courteous to give people the benefit of the doubt, and give them a heads up that the fridge is going to be cleaned. Nobody leaves food to go gross and mouldy on purpose – they’re most likely too busy working to be keeping track of the office fridge.

So… how do you write an office fridge clean-out email that hits all the right notes; one that gets a response, and some action – but doesn’t make you sound like a whining (or worse, bullying) blowhard?

Well, we’ve already written the perfect office fridge clean-out email below, so you don’t have to.

But before we get there, here are a few golden rules to follow.

1. Give plenty of warning

Make sure you give lots of notice for an office fridge clean-out, and make sure people aren’t on leave or remoting on the day it’s going to happen. After items have been in the fridge for months on end, another week or two won’t really make things any worse.

2. Let everyone know

Some people don’t do email as well as others. Some people forget. And everyone’s busy. So not everyone will get the memo. In which case, be sure to put signs up on office noticeboards, make a poster, do calendar invites, make it part of the weekly standup, stick post-it notes on the fridge itself – whatever works. Just make sure everyone knows.

3. Let people do it themselves

Give everyone the opportunity to clean-out their own stuff from the fridge. Better yet, make it fun! Spend 20 minutes of the day having an office fridge clean-out party, with everyone involved, if that’s how your office rolls.

Here it is – the PERFECT Office Fridge Clean-Out Email

Email subject: Let’s talk about the office fridge…

Hey everyone!

Do you keep stuff in the fridge? Well, you’ve probably noticed it’s getting a bit crowded. And a bit smelly.

That’s why we’re going to have a big office fridge clean-out next Friday, at 12pm.

Don’t worry, you won’t have to stay late or work extra to make it up – or take time out of your lunch break. All you have to do is see what’s yours, and either bin it or take it home.

And it’ll be a blame-free, judgement-free zone. We get it, everyone’s busy. This is just one of those things we have to do to keep the office clean and safe, and make sure we don’t accidentally throw away your good stuff!

If you’d prefer to do your bit before Friday, that’s no problem.

You’re welcome to join us all for the clean-out, or sit it out – but just be aware that if there’s anything remaining after 3pm on Friday, then unfortunately we’ll have to dispose of it.

This is because the fridge will be turned off so it can be thoroughly cleaned and aired out.

This might actually be fun! Think we’ll find anything living in there? Let’s find out next Friday…

Thanks,

Office Admin

What makes this email good?

It’s crystal clear without being judgey or abrupt.

It gives a solid reason and purpose. It cuts people some slack. It’s relatable, it adds incentives – and importantly, it gives the opportunity for inclusivity or anonymity.

We’d say that’s the perfect way to do it – nice and light, inviting, reasonable… So feel free to copy it, paste it, and make it your own!

Get office kitchen cleaning done for you

Rather be getting on with your job than cleaning the office kitchen?

The Abbey Cleaning Service provides professional office cleaning services in Cardiff, South Wales. Call 029 2067 9323 today, and find out how we’ll keep your office kitchen clean, safe, and smelling fresh – without disrupting your business.