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13 Feb 2018

Channel 4 Dispatches filming at Design School

Mike Fray

Requiring an insight into how the movement of cleaning staff can place strain on the physical structures of the body when having to complete the work under strict time pressure; the team set up a mock hotel room at the Design School, to investigate the issues.

The simulated hotel accommodation included all the facilities of a standard hotel room, and Design School students volunteered to clean the room under instruction; covering all the aspects of cleaning that hotel staff are expected to undertake, including a bathroom clean, changing the bedding, vacuuming, dusting, clearing rubbish and restocking items. As each student acted out these tasks, they were timed and monitored, with Dr Mike Fray from the Design School calling out the task list to ensure all aspects of the clean were completed. Morland Sanders the presenter of Dispatches was also involved in an attempt to complete the tasks in the specified time.

The results highlighted the difficulties for each individual to complete all the required cleaning tasks in the stipulated time. Dr Mike Fray commented “Placing the volunteers in a time pressured situation and recording the time it took to complete the tasks, emphasised the workload on the volunteers.  All the volunteers found the task hard from a biomechanical, physiological and a psychological perspective.” He added “It was an interesting activity to be involved with, our early discussions with the producers highlighted the postural and biomechanical issues of these jobs but the trial showed the time restrictions were much more challenging.”  

For more information on Mike Fray and his work, click here