Building Operations’ Robotic Floor Scrubber Pilot Comes to Successful Conclusion

Four years ago, Pamela Voigt, Acting Superintendent of Custodial Services in UBC’s Building Operations department, began working with Vancouver technology start-up, A&K Robotics. Last month, Building Operations and A&K Robotics completed their very successful three-week pilot of A&K’s robotic floor cleaning system at UBC’s Sauder School of Business’ Henry Angus Building.

A&K Robotics’ floor cleaner took responsibility for cleaning Level 3 of Henry Angus Building for two weeks, followed by both Levels 3 and 4 for a third week.

The objective of this pilot was to help the Building Operations test how to optimize robotic support for routine floor cleaning to enable custodial staff to focus on high-value or less physically-demanding work.

Voigt is thrilled with the value that this could bring to UBC. “The A&K auto scrubber helped us to maximize cleaning schedules when employees are away or on limited duty due to physical limitations,” she notes. Voigt expects that adding a similar device to the UBC toolset would drive an increase in efficiency and engagement among her staff.

UBC’s Building Operations has built a reputation as a leader in applying best practices and providing their staff with world-class equipment and tools. The positive results and feedback of this pilot show that there is true potential for A&K Robotics’ system to supplement and empower UBC Building Operations custodial staff to continue to deliver on spaces that inspire learning and creative thinking.

This pilot further represents a collaboration between UBC and the growing community of new technology innovators bringing science to life and economic growth in Canada and British Columbia. The founders of A&K Robotics are UBC alumni who have recently graduated from the Faculties of Business, Engineering, and Arts and 80% of A&K’s staff are UBC Engineering graduates.