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EFCI News – Issue 2 | December 2019



On 29 November, EBSA’s members elected Michael Freytag (World Employment Confederation) as new Chair and EFCI’s Director, Isabel Yglesias, as new EBSA’s Vice-Chair. The EBSA (European Services Business Alliance) brings together the European associations within the business services sector, and works on increasing knowledge, visibility and recognition of the business services industry at the European level.

The EBSA promotes the convergence of views and positions expressed by European Business Services associations in order to enhance our ability to make strong representations to the EU Institutions and other relevant European and international stakeholders.

The new leadership of the Alliance was appointed after EBSA’s former President, Robert Long (Secretary General of the European Textile Services Association) stepped down during the autumn.

The EBSA has been very active during 2019. It notably issued a Manifesto for the new legislative mandate and conducted advocacy in areas such as the internal market for services, public procurement, service standards and services statistics.

Business Services represents around 12 % of the European economy and are key drivers in increasing European productivity and transforming the European economy. The new chairmanship has the willingness to actively promote EBSA and the relevance of business services at the EU level.


In June 2019, the EFCI presented its “SK-Clean” project to the European Commission, in the framework of the social dialogue. The objective of the project is to map the training systems and actors of the sector across the EU and assist them in the digital transition. The project will be running for 18 months with the financial help of the European Commission.

The project, that will start during the first quarter of 2020, is entitled “SK-Clean. Digitalisation in the cleaning sector: supporting the skills transition for cleaning agents”. In a first phase, the project will map the different training/VET systems in the EU. With the assistance of experts in training in the sector, the project will study how digitalisation is impacting the skills needed by cleaning agents and which training systems or initiatives are needed to ensure a smooth digital transition. The outcome of the project will be a guide to support employers and training bodies in the digital transition. 

The identification of the impact on skills and the new skills arising in the cleaning sector as a result of the digital transition is necessary in order to better follow and anticipate the impact of digitalisation in our labour-intensive industry. It is one of the main objectives of the EFCI in its political priorities and strategy as well as an essential point of the Sectorial Social Dialogue Committee for Industrial Cleaning’s Work Programme for 2019-2020.

For queries and suggestions on the project, do not hesitate to contact EFCI’s Secretariat at


On 21-22 November, the EFCI’s President and the Secretariat participated in the 2019 edition of the “Labour-Intensive Facility Event 2019” in in Venice. Theconference was organised by ANIP-CONFINDUSTRIA in the framework of the new federation CONFINDUSTRIA SERVIZI Hygiene, Cleaning & Facility Services, Labour Safety Solutions.

This is year too, the LiFE Conference offered a dynamic arena of discussion, bringing together industry stakeholders, policy makers and academics. The main topics on the agenda included innovation, labour and human capital, digitalisation, procurement and circular economy. Topics such as digital identity and reputation for companies were also tackled with interventions by communication specialists.

ANIP-CONFINDUSTRIA took the occasion to present recent data gathered by Cresme, the Italian Market  Research Centre. The report highlights that the Italian services industry has registered an important growth between 2013 and 2017, counting nowadays 53 500 companies employing 532 000 employees. ANIP-CONFINDUSTRIA’s President, Lorenzo Mattioli, stated that these data reflect the importance of the services sector in Italy and therefore, why it needs specific rules to safeguard companies and workers. He also added that a services industry strategy should include three main elements: (i) a framework law that can be a reference for those operating in the market; (ii) equal dignity with regard to the public works sector in the drafting of the Procurement Code and (iii) a rethinking of the internalisation activities that are on the horizon.  On this last point, Lorenzo Mattioli was referring to the Italian government decision to re-internalise the cleaning services for schools: it will involve very  high social costs due to the dismissal of the over 16,000 work units employed with permanent contracts, through the contracts awarded to cleaning and facility services companies.

EFCI’s President and the EFCI Secretariat joined LiFE 2019 to bring the European perspective on the table. Juan Díez de los Ríos gave one of the opening speeches of the Conference, underlying the importance of ANIP-CONFINDUSTRIA’s example in the foundation of the new services federation. He also presented EFCI’s Trend Report (which was developed in Italian thanks to the support of ANIP-Confindustria), highlighting the successful evolution of the cleaning industry over the last 20 years. EFCI’s Director Isabel Yglesias gave an introduction to the roundtable on “Green and Blue Economy” by illustrating the latest European developments concerning sustainability, circular economy and the European Green Deal.  


The Fédération des Entreprises de Propreté et Services Associés (FEP – EFCI’s French member) launched, during the last weeks of November 2019, a campaign to promote the efficient and responsible purchase of cleaning services through the webtool “Achat Propreté” and a media campaign.

The FEP has developed the webtool Achat propreté” (i.e. purchase of cleanliness). This comprehensive website (in French) gathers resources dedicated to private and public buyers of cleaning services. It guides clients through the various stages of the contract’s life to help them to make a successful purchase of cleaning services. The website is structured as follow: (i) definition of the needs and preparation of the tender; (ii) choose the right supplier, (iii) monitoring and evaluation of the market.

Through a media campaign (both on French TV and online), primarily intended for buyers and beneficiaries of the services of cleaning companies, the FEP raised awareness of the real impact of cleaning on the company’s performances and encourage them to rethink their purchase of cleaning services.

The EFCI strongly supports this initiative, which liaises with EFCI’s activities active at EU level on procurement, such as the e “Selecting Best Value” guide to assists buyers in their tendering process by guiding them through elaboration of tenders and developing the criterion that lead to the selection of quality services and the benefits attached to them, with a focus on quality services.


Building on the current growth of the EFCI and the success of its recent events and advocacy initiatives, the EFCI has decided to open some of its activities to sponsorship in 2020. Sponsorship opportunities are exclusively opened to suppliers.

The EFCI proposes 3 sponsorship packages: sponsoring of EFCI’s monthly external newsletter; sponsoring EFCI’s statistical survey and/or membership to the “Circle for suppliers”. For further details, please consult this page and do not hesitate to contact

Sponsoring EFCI’s work will give organisations a new source of visibility towards industry players at national and EU level, and with relevant EU stakeholders. It will also help to defend the interests of the cleaning and facility services industry, which has an undisputable relevance in our economy.