2013 – Schoongewoon (Just Clean) is a workers’ cooperative in Den Bosch, the Netherlands. The cooperative has thirty employees/owners. 

Workplace innovation
The cleaners are the owners of the company ánd they are employed by the cooperative. They run the company together. They themselves buy the tools and materials they need, consult with the customer themselves and plan their own working times. Their craftsmanship is key. They are supported by a cooperative-leader who does the selling and the administration.

Approach The founder: Remmelt Schuuring was inspired by cooperatives in a small village in the Basque Country. He wants to prove that it is possible to put the ownership among employees. He reasoned: “a good example will be followed. So we just do it". Remmelt begins with the P of People in the full confidence that then the other Ps (Planet and Profit) will follow.

The company was started in 2012 and has grown to thirty people now (2013). In the founding year, absenteeism was 0 %.
The example has resulted in the creation of new cooperatives in Zeist, Castricum and a second one in Den Bosch.

The company was named one of the ‘Smartest companies in the Netherlands’ on the ‘Energy Day 2013’ organized by a SME-network of Syntens (a former state agency to support SME’s). The jury report can be found in the Annex.

Themes: Labour relations, Self organisation

Sector: services

Source: Case