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Consumer Perception Survey

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This report covers the consumer (laundry customers’ customers) portion of the broader Fabrizio Ward study for TRSA of public attitudes toward the textile services industry, which also measured business decision-makers’ (laundry customers') opinions of uniform and linen service.

The national online survey of consumers, conducted March 6-9, 2015, received responses from 700 adults. Interviews were stratified into geographic units that reflect the national population; gender, age, and race were weighted to match Census demographics.

Findings gauge how uniforms create a halo effect to a company’s image. The survey measures the degree to which consumers prefer businesses in uniform, associating advantages to uniformed employees. These include easing identification of them, increasing buyers’ comfort explaining purchase requirements to sellers and perceiving employees’ professionalism: more trustworthy, credible, courteous, attentive, competent and knowledgeable. Uniforms are also seen as creating a sense of higher product quality.

The most important factors in deciding to rent uniforms and reusable textiles are identified by market sector: food and beverage (F&B), healthcare, hospitality and industrial. Sector-specific issues profiled include:

  • Consumers’ belief in the need for professional launderers to clean lab coats as opposed to individual workers taking such responsibility; plus public concern about scrubs worn outside of a medical facility.
  • Perception of hotels’ lack of daily linen replacement in guest rooms as motivated by the desire to save money, not protect the environment; consumers’ desire for hotels to wash their laundry in a more environmentally friendly manner.
  • Preference for restaurants with tablecloths rather than a bare table, particularly among older, more affluent and frequent diners; consumers’ anticipation they will have a better experience at restaurants with table linens (establishment perceived as more attentive to detail, providing better service and food quality) and their willingness to pay more for the experience.