Soft support is a technical term used by labour agencies and businesses to describe support jobs such as cleaners, groundskeepers and mail room employees. These services are often obtained through contracts with outside suppliers.
The definition of soft services support jobs varies but most of the time, workers who handle groundskeeping, cleaning, reception, mail room, waste management/trash, security, laundry and site management are considered soft services. For certain speciality businesses, this definition can also include any non-essential employees.
For many businesses, it is more cost-effective to provide soft support services via outside agencies which often step in to provide as-needed help on a contract basis. Most of these contracts only last for one year, although shorter and longer-term contracts are also available.
Although the term soft services is sometimes used in the United States -- usually in a government setting -- it is primarily used in other English-speaking nations. Maintenance and support services are referred to as soft services in the United Kingdom, South Africa and Australia.
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