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.
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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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