How To Cultivate a Culture of Cleanliness

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Chair of the Month

Jon Olsen
Jon Olsen
An engineer with the imagination of an entrepreneur, Jon Olsen’s inquisitive nature has led him to tackle seemingly insurmountable problems. Before founding hand hygiene company Vaask, Jon developed products to reduce food waste by prolonging the shelf life of fruits and vegetables. He also contributed to healthier lifestyles by designing systems to improve sleep patterns. Behind his work is a refusal to accept the status quo. During the early days of the pandemic, Jon recognized the design failure on all levels of the hand sanitizer experience. While more crucial than ever before, dispensers pumped too much or too little, created messes or invariably were left empty. Designed as a touchless fixture, Vaask is built to last and makes hand hygiene convenient.

Vaask gives your facility the edge.


With the pandemic now endemic and office workers returning, employers have an opportunity to proactively reduce absenteeism. Before the pandemic, researchers estimated 3% of workers called in sick daily, but with that number now staggeringly higher, it’s more important than ever to address what’s responsible for 80% of illnesses — our hands.

The Vaask® touchless hand sanitizing fixture couldn’t have come at a better time. Vaask offers a superior solution that is easy to use and cost-effective. Most importantly, it significantly reduces germ transmission.

Building a healthier workplace

Developed with healthcare industry architects, designers and professionals, Vaask — a name inspired by the Norwegian word for ‘wash’ — complements the style of any space and makes hand hygiene convenient:

  • AC power or POE (no batteries required)
  • Cast aluminum and steel; 5-year warranty
  • PalmPilot® sensor that precisely detects hands
  • Large-capacity, refillable sanitizer cartridge
  • Customizable colors, metals and graphics
  • Recessed, wall-mounted or freestanding


Behind each of these differentiating features is a focus on advanced technology, designed to create a simple, reliable experience with less work for today’s overtaxed maintenance crews. Vaask incorporates a high-end stepper motor and peristaltic pump in its design, ensuring that it dispenses the correct amount of sanitizer every time, tracks usage to alert you via an exterior LED panel and an online dashboard when it’s time to refill, and can be refilled with Vaask’s premium sanitizer or any quality gel sanitizer. You’ll never be locked into expensive long-term supply contracts.

Vaask’s proprietary PalmPilot sensor accurately detects hands, eliminating mess. The PalmPilot technology measures the speed at which light photons leave its sensor and return. Because the component measures speed rather than light, the PalmPilot sensor functions even in spaces where dust can be an issue and detects hands of any shade that would otherwise flummox everyday infrared sensors.

Built to last

Vaask also helps sustainably minded companies achieve their goals. Backed by a 5-year warranty, the U.S.-manufactured fixture features all-metal construction and replaces the endless array of single-use plastic hand sanitizer bottles. Selected for its quality manufacturing and superior coating options, the cast aluminum allows for customizable colors and graphics, so your company can proudly brand your Vaask dispensers to showcase a sincere commitment to cleanliness.

Vaask earned honors from TIME’s Best Inventions, with judges praising the company for giving hand hygiene “the kind of design attention that the rest of a modern workplace gets.”

Vaask is also easy to maintain. The refillable cartridge contains nearly twice the sanitizer of typical dispensers, requiring less frequent refills.


Making hand hygiene attractive

The animation in Vaask’s customizable LED panel beckons users, encouraging the kind of frequent use that helps reduce the spread of germs — crucial since our hands transmit 80% of illnesses. And after a reliable dispensing of Vaask’s gel sanitizer, the user appreciates a lovely fragrance, in total resulting in a positive experience.

“The design of this product is outstanding and makes the necessary hand sanitizer station look appealing and less clinical,” wrote a judge for Healthcare Design’s Product Innovation Awards that honored Vaask with its top prize.

Putting Vaask to the test

Nashville property manager Patty Williams said Vaask looks right at home in her workplace, which caters to business travelers. As she said,

Vaask is doing exactly what it’s meant to do: get people’s attention and encourage them to sanitize their hands.

Williams told a story about the day the property’s developer came in with his 4-year-old daughter: “They walked in the front door, and she saw it by the elevator. Drawn by the LEDs, she immediately walked over and held her hand up. It was proof positive of the whole concept. If a 4-year-old is instantly drawn to it and can use it, you know it’s going to work.”

Chicago real estate development firm LG Development turned to Vaask in late 2021 to provide a permanent hand sanitizing solution for its latest boutique building. Lead designer Melody McLeod said Vaask solved a constant problem for the company’s high-end properties — messy plastic bottles that were always running out.

“Vaask blends right in with our sophisticated, modern interiors and makes cleaning your hands quite the experience instead of an afterthought,” McLeod said. “People have remarked constantly since its installation, and we’re excited to add it to our future properties and retrofit our existing spaces.”

When a hand sanitizing fixture makes people want to use it not just to keep themselves and others healthy, but for the experience alone, then they’re going to use it more regularly — whether anyone’s watching them or not. And that helps make every one of us healthier.

office hand sanitizing

Easy to maintain

The last thing facility managers need is another to-do on the list. So while the past few years have put hand sanitizers front and center, most dispensers just add to their workload. Built to last, Vaask is reliable, inexpensive to operate and simple to maintain. No more making the rounds to check each unit individually.

Wrote one award contest judge, “The automatic sanitizer dispenser created by Vaask is a practical and useful offering in a post-COVID world. The product eliminates plastic waste and the refillable high-capacity cartridges are an important design feature that allows for bulk refill of product and lower operating costs.”

Award-winning answer for facilities

Vaask sanitizing dispensers have been honored with numerous awards, including the Red Dot product design award, Boutique Design’s BDNY Product Design Award and the Green Product Award.

The fixture also won Best New Healthcare Product of the Year at the Best in Biz Awards, as well as two Symposium Distinction Awards at the Healthcare Facilities Symposium & Expo, which recognized Vaask as both Most Sustainable Product and Architect’s Choice Product.

See Vaask in action at

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