This employment field is ideal for someone with relatively few skills; however there is a high rate of turnover due to low pay and infrequent scheduling.
While the pay scale is typically low for janitorial employment, there is room for advancement for individuals who excel. Positions in supervision and management offer better pay and scheduling.
All of the janitorial job classifications may work in a broad range of environments including hospitals, office buildings, stores, hotels and motels, residential buildings, schools and private residences.
Depending on the environment where a janitorial employee works, the work shift may vary
Private residence janitors may work during the day, while those employed to clean office buildings almost always work night shifts.
Employment Prospects for Janitorial Jobs
Janitorial jobs fall into two categories; self employed and employed by a company.
In the second category of janitorial employment prospects, fall those individuals who are either seeking work in the janitorial business with a contractor or in a public or private business such as restaurants, schools and entertainment complexes.
Among these two divisions, janitorial jobs split into even more sub-categories:
Self Employed Janitorial Contractors
For those individuals who have chosen to go into business for themselves, there will be relatively few times when they will need a traditional resume. Instead they will need a resume that describes their experience as a contractor, services offered and customer service achievements.
Janitorial contractors will also need to frequently submit bids for contracts. While a contractor’s portfolio and bid proposal are different in format than a job seeker’s resume, the purpose and some of the information included will remain the same. Both a contractor and a job seeker are attempting to ‘sell’ themselves to a customer; whether it is a paying customer or a prospective employer.
Proof / References Are Essential
In order to be successful as a janitorial contractor, individuals will need to be able to provide solid proof of their experience and skills. This will most often come in the form of references, both from previous customers and employers.
Most janitorial contracts spend some time working as an employee, learning the ropes with on the job training before branching out to open their own business. This experience can prove invaluable, if the individual is a hard worker who catches on fast.
Each contract job that is performed well is also an opportunity to list a satisfied customer as a positive reference
There will be a start-up fee for individuals who wish to go into business for themselves as janitorial contractors.
At a minimum this will include the purchase of equipment and supplies, unless they already own these items. Such necessary equipment might include mops, brooms, buckets, dustpans, vacuums, steam cleaners, dust cloths and various cleaning products.
Janitorial contractors may also consider becoming bonded. This gives a healthy dose of reassurance to business owners that their property and belongings will be kept safe.
Janitorial contractors often provide janitorial services for businesses such as apartments and office buildings.
Traditional Janitorial Jobs
Janitors provide a larger range of cleaning duties than do some of the other categories of janitorial employment. Their duties are often of a heavier nature and may even consist of some minor building and lawn maintenance in addition to cleaning duties.
Maids and Housekeepers
May be either employed privately in residences or employed through contractors to clean private homes and office buildings. This classification of janitorial employment may also work in hospitals and nursing homes.
The type of work maids and housekeepers generally do varies upon the environment they work in, but at a minimum usually includes emptying trash, and other cleaning duties.
This usually involves disinfecting and making beds, while private residence work encompasses cleaning floors, polishing furniture, cleaning kitchens and bathrooms as well as possible laundry and ironing.
Job Search for Janitorial Jobs
In most cases it is relatively easy to find employment in janitorial services due to the high number of open positions and little training and relevant work experience required. Interested job seekers often locate janitorial employment either by directly applying to business and residences or through classified newspaper ads.
Cover Letters for Janitorial Jobs
A janitorial cover letter allows the job seeker an opportunity to express a strong work ethic. In a field where there is little education and work experience required, a strong work ethic is usually a huge bonus for job seekers.
Resumes for Janitorial Jobs
Individuals who are looking for work in janitorial employment often use a functional resume. The functional resume works well for janitorial job seekers because it focuses more on skills and less on work history.
Training & Qualifications for Janitorial Jobs
For the most part, training is accomplished through on the job training. For ambitious individuals, there is also the possibility of becoming certified in the prestigious International Executive Housekeepers Association.
The Association offers both a Certified and a Registered program. Individuals with one of these certifications will be in a better position to find janitorial employment in higher end establishments such as luxury hotels and casinos.
There are very few qualifications and training required to enter the field of janitorial work.
In more metropolitan areas, an importance is placed on not only a competence in key janitorial tasks but good public relations skills, as well as health and safety regulations.