Skills You Should Check When Hiring a Housekeeper

housekeeping skills

Published on December 20, 2019

When you hire a housekeeper you need to consider their housekeeping skills as well as your household’s needs depending on its size and the number of people living in your house. The housekeeper’s skills should match your expectations. Otherwise, you’ll be repeatedly recruiting new housekeepers, which is frustrating and time consuming.
So what housekeeping skills should you check when hiring a housekeeper?

What are the consequences of not checking your housekeeper’s skills?

If your housekeeper’s skills don’t fit with your needs then you are likely to end up being unhappy.  You’ll get frustrated when the housekeeper doesn’t meet your expectations.  You may wonder why you are spending money for a housekeeper in the first place.
Many of our clients come to us with this problem, which is usually the result of the employer failing to check the housekeeper’s skills before hiring. After all, you simply can’t teach common sense or initiative.  If someone doesn’t have the skills you need in the first place, they might never acquire them.
Yes, you can invest in training for your staff, such as the courses we offer here at Polo & Tweed, but the best course of action is to check your housekeeper skills before making the hire.

What housekeeping skills should you check when hiring a housekeeper?

1. Ability to Respond to Directions. 

This is important.  If you give a direction and it isn’t followed, then it’s likely to cause frustration down the road. First check whether you communicated clearly. Perhaps the housekeeper’s first language isn’t your own so there’ a chance of miscommunication. Once you’ve established that, see how the housekeeper responds to instructions and directions, and use that as a gauge of their skills.

2. Timekeeping Ability.

A good housekeeper should be able to manage their time effectively.  You shouldn’t have to micro-manage or oversee their work – this will reflect strong housekeeping skills.  You know that certain tasks take a certain amount of time to complete. A professional housekeeper should do it well within the time set – if not quicker.  If you see that their time management is poor then this may become an issue down the road.  Ensure you’ve communicated clear timeline expectations when you set tasks.

3. Ability to Plan for the Property.

When hiring a professional housekeeper, ask them how they would approach your specific property as this will demonstrate their existing skills.  This is a good gauge of whether they have worked in properties similar to yours. Cleaning a grade II listed property is very different to an uber-modern household. Your professional housekeeper should be able to plan for your specific property and quickly recognise how it should be cared for.

4. Ability to Take Constructive Feedback.

Humans make mistakes.  Your housekeeper will make mistakes and might sometimes fail to meet your expectations, this isn’t always a reflection on their housekeeping skills. What’s important is how they respond when you give them feedback on how you want the job done next time. Do they get defensive, or do they take on board your feedback and improve? How the housekeeper responds to your feedback will help you determine early on whether he or she is suitable for you and your property.

5. Flexibility.

Whether you are hiring a part-time or full-time housekeeper, they should be flexible in their approach.  Yes, you should be reasonable with your request, and in turn understand that your professional housekeeper may have other commitments – both professional or personal – but they should demonstrate flexibility, particularly when working in a private household.  Private households are busy, and schedules can change last minute.  So it’s imperative that your professional housekeeper is happy to adjust and be flexible when on the job – this is a key factor of importance with their skills.

Remember to check the Legal Right to Work!

You should always check that the housekeeper has the legal right to work.  Check with your local government guidelines for what you need to see in order to establish that the housekeeper you are hiring has the right to work.

How can Polo & Tweed help?

As a worldwide housekeeping recruitment and training agency, Polo & Tweed matches client with candidates around the world.  We help with the entire recruitment process, from initial interviews through to trials to check whether they have the skills you want before placement.
To begin your search for the right housekeeper for you get in touch with us here.
We look forward to hearing from you.

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