21 Oct 6 things to look for on a housekeeping resume
Advertising for an open position can lead to an avalanche of resumes. If you’re thinking about hiring an independent housekeeper, you’ll likely find yourself sorting through a number of qualified applicants for your job. Now comes the challenging part: sorting through a pile of housekeeping resumes and deciding who to interview. Has the process left you scratching your head yet? While many resumes look the same, we’ve put together the top things to look for when reviewing a housekeeping resume, as well as a few things to avoid.
Cleaning needs and frequency will vary between households, so knowing exactly what to look for will help you feel confident that you’re hiring a qualified, safe, and reliable professional to get the job done right.
Here are 7 things to look for on a housekeeping resume to compare candidates fairly, spot red flags and recognize potential diamonds in the rough –
1. Housekeeping skills and services
Figure out what skills you need and look for them in the resume. From basic cleaning abilities to specialty services, a housekeeper should have a variety of skills and services listed on their resume to showcase professional qualifications.
As you’re reviewing the list of services and qualifications, consider what suits the needs best for you and your family. A housekeeper who specializes in pet care cleaning could be a good choice if you have a four-legged friend in the home. Or maybe you are just looking for assistance with routine chores like dusting and mopping. Look for skills and services that fit the needs and demands of your household.
Basic tasks performed by a housekeeper include dusting, vacuuming and mopping, wiping down and cleaning off surfaces, making beds, removing garbage, as well as tidying up bathrooms, kitchens, and main living areas. The candidate may also detail what, if any, experience they have using specific types of cleaning tools, such as floor buffing machines.
On this part of the resume, you’ll also find additional specialty services they may offer such as grout cleaning, upholstery cleaning, window washing, silverware polishing, time and budget management, as well as child care and pet care, and more. Remember, look for the skill set that best matches up with you the needs of your family and home.
Also, take note of any professional certifications from reputable organizations like the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and International Executive Housekeepers Association, Inc., as well as applicable training courses listed on their resume. These extra steps indicate the applicant is up-to-date on the industry standards in order to provide the best possible service to clients like you.
2. Availability and scheduling
As you flip through the stack of resumes, check to see if the applicant has listed their availability, desired schedule, and whether or not they are looking for part-time or full-time employment. A good housekeeping resume will contain this information near the top in their personal summary.
Many housekeepers offer their services on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis, and are available throughout the week and on weekends. Determine which cleaning frequency, as well as what days of the week or weekend, works best for your household.
If you’re between candidates, this is a quick and simple way to sort out which ones will work for you and which will not.
3. Professional housekeeping experience level
On each resume you review, you should find a detailed recap of all of their previous job experience, accompanied by the number of months and years spent at the job. Do you need someone with years of experience? Or will an entry-level housekeeper meet your needs? If your household just needs light cleaning from time-to-time, you may consider hiring someone with less experience. If you’re looking for a good deep cleaning every week or so, then you’ll likely want to hire someone with a reasonable amount of experience who has performed the desired duties before.
The applicant’s background experience will give you a more comprehensive understanding of their specific skills, qualifications, and certifications mentioned elsewhere on their resume.
Perhaps you would prefer to hire someone that has prior experience working for a private family. What responsibilities did they have? How long did they work for the family? These are all things a good candidate’s resume will contain.
4. Location and contact information
At the top of the resume should be the applicant’s contact information, including their address. If you’re not familiar with the location, check their address against yours to see how far they will be commuting to your home. Someone who lives an hour or more away may not be the best choice for you if you’re looking to hire frequent cleaning help.
Choose a housekeeper who lives within a reasonable driving distance of your home. This is a great topic to discuss during the interview process and can open the door to other important questions such as promptness and reliable transportation.
Also, check to verify that they provided a valid email address and personal phone number. This is how you will reach them to set up an interview, as well as communicate with them should they be hired. Keeping the lines of communication open is key to ensuring the success of any working relationship.
5. Personal summary
A good resume will include a personal summary at the top – and there’s a lot you can learn about someone in just a few short sentences. How do they describe themselves? Hardworking? Efficient? Reliable? These are all great descriptive keywords that ooze confidence. Of course, there are many other similar adjectives one can use, but a candidate who speaks highly of themselves with the experience to back it up could be a great potential match for you and your household.
Other things to look for in an applicant’s personal summary: Are they fluent in multiple languages? Do they work well with others and easily get along with different personalities? What are their professional goals and what do they hope to gain from working in your home?
Above all, a candidate’s personal summary should leave you interested enough to call them for an interview while providing a good overall impression of who they are.
Some resumes may pass your initial review but fail to impress as you dig deeper. If the resume and cover letter appear generic, it’s likely the applicant is sending the exact same document to multiple employers. Serious contenders customize their resumes, emphasizing those skills and qualifications that are most relevant to the job description you posted. When you review resumes, look for ones that have been clearly crafted with that specific job posting in mind.
Take some time to come up with real questions, and make sure that you’re thorough with the interview. Ask questions about what they enjoy about their work. Why did they choose housekeeping as a line of work? Check references, work history, and criminal history. A lot of staffing agencies will do these things in advance, but be thorough and check out the results.
6. Potential red flags
Some resumes contain warning signs of potential problems that may outweigh a candidate’s abilities and experience. These are the biggest red flags to look for as you evaluate resumes:
- Unexplained employment gaps – As you’re reviewing an applicant’s work history, look out for long breaks between jobs. While there could be a perfectly reasonable explanation, such as military service, any serious candidate should be prepared and willing to explain these gaps in an interview.
- Excessive job hopping – Job hopping is more common in younger generations and can be a sign of ambition. But too many employers in too short a time span could indicate an uncommitted worker. People do leave jobs quickly for good reasons, but since you’ll be spending significant time in choosing the new hire, you need to know it’ll be worth the effort.
- Static career – A resume with a series of jobs with no increase in responsibility could suggest a lack of career direction or drive.
- Careless mistakes – Given all the online resources and books devoted to resume writing, there’s no excuse for a resume that’s difficult to read, poorly organized or littered with typos. Candidates who submit messy documents demonstrate a lack of attention to detail, a real liability in this field.
- Extraneous information – An interesting hobby or two requiring relevant skills could make a candidate stand out from the crowd. However, resumes that over-emphasize personal interests suggest the job seeker is looking to fill space or that they view their career as a side activity.
While a checklist is helpful for narrowing down applications in an objective way, try to keep an open mind – be rigorous but not rigid. Not everyone has followed a traditional career path, and their experience could be all the richer for it. Be sure to differentiate between essential qualifications needed to do the housekeeper’s job and knowledge that can easily be gained in-house.
As an example, in a tight job market, an employment gap isn’t necessarily a deal breaker. Take the current hiring market into account as you evaluate a resume you’ve received. Remember, the possibility that the perfect candidate may not be out there, especially during periods of low unemployment.
Don’t have time to review dozens of resumes? Contact Riveter Consulting Group to help you find you a skilled Housekeeper for your family’s needs.