Jobs and Careers - Hilary Devey 2012 - (Page 81)

industries professional cleaning employees onto their premises, often unsupervised and, if that trust is betrayed through theft or damage, your reputation could take a catastrophic hit. Many cleaning companies now provide services to public sector organisations, including health and education facilities. brusH up Your career could shine in the cleaning industrY… a clean break WORDS: Jamie Liddell | PICTURES: Getty Images, Shutterstock A familiarity with the relevant legislative framework is a must here – for example, regulations around working with children are tight, and infractions can be heavily punished. It also helps, especially at senior level, to have a robust understanding of the workings of local and even national government: as with any sector, a company’s sales efforts can only be enhanced by good connections with the right people, and knowing who those people are and how best to present your business to them as and when contracts come up is a real competitive advantage. Career tip: When starting a cleaning business of your own, first find out what the offices and businesses in your chosen area are being charged. You may discover that the area you want to set up in is a saturated market and, therefore, you’ll need to look at other locations. n tough times, it’s always a good idea to seek out employment opportunities in business sectors which are as immune as possible from the prevailing economic conditions. Businesses able to tap into demand which stays relatively constant – or at least doesn’t exhibit a dramatic fall-off – are, of course, in a much better position than those subject to large fluctuations; and so, therefore, are their employees. I sector stability A lack of attention to basic cleanliness and tidiness even in one small part of an organisation can impact the entire structure, with reputational damage amongst customers, partners and staff potentially endangering the business as a going concern – and this is where the aforementioned consistent demand comes from, with organisations maintaining in-house cleaning and facilities management staff or, increasingly frequently (especially in highdensity urban business districts), outsourcing it to specialists. that its management would also be prepared to muck in. It’s also crucial to have good judgement when it comes to hiring and deploying staff: your clients are putting a good degree of trust into your organisation by letting your Tools of the trade the specialist skills and equipment required for basic cleaning tasks are, of course, limited, and many companies specialising in, for example, office cleaning can perform very successfully with not much more than what would be found in the average household (albeit on a larger scale). However, plenty of niche cleaning opportunities exist which require a much greater investment in equipment and training but which provide correspondingly greater revenues. cleaning industrial sites, for example, could well require staff to wear specialised safety equipment and use a variety of hazardous chemicals; many companies still retain this capability in-house, but specialist cleaning firms can make a lot of money selling their services. ✱ One industry which is proving better than most at riding out the current economic storm is the cleaning trade. No organisation – from institutions where hygiene is crucial such as hospitals and restaurants through to offices and retail branches – can afford to let its premises become dirty or cluttered with litter. a fresH start Those contemplating a career in this trade will need to display good people skills, managing teams frequently from very different cultural backgrounds and being able to inspire respect: cleaning can be a hard task and it’s important for a team to believe 081

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Jobs and Careers - Hilary Devey 2012

Hilary's hello
The home office
Dress to impress
The woman at the top
Your guide to education
Intern success
What do you mean?
CV don’ts
The thrill of the search
Money matters
Moving on.
Let’s get medical
Medical know-how
Caring and sharing
A senior moment?
Keeping it clean
Going global
Funeral services
Home sweet home
Constructing a career
As good as new
Power on
Engineering heroes
Changing gear
A bright spark!
Water work
Bank on it
Insure your career
Nice supplies
Get creative!
Don’t sell yourself short
Food for thought
Hilary Devey Q&A
Get connected
Online round-up

Jobs and Careers - Hilary Devey 2012