Every day the housekeeping staff must ensure that no matter how messy the rooms are they are returned to a spotless condition in a fairly short amount of time. Whether a person is employed by a luxury hotel or a private bed and breakfast, housekeeping is always a difficult and demanding job.
The job of an assistant housekeeper in the average hotel facility is to ensure that an assigned number of rooms gets cleaned each shift. With occupied rooms, the assistant housekeeper has to ensure these are cleaned matching the exact standards that most hotels demand. They are also responsible for replenishing standard supplies such as toiletries and towels. A room which has been occupied, but whose last guests have checked out, must be serviced even further. That room has to look inviting to the next occupant, and should not show signs that someone else was there. Nobody should notice that the room was occupied just a few hours ago.
This job can be a challenge when guests request that not be disturbed at certain times which conflict with normal cleaning times, and then request their rooms be serviced at a different time. In those cases, however, it is still the employee’s responsibility to ensure the room is attended to in the proper manner. Good housekeepers need to be able to keep track of the rooms that still need to be taken care of, and they have to designate it to another shift if necessary. Even one instance of a badly maintained room can be damaging to a hotel’s reputation. The standard the housekeeping staff is being held to is usually very strict.
Most assistant housekeepers in a typical hotel setting work an eight-hour shift. This eight-hour shift curtails almost non-stop activity. Each worker can be assigned up to fifteen rooms a day with the expectation that each one be completely clean and tidy in a mere fifteen minutes.
A great housekeeper needs to have a meticulous eye for detail. The ability to spot dirt and clutter where others might over look it is of utmost importance. This is a very physical occupation, so the ability to bend, stretch, and lift for extended periods of time is a standard requirement. The assistant housekeeper’s income is often supplemented by tips he or she receives from guests. A sunny and pleasant disposition, complemented with the ability to interact politely with even the most difficult guest, will be a great asset to the worker hoping to obtain a position in the hotel’s housekeeping department.
There are really no educational requirements to work as an assistant housekeeper. Potential employers value diligence, efficiency, honesty, and a great work ethic. Good organizational and time management skills are also attributes that the successful candidate must possess. As an assistant, one reports to the head of housekeeping, a well-paid position that a good assistant housekeeper can often be promoted to.
The pay of an assistant housekeeper in the average hotel receives is not that high—around $17,000–$23,000 per year. Tips, however, can supplement those earnings significantly. Most people are aware of the fact that it is expected that a housekeeper is tipped, and almost everyone does, just as they would a waitress or bartender.