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Dear Workforce How Do We Recruit and Retain Housekeeping Staff

You're doing other people's laundry. Can you do your employees?
August 2, 2000
Related Topics: Retention, Dear Workforce

Dear Workforce:

We are a nonprofit retirement community having problems recruiting housekeeping help to clean apartments. All the tips on retention and recruiting don't work for housekeeping staff whose job is routine and there is no chance for advancement by the nature of the jobs. How do we recruit and retain this type of staff?
-- Carol

A Dear Carol:

Maybe it's time to break out of the routine!

Find (or create) ways to differentiate working for your retirement community.

With all those other jobs out there, why should I work for you? Is work here more meaningful? Do we have fun? How about a pizza party for lunch? An ice cream surprise mid-afternoon? Is my supervisor a happy person who enjoys working here, or someone who is on my case all the time.

What kind of learning opportunities are available? How about classes on how to help my kids in school or courses I can apply toward my GED? Are my hours flexible (I have family responsibilities, too) and is transportation available to get me to work? We do laundry here, how about doing laundry for employees, too?


SOURCE: Roger Herman, CEO of the Herman Group. More ideas are available in his books: "Keeping Good People," "Lean & Meaningful," and "How to Become an Employer of Choice."

E-mail your Dear Workforce questions to Online Editor Todd Raphael at, along with your name, title, organization and location. Unless you state otherwise, your identifying info may be used on and in Workforce magazine. We can't guarantee we'll be able to answer every question.


 The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.

If you have any questions or concerns about, please email or call 312-676-9900.

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