Hiring new people for your janitorial team? Discover the pros and cons of experience vs. training.
When you hire new people, you’re likely looking at two options: Hiring someone with experience vs. training someone on the job. There are some interesting arguments in favor of both decisions. And like anything, there’s a balance in determining which one is better for you.
That answer won’t be the same for every professional cleaning operation. It might even be different for you, depending upon your circumstances. For example, if you’re exceptionally shorthanded and need someone who can step in and do the job right away, you may prefer someone with experience vs. training a new person. You could flip that, too, if you know you have some big contracts coming up and you’d prefer to train someone.
The best thing to do is look at some pros and cons of each, and determine which option is better in your current situation.
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The pros and cons of hiring someone with experience vs. training a new employee
Before jumping into the pros and cons, it’s worth mentioning that no matter who you hire, you’ll need to do at least some training. Experience may move the process along more quickly, but even the most experienced janitorial employee will still need to know the specifics of your cleaning operation.
Details like the way you schedule, where you keep supplies, or how you track inventory are the things you’ll need to go over with any new hire. Beyond that, though, let’s go over some of the benefits and drawbacks of hiring a janitor with experience vs. training someone new.
When you hire someone with experience, you can expect less time for them to get up to speed. In theory, this means more productivity and less stress for other employees who don’t have to worry about covering for them. Any training you do can most likely be quick – just enough so they understand your approach to commercial cleaning and customer service.
New hires with experience may also bring new ideas or skills to your team. They may have a wealth of knowledge around equipment maintenance and repair. It can be a great way to expand your services, too, if your new hire has certifications like carpet cleaning or hardwood floor experience.
Hiring experienced employees isn’t without some downsides, though. You may be paying more for experience you don’t necessarily need. For example, if everyone on your team is currently certified in carpet care, you might not need another person with that skill. That’s not to say you shouldn’t pay for experience and skills, but choose carefully.
Experienced employees may also want to learn new skills and expand their expertise, so they could be in the market for on-the-job training. Alternatively, employees with experience might be opposed to learning new ways to do things. They might not care to follow your task checklist or offer the high level of customer service your clients expect.
So what does this experience vs. training someone look like? When you hire someone without commercial cleaning experience, you’re starting fresh with someone you can train to do the job to your standards. From customer service to how you use supplies to the best way to handle difficult stains, you can train them to do things the way you want them done.
A new hire may give some of your more experienced employees a chance to learn management skills, as well, if they are helping with the training. However, there are also some disadvantages to hiring someone who needs more extensive training.
To begin, someone has to train your new hire. Whether that’s you or one of your shift leaders, that’s time away from their primary job. And to train someone well, you need to focus on them. It will also take time, meaning the rest of your team may need to pick up some slack until your new hire has a firm grasp of the work.
A better way to hire
Rather than debate hiring someone with experience vs. training someone new, there can be a better way to hire your next janitorial employee. If you’ve considered the pros and cons of each, and neither seems to stand out as the right or wrong way to proceed, look to your team.
They’ll be working closely with this person, so consider hiring someone who, regardless of experience, will boost your team and add something to the group. An enthusiastic, easygoing person may be the right choice for your work culture and atmosphere no matter their experience.
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