You must by nature be hardworking and neat
Adelheid is one of the most experienced housekeepers around and has for years been truly enjoying her job at Hotel Furstenhof. She is a hands-on single mother who not only keeps her family happy but also makes sure that hotel clients are more than satisfied with her services as housekeeper. She spoke to Namibian Sun about her job.
What does a housekeeper do?
A housekeeper is mainly responsible for cleaning, dusting and vacuuming the rooms or any other areas, especially in hotels, guesthouses or lodges.
Basically, this person is responsible for the upkeep of an area so that it remains clean and neat at all times.
Briefly describe your normal day at work
The first we do is to ask for a rooming list which directs us on what to do for the day. We check if clients have booked out or not. If they have, we clean their rooms, collect the laundry and change the bedding. We clean the corridors and any other areas as assigned by the supervisors. We have breaks in between, but most of the time we watch out for any extra cleaning jobs that need to be done inside the building.
What characteristics must a housekeeper have?
Housekeepers must by nature be hardworking and neat people. You must be able to work for long hours sometimes and it is also important to be a caring person who looks after things. Friendliness is also required because you constantly deal with people, although you don’t talk much to them. Punctuality is also important.
What are the major challenges in your job?
There are no major challenges, but the biggest is possibly the fact that one is constantly dealing with clients who are difficult at times. Some will complain about linen that is not ironed or sometimes towels that don’t look acceptable to them and things like that.
What tools or equipment do you use on a daily basis?
We use various chemicals for cleaning rooms, bathrooms, reception areas and so on. Other items include brooms, mops, vacuum cleaners, gloves, cloths and various air fresheners.
Is your job rewarding?
Yes, it is because I get to meet a lot of guests who come to the hotel and make friends sometimes. Although it is not the best paying job in the world, one can draw a lot from the experience you get here because you transfer that to your household and can then also teach others how important cleanliness and hygiene is.
Would you recommend this job to anyone?
It is a job for everyone who tries to maintain a good standard of cleanliness. You don’t really need to study for it but it should be a natural instinct. People who study in the hospitality industry at times also naturally have the skills of a housekeeper and one can even do it coming straight out of high school.