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PERSONALIZED JOBS

Become A Cleaner

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Working As A Cleaner

  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Handling and Moving Objects
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Outdoors/walking/standing

  • $18,783

    Average Salary

What Does A Cleaner Do

Janitors and building cleaners keep many types of buildings clean, orderly, and in good condition.

Duties

Janitors and building cleaners typically do the following:

  • Gather and empty trash
  • Sweep, mop, or vacuum building floors
  • Clean restrooms and stock them with supplies
  • Lock doors to secure buildings
  • Clean spills and other hazards with appropriate equipment
  • Wash windows, walls, and glass
  • Order cleaning supplies
  • Make minor building repairs
  • Notify managers when a building needs major repairs

Janitors and building cleaners keep office buildings, schools, hospitals, retail stores, hotels, and other places clean, sanitary, and in good condition. Some only clean, while others have a wide range of duties.

In addition to keeping the inside of buildings clean and orderly, some janitors and building cleaners work outdoors, mowing lawns, sweeping walkways, and removing snow. Some workers also monitor the building’s heating and cooling system, ensuring that it functions properly.

Janitors and building cleaners use many tools and equipment. Simple cleaning tools may include mops, brooms, rakes, and shovels. Other tools may include snowblowers, floor buffers, and carpet extraction equipment.

Some janitors are responsible for repairing minor electrical or plumbing problems, such as leaky faucets.

The following are examples of types of janitors and building cleaners:

Building superintendents are responsible for maintaining residential buildings, such as apartments and condominiums. Although their duties are similar to those of other janitors, some building superintendents also help collect rent and show vacancies to potential tenants.

Custodians are janitors or cleaning workers who typically maintain institutional facilities, such as public schools and hospitals.

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How To Become A Cleaner

Most janitors and building cleaners learn on the job. Formal education is not required.

Education

Janitors and building cleaners do not need any formal educational credential. However, high school courses in shop can be helpful for jobs involving repair work.

Training

Most janitors and building cleaners learn on the job. Beginners typically work with a more experienced janitor, learning how to use and maintain equipment such as vacuums, floor buffers, and other tools. On the job, they also learn how to repair minor electrical and plumbing problems.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although not required, certification is available through the Building Service Contractors Association International, the International Executive Housekeepers Association, and ISSA—The International Sanitary Supply Association. Certification can demonstrate competence and may make applicants more appealing to employers.

Important Qualities

Interpersonal skills. Janitors and building cleaners should get along well with their supervisors, other cleaners, and the people who live or work in the buildings they clean.

Mechanical skills. Janitors and building cleaners should understand general building operations. They should be able to make routine repairs, such as repairing leaky faucets. 

Physical stamina. Janitors and building cleaners spend most of their workday on their feet, operating cleaning equipment and lifting and moving supplies or tools. As a result, they should have good physical stamina.

Physical strength. Janitors and building cleaners often must lift and move cleaning materials and heavy equipment. Cases of liquid cleaner and trash receptacles, for example, can be very heavy, so workers should be strong enough to lift them without injuring their back.

Time-management skills. Janitors and building cleaners should be able to plan and complete tasks in a timely manner.

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Cleaner jobs

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Average Length of Employment
Spice Cleaner 10.2 years
Bell Cleaner 7.1 years
Still Cleaner 5.9 years
Carbon Cleaner 4.8 years
Ladle Cleaner 4.6 years
Wafer Cleaner 4.2 years
Grain Cleaner 4.1 years
Photo Mask Cleaner 3.8 years
Booth Cleaner 3.6 years
Cone Cleaner 3.6 years
Loom Cleaner 3.6 years
Press Cleaner 3.3 years
Rug Cleaner 3.1 years
Hand Fur Cleaner 2.9 years
Sewer Cleaner 2.8 years
Hospital Cleaner 2.8 years
Custodial Engineer 2.8 years
Lead Janitor 2.7 years
Drain Cleaner 2.7 years
Brush Cleaner 2.7 years
Custodian 2.6 years
Upholstery Cleaner 2.6 years
Steam Cleaner 2.5 years
Office Cleaner 2.5 years
Engine Cleaner 2.5 years
House Cleaner 2.5 years
Mold Cleaner 2.5 years
Dry Cleaner 2.4 years
Custodian Worker 2.4 years
Connie Cleaner 2.4 years
Building Cleaner 2.4 years
Carpet Cleaner 2.3 years
Coach Cleaner 2.3 years
Boiler Cleaner 2.3 years
Equipment Cleaner 2.2 years
Card Cleaner 2.2 years
Window Cleaner 2.2 years
Service Cleaner 2.1 years
Cleaning Porter 2.1 years
Assembly Cleaner 2.1 years
Stone Cleaner 2.0 years
Core Cleaner 2.0 years
Cleaner And Dyer 2.0 years
Assistant Cleaner 2.0 years
Stove Cleaner 2.0 years
Cleaner 2.0 years
Seed Cleaner 1.9 years
Floor Cleaner 1.9 years
Room Cleaner 1.9 years
Poultry Cleaner 1.9 years
Day Porter 1.9 years
Machine Cleaner 1.9 years
Sack Cleaner 1.9 years
Janitor 1.9 years
Cooker Cleaner 1.8 years
Shoe Cleaner 1.8 years
Tank Cleaner 1.8 years
Lining Cleaner 1.8 years
Tower Cleaner 1.7 years
General Cleaner 1.7 years
Porter 1.7 years
Yard Cleaner 1.7 years
Industrial Cleaner 1.7 years
Kitchen Cleaner 1.7 years
Die Cleaner 1.7 years
Housekeeper 1.7 years
Metal Cleaner 1.6 years
Cleaner/Shifter 1.6 years
Dry Cleaner Helper 1.6 years
Rug Cleaner Helper 1.6 years
Fish Cleaner 1.5 years
Body Cleaner 1.5 years
Glass Cleaner 1.5 years
Aircraft Cleaner 1.5 years
Cell Cleaner 1.5 years
Machinery Cleaner 1.5 years
Pool Cleaner 1.5 years
Duct Cleaner 1.4 years
Cabin Cleaner 1.4 years
Sweeper 1.4 years
Furnace Cleaner 1.3 years
Grounds Cleaner 1.3 years
Bobbin Cleaner 1.3 years
Car Cleaner 1.3 years
Airplane Cleaner 1.2 years
Septic Cleaner 1.2 years
Roll Cleaner 1.2 years
Hat Cleaner 1.2 years
Hand Glove Cleaner 1.2 years
Radiator Cleaner 1.1 years
Flue Cleaner 1.0 years
Hand Rug Cleaner 0.9 years
Street Cleaner 0.9 years
Casting Cleaner 0.9 years
Screen Cleaner 0.8 years
Bottle Cleaner 0.7 years
Silver Cleaner 0.7 years
Barrel Cleaner 0.7 years
Fur Cleaner 0.7 years
Shirt Cleaner 0.7 years
Alley Cleaner 0.5 years
Leather Cleaner 0.4 years
Pecan Cleaner 0.4 years
Mold Sheet Cleaner 0.4 years
Chicken Cleaner 0.3 years
Acid Cleaner 0.3 years
Coke Still Cleaner 0.2 years
Gut Cleaner 0.2 years
Hide Cleaner 0.2 years
Top Employers Before
Cashier 20.5%
Custodian 4.6%
Cook 3.8%
Janitor 3.7%
Server 3.6%
Manager 2.8%
Waitress 2.8%
Top Employers After
Cashier 15.6%
Custodian 5.5%
Janitor 4.3%
Server 4.0%
Cook 3.6%
Driver 3.2%
Manager 2.6%
Supervisor 2.4%

Cleaner Demographics

Gender

Female

52.7%

Male

45.6%

Unknown

1.7%
Ethnicity

White

80.8%

Hispanic or Latino

11.3%

Asian

6.0%

Unknown

1.4%

Black or African American

0.5%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

68.9%

French

6.9%

Portuguese

3.3%

Polish

2.7%

Japanese

2.5%

German

2.3%

Mandarin

1.7%

Italian

1.6%

Chinese

1.6%

Russian

1.5%

Carrier

1.1%

Arabic

1.1%

Korean

0.8%

Dakota

0.8%

Greek

0.7%

Cantonese

0.7%

Swahili

0.5%

Vietnamese

0.5%

Croatian

0.5%

Tagalog

0.4%
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Cleaner Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

18.9%

Kaplan University

7.9%

Ashford University

5.7%

Liberty University

5.5%

Lansing Community College

5.1%

Everest Institute

4.8%

Hudson Valley Community College

4.4%

Community College of Allegheny County

4.3%

Southern New Hampshire University

4.1%

Ultimate Medical Academy - Clearwater

4.1%

Essex County College

3.9%

Grand Rapids Community College

3.9%

University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee

3.8%

Trident Technical College

3.6%

Strayer University

3.6%

Mohawk Valley Community College

3.4%

Cuyahoga Community College

3.4%

Onondaga Community College

3.4%

Brigham Young University

3.2%

Henry Ford College

3.1%
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Majors

Business

20.8%

General Studies

9.0%

Criminal Justice

9.0%

Nursing

6.6%

Medical Assisting Services

6.5%

Health Care Administration

6.1%

Psychology

5.5%

Accounting

3.8%

Nursing Assistants

3.6%

Computer Science

3.5%

Liberal Arts

3.3%

Education

3.1%

Cosmetology

2.9%

Automotive Technology

2.8%

Graphic Design

2.8%

Human Services

2.3%

Communication

2.3%

Culinary Arts

2.1%

English

2.0%

Biology

2.0%
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Degrees

Other

49.2%

Bachelors

18.0%

Associate

17.9%

Certificate

8.3%

Diploma

3.8%

Masters

1.9%

License

0.8%

Doctorate

0.2%
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Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Cleaner Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Cleaner Sagewood Construction & Design Corp. New York, NY Jul 07, 2016 $39,333
Cleaner Marbod Hardwood Floors New York, NY Feb 11, 2015 $37,814
Cleaners Pine Hollow Country Club Inc. East Norwich, NY Apr 01, 2015 $31,347
Cleaners Finch Group Hotels and Resorts, Inc. Nantucket, MA Apr 26, 2016 $30,742
Cleaners Pine Hollow Country Club East Norwich, NY Apr 01, 2016 $30,742
Cleaner, S Aqvinos Cleaning Service Nantucket, MA Apr 01, 2016 $30,742
Cleaners Finch Group Hotels and Resorts, Inc. MA May 01, 2015 $29,218
Cleaner C & S Foundations Waretown, NJ Apr 15, 2015 $28,475
Boat Cleaners Salt Water Services, Inc. Chatham, MA Apr 01, 2016 $28,091
Boat Cleaners Salt Water Services, Inc. Chatham, MA Apr 19, 2016 $28,091
Commercial Cleaner WPC Commercial Cleaning & Painting, Inc. Lexington, MA Mar 05, 2016 $27,872
Cleaners Travis Hospitality, Inc. West Yarmouth, MA May 02, 2016 $27,131
Cleaner Flores Cleaning Services OK Apr 13, 2015 $26,442
Cleaner Fresh Clean Pro LLC Malden, MA May 02, 2016 $25,000
Cleaner Merrifield Garden Center Manassas, VA Jul 20, 2016 $17,680
Cleaner Merrifield Garden Center Fairfax, VA May 13, 2016 $17,680
Cleaner Merrifield Garden Center Merrifield, VA Apr 13, 2016 $17,680
Cleaner Villa Enterprises Management Ltd Morristown, NJ Jul 23, 2015 $17,493
Residential Cleaner New World Cleaning Services Inc. Falls Church, VA Apr 08, 2016 $17,451
Cleaner JRV Enterprise LLC Towson, MD Oct 03, 2016 $16,967
Commercial Cleaner Defender Services, Inc. Anderson, SC Oct 19, 2016 $16,946

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Top Skills for A Cleaner

BuildingFloorsWindowSillsBathroomFixturesPublicRestroomsOfficeBuildingsMopFloorsSafeEnvironmentEmptyTrashJanitorialEquipmentCustomerServiceCleanWindowsCleanAshtraysGlassPartitionsCleanBathroomsSoapyWaterResponsibilitiesiTrashCansTrashRemovalPaperTowelsLockerRooms

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Top Cleaner Skills

  1. Building Floors
  2. Window Sills
  3. Bathroom Fixtures
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Cleaned building floors by sweeping, mopping, scrubbing and vacuuming.
  • Dusted all office furniture, pictures and window sills; removed finger marks from painted walls within reach.
  • Scrub and clean bathroom fixtures, replenish supplies, empty wastebaskets and receptacles into larger container.
  • Maintained and cleaned all lobbies, passageways, stairwells, public restrooms and other common use areas in and around buildings.
  • Worked independently completing cleaning and light maintenance of office buildings.

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