There are always multiple ways you can look to recruit the housekeeper, and lots of helpful tips can be read about here. But once you’ve got to interview stage what next? How do you ask the right questions?
To help you on your recruitment journey, we’ve compiled the top eight interview questions to ask any housekeeper.
1. Tell us about yourself, your background and how you came to apply for this job?
An open-ended question is a great way to start. It will relax the candidate and allow them to start to talk about themselves. Listen, and make notes, and you can then come back to any points they raise which you might want to discuss later.
2. What are you looking for in a new role?
This is a good way to explore what has led the housekeeper to apply for the role. It can be revealing and show any areas for concern. You can match what they are looking for with your own job you are looking to fill.
3. What are your hobbies or passions?
A lovely question as it allows the candidate to talk about something they enjoy doing. You can gauge their energy and passion for something non work related, and it can show you their personality and what they enjoy doing in their spare time. Particularly important to know if this is a live in role as this might affect your hiring decision.
4. Where do you see yourself in ten years?
This is an interesting question, as if the candidate has quite different goals or driving focus, it can affect if they will stay long term in a position - or you can determine what drives them - perhaps they want to study and your role will allow them to do this - or maybe they just want to save for the future - you can use this question to determine where they see themselves in ten years time.
5. Are you a confident [insert driver, cook, animal lover etc]
You should pinpoint key aspects of the job you are looking to fill - is there a lot of cooking? Does the housekeeper need to care for any children or animals? You should discuss with them if they are clear and willing to do this. For example, if you have a cat and they are allergic to cats - then this might not be the best position for them!
6. What challenges did you face in your last role(s)?
You want to figure out what makes the housekeeper tick and what they do when faced with challenges. Stress is part of any work setting, but how one responds to stress will affect how they can do the job. Working in private, domestic settings can be more heightened, as they may not have another housekeeper they can rely on - and they will need to deal with their stresses and cope accordingly.
7. Tell us about your last few jobs - what did you enjoy and what didn’t you - why did you leave each position?
It’s important to go through the candidates work history and determine what they liked and didn’t like about the roles. You can also discuss why they left each position, to determine if they jump from job to job, or if their reasons are valid for leaving.
8. Do you have any questions for me?
It’s always nice to ask if the candidate has questions, as it will give them an opportunity to ask any areas, they want clarification on. This may be on the job duties, the hours, the package or anything else. The housekeeper might want to talk about salaries, and if so, you should be clear on what you are offering, and the package associated. If you need some guidelines on what to offer as a salary you can read about that here. If you don’t know the answer, let them know you will find the information out and inform them at a later stage.
Interviews are the best way for you to establish if the person you are considering is right for the role in your household. Don’t be afraid to spend time getting to know the person, but always be respectful to personal boundaries, and ensure you don’t ask questions which could be considered discriminatory (for example you cannot ask if someone is planning to start a family or if they have any medical issues). There are lots of duties you as the employer has to uphold - and if you want to know more about this, you can read about this here.
Regardless if you are self-recruiting or using a professional agency like Polo & Tweed, you should always consider your options, and you can hold a number of interview rounds if it helps you make the right decision. Take your time to get to know someone, and always trust your gut instincts, it’s probably telling you the truth!