In April 2020, the national unemployment rate spiked to a record-shattering 14.7 percent. Although the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has reported a steady decline in unemployment rates since that time, the most recent (January 2021) 6.3 percent remains well above pre-pandemic levels.
As businesses reopen, unemployment is expected to continue it’s decline, but job seekers aren’t necessarily going back to their old positions. Instead, many are looking for roles that are more secure and offer a steady income. Nothing was more steady throughout the pandemic than cleaning.
In fact, the BLS is projecting a job growth rate of 10 percent in the cleaning industry, 3 percent above the national average. This results in the creation of an estimated 236,500 more janitorial jobs.
With numbers like that, BSCs shouldn’t struggle to find qualified new hires. Instead, their new challenge will be retention. Eventually, the insecurity surrounding the pandemic will fade and BSCs need to be ready with retention strategies in place.
With options in applicants, BSCs should prioritize hiring the right person — and not just a body — from the start. Be honest and upfront about the expectations and physicality of the job. Avoiding this step can cause employee frustration and eventual departure.
It’s also important to provide competitive wages and benefits. There are various studies on this fact, but most indicate that the wage gets people in the door, while the benefits are what keep them. Wages matter, but bonus incentives, health care and a positive team environment cannot be overlooked.
For more information on staffing — including reasons why most janitors leave, recruitment techniques and retention strategies — check out the “Building Service Contractor Frontline Labor Report”. It can provide the help you need to find the right people…and keep them.