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10 good janitor interview questions
- What cleaning equipment are you familiar with?
- How do you prioritize your cleaning tasks?
- What safety precautions do you take when using cleaning chemicals?
- How would you handle a situation where you break something while cleaning?
- What would you do if you were asked to perform a task not in your job description?
- How do you ensure quality in your cleaning work?
- Are you comfortable working around the general public?
- How do you handle repetitive tasks?
- What would you do if you encountered a safety hazard?
- Do you have experience with special machinery or chemical cleaners?
Here are 10 essential interview questions and sample answers to help identify the best candidates for this role.
1. What cleaning equipment are you familiar with?
This question assesses the candidate’s familiarity with various types of cleaning equipment.
“I am familiar with a range of cleaning equipment, including vacuum cleaners, floor buffers, and carpet cleaning machines.”
2. How do you prioritize your cleaning tasks?
This question evaluates the candidate’s ability to manage time and prioritize tasks effectively.
“I usually start with tasks that are most urgent, like cleaning spills or restrooms, and then move on to regular maintenance tasks.”
3. What safety precautions do you take when using cleaning chemicals?
This question gauges the candidate’s awareness of safety protocols when handling cleaning chemicals.
“I always read the labels and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. I also wear gloves and ensure the area is well-ventilated.”
4. How would you handle a situation where you break something while cleaning?
This question tests the candidate’s problem-solving skills and integrity.
“I would immediately report the incident to my supervisor and take responsibility for my actions.”
5. What would you do if you were asked to perform a task not in your job description?
This question assesses the candidate’s flexibility and willingness to go beyond their regular duties.
“As long as it’s within reason and safe, I would be willing to perform the task to the best of my ability.”
6. How do you ensure quality in your cleaning work?
This question evaluates the candidate’s commitment to maintaining high standards in their work.
“I double-check my work and also follow a checklist to ensure that I haven’t missed any tasks.”
7. Are you comfortable working around the general public?
This question gauges the candidate’s ability to work in environments where they may interact with people.
“Yes, I am comfortable working around people and always maintain a professional demeanor.”
8. How do you handle repetitive tasks?
This question assesses the candidate’s ability to maintain focus and efficiency in repetitive tasks.
“I try to keep a positive mindset and focus on the importance of each task, no matter how repetitive.”
9. What would you do if you encountered a safety hazard?
This question tests the candidate’s awareness and action plan for dealing with safety hazards.
“I would immediately secure the area to prevent accidents and report the hazard to the appropriate personnel.”
10. Do you have experience with special machinery or chemical cleaners?
This question assesses the candidate’s experience with specialized cleaning tasks.
“Yes, I have experience using industrial carpet cleaners and have been trained in the use of chemical cleaners.”
What does a good janitor candidate look like?
A good janitor candidate should be reliable, thorough, and self-motivated. They should also have a good understanding of safety protocols and be comfortable working in various environments, including around the general public.
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Janitor and Custodian Interview Questions
In most cases, your janitor, custodian or cleaner is responsible for maintaining the cleanliness and orderliness of a facility. However, some work environments call for more advanced cleaning skills. If your candidates need to know how to operate special machinery, use chemical cleaners, or make minor repairs on occasion, add some questions that pertain to these tasks.
The best candidates for this position are self-motivated, reliable, thorough, and won’t be distracted if they have to do their work around the general public. Use the following open-ended and situational questions to evaluate proven experience in this field.
Let’s summarize some of the questions and add a few more divided into specific types.
Operational and Situational questions
- Describe your relevant experience as a janitor or custodian. What were some of your responsibilities?
- What did you like most about your last job?
- How would you handle being around the general public while you clean?
- How often do you clean and maintain your equipment?
- What types of cleaning machinery do you have experience with?
- What steps would you take if you noticed a problem that required major repairs?
- Cleaning is repetitive work. How do you stay motivated?
- Describe a time you had to solve a problem on your own because your supervisor was not available.
- Describe a time someone criticized your work. How did you handle it?
- Describe a frustrating experience with this kind of job.
- You’ve noticed one of your co-workers stealing supplies. What would you do?
- What are you looking for in your next supervisor?
Frequently asked questions
- What are the top janitor interview questions?
- Focus on questions that assess reliability, attention to detail, and awareness of safety protocols.
- What is the best way to prepare for a janitor interview as an HR professional?
- Familiarize yourself with the specific cleaning tasks and equipment relevant to your facility and prepare questions that assess both technical skills and character.
- What are 3 qualities of a candidate for the janitor position?
- Reliability, attention to detail, and awareness of safety protocols are key qualities to look for.
- How can I assess a janitor's skill level during an interview?
- Ask for specific examples of past work, inquire about their familiarity with cleaning equipment, and consider conducting a practical test.
- What should I look for in a janitor's answers?
- Look for detailed responses that demonstrate a commitment to high standards, safety, and reliability.