Finding Household Staff

How hard can it be to find household staff for your home?

For some of you, you already know the answer to this question. Because you’ve been burned before. You’ve placed your own ads and done your own screening and interviewing or had your HR department conduct the search. And unfortunately,. you wound up with an employee who had an unprofessional attitude, didn’t have the experience you wanted, used your belongings without your permission, stole from you, or otherwise drove the peace right out of your home.

If this has happened to you, please understand that this is not your fault. Just as we tell our applicants that no one is born knowing how to care for a home or family, so it is that no one is born understanding how to find the perfect staff to work in your home — as you don’t do this very often (or shouldn’t,  anyway!).

That’s where Professional Domestic Services and Institute can come in. We have nearly 30 years’ experience in finding, interviewing, screening, and placing household staff in homes of wealth. We know what qualities wealthy individuals and families need for their homes and the type of staff they want representing their family.

*       We know how to conduct background checks and references. We know how to verify that a person we’re calling for a reference is who they say they are (and not a relative or friend covering for them!).

*       We know the kind of attitude to look for in correspondence and interviews. We’ve learned over many years that an applicant’s attitude is just as important as the information they are providing.

*       We know signs that an applicant may be hiding something.

For example, sometimes an applicant will claim they can’t let us know who their previous employer was because “I signed a confidentiality agreement.”  Other times they will say “I’ve been self-employed,” but then are reluctant to provide copies of legal paperwork proving their self-employment.  These and other excuses for not providing some of the paperwork we request – as an employment agency working to match their skills, qualifications, and experience to clients looking for staff – tend to send messages. Those messages aren’t good ones!

For your information, once upon a time, we featured a photo of “the girl next door” holding a puppy in our newsletter. We asked everyone to guess her occupation.  We had hundreds of responses, and nobody guessed that she was a dog trainer serving a prison sentence. The only reason I am relating this story is to show that you can’t judge someone by their appearance and personality.

*       What’s more, we know how to judge an applicant’s skill set. We also know how to determine if an inexperienced and/or unskilled applicant would be a perfect fit for a household; maybe all they need is a little fine tuning or some professional training.

Because we have had a State Certified School for almost 22 years, we have learned how to judge applicants’ abilities and know the skills that can provide the service you should be receiving.  And if any of their skills need to be improved upon, we can do that.

One of the reasons we decided to include training into our agency is that, as we mentioned earlier, people are not born knowing how to properly care for a wealthy home.  Sure, an individual may be able to dust, vacuum, and mop a floor. But that doesn’t mean that this individual knows how to care properly for your valuable possessions! There is a great difference between cleaning a home and caring for a home.

We spent close to a million dollars to be able to provide the items a student would need to learn to care for, like Oriental rugs; fine bone china; silver accessories; collectables made of ivory, jade, wood, etc.,; valuable oil, watercolor, and/or acrylic paintings; and fine furnishings. We also wrote and created a one-of-a-kind textbook to help care for the homes of the wealthy.

In our training programs, we teach:

*       Proper household cleaning, ironing, and organization

*       Time management

*       How to properly handle and clean your most cherished possessions

*       How to respect boundaries

*       How to be a member of the household, but not of your family

*       How to set and serve a formal table (it isn’t like setting or serving a table in a restaurant)

*       How to understand and meet your expectations

This is just a small sample of the vast amount of information we provide to our students. By the time they leave our training, they feel confident in their ability to step into any home and provide that family with the care they require.

At Professional Domestic Services and Institute, we want nothing more than rewarding, long-term placements that benefit both parties. We want families to be happy with the staff they’ve hired, and vice versa. Our training plus our placement processes have been designed especially with this goal in mind.

If the employer is not happy with the quality of work their employee provides; or the employee is not happy with the way they are being treated, salary or benefits, it won’t be long before you are once again searching for another employee.

If you’re ready for your home to be the haven it was meant to be, we encourage you to call our office at 614.565.5043 today.


Professional Domestic Services & Institute    email    614.565.5043