Housekeeper - Head

Alternate Titles:  HH, Executive Housekeeper, Housekeeper

In "private service", Head Housekeeper oversees the overall cleanliness of a formal or multi-staffed household, and manages and supervises, one or a team of domestic professionals, including housekeepers, maids and chambermaids. 

Head Housekeeper Is Hands-On – They Work with Other Housekeepers

A Head Housekeeper is responsible for supervising, training, and working beside other professional housekeepers.  This is the highest housekeeping title in the Principal’s household or estate.  The Head Housekeeper, through their years of experience, have attained specialized knowledge in cleaning and caring for fine furnishings, valuables, and artwork and are comfortable working in high end "private service". Head Housekeepers have a clear understanding of the most effective and efficient housekeeping processes and houskeeping systems used to maintain a meticulous and clean home.  Head Housekeepers perform many of the same duties as the Housekeepers they supervise or manage.

Household Standards & Procedures – Implemented by HH

Head Housekeepers are responsible for the cleanliness and service standards within the private residence according to the Household Standards Manual (HSM) and they clean, maintain and service the Principal’s home as directed in the Household Procedures Manual (HPM)

Today's Head Housekeeper in “private service” has a wide and varied array of responsibilities in order to meet the ever changing and challenging demands of the position depending upon the needs of the employer.  The position is usually live out and may be “on-call”, if required. 

Education, Experience, Knowledge, Skills & Abilities

  • Successful Head Housekeepers draw on years of “private services” experience and have a strong respect for and understanding of housekeeping management systems.  Many have previously worked in the hotel and hospitality industry prior to entering private service
  • Head Housekeepers must have excellent English skills, professional demeanor and appearance, and in certain regions of the world, will be required to be multi-lingual.  Experience in managing a housekeeping staff is gained by many years of working in private service  

Head Housekeepers Range of Responsibilities

  • Household Procedures Standards (HPS) – apply HPS to residence, and develop, update and implement cleaning programs as needed with Household Manager / Butler or Estate Manager as appropriate
  • Staffing - Regardless of staff size, staffing and personnel management responsibilities for one or a multi-staff include:  hiring, firing, orientation, training, mentoring, coaching, development, performance reviews and on-going management and supervision of staff to meet service needs of household to include administrative functions
  • Supervise & Management - in a multi-staff housekeeping department, HH is responsible for training and assisting the other housekeepers in deep cleaning, laundering clothes and household linens
  • Housekeeping Equipment - source, select and purchasing all equipment used in the Housekeeping Department of the Principal’s household; may liaise with outside contractors
  • Budgeting - prepare and work within the constraints of budgets for payroll, capital and expenses
  • Health & Safety - maintain a clean and safe workplace remaining compliant with current Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) regulations.  HH selects chemicals and ensures their proper handling, storage and positive environmental impact
  • Inventory Maintenance - inventory and liaise with all other operational departments on a daily basis
  • Housekeeper Duties - Make and change beds and household linens, polish silver and may: care for household pets, run errands, prepare light meals, keep the household supplies stocked; manage general household projects as assigned

Compensation – Corporate Type Benefits, Perks

  • Full-time (40 hours per week), regular positions are compensated broadly between the low of $52,000 ($25.00/hour) to $70,000 ($33.65/hour), and more, plus benefits
  • Full-time HH positions may be compensated above $70,000 depending on the duties hours required in the job description, experience brought to the position, and the metropolitan area, region or country
  • Part-time positions are compensated between $25 - $30/hour, or more
  • In many households corporate type benefits will apply and reimbursement for automobile expenses are common