Wondering how to start a janitorial service? We take you step-by-step from start to success.
Creating a Sustainable Janitorial Service Startup
The residential and commercial janitorial service industry is known for being fiercely competitive. Startup entrepreneurs face an uphill struggle to establish themselves in the marketplace, largely because there are many existing competitors as well as large numbers of new janitorial services that enter the marketplace each year.
The key to janitorial service startup success is sustainability. And to create a sustainable startup, your business plan will need to feature a lean and mean startup strategy -- to generate a profit, your startup will need to consistently accomplish more with less.
Cost management is critical, so if possible, launch your operation out of your home and plan on supplying the bulk of the company's labor -- at least until the business proves itself capable of producing a reliable revenue stream. Rather than buying new vehicles, lease a van or better yet, repurpose a personal vehicle for business use.
Promoting Your New Janitorial Service
Like many other small businesses, startup janitorial services have limited resources available for marketing and advertising initiatives. Although word-of-mouth is the most affordable and effective way of promoting your new company, achieving effective word-of-mouth advertising can be difficult.
As you plan your startup's promotional campaigns, it's important to tailor your strategy to specific audiences in your target market. If you specialize in commercial janitorial services, your marketing and advertising tactics need to be designed for a B2B (rather than a consumer) business context -- and that may mean focusing on individual customers and prospects rather than large market segments.
Hiring Tips for Janitorial Service Business Owners
At some point, you will need to hire additional staff for your janitorial service company. The good news is that it's currently an employer's market -- with plenty of jobseekers in the marketplace, you should have no trouble finding qualified applicants to fill open positions.
But the availability of qualified janitorial job candidates shouldn't get in the way of standard hiring practices. Establish the shape and scope of the hiring process before you advertise the position and be sure to interview several candidates even if you think you already have the right person for the job.
Most importantly, you will need to verify the candidate's before you make a job offer. Reliability and professionalism are essential to your janitorial company's success, and if you fail to follow up on work references, you could easily hire individuals with a track record of poor work habits.
Tips for Creating a Great Janitorial Service Business Plan
A business plan is the skeletal framework for your janitorial service's mission, goals and strategic vision.
In contemporary business culture, business plans are also litmus tests used by external interests to assess real world viability and marketability.
Early in the process, it's worth your time to learn how to write the market analysis section of a business plan. As you prepare the market analysis section, be careful to rely on substantiated market research rather than your hopes for your janitorial service.
Take a Look at Competitors
Well in advance of opening a janitorial service within your community, it's a smart move to determine how many competitors you have. We've provided the link below to help you get a list of local competitors in your city. Just enter your city, state and zip code to get a list of janitorial services in your community.
Is the established competition doing a good job? It's important to understand their strengths and weaknesses and think through how you'll stake up against those established businesses.
Learn from Others Who Are Already In This Space
If you are seriously contemplating launching a janitorial service, it's a smart move to learn as much as you can from somebody who is already in the business. If you think owners of nearby janitorial services will give you advice, think again. What's in it for them?
However, a fellow entrepreneur who has started a janitorial service in a location that is not competitive to you may be willing to share their entrepreneurial wisdom with you, once they realize that you are not going to directly compete with them in their community. Many business owners are happy to give advice to new entrepreneurs If you are persistent, you can find a business mentor who is willing to help you out.
How does one go about finding an owner of a janitorial service who is willing to advise you because you live in different cities?
It's easy. Here's a link you can use to find a mentor outside of your area.
Getting Started in Janitorial Service Ownership
As a prospective janitorial service owner, your entry options are limited to buying a viable business or building one from scratch.
Startup janitorial services can be attractive because they allow the entrepreneur to have more control and greater influence. But financially, startups present significant challenges because lenders are typically hesitant to fund startup janitorial services.
Acquired janitorial services are known quantities - and are less risky for lenders. Although buying a business doesn't guarantee success, it substantially increases your odds of obtaining financing and achieving profitability.
Franchising May Be a Better Way to Go
Recognize that your chances of growing your business are greatly increased if you go the franchising route in lieu of doing everything yourself.
Before you get too far along in your plan to open a janitorial service, a smart move is to check out whether franchise opportunities in your space might simplify your entering the business.
The link below gives you access to our franchise directory so you can see if there's a franchise opportunity for you. You might even find something that points you in a completely different direction.
These additional resources regarding getting started as an entrepreneur may be of interest to you.
If you sell to janitorial services, you're in the wrong place. These resources are more appropriate for you:
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