$36k $36k
1374k 1374k
6.1% 6.1%
2.9/5 2.9/5
N/A N/A

What is a Maintenance Worker?

Also known as: General Maintenance Worker, Building Maintenance Worker.

A maintenance worker is an individual who is responsible for the maintenance and repair of a single building or a group of buildings. Examples of employers that could potentially employ this type of worker include colleges, factories, hotels, hospitals, rental companies, public and private schools and shopping plazas.

What does a Maintenance Worker do?

Some employers will employ a maintenance department, which will include several workers doing a series of tasks, but on different shifts. Generally, the employers who have an entire department will have a department foreman for all the other workers to report to. Other employers, usually smaller companies, will only employ one or two maintenance workers. If issues arise that require more workers, the smaller companies generally contract that type of work to an outside service.

Whether there are multiple maintenance workers, or just one or two, the general way the occupation is carried out will be the same. Generally, a maintenance worker will follow a schedule to ensure that the entire building or set of buildings they are responsible for are attended to. The type of maintenance that a worker provides in this field includes general carpentry, electrical, masonry and plumbing. It is also the responsibility of the worker to recognize potential problems or repairs that are out of their scope of expertise. When this occurs, it is the maintenance worker's duty to contact administration, so that the appropriate expert can be hired to repair or maintain the building.

In addition to structural building inspections and general maintenance including lawn mowing and window washing, maintenance workers will also troubleshoot or repair machines, mechanical equipment and basic electrical and heating and cooling problems. When supplies are needed to maintain or repair equipment, it is usually the responsibility of the worker or maintenance department to order the correct supplies or parts for the particular task. Maintenance workers also set up and assemble new equipment. Detailed records must be kept to document all repairs, inspections and maintenance that occurs.

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What is the workplace of a Maintenance Worker like?

There are several industries that routinely hire maintenance workers including real estate rental and lending agencies, manufacturing companies, educational services departments including state, local and private schools, and health care and social assistance agencies. While these industries are the most common employers of maintenance workers, the field is not limited to only these sectors. It is possible to find a maintenance worker position in fields not listed as well.

Depending on the needs of the maintenance worker's employer, the workplace for this type of worker can change from day-to-day. If the employer is restricted to one building, like a hospital, business or hotel, the worker may only need to go to one location. However, if the employer has more than one location, like an apartment complex or college campus, the worker may have to travel to several different work sites in one day, and the buildings that the worker visits may be different everyday.

It is also important to recognize that maintenance workers do a great deal of maintenance work both in and out of the buildings they are responsible for. So, even in inclement weather, a worker may be required to make necessary repairs or maintenance on the outside of the building.

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Further Reading

  • What does a Maintenance Person do? www.wisegeek.org

    A maintenance person may work as an independent contractor or as part of a maintenance team.

  • General Maintenance and Repair Workers www.bls.gov

    General maintenance and repair workers fix and maintain machines, mechanical equipment, and buildings. They paint, repair flooring, and work on plumbing, electrical, and air-conditioning and heating systems.

  • Maintenance Worker Job Description www.snagajob.com

    Maintenance workers are responsible for maintenance and repair work for buildings and job sites like offices, apartment complexes, government agencies and schools.

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