Although there are differences in the processes used in
laundries and dry cleaning, the work of a laundry or a
dry cleaning worker involves common or similar tasks.
These can include:
Reception/collection: accepting articles, checking for damage or stains and labelling. For larger amounts of laundry, workers may be involved in the collection/delivery/replacement and transportation of soiled items.
Sorting: articles are sorted manually/automated by colour, size, type of fabric and the required cleaning process. For identification they may then be tagged with bar codes or computer chips.
Cleaning/washing: using water and chemicals to remove stains as necessary before processing. Loading items into machines and monitoring cleaning process. After drying, carrying out an inspection and, if necessary, sending for re-processing before finishing.
Finishing: drying, pressing and folding articles.
Packing: a dry cleaning worker will check cleaned articles, bag them and hang them ready for collection. A laundry worker will pack linen into bags or baskets and hang items of clothing or fold them for placing in lockers on customers’ premises.
Customer service: handling payments and dealing with any customer complaints. In a laundry this may involve processing orders, sending out invoices and record keeping.
Laundries usually operate seven days a week, and full-
time staff normally work 35 to 40 hours a week over a
seven-day shift pattern. In a dry cleaning shop these
hours may include weekend work and evenings. Part-
time work may be available.
Dry cleaning workers may work in a shop with a workroom at the back, or in a large dry cleaning plant that cleans garments transported from a network of shops.
Laundry and dry cleaning workers spend most of the working day on their feet, and will usually wear a uniform.
This type of work may not be suitable for anyone with asthma or allergies and related problems.
To be a laundry worker you should be:
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