How to get a cleaning certificate

Aside from certification, lots of cleaning experience can help you establish your business.

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Cleaning jobs have become a viable source of income for Australians. reported that cleaners earn an average of AU$53,625 a year, with an hourly rate of AU$27.50 (as of July 2022).

Are you looking to break into the cleaning industry? Knowing how to get a cleaning certificate is essential – whether you want to level up your cleaning business or become an established cleaning professional. 

Here are steps to get a certificate in cleaning, as well as organisations that provide cleaning certificates. 

Steps to get a cleaning certificate

Wondering how to become a certified cleaner in Australia? Here are the basic steps to take when applying for a cleaning certification.

Step 1: Know the type of cleaning certificate you need. 

Before anything else, it’s important to choose what type of cleaning you want to specialise in. You may opt to pursue a general certification or get one for a very specific type of cleaning (e.g. carpet cleaning, hotel cleaning, hard floor care). Narrow it down to your chosen niche, as each specialisation comes with its own certification requirements. 

Organisations that issue cleaning certifications

1. International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA)

ISSA is the industry leader responsible for crafting the Cleaning Industry Management Standard (CIMS). Businesses that meet ISSA standards for effectiveness receive the CIMS certification. Meanwhile, individuals trained under ISSA receive the CIMS Certified Expert (CCE). 

Other types of ISSA certifications include:

  • Cleaning Management Institute (CMI) Cleaning Professional 101

  • Certified Custodial Technician (CCT)

The whole application process for an ISSA certification does not have a definite timeline, but you should assess whether your business needs this certificate type since you’ll need to dedicate a lot of time and money on this. 

> International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA) Oceania website

2. Association of Residential Cleaning Services International (ARCSI)

ARCSI is a division of ISSA that specialises in training businesses and individuals in residential cleaning. If you want to know how to become a certified house cleaner, then these certifications might be for you:

  • Professional House Cleaning (PHC) certification

  • House Cleaning Technician (HCT) certification

> ARCSI online learning portal for residential cleaning companies

3. ACS Distance Education

ACS Distance Education offers online cleaning courses that cover domestic and commercial practices. Those who finish the course will earn a statement of attainment from the reputable organisation. 

> ACS Distance Education website


This web-based learning portal provides cleaning courses that grant nationally-recognised certifications to students, some of which include:

  • Certificates in Cleaning

  • Certificates in Cleaning Operations

  • Certificates in Cleaning Management


Step 2: Prepare the requirements for your chosen cleaning certification.

Once you’ve decided on the certificate type, your next question may be, “What qualifications do I need for cleaning?” Organisations usually specify requirements on their respective websites. But here’s what you can expect to prepare before taking a cleaning course: 

  • A detailed summary of your cleaning experience, if applicable

  • Time - Any applicant for whatever type of certification would have to undergo at least an hour of training. The exact duration will depend on the specialisation you choose. 

  • Money - Some cleaning courses will require fees to get yourself or your staff certified; Expect application and exam fees, course fees, badge fees, and more.

  • Prerequisite courses - An applicant may be asked to take and complete a prerequisite certification before taking an advanced specialised program.

Note: While there aren’t many platforms offering free cleaning certificates, you can still find free online courses from websites like Afterwards, you can opt to pay for a digital cleaning certificate to showcase your achievement. 

Step 3: Apply for your desired cleaning certification.

For this step, follow the application process as instructed by the issuing agency. You can check the official website if there’s an option to apply online.

Step 4: Undergo cleaning certification training.

Depending on the type of certification you’re after, you may have to attend face-to-face training or complete online modules. Some can be completed at home, while others can be a mix of both.

Once you’re done with training, that’s pretty much it! As long as an exam isn’t a requirement, you can secure your certificate immediately.

Extra step: Take the certification exam, and aim for a passing score!

Some cleaning certification courses do require an exam. In some cases, you can take the exam as soon as you finish the online modules. Meanwhile, for other courses, exams should be scheduled and accomplished at a testing centre. Don’t forget to review important points before you take the exam. Good luck!

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FAQs on cleaning certification

A cleaning services certificate can give you a competitive edge over other service providers without one. Since this job is based on trust, a certificate also boosts your credibility and legitimacy. 

Other advantages include the following:

  • Receive industry-standard training on cleaning, disinfection, sanitation, and more
  • Learn up-to-date best practices relevant to the post-pandemic era
  • Become more efficient in the job – time and resources-wise
  • Use your cleaning certification to boost your credentials

You can showcase your cleaning expertise on Airtasker by including certifications on your profile. These credentials can help attract customers. 

Cleaners with or without certification can find cleaning jobs, get customer reviews, and earn money. One way to get cleaning jobs without certification is to sign up as a Tasker and find local cleaning work that matches your skills. With more cleaning experience, you can grow your expertise and establish your cleaning business. 

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