May 14, 2019

“Our industry continues to set itself apart from general statutory minimum wage rates”

This press release is from the National Guild Association of the Building Cleaning Trade (BIV)

Current industry data

Efficient businesses with the focus on quality, whose range of products and services is constantly expanding to meet the requirements of the market, have made this industry a modern, service-based trade, an important economic factor and an interesting source of employment with secure jobs.

#Employment. Building cleaning is and will remain the trade with the largest workforce in Germany. Currently it employs 662,115 people (latest available figure 2017). This means that employment levels have remained at the same level as the previous year (2016: 664,774). The very slight decline, by 0.4 per cent, emphasises the fact that companies will find it harder to find employees. A comparison over a five year period reveals that employment in this sector has increased by 7.3 per cent (2012: 616,894).

In 2018 the companies achieved a turnover of 17. 9 billion euros. Compared with the previous year this is an increase of 5.9 per cent (previous year: 16.9 billion euros). This confirms that the cleaning market in Germany continues to be the leader in Europe.


“It is less of a problem acquiring new orders than it is to attract new employees”, says Thomas Dietrich. “Ensuring that we have enough skilled staff and an adequate workforce is becoming even more crucial and is now the major challenge facing us for the future.”

“In addition to training skilled staff we continue to focus on the wide-ranging integrative capabilities of our trade”, Dietrich stated. “Our sector not only fulfils an important role socially but, in particular, in the case of basic activities, it also provides opportunities for everyone to take up employment.”

Thomas Dietrich, National Guild Master: “Our industry continues to set itself apart from general statutory minimum wage rates. The rise in agreed wage rates and the historic convergence of East and West in 2020 are of particular importance for the attractiveness of our industry.”

#Agreed wage rate.
Remuneration for newcomers to the industry improves with each year that passes. By the end of 2020 wages in the building cleaning sector in east and west will have become harmonised. By then the statutory minimum wage in the industry will be 10.80 euros per hour throughout the country. The starting wage for basic activities will then be more than 15 per cent higher that the general statutory minimum wage.

#Training. There are many convincing reasons for obtaining training in the cleaning of buildings. As a rule applicants will be accepted if they have obtained a school-leaving certificate. In most of Germany’s federal states monthly pay is between 725 and 1,000 euros. After initial training, apprentices can expect to earn 2,500 euros per month or more. There are opportunities to rapidly advance in the management of facilities and departments for those prepared to take on responsibility for personnel, to manage their own team and look after the needs of their own customers. In addition to becoming a master in the trade, advanced training is also available, leading to the position of business administrator in hygiene management or cleaning technology.

New training regulations take effect in August 2019 following twenty years of upgrading: “Modern, digital and with a practical orientation – learning content has been brought right up to date and provides young people with access to many different facets of our skilled trade. VDMA Here too we anticipate a fresh impetus for attracting new employees”, according to the National Guild Master.

Thomas Dietrich: “For young people in particular such factors as digitisation, automation and the use of robots make working in the cleaning sector not only easier but also a more attractive proposition”.

CMS 2019 – the leading international event of the year for the industry

For the providers of building cleaning services, every two years CMS is the most important platform for professionals and for networking in the whole of Europe.” With the CMS World Summit the trade fair underlines its growing international importance for the global cleaning community”, explained National Guild Master Thomas Dietrich. “I am particularly looking forward to the debut of the large combined stand for innovative newcomers and start-ups – the industry depends on new and bold initiatives for the future.”