Assistant Custodian (entry level)

Chicago Zoological Society

Job Description

The Chicago Zoological Society’s Brookfield Zoo is known throughout the world as a leader in animal welfare and conservation and has an exciting, fast-paced work environment and family friendly atmosphere. Our beautiful park like setting has an amazing 216 acres of meticulously landscaped grounds where thousands of animals representing 500 species receive state-of-the-art care through top-notch medical, husbandry, and nutrition programs. We are very customer focused as we host over 2 million guests at Brookfield Zoo each year. We take PRIDE in every aspect of our operation, and our employees enjoy a work environment that is based on respect, openness, cooperation and involvement. Employees are proud to work for the Chicago Zoological Society and are committed to our important conservation mission. Our dedicated staff has a true sense of purpose and a strong commitment to animals and conservation.

As an Assistant Custodian, you will support the success of the Chicago Zoological Society by performing routine and standard Custodial duties and functions to contribute to the cleanliness of the park and provide an exceptional guest experience. You will carry out a variety of general park cleaning duties and washroom maintenance during park hours, maintaining work records as directed and occasionally directing the work of seasonal employees as assigned during specific tasks. Custodial duties include but are not limited to: building vestibule clean-up; floor cleaning, stripping and sealing; wall and ceiling cleaning; public restroom cleaning and sanitation; restocking of supplies; minor restroom repairs and maintenance; carpet cleaning; spot removal; office cleaning; restaurant cleaning; and the cleaning of all public space in the park. Your focus on safety will be demonstrated as you operate various equipment (such as mops, brooms, vacuum cleaners, scrubbers, carpet cleaning equipment, etc.) to assure assigned areas are thoroughly cleaned. You will make use of your good communication skills as you perform a daily inspection of your assigned area and report pertinent information (such as unfinished work, safety issues, necessary repairs, needed supplies, and other problems) to your supervisor. You will participate constructively in all departmental activities, including but not limited to meetings, irregular and emergency assignments, and Special Events. Your friendly demeanor and pleasant smile will contribute to creating an extraordinary guest experience as Custodians work in public areas and may interact with guests to provide general information on park schedules and activities. The Custodial department is very conservation minded utilizing paper products from recycled stock and using nearly 100% green products!

Position Requirements and Specifications

The Assistant Custodian position with the Chicago Zoological Society is a full-time union role with an hourly rate of $16.76. Additionally, a comprehensive benefits package that that includes medical, dental, and 401(k) retirement savings plans will also be offered. As Brookfield Zoo is open 365 days a year, this position highly prefers the ability to work a flexible schedule that includes early morning and evening shifts as well as weekends and holidays, and for the Assistant Custodian position, you must be at least 18 years of age.

The requirements for this position include:

  • High School diploma, G.E.D., or equivalent combination of training and/or experience required.
  • Good communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Reliable, dependable individual, flexible.
  • Personable demeanor and customer service orientated.
  • Must be at least 18 years of age.
  • A valid drivers license is required on date of hire. If an Illinois resident, must possess a valid Illinois drivers license at the time of hire or must obtain one within 90 days of hire. A valid out-of-state drivers license is required at time of hire for out-of-state residents.

The preferred qualifications include:

  • One year previous custodial experience desirable.
  • Multilingual ability, Spanish fluency a plus.

Additional Information

The Chicago Zoological Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Schedule Details

As Brookfield Zoo is open 365 days a year, the work schedule will regularly include both Saturday and Sunday along with three weekdays. There will be two days off during the week days. Hours: Non-peak season generally 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; Peak season generally 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

This position will also include Holidays and some evenings. For example during events such as Holiday Magic, Zoo Brew and Summer Nights, the hours are 12:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Job Location

Chicago Zoological Society-Brookfield Zoo

Zip Code



Custodial Services


Plant & Facilities

Union Status


Work Shift

Any 5 out of 7 days/week