As you may know from visiting any hotel, there are many careers paths in the hospitality industry. Sit in a hotel lobby for an hour and you’ll see that there are many hospitality industry job types that involve more specific responsibilities, other than hotel management, that help a resort or hotel run efficiently. From the chef in the hotel restaurant to the spa manager coordinating appointments to the concierge helping hotel guests pick a restaurant, read on for information on careers in the hospitality industry and how you may be able to jumpstart a career in hospitality.
Chefs and Head Cooks[i]
Hotels often have a signature restaurant as part of the hotel and those restaurants need chefs and head cooks. Chefs and cooks prepare food, coordinate menus, and oversee daily food preparation. They also manage staff, handle any food-related issues, and may oversee the ordering or budgeting for the kitchen.
The skills that chefs and head cooks use are largely learned through work experience and some people who go into this field need just a high school diploma or equivalent. However, many chefs and head cooks train at community colleges, culinary schools, trade schools, or at 4-year colleges.
Median annual salary: $42,480[i]
Some hotels, resorts, and casinos feature a spa which needs to be run by a spa manager. Some responsibilities of spa managers are to schedule guest appointments, manage staff and the staff schedule, handle customer service feedback or complaints, plan spa programs and marketing efforts, and make sure the spa is adhering to health and safety standards. Spas may require spa managers to have had training from a vocational school, on-the-job experience that is related to spa management, or an associate’s degree to be qualified.
Median annual salary: $35,300[ii]
Food and Beverage Service Managers[iii]
If a hotel has a restaurant, bar, or room service, it needs a food and beverage service manager. Food and beverage service managers may handle the daily operations of the hotel restaurant and make sure that customers are satisfied with the service. These managers also oversee staff and staff schedules and may be in charge of hiring chefs, cooks, servers, and cleaning staff.
Food and beverage service managers who work in a hospitality industry jobs may have a high school diploma and long-term experience in the food service industry. You can also train at a community college, vocational or technical school, culinary institute, or a 4-year college in order to qualify for a position in this career in hospitality.
Median annual salary: $47,960[iii]
To satisfy hotel guests and to keep a hotel up to code on health and cleanliness standards, housekeeping managers oversee staff and operations of the housekeeping employees. These managers may be in charge of budgeting and ordering supplies, coordinating payroll, inspecting and evaluating work for cleanliness standards, among other responsibilities.
For this hospitality industry job, a high school diploma is usually required and some management knowledge and experience would be beneficial in a role such as this. Some housekeeping managers may obtain a postsecondary certificate from a technical or vocational school, or have some completed some college courses.
Median annual salary: $35,680[iv]
Hotel Desk Clerks[v]
A hotel desk clerk is often the first person a hotel or resort guest interacts with, so a clerk must be trained to pleasantly greet the guest and assist with check-in. Hotel desk clerks also need to have exceptional people skills and be able to communicate effectively on the phone, since they need to take and confirm reservations. As a hotel desk clerk, you’ll also need to handle guest bills, guest requests, and complaints or feedback. Many hotel desks clerks who are currently employed have a high school diploma or equivalent, and some have completed some college coursework.
Median annual salary: $20,400[v]
Since hotel guests are usually unfamiliar with the city they are vacationing in, a concierge is a person who assists hotel or resort guests with making recommendations and reservations for restaurants, theater tickets, city tours, and more. Concierges need to be informed about the neighborhoods, landmarks, and attractions of the immediate and surrounding community in which the hotel or resort is located, since guests need directions and recommendations. A concierge should also have exceptional people and communication skills, since assisting guests is the main focus of this job. Most concierge positions require training in a vocational school, on-the-job experience related to the skills required, or an associate’s degree.
Median annual salary: $27,810[vi]
Customer Service Representative[vii]
As with many businesses, a hotel or resort may have a customer service team to record and resolve customers’ complaints and feedback. Customer service representatives with careers in the hospitality industry should have personal service skills in order to see a customer’s problem through to resolution, so customer service training may be a requirement of the job.
For this position, a high school diploma or equivalent is usually required and some related experience working with people is usually needed. Some customer service representatives currently employed have earned a bachelor's degree.
Median annual salary: $30,870[vii]
[i] bls.gov/ooh/food-preparation-and-serving/chefs-and-head-cooks.htm | [ii] onetonline.org/link/summary/39-1021.01 | [iii] bls.gov/ooh/management/food-service-managers.htm | [iv] onetonline.org/link/summary/37-1011.00 | [v] onetonline.org/link/summary/43-4081.00 | [vi] onetonline.org/link/summary/39-6012.00 | [vii] onetonline.org/link/summary/43-4051.00