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Hotel Job Descriptions

If you want to play many professional roles, then think about working in the hotel sector, an industry that is as rewarding as it is demanding. The hotel industry is constantly evolving based on new trends, changing customer needs, and new generations of managers. The industry has had to respond to the many ups and downs of the global economy.

In general, hotels have at least three main activity sectors:

  • Accommodation: reception, reservations, night auditor, housekeeping, car and concierge service.
  • Food services: restaurants, banquets, room service, purchasing.
  • Administration: accounting, marketing, sales, human resources, management.

Because customers need services at any time of day or night, people skills play a huge role in hotel positions. Since customers are demanding, you need to be highly adaptable and have a sense of drive and initiative to offer a quality service that meets the hotel’s standards.

Finally, working conditions vary depending on whether the hotel belongs to an international or local brand. Also note that you will have to work long hours standing up, while periods of intense stress are inevitable no matter what type of hotel you work at.

Examples of Jobs in Different Hotel Sectors

Accommodation

Reception clerk | Reservation clerk | Concierge Housekeeping attendant :

Welcomes customer and answers their questions; sells goods and services using promotional tools and computerized reservation systems. Cleans common areas and rooms (housekeeping). This type of role is physically demanding and requires adhering to the company’s standards and code of ethics. This is an entry-level job that may or may not require experience, depending on the hotel. This means it can lead to other positions that required hotel-industry experience.

Restaurant services

Server, assistant head waiter (restaurants, banquets, and room service) | Barista, bar employee (bartender) | Host:

Receives orders from customers, checks on order with the kitchen, serves the order; sets up the dining area, food carts, or banquet halls. Provides courteous service that is in line with the company’s standards. Follows up on sales directives for receptions, banquets and special events and is sometimes responsible for making purchases for the dining room. This type of role is physically demanding and requires adhering to the company’s standards and code of ethics. These entry-level jobs require a minimum of one to three years of experience in hotel or restaurant services.

Administration (supervisory positions)

Marketing coordinator | Reception supervisor | Sales representative | Night auditor | Human resources coordinator:

Performs follow-up between different sectors of the establishment. Supervises employees (2 to 15 on average), makes sure they meet hotel standards, trains them, and evaluates them. Meets the targets and ratios set by management; this type of role requires a lot of office work to provide the requested information. These positions require a minimum of five years of experience in the hotel industry and sometimes advanced studies in marketing, sales, accounting or human resources.

Management (supervisory positions)

Accommodation manager | Housekeeping manager | Restaurant services manager | Operations manager | Sales manager | General manager of a hotel establishment:

Plans, organizes, directs and controls the activities of the establishment’s different sectors while ensuring that provided services are efficient and profitable. Attends meetings and works with other sectors of the hotel. Is responsible for tracking occupancy forecasts to perform budget and marketing planning and ensure that the establishment has the human resources to meet service standards. These positions require a minimum of ten years of experience in the hotel industry and sometimes advanced studies in marketing, sales, accounting or human resources.

Main Job Tasks

Here are the main tasks for the different positions listed above, according to the website of the Conseil québécois des ressources humaines en tourisme:

Accommodation

  • Answer customer questions.
  • Help organize the arrival of customers and groups.
  • Make reservations using a computerized system.
  • Assign rooms.
  • Promote special rates, packages or activities.
  • Inform customers about internal policies.
  • Perform housekeeping tasks in rooms.
  • Clean reception areas.
  • Balance accounts or the cash register.
  • Update the customer database.

Restaurant services

  • Welcome customers, present the menu, make suggestions, and answer questions about food and beverages.
  • Answer customer questions.
  • Set up the dining rooms or banquet rooms.
  • Provide customers with their bills and perform cash transactions.
  • Ensure good communication with staff.
  • Take orders to the room and serve them.
  • Retrieve used dishes from the floors, banquet rooms, and dining rooms.

Required Qualifications

From the website of the CQRHT

Skills for sales and customer service:

  • Teamwork skills, independence, drive, honesty, versatility, motivation, initiative, organizational skills, leadership, and ability to make decisions.
  • Ability to communicate in multiple languages (at least French and English) and written and oral communication skills in at least French and English.
  • Planning and human resources management skills (team management, conflict resolution).
  • Able to perform monetary transactions.
  • Knowledge and application of labour standards and basic health and safety principles.
  • Tolerance for stress and a good memory.
  • Very good knowledge of the main tourist attractions of the local region.
  • Mobility, flexibility, versatility, and availability.

Workplaces

Work environments vary and are mainly in the private sector:

  • Hotels and hostels (hotel chains, independent hotels, boutique hotels)
  • Tourist resorts
  • Cruise ships
  • Conference centres and reception halls
  • Outfitters
  • Casinos

Special Working Conditions

You will fully develop in your career if you are open to the working conditions that are particular to the hotel industry:

  • Atypical schedules
  • Standing for long stretches of time and during periods of high client volume and intense stress
  • Ability to lift loads of 20 pounds or more
  • Work in extreme or highly contrasted temperatures
  • Frequent use of a computer (word processing and database software)
  • Many challenges that will strengthen your passion for the restaurant industry!

Placements and Salaries

Placement rate according to Emploi-Québec

The Labour Market Information (LMI) website indicates that job prospects in this sector are favourable (forecasts for 2011 to 2015).

Salaries and employment statistics

Labour Market Information (LMI) http://imt.emploiquebec.net

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