Hospitality service roles can be found in a wide range of leisure and retail organisations as well as in private and public sector businesses. A hospitality team member can work in a range of establishments, for example bars, restaurants, cafés, conference centres, banqueting venues, hotels or contract caterers. The role is very varied and although hospitality team members tend to specialise in an area, they have to be adaptable and ready to support team members across the business, for example during busy periods.
This industry is primarily customer facing, although some roles require working out of the customer’s eye-line to ensure services run smoothly. People in these roles are usually friendly and have a professional manner that is welcoming. Specialist areas in hospitality include food and beverage service, serving alcoholic beverages, barista, food preparation, housekeeping, concierge and guest services, reception, reservations and conference and banqueting.
Within this industry there are a variety of specialist skills roles including: Concierge; Guest Services Associate; Meeting Coordinator; Catering Manager; Back Office Assistant; Housekeeper; Maintenance Worker; Barista; Bartender; and Catering Assistant.
The most important part of the role is developing fantastic ‘hospitality’ skills and knowledge such as recognising customer needs, knowing how to match them to the products and services of the business and working as part of a team to ensure that every customer, whether they are eating in a restaurant, drinking cocktails in a bar, ordering room service in a hotel or attending a business conference feels welcomed and looked after.
These roles require a strong sense of professionalism, accuracy, attention to detail and problem solving. People in this role are able to work under pressure or to tight deadlines to provide immediate solutions to problems the customer may encounter.
Hospitality roles are an excellent starting point for those wanting to develop a career in a managerial role, become an entrepreneur or self-employed, or as a higher professional in this area.
All hospitality team members must have the following introductory knowledge:
Understand what hospitality means; the culture of the industry and why delivering a customer experience to meet and exceed customer’s expectations is so important to hospitality businesses.
Appreciate the importance of hospitality behaviours such as personal conduct, being adaptable, using initiative and communicating with a diverse range of people.
Know the range of businesses and establishments that make up the hospitality industry, their differences and similarities and the variety of job roles and progression opportunities that are available.