Hotel guest relations officers hold some of the most important positions in their industry. After all, they are often the first employees with whom a guest interacts. Hotel guest relations officers answer phones, book reservations and greet customers who enter the establishment. Mostly, they aim to make sure guests have a comfortable stay and want to return.
Hotel guest relations officers check in guests by verifying a reservation. That usually entails checking identification, as well as getting the guest's car make and license number for security purposes. Hotel guest relations officers also make guests aware of special discounts and other amenities such as continental breakfasts, room service and activities and restaurants in the vicinity. Other duties include scheduling and making wake-up calls, taking payments from guests and operating a cash register. Most hotel guest relations officers are also responsible for the cleanliness and organisation of the front desk area.
Hotel guest relations officers must have a strong understanding of customer service. They have to be friendly and professional, as well as organised. They also need to be capable of performing basic clerical duties, such as faxing and copying documents--as well as operating registers and computers, often used to store guest information. Along with those traits, hotel relations officers should possess a strong work ethic, positive attitude toward the job and patience in dealing with guests.
Most hotel relations officers hold entry-level positions in which they can learn on the job with minimal training. In most cases, no more than a high school diploma, or the equivalent, is required. Occasionally, hotel guest relations officers will have previously held similar positions, such as a receptionist or front desk clerk for an insurance agency. Others are part-time workers who are attending college.
Jobs for hotel guest relations officers are likely to plentiful for at least the next decade. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of hotel desk clerks is expected to increase 14 per cent from 2008 through 2018, which is slightly higher than that projected for all other occupations. About one in four hotel clerks are part-time employees, according to the BLS.
Much of a hotel guest relations officer's wages are based on overall responsibilities and size and success of hotel. According to a leading salary website, hotel clerks earned anywhere from £5.30 to £6.90 per hour in May 2010. Also, the BLS reported the median annual wage of such workers was £12,600 in May 2008.