The front office of lodging facilities typically refers to the reception area and the main operations department including sales and marketing, concierge, and housekeeping. Front office managers are responsible for the supervision of all operations of the front office.
What does a front office manager do?
Front office managers make sure the front office of lodging facilities is operating effectively and efficiently. They are responsible for all front desk operations and guest services such as accommodations, transportation, and special services. They organize reservations and the assignment of rooms and make sure guests are treated in a courteous manner and all of their needs are met. They handle guest complaints and a variety of issues and ensure they are successfully resolved. They often handle bill adjustments and other related financial issues. Front office managers also provide training and direction to front office personnel.
What kind of training does a front office manager need?
Front office managers must have at least a high school diploma, but many employers prefer candidates with formal training in hospitality or hotel management. Prospective front office managers often complete courses in accounting, marketing, hotel administration, hotel maintenance, and food service management. Many aspiring front office managers complete internships or obtain part-time employment in hotels to gain practical experience. Many front office managers begin their career in lower level positions and advance to management positions as they gain the necessary skills and experience. Most employers provide some type of on the job training to enable new front office managers to learn the necessary policies and procedures.
What are the prospects for a career as a front office manager?
Employment of front office managers is expected to grow slower than average for all professions, increasing 5% through 2018 (1). The increase in limited service hotels with less management will contribute to the slow job growth.
Job prospects are expected to be good especially for front office managers with extensive experience and advanced training. Many job openings will result from the need to replace front office managers that retire, transfer, or leave the field for other reasons.
How much do front office managers make?
As of 2012, the average annual salary for front office managers is $50,000; average annual front office manager salaries vary greatly on location, employer, education, experience, and benefits (2).
A career as a front office manager is a great choice for people with a strong interest in hospitality management and overseeing the front office operations of lodging facilities. Front office managers must have a solid understanding of the policies and procedures of their facilities. Good leadership, multi-tasking ability, good time-management skills, great problem solving skills, and excellent decision-making are necessary characteristics. Front office managers must have excellent communication and customer service skills and ability to interact with a variety of guests and hotel staff. They must be able to work in fast-paced and often stressful environments.
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