A hotel desk clerk is typically the first person guests see as they enter a hotel. Clerks generally greet guests arriving at a hotel and carry out the necessary tasks to check the individuals into their rooms. The clerk may perform a variety of tasks, such as collecting fees, assigning room keys and providing directions around the hotel. Additionally, the clerk will also be on hand when it's time for the guests to leave and will assume the responsibility of getting guests checked out. The requirements to become a hotel desk clerk may depend on the individual establishment the person is applying to for employment.
Typically, a high school diploma is the minimal amount of education required to become a hotel desk clerk. For better chances at a promotion, an individual may opt to obtain a degree in hospitality or a related concentration. The degree may be an associate's or a bachelor's. Many community colleges and universities will have programs focusing in these areas of study. It may also be beneficial to take courses in international tourism to acquire some knowledge of the travel industry.
The ability to provide good customer service may also be required to become a hotel desk clerk. A clerk may have the responsibility of performing many different tasks at once. He or she may check guests in and out while handling the phones and answering questions from other visitors and staff members at the same time. Although, this can be a very demanding position, it will be important to remain pleasant and open to everyone encountered. Generally, the desk clerk is one of the main people responsible for ensuring that the needs of the guests are met from every standpoint during their stay at the hotel.
A person wishing to become a hotel desk clerk will also have to be very well informed about the hotel and the surrounding area. Most clerks will answer questions throughout the day and night pertaining to both the hotel and the area which surrounds it. Guests will generally need help finding their way around the hotel. Additionally, visitors may need suggestions about what to do while staying in the area. For this reason, hotel desk clerks will also need to be knowledgeable of nearby locations for shopping, dining and entertainment.
It will also be necessary to solve problems independently and as smoothly as possible to become a hotel desk clerk. Staying away from home and at a hotel can become stressful, especially if the guests' are running into unresolved problems. One of the most important parts of being a hotel desk clerk is assuring that guests' problems are worked out in a manner that is efficient and satisfactory. After all, the clerk's job and the reputation of the hotel may lay on the line if the guest is left unsatisfied. In order to obtain a position as a hotel desk clerk, a person may apply directly to local hotels, search online or turn to the classified area of a local newspapers for openings.