What Do Concierges Do?
One of the bastions of customer service, concierges help out guests and patrons in all manner of requests, at the front desk of a hotel or motel, an apartment complex, or a large office building. You’ll assist all visitors by answering questions, taking messages, offering advice and arranging transportation and entertainment, and scheduling service calls and housekeeping.With the growing tourist industry, the need for concierges is increasing quickly. A 23% rise in the number of jobs is predicted between 2012 and 2022, with over 1,200 positions expected to open every year across the country.
Concierges Skills and Abilities
The most important skill for a concierge is customer service. You must be attentive, courteous and personable, able to understand your patrons’ needs and answer them. Strong communication skills are a must, as is English fluency. You’ll need to reason through problems, as well as be able to remember or know how to look up facts and information. Concierges also need basic knowledge of clerical and administrative tasks and sales and marketing principles, and be comfortable using computers to schedule and find information.
Working as a concierge, you’ll have a range of diverse responsibilities. One of your primary duties will be to provide information and directions, advising patrons about local features such as dining and nightlife, and answering their questions about where to find particular places. You may call taxis and make other travel arrangements, schedule reservations at restaurants and services such as spa treatments and obtain tickets for performances and shows. You’ll assist in planning parties and other events, arrange childcare, and bring in a translator or interpreter when needed to help a guest. You’ll also help with guests’ business, receiving and delivering mail, sending faxes and dispatching packages.Concierges also handle more unusual requests. You may be asked to find and deliver specific items, locate lost articles or provide sufficient replacements, and make bookings for special services, for example whitewater rafting tours or hot-air balloon rides, and run other errands. To support the hotel and related businesses, you may advertise or otherwise promote particular amenities such as room service.
Concierges Tools and Technology
The majority of technology concierges use to complete their duties are various types of communication devices. As a concierge, you’ll need to be capable with:
- Fax machines
- Computer printers
- Mobile phones and multi-line telephones
- Desktop, laptop and tablet computers.
You’ll also be using a variety of different software, including accounting and billing programs, electronic calendars for scheduling, and email and web browsers. To answer guests’ questions, you’ll need to be able to search and make queries online and in information databases.
Education and Training for Concierges
Most concierge positions require a high school diploma or GED. Some college education is helpful, especially in fields related to customer service, though a four-year degree is not generally demanded. You’ll get some training on the job, but previous familiarity with an area and its popular features will give you an advantage.
The pay concierges receive is highly dependent on location, as well as experience and expertise. Though the national median salary is $28,000 a year, in some places the average is over $40,000. Lower paying positions can be below $19,000, but the highest paid concierges make over $54,000 a year.
Concierges Jobs by Geography
While concierges work across the country, the most and the best-paying jobs are concentrated in popular tourist destinations and places with high-end apartment buildings and office complexes, such as large cities like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Hawaii, Florida, and Las Vegas in Nevada employ many concierges. However, you may be able to find a position in nearly any community populous enough to support a hotel.