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The Inside Track on… the role of a concierge

Whether they’re working in a hotel, an office reception, or an apartment building, the concierge always plays a vitally important role. That’s why, when you’re setting out to hire a new concierge, it’s worth going the extra mile to find exactly the right person. Over the next few months, we’ll be taking a look at some of the hospitality roles we regularly help our clients fulfil and giving our perspective on what constitutes a great candidate. We’ve decided to start with the concierge because it’s a role that requires skill, charisma, and exceptional customer service abilities to perform brilliantly. We hope this brief insight helps you understand more about what we’re looking for when we’re recruiting for our clients, and we also hope it might inform and inspire any prospective candidates who are thinking about becoming concierges themselves.

The overview

A concierge is often the first point of contact for your guests and visitors. As such, it’s important they make an excellent first impression: looking smart and professional, acting efficiently with just the right mixture of friendliness, diplomacy and authority, and always focused on providing the very best customer service experience possible. They should also have excellent organisational and administrative skills, stay calm under pressure, and always be ready to rise to a challenge and go above and beyond to meet your customers’ expectations. Thorough working knowledge of your business and its surrounding location (nearby restaurants and transport links etc.) is important too.

The finer details

A concierge is an exceptional type of people person, and the most successful concierges are always prepared to expect the unexpected. If they’re working in a hotel, they’ll recommend the perfect places to take an early morning walk and be able to give directions to the off-the-beaten-track shops and restaurants only the locals know about. If they’re working in an office reception they’ll meet and greet visitors, screen telephone calls and support back-office staff, and help to build trusting working relationships with your clients and contractors. If they’re working in an apartment building, they’ll know the names of all the residents and do whatever they can to enhance the quality of the residents’ living experience – anything from taking in packages, dealing with building maintenance and housekeeping issues, providing directions or hailing cabs. Those are just a few of the duties a hotel, office or apartment concierge should expect to tackle on a daily basis even though when you’re a concierge no two days are ever entirely the same. That’s one of the many reasons the most successful concierges love doing what they do.

The five essential skills every concierge needs

Professionalism: When a guest or visitor first enters your building, the concierge is the ambassador for your organisation. Before they’ve even spoken a word, the smile on their face and the professionalism of their attire and demeanour will go a long way towards putting your guests at their ease.

First class communication skills: a concierge speaks with guests and visitors all day, so it’s important that all their communication skills – verbal, written and listening – are as finely tuned as possible.

A friendly, positive attitude: no matter how early or late it is, how tired they are or what challenges they’ve faced throughout the day, a concierge should always be welcoming and ready to help. They should also be able to demonstrate patience and flexibility and have the conflict resolution skills necessary to keep everyone calm in a crisis.

Be able to multi-task: a concierge should be a consummate organiser, capable of managing several tasks at the same time and delivering every one of them on schedule.

Be knowledgeable: a concierge should have a thorough knowledge of both a) your business and b) the attractions and services available in the local area. A concierge who’s passionate about their work is always on the look-out for new ways to make their guest’s lives easier and bring more value-add to the customer service experience.

On top of that, a concierge should have the energy it takes to work demanding and sometimes unsociable shift patterns and still stay happy and focused even when they’ve spent several hours standing on their feet. It’s a very physically as well as mentally demanding role, which is why – when you’re recruiting a concierge for your organisation – it’s important to make sure your candidates have the key skills you’re looking for while also possessing those extra-special qualities they may not have included on their CV. That’s where we can help, because our friendly team has the knowledge and experience to identify the invaluable qualities other recruiters may overlook. Working together, we’ll help you find the perfect candidate for your workplace – somebody who’ll fit seamlessly into your existing team who isn’t just perfect on paper, they’re perfect in person.

So, if you’re looking for a new concierge (or if you’re recruiting for any other roles in your hospitality team) don’t hesitate to get in touch on 020 7580 4398 or email info@primerec.co.uk. We’re looking forward to hearing from you and we guarantee you’ll get a great reception!

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