The tourism industry in India is extremely vibrant and the country is fast becoming a global destination. India's travel and tourism industry is one of the most profitable industries in the country. It has also been credited with contributing a substantial amount of foreign exchange. This growth has gone hand-in-hand with an increase in the number of youngsters who are opting for a career in the hotel management industry. We speak to Nikhil Kapur, General Manager of Ista Hotels, who throws light on this fascinating career
What are the career options after pursuing a hotel management course?
One can start off as a guest relation officer or work in the front office, food and beverage department or housekeeping. There are a lot of options within the setup and growth varies according to individual strengths. A good degree and hard work will help one scale to the top in a short period of time.
In which sector can a person find employment?
Hotel management basically teaches logistics, customer relations and communication skills. So one can get a job in places where these skills are required like hotels, BPOs, airlines, hospitals, tourism associations, the retail sector and cruise liners.
What are the qualifications required for this career?
Any person who has passed class 12 or an equivalent examination can pursue hotel management. Apart from this educational qualification, one has to be very mature, disciplined, committed and hardworking. One should have the ability to work in crisis situations and should be dedicated towards one's work as the hours one needs to keep do tend to become stressful.
What is the nature of the job?
Since hotels are part of the service industry, the job can be very demanding. It includes a lot of interaction with people and managerial skills. It demands a lot of hard work and commitment. The work pattern also depends on the department in which one is working.
What kind of pay scales can one expect?
If you start by working as a guest relation officer or with the front office, then you can expect a starting salary of around Rs 7,000 to 10,000 per month. However, the pay scale increases gradually along with the designation.
Places which offer courses in this career
- Indian Hotel Management, Mumbai. Website: ihmctan.edu
- ITC's Welcome Group Graduate School of Hotel Management, Manipal. Website: manipal.edu
JOB OPTIONS IN A HOTEL
Managers: Hotel managers are responsible for the efficient and profitable operation of their establishments. The general manager controls the finances, establishment norms to be followed by the staff while providing services to guests, housekeeping, food quality, decor and interiors. Assistant managers supervise the day-to-day operations of their departments. Large hotels have resident managers to resolve problems round the clock. Department managers work under the supervision and guidance of the top management.
Front Office: The first people to welcome guests in a hotel are the personnel at the front office. The front office manager supervises the work of the receptionists, information clerks, reservation clerks and other service personnel like bell captains, bell boys and doormen. Bell boys assist guests with baggage while checking into a room. The bell captain supervises the work of bell boys. The information clerk delivers telephone messages to guests through the bell captain.
Food and Beverage (F&B): This department includes the culinary unit, steward department and food service department. Restaurant and food service managers are responsible for stocks of tableware, linens, supplies, furniture and cleaning equipment. They arrange for equipment maintenance and repairs. They also have to maintain records of hours and wages of employees, payrolls and taxes. Banquet managers are in charge of catering assignments.
Housekeeping: A hotel requires maintenance on a very large scale. Hotels have a housekeeping department to look after cleanliness in rooms, lounges, lobbies, restaurants, dining halls and gardens. This department functions under the supervision of an executive housekeeper.
Executive housekeepers are responsible for ensuring that guest rooms, meeting and banquet rooms and public areas are clean, orderly and well-maintained. They train, schedule and supervise the work of housekeepers, inspect rooms and order necessary supplies. Housekeeping is a round-the-clock job. This department thus works in shifts.
Marketing Department: Today, marketing of services is a major aspect of hotel management. The sales and marketing division works to identify the needs of prospective customers, develop stay packages to suit their needs and sell the services that have been developed.