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How to Become a Concierge

If you’re a people person with a friendly, outgoing personality and enjoy doing things for others and making sure they are taken care of, becoming a concierge might be the perfect customer service role for you.

The concierge might also be referred to as a guest relations manager or a guest service worker. They serve as highly specialized customer service representatives. Concierges typically work in the hospitality industry, such as in hotels and resorts, although they are also found in high-end office buildings, condominiums, and apartment complexes. They respond to a wide variety of guest or tenant needs in an effort to give them the best possible experience. A concierge must have excellent communication skills and top-notch customer service skills. Some of the more common services they provide are assisting guests and tenants with dinner and tour reservations, arranging tickets to events, and coordinating transportation.

Sample job description

[Your Company Name] is seeking a new concierge. You will be responsible to deliver the highest quality customer service to all members and guests. As the first point of contact, you play a crucial role in ensuring everyone who visits feels welcomed and valued. In this role, you will enjoy a fun work environment while building value-based relationships, which increases member loyalty and assists them in meeting their healthy way of life goals. As an ideal candidate, you have proven customer service experience working in the hospitality industry or a related field.

Typical duties and responsibilities

  • Greets guests and/or customers
  • Handles guest or customer complaints
  • Provides local information to guests, including directions, attractions, shopping, nightlife, or recreational opportunities
  • Arranges transportation for special events, excursions, and tours
  • Acquires tickets to special events or makes reservations for guests at a wide variety of venues, such as dinner, recreation times, or spa treatments
  • Runs errands for guests 
  • Provides a range of business services such as shipping packages and assisting with printing needs
  • Handles incoming and outgoing mail
  • Manages luggage and deliveries
  • Plans and schedules special events, parties, or meetings
  • Arranges for interpreters or translators
  • Managing requests for housekeeping and/or maintenance

Education and experience

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • 2+ years of hotel guest services experience

Required skills and qualifications

  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office Suite or related software
  • Strong problem-solving and critical thinking skills
  • Positive attitude 
  • Flexible 
  • Patience
  • Excellent organizational and multitasking skills
  • Excellent administrative skills

Preferred qualifications

  • Ability to speak a second language 
  • Experience in customer service, preferably in the hospitality industry
  • Sales experience
  • Associate’s or bachelor’s degree in hospitality, business, or related field

Typical work environment

Concierges typically work in highly visible, service-oriented settings. They spend their days interacting with guests and tenants, fulfilling numerous requests simultaneously. They also handle customer requests over the phone. A concierge might be on their feet for long periods, either standing or running errands for guests and customers.

Typical hours

A concierge might work a variety of hours, including nights, weekends, and holidays. They must be flexible and work when needed.

Available certifications

As technical writers work in a variety of industries, there are many institutions that offer certifications, including:

Concierges work mainly in the hospitality industry, and many institutions offer certifications that can expand industry knowledge and enhance hospitality and customer service skills. Here are some top certifications for this position: 

  • Certified Hotel Concierge. This certification is administered by The National Concierge Association (NCA) and is awarded based on concierge services excellence, continuing education in the hospitality industry, and community involvement. To obtain certification, you must attend the NCA orientation session and complete a written essay, exam, and interview with the National President and NCA Chief Executive Officer. You also must be approved by the NCA Executive Board of Directors. Emphasis is placed on your guest service skills, your proficiency using technology and the internet, your ability to provide personalized service, your diversity awareness, and your immersion in global and cultural environments. Individuals employed as hotel lobby concierges with at least 90 days experience in the field are eligible.
  • NCA Certified Concierge. The National Concierge Association (NCA) grants NCA Certified Concierge certification status to NCA Concierge members who have demonstrated concierge services excellence, continuing education in the hospitality industry, community involvement, and who are active in the NCA. Qualifications include becoming a member of the NCA, attending the NCA Orientation session, and completing all requirements of the NCA Certification program, which include a written essay, exam, interview with the National President and NCA Chief Executive Officer, and approval by a majority vote of the NCA Executive Board of Directors. 
  • Art of Concierge (AOC) Certificate. The International School of Hospitality offers the AOC to individuals looking to take their guest service skills to the next level. This course combines theory and practice in providing you with the expertise you’ll need in dining, entertainment, and leisure, as well as developing your sense of self and integrity as a professional concierge. You will learn the latest and best practices in the industry from some of the most prominent individuals in the field. Key topics include creating comprehensive itineraries for guests and their parties, making recommendations for food, leisure, and entertainment, global guests and guest diversity, and safety and security.

Career path

To begin your career path toward becoming a concierge, you will need a high school diploma or its equivalent. Many entry-level positions will train you on the job. Others are looking for previous experience in the customer service industry. By earning a hospitality assistant diploma, offered by a number of US colleges, you will be a step ahead of your competition when entering the job market for a concierge position. To advance your career, you can continue your education by obtaining an associate’s degree in hospitality management or restaurant and hotel management. Earning a bachelor’s degree in marketing, promotions, advertising sales, or business administration and several years of experience are typically needed for the best career opportunities in high-end hotels, office buildings, and apartment buildings. 

US, Bureau of Labor Statistics’ job outlook

SOC Code: 11-9081

2020 Employment48,100
Projected Employment in 203052,200
Projected 2020-2030 Percentage Shift 9% increase
Projected 2020-2030 Numeric Shift4,200 increase

One trend to look for in the hospitality industry is the shift away from wasteful “luxuries,” such as sewing kits, slippers, and leaflets. Instead of using hotel shampoo bottles, of which billions are thrown away half-used every year, hotels are switching to using bulk, refillable dispensers in hotel rooms. Travelers are looking for the essentials in hospitality, which might include nothing more than a room with a shower and a bed. The trend toward creating a higher level of satisfaction by offering less, but providing better service, is expected to continue.

More people are traveling solo, and the hospitality industry is changing to accommodate that trend. With innovations such as virtual lobbies, hotels are streamlining the guest experience, allowing travelers to share as much or as little personal information as they please. Hotel restaurants and bars are offering a more informal atmosphere and décor, catering to single travelers and making it easier for them to integrate into the hotel community.