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More than simply front desk clerks, rooms controllers work diligently to accommodate guest reservations in hotels and resorts. In addition to working to book each room, they are equally concerned with creating a positive experience for every person staying in the facility.
Rooms controllers have a complete knowledge of every room offered at a facility, including standard rooms, junior suites and luxury suites. They implement the appropriate booking strategies to ensure that all parties are appropriately accommodated, and work with housekeeping and the reservations department regarding the distribution and status of guest rooms. They also ensure that frequent guests are given special treatment in accordance with the organization’s policies. They register guests, providing them with room keys and pertinent information about the available amenities, such as spa facilities and office centers, and events taking place at the facility, such as conferences.
Although a formal education is not required to become a rooms controller, to obtain the position as a stepping stone to a broader career within the hospitality industry, you may want to consider educational options. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 26 states and the District of Columbia offer high school level training in the subject of hospitality management. In addition, many employers give preference to candidates who possess a bachelor’s degree in the field when considering them for management-level positions or promotions. Students in these formal programs are trained in a variety of relevant topics, including accounting, marketing, housekeeping and food service management. There are approximately 60 accredited hospitality management programs offered throughout the country.
Skills and Qualifications
The most important qualification rooms controllers must have in order to be successful is strong customer service skills. They serve as the face of their facility, and must greet a variety of people who approach them in all manner of moods in a professional, courteous and positive way. Communication skills are also very important, as they are required to listen to and comprehend the needs of each guest. They must also be able to clearly instruct them on the location of their rooms and the services offered by the facility. Multitasking is equally important, as they may have to deal with multiple guests in-person and over the telephone over a short span of time.
A May 2013 report issued by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that rooms controllers and other hotel, motel and resort desk clerks earned a median hourly wage of $9.81, or approximately $20,400 per year. The lowest earners in this profession were paid $8 per hour, or $16,640 each year; those who were paid the highest made $14.54, or a yearly salary of $30,250.
KJ Henderson has more than a decade of HR and talent acquisition experience. He has held roles at a Fortune 100 investment bank, a media conglomerate and at one of NYC's largest executive staffing firms. He currently heads recruitment sourcing at a major movie studio. He read literature at Oxford.