A Closer Look at a Career as a Concierge
Canada’s tourism and retail industries are enjoying peak numbers according to a latest report by CBC News based on research by Destination Canada. In 2016 alone, Canada attracted an additional 1.2 million visitors compared to the previous year (2015), which was 33% above target. These visitors went on to spend over $1.5 billion, which was 36% above target.
With this ever-growing numbers, the tourism sector, currently providing nearly 10,500 jobs, is expected to grow even more. One job that will continue to flourish because of vibrant tourism activities will be the concierge, so this is one career that is worth looking into.
Concierge – What You Need to Know
A concierge professional is a customer service representative who works in hotels, resorts, shopping malls, or residential facilities, including privately owned condominium properties and homes. Some corporate office settings have also adopted the concierge approach.
When in tourism-related work environments, the concierge’s main task is to provide a positive guest experience. They serve as the first point of contact for guests or customers and they are the go-to personnel when tourists want to know about shopping or dining options or the best spots to visit. While it’s true that Siri or Alexia can provide this information, the concierge can do more as they can also make recommendations and advice based on their personal experience so there is a personal touch—and that’s something Siri or Alexia can’t provide.
The concierge can also perform other tasks on behalf of the hotel guests or customers: from arranging to pick up laundry to booking a luxury beach resort. In some establishments, the concierge is also mandated to perform in capacities related to safety and security.
According to PayScale.com, a concierge can earn between $24,486 up to $44,887 per year with potential for bonus, tips, and overtime. With exceptional performance and years of experience, a concierge can earn higher level positions such as an operations manager where they can manage a team of front desk agents, night auditors, and concierge professionals.
To start off a career as a concierge, it’s beneficial to earn a high school diploma or its equivalent or GED. Of course, because of the nature of their work, the priority quality all concierge must have is refined customer service skills so they can always provide outstanding customer service to tourists, guests, customers, or tenants. A concierge must also have exceptional verbal and written communication skills to correspond with customers and provide them with the comprehensive information they need.
In addition, they have to have expert observation skills and must be meticulous in record keeping and report writing. Maintaining grace under pressure is also a must in this undertaking.
Pros and Cons
A career as a concierge can be an exciting one as one will have to deal with all types of people all the time. Since every customer is different, a concierge can expect every day to be different. Of course, this can also be challenging as one will have to be flexible to adopt or adjust a certain customer service approach and tailor it to the customer’s personality type. At times, they will have to deal with the pressure of accommodating the demanding requests of VIP guests.
Another challenge is dealing with a high volume of guests during peak seasons.
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