The basic principles of Managing a Hotel are simple and similar, no matter what the Star classification of the Hotel is (1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 Star Hotel (Based on the Services and Facilities they provide), or if it’s a large or a small Hotel or if the hotel is operated independently (Managing the Hotel under your (Hotel Owners) Name) or part of a Hotel Chain (Managing Hotel under someone else name and paying them fees for using their name). The bigger the Hotel gets, in terms of the number of Rooms and the number of Restaurants and Bars, the number of Staff increase and also the number of Titles and Positions of the Staff working there. The primary and basic Business of any Hotel or a Resort is providing Rooms, Food and Drink to Guests (Customers).
They are classified as City Hotels (which mainly cater for Business Guest), Resorts (which cater for Guests on Holiday or on Vacation in Holiday and Beach Side Destinations), Airport Hotels (which are close to Airports and mostly cater to transit Airline Passengers and Airline Crew), Casino Hotels (Hotels which have licensed Gambling facilities), Convention Hotels (which have Convention and Meeting facilities for large number of Guests), Motels (Mainly in the US, which cater to Guests Traveling by road and who wish to stop over for overnight) , Bed and Breakfast (Mainly in Europe, which are small Hotels catering for Guest at reasonable pricing).
Letting out Guest Rooms, Letting out Conference Rooms for Meetings and Conferences, Letting out Ballrooms for Weddings and Functions and Sale and Service of Food and Drink in Restaurants and Bars are the primary source of Revenue on which Hotels rely.
As time passed by Hotels started generating Revenues from Spa (Providing Massage and Treatment Services) ,Health Club (Gym), Boutiques in the Hotel Lobby, Golf, Outside Catering, Serving Airlines through Flight Catering etc.
The primary Operational Departments of a Hotel are Front Office Department, House Keeping Department, Food and Beverage Service Department, Food Production Department (Kitchen).
Front Office and House Keeping Departments together are also known as Rooms Division Department.
Front Office Department deals with Guests Reservations: for Guests who want to stay in the Hotel , it also deals with Guest Registration when Guest check in to the Hotel, through dealing with Guest requests and Complaints during a Guest stay in the Hotel to finally collecting and processing Guest Payments, when Guest Finally check out of the Hotel.
In smaller Hotels Front Office Department is simply known as Reception.
Receptionists, Guest Service Agents, Cashiers and Front Office Manager form part of this Department.
Second Operational Department which is closely related to Front Office Department is House Keeping Department, which deals with the cleaning of Guest Rooms and Public Areas (Restaurants, Bars, Conference Halls, Ball Rooms and Offices etc).
In medium sized to big Hotels House Keeping Department also has an on premises Laundry for the washing of Guest Room Linen (Bed Sheets, Towels, Pillow Cases etc), Guest Clothes (for an extra Fee) and Staff Uniforms. In smaller Hotels this function is normally outsourced.
In smaller Hotels it’s simply known as Maid Service.
Room Maids, Housemen, Laundry Supervisor and Executive House Keeper form part of this Department.
Third Operational Department is Food and Beverage Service Department, which is a collection of all Restaurants, Bars, Conference halls and Ball rooms in the Hotel. It also includes Room Service.
Waiters, Bartenders, Restaurant Manager, Bar Manager, Room Service Manager, Banquet Manager and Food and Beverage Manager form part of this Department.
This Department deals with the Service of Food and Drink to the Guest and later for the collection of Payment from Guest.
Fourth Operational Department in a Hotel is Food Production Department or Kitchen. They cook Food for the Guests in the Restaurant, Bar, Room Service, Conferences, Functions and Weddings.
Cooks, Kitchen Stewards, Commis, Chef de Parties and Executive Chef form part of this Department.
Other than the four main operational departments mentioned above there are small ancillary departments which help in the proper functioning of a Hotel.
Accounts Department: Deals with the Money of the Hotel: all the Receipts and Payments of Money .Check if everything is accounted for and there is no pilferage (Stealing). Pays Salaries to Staff, Payments to Suppliers and deals with Books of Accounts for Taxation purpose. They also make regular reports for Owners and Managers, to give them the correct financial picture (if the Hotel is making Profit or Loss).
Human Resources or Personnel Department: This Department Recruits or Hires new staff deals with Employee Disciplinary Procedures, Employee Reward and Recognition Systems, Staff Attendance, Staff Holidays and Leave, Hiring, Firing, Promotions, Demotions and Transfers of Staff. They also deal with Employee Benefits like Social Security, Employee Insurance, Health and Safety of Staff and matters related to Staff Pay.
Training Department: This Department is part of Human Resources Department, deals mainly with Staff Training.
Sales and Marketing Department: deals with promoting the Hotel and its Restaurants and Bars to increase the Room Occupancy and Sales and to also increase sales of Restaurants, Bars, Functions and Conferences. They also take care of Advertising, Promotions and Public Relations of the Hotel.
Engineering and Maintenance Department: deals with the proper maintenance of Hotel Building and Equipment, lighting, Air Conditioning, Hot and Cold Water in Rooms and Restaurants, Plumbing, Painting, Carpentry Repairs etc.
Purchase Department: deals with the Purchase of Goods and Items (Food, Drink, Stationery and Equipment etc), required for the proper functioning of a Hotel.
Store Department: deals with the Receiving, Storage and Issuing of Goods and Items (Food, Drink, Stationary and Equipment etc) to various Departments in the Hotel.
Security Department: deals with the Security of Staff, Guests and the Hotel Property.
They are also responsible for the Fire Safety.
Finally, there is the IT (Information Technology) Guy, who takes care of the Computers and the Networking Systems in the Hotel, Hotel Website, Emails and Printers etc
Every Department can function on its own with a Department Head/Supervisor. But, to give proper Guest Service, Maintain Standards and to Increase Hotel Revenue you need a coordinator who can coordinate, guide and control all the Departments in the Hotel. That is when the Hotel Manager/ General Manager come in, to coordinate the Functions of all the Departments and take the Hotel in the right direction.
So in a nutshell, Managing Hotel is all about keeping the Guest happy by providing him good product (Room, Food and Drink) and service and thus ensuring his/her return which will ultimately lead to the profitability of the Hotel and its Owners. This is just a brief introduction to Manage Hotel or a Resort.