Earning a degree in hotel management will provide you with the skills to work in the hospitality industry, which offers many areas in which you can spread your career wings. In hotel and lodging management, you can work as the supervisor, manager or director of hotels, motels, resorts, vacation rentals and any other facility that provides lodging to all types of travelers.
Many who earn a hotel management degree may work in food and beverage management. These managers work in hotels, motels, casinos, conference centers and anywhere where food and beverages are sold. They may be involved in human resources, the ordering of food and supplies, financial tracking and inventory and customer service.
A hotel management degree also can lead to a career in travel and tourism management. Jobs in this field may include cruise directors, travel agents, tour managers and sales managers. These managers are responsible for the oversight of all factors that have to do with traveling.
What Is Hotel Management?
Hotel management ensures that guests who are staying in a hotel, motel or other lodging have a pleasant stay. A hotel manager also ensures that the lodging facility is run in a profitable and efficient manner.
Some of the common duties of the hotel manager include:
- Inspect the rooms that guests stay in, as well as the public areas and grounds for proper cleanliness and appearance
- Ensure that standards are maintained in terms of decor, guest services and housekeeping
- Answer inquiries from guests about the services and policies of the lodging establishment
- Interview, train and hire members of staff
- Monitor the performance of staff to make sure that guests are satisfied and the facility is run properly
- Coordinate all of the activities of the motel or hotel and deal with any problems
- Set the budget and rate for the hotel
Some of the most common types of hotel managers are as follows:
- General manager: Oversees all of the operations at a property. If the hotel is large, there could be a general manager and several lower level managers that coordinate the activities of the various departments. Some of these departments may include HR, housekeeping, room operations, marketing and sales, recreational activities and maintenance.
- Revenue manager: Works in the financial management area, and monitors reservations and room sales. Also oversees accounting and cash flow, and projects levels of occupancy.
- Front officer manager: Handles rooms assignments and coordinates reservations. Also is responsible for training and directing the staff of the front desk.
- Convention service manager: Supervises the work of various departments at a convention center, and accommodates various meetings, special events and conventions.
The lodging management field overall will see 6% growth by 2026, which is about as fast as average. It is believed that there will be decent growth in travel, tourism, and generally higher levels of need for hotel space. As the economy continues to improve, there also should be greater need for convention managers, as there are more business conventions taking place.
BLS reports that there are 47,800 lodging manager and hotel manager jobs in the US. The largest number of hotel managers work in these areas:
- Travel accommodations: 66%
- Self employed: 24%
- RV and recreational camps: 3%
Some of the other related job titles in this field are:
- Food service manager
- Gaming service worker
- HR manager
- Community association manager
- Sales manager
The median wage for all hotel and lodging managers was $51,800 in 2016. The top 10% in the field earn $96,500 per year. In the area of traveler accommodation, the median wage is $51,000 per year. In RV parks, the median salary is $45,100.
Professionals who want to pursue the best hospitality management and hotel management opportunities may consider working in these cities:
- San Francisco: Those who are interested in hotel management should strongly think about working in this city. There are nearly 350 large hotels, inns and beds and breakfasts here, and more than 32,000 hotel rooms.
- Houston: This city is growing very rapidly in both employment and in tourism, which leads to a high number of hotels and motels with plenty of management jobs.
- Orlando: This is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the US, and there are more than 300 large hotels here.
- Los Angeles: This popular tourist city has 347 large hotels and there also are 70 casinos. So there are many job opportunities for professionals interested in lodging management.
- Las Vegas: As the gambling capital of America, there are few places in the country with more hospitality jobs. There are hundreds of hotels and nearly 300 casinos in this city.
Professionals who seek a career as a hotel manager or a related position may consider working for these top hospitality companies in the US:
- American Cruise Lines
- Artisans of Leisure
- Best Western
- Gaylord Hotels
- Marriott International
- Carlson Companies
- Outrigger Hotels and Resorts
- Crown American
- Extended Stay America
- Carnival Cruise Lines
- Hilton Worldwide
- Waldorf Astoria
Students who want to launch their career in hotel or hospitality management will benefit from getting a bachelor’s degree in hospitality management or hotel management. This type of degree will provide you with the skills to oversee a variety of resorts, gaming operations and banquet facilities. Typical coursework includes foundations of hotel management, restaurant management, casino management, and tourism management.
A master’s degree in hotel management or hospitality management will give you the in depth skills that you need in marketing, operations, financial planning, HR and business development. Students also learn about hotel operations, financial planning, problem solving and project management.
A master’s program in hotel or hospitality management will often require you to have a high GPA of at least 2.75 or higher; GRE or GMAT scores; 3 references from academic or employer sources; writing samples and a resume with related work experience.
If you earn a degree in hotel or hospitality management, you may take courses such as:
- Financial management in tourism and hospitality
- Service management for the tourism and hospitality industry
- Strategic management in the tourism and hospitality industry
- Strategic brand management
- Customer relationship management in tourism and hospitality
Students who wish to get their degree in hotel management may consider the following scholarships to help them:
- David J. Hallissey Memorial Scholarship: Various amounts
- Icon of Industry Scholarship: Various amounts
- William F. Carl Scholarship: Various amounts
- Ted J Balestreri Scholarship: Various amounts
- California Hotel and Motel Education Scholarship: Various amounts
- Sweeney Family Scholarship: Various amounts
- Rama Scholarship for the American Dream: $1000 to $3000
- Warren W. Rosenthal Undergraduate Scholarship: $2500
To enhance your career possibilities, it is recommended that you earn your Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA) designation. This is the most valuable certification that you can earn as a hotel manager or general manager. It will identify you as being one of the few of an elite group of management professionals in the hospitality industry.
This certification is recognized around the globe and will show that you possess advanced knowledge in the hotel and hospitality industries. It also shows that you have been updated on the latest trends in the industry and know all of the latest protocols in the hospitality industry.
Consider joining these associations to further your career in hotel management:
- American Hotel and Lodging Association
- Hospitality Asset Managers Association
- Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International
- American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute
As the economy grows in strength, the hotel management and hospitality management fields will be expanding. So, it is a good career move to earn your degree in this field.
- Career Paths of a Hospitality Management Student. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.hcareers.com/article/career-advice/career-paths-of-a-hospitality-management-student
- Top 25 Hospitality Companies. (2015). Retrieved from https://www.soegjobs.com/2016/06/09/top-25-hospitality-companies-usa/
- Lodging Managers. (2015, Dec. 18). Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/lodging-managers.htm