Marshall-Alan Associates: Understanding The Hierarchy of Hotel Management – Who Reports to Whom?

Marshall-Alan Associates is an executive search firm specializing in the hospitality industry. But what are hotel executives, and how many levels of executive management are there in an average high end hotel?

The answer is, that depends. Does the hotel have a restaurant? There is a complete side chain of command that can include a culinary director, executive chefs, and food and beverage directors. The size of the hotel will also be a factor, as different jobs can mean different responsibilities in a 100 bed hotel as opposed to a 500 bed hotel! The responsibilities of each level of management will vary depending on the size of the hotel and titles may vary based on the region.

The hierarchy of hotel management is a chain of command, with each link responsible for reporting to the next level to ensure that hotel operations are flowing smoothly and guest needs are being properly met. Although the terms used to describe positions may vary slightly geographically, the following is the basic outline for hotel management hierarchy.

Front office employees are the first wave of representatives who are responsible for guests. They are tasked with staffing the front desk, handling reservations and guest requests, and report to the front office manager. The front officer supervisor is responsible for not only the front office employees, but bellmen, concierges, door attendants and any other department that may be present. This is the “front line” executive management position.

The front office supervisor is in turn responsible for reporting to the assistant front office manger. The assistant front office manager handles any issues beyond the basic functions of daily hotel operations as well as interacting with guests and ensuring that all amenities guests may require are available. He is also often responsible for preparing data related to occupancy, rate plans and room inventory.

The assistant front office manager reports directly to the front office manager who handles issues related to cash control, guest service standards, departmental costs, training guidelines and assurance, crisis management, maintaining the duty manager log book, special guest requests as needed, interacting with guests and the overall supervision of all hotel employees and operations. Depending on the size of the hotel, there is usually a rooms division manager that will share some of the front area responsibilities.

At the top of the chain are the executive committee members, which can include: Hotel Manager or Director of Operations, Director of Marketing / DOSM, Controller, Director of Engineering,  Director of Housekeeping and Director of Reservation/Revenue Manager. These executives have experience years of training for their jobs, and are highly in demand. Marshall-Alan Associates specializes in finding top performing executives like these for placement in hotels in New York and across the US.

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