Top Resume Writing Tips for Hospitality Jobs
Job seekers in the hospitality should follow some of the general rules that govern resume writing for most industries. A well-crafted resume is designed to be a sales or personal branding tool that convinces a potential employer not only of your relevant experience and skill set, but also that you are conscientious and have the determination to successfully carry out the job.
Your resume should concisely relate your chronological employment and educational history, highlighting your responsibilities and ideally, your accomplishments at each past and of course, current positions.
But that account of your work experience should also tell a narrative that makes your profile distinct from your competition. Here are five suggestions for doing exactly that:
Describe your previous and current employers
Even if you’ve worked for a property within a major international hotel, you should still convey – at a minimum – the size and location of the hotel as well as the category it uses to define its competitive set. That is, was it an upscale, upper upscale or luxury hotel?
The interviewer will want to know that your experience is relevant and either that you’ve consistently worked for properties in a particular setting such as urban or beachfront and what you’ve learned working at properties with similar or differing room counts. If you’ve gone from a convention hotel to a boutique property, your resume should make it clear that there was advancement in the move.
Promote achievements that relate to the hotel’s revenue
Do not simply list tasks that you were responsible for at each of your previous positions, but include ways in which you made a positive impact on the hotel’s margins, either by generating additional profits or through savings. This does not only apply to revenue and marketing staff, but all hotel departments including housekeeping where you may have been part of a team that implemented a new scheduling system to save on labor costs or front desk agents who may upsell guests on higher room categories upon their arrival.
Emphasize customer service skills, teamwork and attention to detail throughout your resume
These skills are detrimental to any job in the hospitality industry since no individual hotel employees functions in a silo and will likely cross paths with guests at some point during their tenure at the property.
Marketing staff might note that they trialed a new digital platform in a previous position while housekeeping and guest service employees could share a line or two of positive guest feedback from a past job. (Avoid using the guest’s full name. Instead, use the guest’s first name and city or country of origin.)
Of course, qualifications such as diplomas and degrees as well as any certifications that you have, especially if you’re applying for food and beverage (F&B) related positions, should also be included.
Remember to include technology skills
Traditionally, this has not be essential to landing a job in the hospitality industry where the human touch is a cornerstone of service. However, the hotel industry is more competitive than ever and is – like all businesses – affected by rapidly changing technology. So if you worked with a particular point-of-sale (POS) system while working in an F&B position or with a specific customer relationship management system as a front desk agent, reference that as you detail your responsibilities in that position.
Of course, if you’re applying for an information technology (IT) position, your resume will have a far more comprehensive technology component. Also keep in mind that the interviewer may ask you about your experience with any technology applications included in your resume, so be prepared to talk about it and as always, keep it positive and easy to understand.
Include volunteer work
This will illustrate that you’re a team player, either as a community member or as part of a past employer’s corporate social responsibility programming. Volunteer work also conveys the desire to serve that is essential to the hospitality industry. Moreover, the type of volunteer work that you do – whether walking dogs at a local animal shelter or reading to the elderly at a senior center – will also tell your potential employer something about you personally and what you enjoy doing outside of work. This could spark a discussion with the interviewer in which you find you have something in common.