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Essential skills profile

This profile contains a list of example tasks that illustrate how each of the 9 essential skills is generally performed by most workers in this occupation. The levels of complexity estimated for each task are ranked between 1 (basic) and 5 (advanced).

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Guest Services Attendants(6721)

This profile was developed as part of an occupational standard. The NOC group to which it relates is "Other Attendants in Accommodation and Travel (Except Airline Travel)". This unit group includes workers who carry hotel guests luggage and escort guests to their rooms, carry travellers luggage at railway stations and aboard ships, and clean and maintain public areas and passengers rooms aboard ships and trains. They are employed by hotels, railway companies and water transport companies.

Reading Help - Reading
  • Read entries in the log book made by other staff in order to obtain information. (1)
  • Scan labels on luggage tags for information. (1)
  • Read memos, newsletters or electronic mail (e-mail) for announcements, policy or procedure changes and information on promotions and events. (2)
  • Read notes, letters from guests and memos for information. (2)
  • Read newspapers in order to answer guest inquiries about current events or sports. (2)
  • Read incident reports which describe confidential information to understand or to learn. (2)
  • Read reports, such as policy documents to provide feedback. (3)
  • Read the employee handbook, standards, equipment manuals and travel information. (3)
  • Read training manuals on a monthly basis with decreasing frequency as they become experienced in the occupation. They refer to training manuals in order to refresh and update themselves on aspects of the job and to provide feedback on documents. Reading training manuals is among the most complex reading tasks performed by guest services attendants since they must be able to synthesize information and understand the many parts of the job and manual. (4)
Document use Help - Document use
  • Read luggage, parking and valet tags, lobby signs and reader boards. (1)
  • Look up information in phone books. (1)
  • Scan checklists during the shift for inventory, checking-in and posting. (1)
  • Fill out forms featuring checklists of daily tasks. (1)
  • As a service to guests, issue vouchers for valet parking, miscellaneous charges, taxis or other amenities. (1)
  • Read bus, shuttle bus and airline schedules, to provide information to guests and to determine if there have been any changes. (2)
  • Read weather and ski reports, for example to check the wind for sailing or to check road conditions. (2)
  • Read reports such as arrival/departure reports or late check-out reports. (2)
  • Read rooming and very important people (VIP) lists and special needs lists, for example for the disabled. (2)
  • Read guest comment forms and room change slips. (2)
  • Interpret the hotel floor plan and maps of the city, province and world. (2)
  • Read function sheets in order to obtain information about the functions being held in the hotel. Function sheets provide the location, time, type of function and the number of people involved. (2)
  • Read convention agendas to obtain information and make decisions. (2)
  • Scan brochures to give directions and provide information to guests. (2)
  • Fill in incident, accident and lost luggage report forms. (2)
  • Fill out courier waybills. (2)
  • Fill out purchase orders, credit/debit slips for guest purchases and paid-out slips. (2)
  • Match luggage tags with rooming lists. (2)
Writing Help - Writing
  • Write notes, electronic mail messages or faxes in order to communicate information. (1)
  • Write notes to track records of special requests and assignments or to justify busy times. (1)
  • Write log book entries varying from a few lines to a full page to provide information from the previous shift, such as delayed luggage and special requests, such as a room requiring urgent cleaning or a guest requesting a newspaper. (2)
  • Write incident reports to keep a record, inform and communicate information. (2)
  • Write workers' compensation reports. (3)
  • May write an analysis of an occurrence for legal purposes. (4)
Numeracy Help - Numeracy Money Math
  • Handle petty cash and make change in order to buy items for guests, such as cigarettes or stamps. (1)
  • Total amounts on credit/debit slips, courier way-bills, and purchase orders. (2)
  • Calculate charges, including gratuities and taxes, for vouchers and luggage handling. (2)
Measurement and Calculation Math
  • Weigh luggage and parcels for shipping or delivery by courier. (1)
  • Read the temperature on a thermometer and may convert Fahrenheit to Celsius. (2)
  • Calculate distances to particular locations by taking measurements on maps and converting to actual distance by using the map scale. (2)
Numerical Estimation
  • Estimate the time required for tasks or the response time for guest service delivery. (1)
Oral communication Help - Oral communication
  • Greet guests. (1)
  • Communicate guests' needs to those who will act on them, such as communicating guest requests for wake up calls to the hotel operator. (1)
  • Talk to suppliers to order special buses to transport guests. (1)
  • Provide information to guests about various sites, including closing and opening times, and give guests directions. (1)
  • Deal with angry or dissatisfied guests in a range of situations. (See Problem Solving) (2)
  • Greet tour groups and give them a short orientation to the hotel and hotel amenities. (2)
Thinking Help - Thinking Problem Solving
  • Must sometimes find lost luggage. They get information on the luggage from the guest. They may have to call around and get assistance in-house to find the bag. They follow established procedures. They also look for stray bags. A follow-up check is done to see if the bag has been found. This is done on a daily to a yearly basis depending on the size of the hotel. (1)
  • Handle angry guests who are concerned about noise in the hallway or who do not have reservations. Guest services attendants must placate the guests through discussing the problem, finding them a room or through some compensation. They may co-ordinate with the front desk agent in order to resolve the problem. Guest services attendants must determine if a solution is within their level of authority and deal with it according to the nature of the complaint and the options available, noting facts and referring to someone else where necessary. They must also use empathy with customers when resolving problems caused by hotel errors. (2)
Decision Making
  • May decide whether to ask for assistance from co-workers, such as the housekeeping room attendant (HRA), front desk agent (FDA) and room service attendant (RSA). This requires experience in forecasting level of business, but there is a set procedure to follow. (1)
  • Decide how to solve hotel service errors. (1)
  • May have to decide whether to compensate a guest who has missed a bus, for example by paying for a taxi. They also decide whether they are empowered to make particular decisions. (2)
  • Decide which suppliers to recommend to guests for services such as transportation and entertainment by keeping up-to-date on suppliers and their level of service. They have to assess client skills, likes, needs, and wants and understand the risks of making an inappropriate recommendation. (2)
Critical Thinking

Critical Thinking information was not collected for this profile.

Job Task Planning and Organizing

Guest services attendants typically have certain predictable tasks that they can plan ahead for. This includes arrivals/departure, check-outs, shuttle schedules and tours. They also have unexpected tasks such as dealing with angry guests, lost luggage, accidents, bomb threats, flight delays and co-workers not showing up for work.

Guest services attendants have a checklist to follow for their job tasks. The order of the tasks that they do is flexible; however, some tasks have priority and will affect hotel operation if they are not done. (2)

Significant Use of Memory
  • Remember guests' names and faces, which rooms are currently available and their rates.
  • Remember guests' histories, such as their problems and likes and dislikes and recall the details of people who come through the hotel lobby in order to respond to inquiries.
  • Memorize phone numbers, bus and airline schedules, the details of upcoming functions and events and instructions for operating equipment.
Finding Information
  • Find out about events through reading the newspaper, listening to the radio and watching the television. (1)
  • Obtain weather and road reports through telephone calls, reading and faxes. (1)
  • Find out about the distance to and cost of sites and facilities and the extent of services available. They find out about restaurants and facilities by visiting them and talking to people about them. (2)
  • Find information by networking with industry, such as calling other properties. (2)
Digital technology Help - Digital technology
  • They send and receive e-mail. (1)
  • They write memos and letters to co-workers or guests. (2)
  • They scan the guest directory or make printouts for researching guest histories. (2)
  • They read occupancy reports. (2)
  • They design entry forms. (3)
  • They use a point of sales system to control inventory; calculate gratuity breakdowns; complete billing forms for laundry, dry-cleaning and valet services; and ensure that all charges get posted correctly. (3)
Additional information Help - Additional information Other Essential Skills:

Working with Others

Guest services attendants work alone some of the time. Most of the time, they work with a partner or helper. They always work as part of a team, working independently but co-ordinating with the work of others. They participate in daily briefings and discussions with co-workers.

Continuous Learning

Guest services attendants continue to learn. As required, they learn about safety, for example, Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), first aid and responsible alcohol service and equipment operations, and about new legislation, such as the Innkeeper's Act, customer service, product knowledge or new job responsibilities.

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