Job description

Front desk clerks front the desks at hotels, motels, resorts and other lodging establishments, big or small, serving as a point of communication between guests and the establishment’s administration. They are responsible for checking in guests to the establishment and ensuring a pleasant stay during their time there.


    • Take, confirm or change room reservations
    • Check guests in and out
    • Assign guests to their rooms and issue room keys
    • Process payments
    • Keep records of room availability and guests’ accounts
    • Arrange tours, taxis and restaurant reservations for guests
    • Provide information about the hotel’s services, and sightseeing and restaurant recommendations
    • Handle guests’ requests and complaints

Skills, qualities and knowledge

Active listening
Social perceptiveness
Service orientation
Time management

Working hours and environment

Average working hours


Typical schedule

Full Time

Nights, weekends, holidays occasionally

p>While the work is generally pleasant, it can be stressful at times, particularly during peak season or when dealing with difficult customers. Much of your workday will be spent on your feet.

You could work in a shift or on a rota, which typically includes nights, weekends and holidays.


Bottom 10%




Top 10%


Annual salary estimates are based on percentile wage data collected through the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey of US workers.

Qualifications and training

Education level

High school

DVM / VMD degree

Study time


You don’t need any formal education to work as a front desk clerk. Most employers typically require a high school diploma and offer on-the-job training which takes about a few weeks. Some employers, though, particularly large hotels, prefer hiring people with some college experience. Typing, bookkeeping and computer operation knowledge is especially useful.

Job outlook

Projected growth
The projected growth rate of employment in the US from 2018 to 2028, based on data collected through the BLS Employment Projections (EP) programme. The national average growth rate for all professions is 5%.


No of new jobs
The number of jobs projected to become available in the US between 2018 and 2028, based on data collected through the BLS Employment Projections (EP) programme.


Automation risk
The probability of computerisation, based on data published in ‘The Future of Employment’, a 2013 working paper by Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osborne.


Career progression

Advancement opportunities for front desk clerks are limited. With additional training, though, they can move up to a supervisory customer service role or move to another department.

A bachelor’s degree in hospitality or a related field will improve your overall career prospects.