Organize your job hunt

Landing a dream job requires patience, dedication, and organization. This is true for getting a job at all levels of the hospitality and foodservice industries. Close attention to detail and organization are key. Keeping excellent track of contacts, managing the overall success of interviews, and organizing vital information such as phone numbers and locations are all an absolute must.

Hotel, resort, and restaurant careers can be a competitive job market. Staying on top of the game could make all the difference in landing the perfect hospitality position. Here the reader will find some helpful job-hunting tips as well as ideas on how to keep all of the important information at the job seeker's fingertips.

The Interview

So what about the all important hospitality job interview? One of most useful pieces of advice that can be given is to be upbeat and personable in the interview. The foodservice and hotel industries are all about their clients. Whatever level of employment an applicant wants to achieve, these industries are very people oriented. One must be friendly, outgoing, and balanced. These are the traits that will tell the interviewer how well an applicant will handle their daily responsibilities, other employees, and most importantly their company's guests.

Tips for a successful interview can be found simple - the best thing a resort or restaurant applicant can remember is to relax and be likable. Meet every interview question with a well thought out, competent answer to ensure an excellent interview.

The Follow Up

A key component to keep in mind after each interview is to send a thank you letter to the interviewer as soon as possible, and a good rule of thumb is to mail it within 24 hours of the first meeting. It needn't be complex - for example:

Dear Mr Shapiro

It was a pleasure to meet with you yesterday. I appreciated the opportunity to talk about the growth of the company and your plans for expansion. Having had some time for reflection, I believe my experience at XYZ Corporation is especially relevant to this role, and would place me in a unique position to lead the team in the front of house area.

My role at XYZ places me in direct contact with customers on a daily basis, and as Supervisor of the front of house team, many problems and queries are referred to me for resolution. This means I have developed both good problem-solving skills and significant people skills in dealing with the more challenging visitors to the hotel.

I also know the impact that good team work can make to this area of the business from my original experience at XYZ when I first joined them. Having seen the importance of team work gave me a perspective no amount of theory or academic learning can replicate, and my team leading skills have benefited enormously from the experience, although at the time it was hard work!

I am confident I have the skills and experience you need for this role, and I do hope to be able to prove how I can help the organization achieve its goals. I wish you continuing success.

Kind regards

The Job Search Diary

Once the hospitality applicant's schedule is full of appointments, here are some good ideas on how to keep track of the particulars of each interview.

Once again a computer can be a valuable tool. As a job seeker you could easily create a spreadsheet to document important information. For those hospitality applicants that find the computer more of a hindrance, buying a spiral bound notebook for this purpose works well too.

It is essential to keep track of the company's name, who performed the interview, their contact information including phone number, and which version of the applicant's cover letter and resume was used.

Other useful details to list are the interview time and place, any relevant questions the applicant can think of before the interview, and a place to make notes on the interview itself.

Additional helpful pieces of information to include in the applicant's job log are a record of when the thank you letter was sent out, and it may be useful to keep a copy of the letter on hand as well.

Post-interview follow-up can make the difference between your application proceeding or failing, and Hcareers will be publishing more information on thank you letters and the power of post interview behavior in the next issue of the Restaurant Job Market eNewsletter.

Getting the ideal job in the foodservice, hotel, or resort industries is a dream come true for many people. Focusing on keeping track of the important details and staying organized in the hospitality applicant's job log will pay off with a rewarding career in this exciting field.