How to Become a Front Desk Supervisor

Mar 10, 2020

Research the requirements to become a front desk supervisor. Learn about the job description and duties, and read the step-by-step process to start a career in this field.

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Could I Be a Front Desk Supervisor?

A front desk supervisor greets visitors, answers guest questions, oversees all incoming calls, trains new employees, and assists in administrative tasks. Supervisors work in a number of industries that provide services to the public, such as hotels, fitness centers, medical centers, and general business offices. Education and training required for these positions vary depending on the responsibilities and the employer. Work includes many hours spent seated or standing and dealing with difficult or demanding guests. Additionally, applicants must have prior experience, as well as a high school diploma, and may need a college education.

Career Requirements

Degree Level High school diploma; postsecondary education required for some jobs
Degree Field Office technology, office administration, business, or other field related to the career
Experience 1-2 years of experience in a related field may be required.
Key Skills Good management, communication, and organization skills, along with good judgment, patience, and knowledge of project management, document management, and accounting software
Additional Requirements May need to sit or stand for long periods of time and lift heavy objects
Salary (2020) $35,405 (Median annual salary for front desk supervisors)

Sources: O*NET Online, November 2012 job postings;

Steps for Front Desk Supervisors

What steps do I need to take to become a front desk supervisor?

Step 1: Take College-Level Courses

Depending on the particular job sector, a front desk supervisor may need to complete a college training program. Some positions may not require a college degree, but will nevertheless require applicants to have specific skills using office technologies and computer software programs, as well as billing and payroll systems. Courses in management and human resources are also beneficial for those wishing to assume a supervisor role. Students may enroll in office technology certificate or associate's degree programs, or they may take courses on an individual basis.

For better chances of success, choose a specialization. Students are advised to enroll in a program directly relevant to the position they desire. For instance, a student who wants to become a front desk supervisor at a hospital needs to understand medical terminology, which is covered through a course in healthcare information management or medical office technology. Those with an interest in working in the hospitality industry should focus their studies on hotel management.

Step 2: Accumulate Experience

Most front desk supervisors must hold prior experience in the field they wish to enter. Many employers require at least 1-2 years of work experience. Aspiring front desk supervisors should start as a front desk associate to build experience with a company and learn how to handle any customer issues or complaints. Entry-level associate positions at a front desk don't require any past experience, but applicants may need some postsecondary education.

Step 3: Acquire Skills for Career Advancement

After some time as a front desk associate, prospective employees may go on to assume supervisor roles, depending on company needs. Individuals have a better chance of advancing to supervisor status based on acquired managerial and people skills.

Front desk supervisors have good communication skills, patience, the ability to handle accounting and industry-specific software, and are capable of sitting or standing for long periods of time. They have high school diplomas and some postsecondary education, and they earn a median annual salary of $35,405.

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