Many different companies require front desk clerks: Doctors' offices, hotels, retail stores and industrial offices all usually employ front desk clerks. Since front desk clerks are usually the first person with whom a customer or client interacts, they must have a great personality, be very friendly and have great written and verbal communication skills. Front desk clerks must be able to multitask and they definitely must have excellent phone skills. For example, front desk clerks at a hotel may check customers out while answering inbound calls or filing paperwork. Hotel front desk clerks may be also required to make, change or cancel appointments for guests while front desk clerks in a corporate office may do the same for the company's executives. Front desk clerks also often take phone messages and ensure those messages reach the intended recipients. They may also be in charge of handling money, processing payments or issuing refunds.
Front desk clerks work to provide excellent customer service. In addition to the aforementioned skills, they should also be able to handle complaints and know how to escalate issues up the chain of command as needed when assisting dissatisfied customers or clients. Many companies require their front desk clerks to have a high school diploma or GED. Work experience is always a plus in the customer service industry, but many companies may hire front desk clerks out of high school. Work hours will vary depending on the company; night, weekend and holiday shifts are all possible. Front desk clerks are usually paid hourly and can be either full-time or part-time.
Front Desk Clerk Tasks
- Perform administrative support tasks; proofreading, typing, operating calculators, facsimile machine and computers.
- Operate telephone switchboard to answer, screen, route calls and relays messages.
- Greet and answer inquiries for general public, customers and visitors; announce and log visitors.
- Process outgoing mail and receive deliveries.