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How To Get A Job in Catering and Hospitality

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What is Catering and Hospitality?

Catering and Hospitality covers a wide breadth of jobs and services across the world. In the UK, catering involves providing food in a range of establishments, such as hotels, theme parks, corporate offices, or event venues.

Hospitality takes this one step further, providing a professional service at these establishments that includes accommodation, entertainment, event planning, transportation, and tourism.

What are the main Catering and Hospitality sectors?

There are a few distinct sectors in catering and hospitality, and it’s often wise to specialise in a specific when building your career. These are:

  • Accommodation & Lodging
    • Hotels
    • Suites
    • Villas & Resorts
  • Events
    • Bars & Nightclubs
    • Entertainment
    • Sports & Gaming
  • Food & Drink
    • Fast Food Establishments
    • Catering Businesses
    • Full-Service Restaurants
  • Travel & Tourism
    • Business
    • Leisure

It’s important to note that many of these sectors overlap, and skills are often transferable from one job to another. So don’t discount any new jobs based on your previous experience – there’s always room for career exploration!

Who are the key employers in Catering and Hospitality?

While many of us will have experienced and enjoyed catering and hospitality at events or on holiday, many of the key employers in the sector do not have a strong consumer brand presence.

Attractions such as Alton Towers and Sea Life are owned by Merlin Entertainments, who is the direct employer of staff at these establishments.

Large catering and event management employers include CH&Co Catering, Compass Group, Live Nation Entertainment and Sodexo.

National pub chains are also a major employer, including Greene King, Marston’s, Mitchells & Butlers, and Wetherspoon.

And of course, hotel groups such as Hilton Hotels and Resorts, InterContinental Hotels Group, MacDonald Hotels, Marriott International, Travelodge, and Whitbread are all notable employers.

What qualifications and training are required?

As a sector, there are many clear ways to launch and progress your career without any higher education. Many people work their way up from entry level and into management positions through internal qualifications and training, as well as experience.

Certain positions that do ask for an undergraduate degree will usually focus on hospitality management or event management. However, there are a number of key skills that are transferable from degrees relating to business or marketing, so don’t count yourself out of applying for a job if you have an open-ended degree.

It’s also worth noting that if you’re looking to work internationally, knowledge of a second language may also be desired.

What skills do employers look for?

To work in hospitality and catering, it’s important that you’re personable and comfortable dealing with members of the public at all times. If not, this isn’t quite the right career path for you!

Other key skills include:

  • Confidence in your role and approach
  • Enjoyment in team work
  • Persuasion and upselling skills
  • Stamina to work long shifts
  • Willingness to work unsociable hours

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