HR Manager

What’s in a day?

In a modern world, the role of HR manager is hot. Staff retention is crucial because hospitality is such a people-orientated industry – from restaurants, to hotels, to pubs to contract catering. It’s no surprise, then, that you’ll be expected to nurture the team, so the staff need to know you and feel able to come to you with any problems. Your warm, cuddly status belies your expertise, however. All heads of department will look to you when they need to recruit staff, deal with people problems and arrange temporary, part time and casual staff. You also need to ensure that pay and leave records are accurately kept, PAYE is deducted correctly and so on. The other side of the job, of course, is even tougher. For instance, you may need to make redundancies when required. You could also be involved in standardising policy on discipline, creating a staff handbook, and producing reports for business planning and unions. Key responsibilities:

  • Getting involved in hands on training
  • Acting as an assessor if your hotel is involved in NVQs/SVQs, and perhaps as a contact for the awarding body
  • Inducting new staff
  • Monitoring and implementing personal development plans and appraisals for staff
  • Liaising with agencies or job sites, such as to find staff
  • Communicating with departmental managers
  • Troubleshooting or mediating when there are staff disputes
  • Ensuring that the company complies with UK employment law


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What sort of hours will I work?

Usually you work office hours, but you could be working late if there is a crisis. Similarly, you may have to drop in during weekends or evenings to meet employees who work shifts.


What’s the best bit about being an HR manager?

You’re not only at the heart of the business, you’re also in a role that’s developing across all industries, giving you excellent career prospects.


And the worst?

You’re dealing with a wide range of people, each with their own ambitions or grievances – and we all know how stressful that can be. On the one hand you may be giving them good news of their promotion, on the other you may be explaining their redundancy payout. Arguably more embarrassing, you may have to tactfully explain that they need to start using deodorant – yep, it is part of your remit.


What skills do I need?
  • Good people skills
  • Razor sharp training and recruitment skills
  • Good at counselling people and dealing with disciplinary matters
  • Ability to keep a confidence
  • Switched on to what talents are required to meet business needs and trends
  • A nose for the right recruitment companies and job sites


What qualifications do I need?

You will need specialist training, particularly in employment law to ensure the company doesn’t get sued when making redundancies or taking disciplinary action. Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD) qualifications are widely recognised, but other possibilities include, for instance, an MA in employment strategy and an MBA in human resource management. It’s best to check out the CIPD to find out which qualifications are necessary. And remember, if you’re assessing NVQs/SVQs, you’ll need the appropriate qualifications, too.


Who would it suit?

Obviously, reclusive types need not apply. This role is perfect for someone who enjoys working with people at all levels, winning their trust and helping them and the business to meet their potential. But you also need to be able to mediate in difficult situations and increasingly you are expected to have a basic grasp of psychology.


What sort of salary can I expect?

The average UK salary is £40,192.78 – £44,376.51


Where can I go from here?

The natural next-step up is to HR director, or perhaps group HR manager with an international company. And it seems you’re unlikely to be out of a job as the skills you hone in hospitality will be in demand in almost any other industry, too.

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