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Work Experience at Norfolk

On Wednesday, June 15th, BVIS has put in their effort to arrange the year 11 their work experience workplace. Six of us including Do Minh Quang - 11B, Do Quang Minh, Nguyen Bao Ngoc (Jenny) - 11V, Do Hoang Thao Vi (Katty), Nguyen Hoang Anh (Anna) and Vo Nhat Nam - 11I, was sent to Norfolk Hotel located in 117 Le Thanh Ton, District 1. Norfolk Hotel was a joint-venture between the Australia’s  Norfolk Group and Vietnam’s Ben Thanh group, built in 1992 with only 37 rooms on the East Wing which later expands to 104 rooms altogether. Norfolk Hotel Saigon are not the same as other travelling hotel, it most specifically served the business world. 20160616_095814_resized The reason that it is only to service for business guests only, and pretty much are not well known in the travelling industry, we were at first quite amazed to have known we would be sent here. Though, the time we have spent here was very valuable and interesting. We were divided into 3 pairs, rotates around 3 main roles in a hotel each day: front desk office, restaurant staff, housekeeping operators and runners. As a front desk officer, lots of tasks and skills are needed since this role operates and interacts most with guests. When we were learning about being a front desk officer, Mr. Luan (Front Office Manager) given us the full theory, the job descriptions and requirements, not to mention need of how to dress appropriately and well mannered towards our guest. Particularly, Nam had said “I enjoyed my time as a front desk officer, and the instructions given really helped my grooming and communication skill get better.” Indeed, understanding the role of a front desk officer, Ms. Thanh  (Chief Deputy Manager of Front Office) taught us how to be excellent in communicating, arranging and planning or even, mastered additional skills such as IT to operate the database systems. Furthermore, since front desk officer is always the first impression of a hotel, it will always remind us to look best in outfit and create a good impression. As a housekeeper, there are two tasks we have to do: runners and operators. For operators, after receive a phone call and confirm what room is clean by runners, then you will use SMILE system (hotel management system) to mark in that the room is now clean so the front officer can see clearly which room is available for  the guests. Runners will clean up the room that was checked out by guest. Most of the time, there guests about to arrive, so runners are very important in order to ready a clean room so it can be deliver to the guest as soon as possible. “Being a housekeeping staff, we are kept busy cleaning the rooms together which help us develop our skills working as a team. At first, it’s quite awkward communicate to the runners because we are new operators, but with the help from Ms. Trang (Main Operator), I find the job was easier and it’s really interesting doing the job that we have never done before. It’s a great experience to me and I really enjoyed it.” - said Jenny. 20160616_094320_resized As a restaurant staff, there are a lot of work for beginners like us to do. There are lots of guests during breakfast so we helped with cleaning the dishes. When breakfast was over, Mr Minh, a restaurant’s staff, taught us how to set up the table at different time of the day. Since for breakfast, we served the guests a full meal whereas only a la carte for lunch and dinner. We also learn to do minor tasks such as folding napkins. Hoang Anh especially loved to work in the restaurant. She said, “It was the best part of the work experienced in my opinion. I am glad that Mr Dinh, a bartender, has given off his time to teach me about serving drinks, even how to use the coffee maker to make cappuccino and espresso. I was very happy to be able to serve my first cup of cappuccino to a foreigner guest.” Yet, working in the restaurant allowed all of us to create bonds with other staffs and earn various of skills. In overall, the skills we gained after the last 3 days are useful for us not just in the working conditions but we can also apply in our daily tasks as well. It helps us to gain more confidence. We really thank BVIS for helping us have these valuable opportunities to complete ourselves!

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