Chief Engineer

Last Updated:
June 29, 2023

Job Description Overview

Looking for a Chief Engineer job description in the hospitality industry? As the head of the engineering department, a Chief Engineer is responsible for ensuring that all equipment, facilities, and utilities in a hotel or resort are well-maintained to provide guests with a safe, comfortable, and enjoyable stay. 

The job of a Chief Engineer involves working closely with other departments such as housekeeping, front desk, and catering to ensure that any issue is resolved efficiently and effectively. They are responsible for developing and implementing preventive maintenance programs to extend the life of hotel equipment and systems. 

A Chief Engineer must have strong technical and problem-solving skills, interpersonal and leadership capabilities, and excellent communication and project management aptitude. They are also accountable for managing the engineering team and hiring and training new engineers. A Bachelor's degree in Engineering, Hotel Management or related field and relevant hands-on work experience are typically required for this role.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Develop and implement maintenance programs for the hotel's facilities and equipment.
  • Ensure compliance with safety regulations and standards.
  • Oversee the engineering team, including hiring, training, and scheduling.
  • Monitor and control the budget for the department.
  • Plan and execute renovation projects and upgrades to the property.
  • Maintain relationships with outside contractors and vendors.
  • Conduct regular inspections of the property to identify areas that need repair or improvement.
  • Evaluate energy usage and develop strategies to reduce costs.
  • Work with other departments to ensure smooth operations of the hotel.
  • Serve as a liaison between hotel management and guests regarding engineering issues.

Experience and Education Requirements

To be a Chief Engineer in the Hospitality industry, you usually need a bunch of experience and education. First, you need to have graduated from high school or earned an equivalent degree. Then, most employers want you to have a technical degree, like mechanical engineering or electrical engineering. You can either take a 2-year degree or a 4-year degree. After that, you'll also need to have work experience of at least 5 years. During this time, you can work in other engineering positions, getting more experience in the field. Many employers also look for certifications, like Certified Facility Manager (CFM) or Certified Energy Manager (CEM), so getting those can be helpful too.

Salary Range

The Chief Engineer is an important role in the hospitality industry, responsible for overseeing the maintenance and repair of a hotel or resort's physical infrastructure. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of May 2020, the median annual salary for a Chief Engineer in the United States was $61,360, with the top 10% earning more than $96,370 per year. However, salaries can vary depending on factors such as location, experience, and the size of the property. 

For example, in New York City, the average salary for a Chief Engineer is estimated to be $77,858 per year, while in Las Vegas, it is closer to $60,000. In comparison, the average annual salary for a Chief Engineer in the United Arab Emirates is around AED 125,464 (approximately $34,178 USD), according to Payscale.


  • US Bureau of Labor Statistics:
  • Payscale:

Career Outlook

The career outlook for a Chief Engineer in the Hospitality industry is growing. According to a report by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of Chief Engineers is projected to grow 6% from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations. The report also states that as the hospitality industry continues to expand, the demand for skilled Chief Engineers will increase.

Furthermore, the National Restaurant Association predicts that the restaurant industry will remain the nation's second-largest private sector employer in 2021. This means that hotels and restaurants will continue to need Chief Engineers to manage and maintain their facilities' electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems.

In conclusion, the career outlook for a Chief Engineer in the Hospitality industry is promising. As the industry continues to grow, the demand for skilled Chief Engineers will increase, providing ample job opportunities for those interested in pursuing this career.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What does a Chief Engineer do in the Hospitality industry?

A: A Chief Engineer is responsible for ensuring that all mechanical and electrical systems in the hotel are functioning properly, and oversees maintenance repairs when necessary.

Q: What kind of experience does a Chief Engineer need?

A: A Chief Engineer typically needs experience in building systems, electrical engineering, plumbing, and HVAC systems. They must have a strong understanding of safety and building codes.

Q: What are the typical job duties of a Chief Engineer?

A: The job duties of a Chief Engineer include managing and training employees, working with contractors, developing and implementing maintenance plans, and managing budgets for the department.

Q: How does a Chief Engineer ensure safety in the hotel?

A: Chief Engineers ensure safety in the hotel by regularly inspecting and maintaining all equipment related to safety, such as fire alarms, sprinklers, and elevators. They also oversee training for staff on safety protocols.

Q: What skills are important for a Chief Engineer to have?

A: Important skills for a Chief Engineer include problem-solving, leadership, and strong communication skills. They must be able to manage multiple projects at once and have a thorough understanding of building systems.

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