Butler

valet

Career outlook for

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary

Currently employed in Scotland

Jobs forecast

This information is supplied by LMI For All, where data is currently available for Scotland.

What's it like?

You would provide personal services for your employer and their family. You’d take care of practical tasks like cooking, cleaning and driving so they could concentrate on their work and leisure time.

You might work for a wealthy individual in a private household or on a country estate, or for organisations like embassies, luxury hotels and cruise ships.

You’d have different duties depending on who you work for but it’s likely that you’d manage the household so it runs smoothly, act as a chauffeur and serve food and drinks at formal meals. You’d need a good knowledge of wines and spirits.

You’d learn a lot about your employer in order to adapt to their needs and work in a discreet and tactful way.

You would:

  • Manage the household and its staff
  • Set the table for dinner
  • Serve food and drinks at events and parties
  • Prepare and cook meals
  • Drive for your employer, their family and their guests
  • Prepare rooms for guests and make sure they have everything they need
  • Manage the wine cellar
  • Order and arrange flowers
  • Clean clothes and shoes and make sure they are stored correctly
  • Take care of pets
  • Organise shoots on country estates

If you also act as a personal assistant, you would manage the person’s diary, book travel and restaurants and represent your employer at meetings.

You’d need to understand and respect social etiquette and protocol. Some clients may expect a very formal working environment, whereas others may be more relaxed.

You’d need to be able to predict your client’s needs and be loyal and discreet.

Working conditions

Hours

Your working hours will depend on your employer. There are likely to be times when you will need to work long and unsocial hours.

Environment

If you are working for a private employer and part of a small staff group, you may be working alone for long periods of time. You may need to adapt to cultural differences if you are working for an overseas employer.

Travel

You may have to live at your place of work.

UK employment status

Full-time

Part-time

Self employed

Here are some of the skills that people in this job would be most likely to have:

  • Communicating with people
  • Working as part of a team
  • Helping customers
  • Being tactful
  • Working on your own
  • Using computers
  • Planning and organising

Build your skills

Your skills can help you choose the career that’s right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.

To understand more, have a look at what are my skills?

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Click here to view / add your skills

Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.

Qualifications

No formal qualifications are required.

Useful subjects

  • Modern languages
  • ICT subjects
  • Business management or other subjects that develop organisation skills

Helpful to have

There are private courses available which teach traditional butler skills.These may help you to find employment. Training courses can cost anything up to £5,000 for a one-week course. To get on to a course, it will help if you have some knowledge or experience of the hospitality or personal services industries.

You could also take a City & Guilds level 3 Diploma for Butlers.

Being able to speak a second language may also be useful, especially if you’re looking to find work with clients whose first language is not English.

You will find it useful to have good IT skills including being comfortable using smartphones, laptops and tablets as your client will probably expect you to manage their personal affairs using such equipment.

A driving licence may be required.