E-House­keep­ing does it bet­ter

Known for their op­er­a­tional com­plex­ity, the house­keep­ing depart­ment in ho­tels can none­the­less be stream­lined into an ef­fi­cient and cost-ef­fec­tive op­er­a­tion by lever­ag­ing the right strat­egy.

Travel Talk - Middle East - - GUESTCOLUMN -

In­dus­try stud­ies have con­sis­tently shown that ho­tel clean­li­ness is among the lead­ing fac­tors in­flu­enc­ing guest sat­is­fac­tion and a prop­erty’s rep­u­ta­tion. How­ever, the truth is that for many hote­liers, main­tain­ing an ef­fec­tive house­keep­ing depart­ment can prove to be a sig­nif­i­cant chal­lenge.

This is due to of­ten over­stretched re­sources and the dif­fi­culty in keep­ing track of all the tasks. Since ho­tels and re­sorts tra­di­tion­ally rely on a pa­per-based man­age­ment strat­egy, an in­crease in as­sign­ments or re­spon­si­bil­i­ties of­ten means an in­creased like­li­hood of over­looked gue­strooms and public ar­eas, with a guest’s ex­pe­ri­ence and fu­ture prop­erty rev­enues ul­ti­mately pay­ing the price. With this is mind, more and more ho­tels are dis­cov­er­ing the ad­van­tages of im­ple­ment­ing soft­ware so­lu­tions that en­sure the seam­less and real-time trans­mis­sion of com­mu­ni­ca­tion and data to staff mem­bers.

Equipped with such func­tion­al­ity, prop­erty lead­er­ship can en­sure that house­keep­ing at­ten­dants are al­ways where they need to be, and that a task, no mat­ter how small, never gets over­looked. By im­ple­ment­ing the five steps be­low when con­sid­er­ing a house­keep­ing man­age­ment soft­ware so­lu­tion, ho­tels can al­ways be sure of their abil­ity to af­ford­ably de­liver only the high­est in guest ex­pec­ta­tions.

Keep an eye on the big pic­ture

House­keep­ing op­er­a­tions span­ning an en­tire prop­erty can of­ten prove daunt­ing when at­tempt­ing to keep track of each in­di­vid­ual room’s sta­tus. By re­ly­ing on a plat­form that can of­fer an in­tu­itive on­screen room ma­trix that is up­dated in real time, house­keep­ing man­age­ment can al­ways rest as­sured of their abil­ity to over­see any and all room sta­tus up­dates. With the abil­ity to view such data re­motely from any lo­ca­tion and at any time, su­per­vi­sors can also make in­formed and im- me­di­ate task ad­just­ment de­ci­sions, if nec­es­sary. In do­ing so, they can con­sis­tently en­sure that house­keep­ing staff are al­ways aware of which tasks are a pri­or­ity.

Step up ef­fi­ciency with full au­toma­tion

With the con­stant jug­gling of nu­mer­ous tasks that can eas­ily over­whelm a house­keep­ing depart­ment, it pays to im­ple­ment and au­to­mated so­lu­tion that has the abil­ity to lighten the load. With in­stant alert no­ti­fi­ca­tions, house­keep­ing man­age­ment can take ad­van­tage of an in­spec­tion ma­trix, for in­stance, and can al­ways be sure of their abil­ity to re­view the qual­ity of com­pleted staff tasks in a timely and ef­fi­cient man­ner. House­keep­ing at­ten­dants in turn can also ben­e­fit sub­stan­tially from au­to­mated as­sign­ments, par­tic­u­larly when it comes to deal­ing with rooms that re­quire spe­cific needs. Only by al­low­ing em­ploy­ees to fo­cus only on the task at hand, can re­sources be utilised ef­fec­tively in a man­ner that al­ways pro­duces su­pe­rior re­sults and guest sat­is­fac­tion.

Prop­erly al­lo­cate your re­sources

The time of the year and vary­ing oc­cu­pancy lev­els can of­ten lead to shifts in task pri­or­i­ti­za­tion. In again lever­ag­ing an in­tu­itive man­age­ment plat­form, be­ing able to fore­cast fac­tors such as the num­ber of in­com­ing guests or how many staff mem­bers are needed for a spe­cific shift, can prove vi­tal in main­tain­ing qual­ity of service. A so­lu­tion ca­pa­ble of pro­vid­ing fore­casts on gue­stroom oc­cu­pancy by spe­cific floor for ex­am­ple, can en­sure that such ar­eas are staffed ad­e­quately dur­ing peak times. Staff ros­ters that can be viewed in real time also al­low su­per­vi­sors to de­ter­mine how many staff mem­bers are on duty dur­ing a par­tic­u­lar shift, there­fore al­low­ing them to al­lo­cate re­sources ac­cord­ingly.

Main­tain proper in­ven­tory

Un­sur­pris­ingly, the abil­ity to main­tain ad­e­quate stock of amenity items can have sig­nif­i­cant in­flu­ence on guest sat­is­fac­tion. How­ever, over­stocked sup­plies can serve as a drain on ho­tel bud­gets while tak­ing up un­nec­es­sary space. Hence, by tak­ing ad­van­tage of a sys­tem that ac­tively tracks guest con­sump­tion and that alerts staff when re­plen­ish­ment is re­quired us­ing pre­set lev­els, hote­liers can en­sure that guest needs are al­ways met in a cost-ef­fec­tive man­ner. In­tel­li­gent in­ven­tory con­trols can like­wise be utilised to track loaned service items, in or­der to en­sure their re­turn and min­imise the need for re­place­ment due to loss or theft.

Max­imise com­mu­ni­ca­tion

Per­haps the most crit­i­cal el­e­ment in a house­keep­ing depart­ment’s op­er­a­tional strat­egy is the abil­ity to main­tain di­rect lines of com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween all staff mem­bers, re­gard­less of loca- tion. So, so­lu­tions that of­fer the abil­ity to re­motely trans­mit and up­date tasks can play a de­cid­ing role in whether a depart­ment’s ef­forts are ul­ti­mately suc­cess­ful. In­dus­try lead­ing plat­forms for in­stance will al­low em­ploy­ees to lever­age the use of per­sonal smart de­vices in re­view­ing tasks as they go about their re­spon­si­bil­i­ties. So­lu­tions like al­low­ing at­ten­dants to share de­tails of the com­pleted as­sign­ments with fel­low staff mem­bers guar­an­tee max­i­mum ef­fi­ciency by en­sur­ing re­sources al­ways go to where they are ac­tu­ally needed. Your guests de­mand clean­li­ness in their ho­tel en­vi­ron­ment. Be sure to al­ways de­liver with FCS e-House­keep­ing.

Since ho­tels and re­sorts tra­di­tion­ally rely on a pa­per-based man­age­ment strat­egy, an in­crease in as­sign­ments of­ten means an in­creased like­li­hood of over­looked gue­strooms and public ar­eas, with a guest’s ex­pe­ri­ence and fu­ture prop­erty rev­enues ul­ti­mately pay­ing the price

Ho­tel house­keep­ing re­spon­si­bil­i­ties can quickly add up, of­ten evolv­ing into a sit­u­a­tion that is in­creas­ingly dif­fi­cult to nav­i­gate for both at­ten­dants and their man­agers. With FCS e-House­keep­ing, hote­liers will al­ways be able to al­ways de­liver only the best in service and guest sat­is­fac­tion. An in­dus­try lead­ing plat­form renowned for stream­lin­ing the house­keep­ing man­age­ment process, e-House­keep­ing works to en­sure that tasks are al­ways de­liv­ered to the right team mem­ber at the right time.

( The views ex­pressed are solely of the au­thor. The pub­li­ca­tion may or may not sub­scribe to the same.)

Eric Rogers

Vice Pres­i­dent EMEA FCS Com­puter Sys­tems (FCS)

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