When choosing a hotel, 84% of respondents from a Statista survey said hotel cleanliness is very important to them.
The effectiveness of your housekeeping department directly impacts your guest satisfaction levels and the guest experience as a whole.
Without concrete housekeeping operations in place, your standards can quickly drop. It’s the difference between gaining a loyal guest for life or being slated on online review sites.
Housekeeping plays a vital role in shaping your hotel’s reputation.
But this pathway to success all starts with your housekeeping team. Here are 5 best housekeeping practices to ensure you maintain quality standards and keep guests wanting more.
Unhappy staff often lack the motivation to go the extra mile. Housekeeping is a demanding job, and staff are usually up against extremely tight time scales to get rooms serviced. Without constant incentive to perform, hotels will struggle to keep their loyalty.
In fact, housekeeping roles have the highest turnover in the industry at 31%. And that’s why it pays to hire people based on attitude, rather than their experience or credentials.
You can offer the obvious perks to help staff feel they’re appreciated, such as flexible schedules, attractive retirement plans and bonuses, but empowerment will also go a long way to ensuring a happier workforce.
When you empower people to make their own decisions, they don’t feel they’re being constantly micro-managed, and are able to get on with the job you’re paying them to do.
Instead of having to telling guests ‘I’ll just ask the manager’, they’ll feel trusted and confident enough to provide a great guest experience.
Comprehensive training ensures all staff understand your values and how your hotel operates on a daily basis. And although housekeeping is typically behind the scenes, conducting an orientation day can also demonstrate how you expect staff to greet and interact with guests when encounters arise.
At orientation, offer staff a detailed manual with FAQs, full job requirements, where they’ll find linen/cleaning products and even some interesting facts about the hotel and area to keep them engaged.
If you have any unusual operations that may trip up new staff members, be sure to include those too.
Thorough training ensures housekeepers maintain your standards and are able to handle any problems they face. This will not only add value to the guest experience, but improve staff productivity.
To meet the expectations of both you and your guests, housekeepers must be given adequate direction and tools.
In every room your staff have specific tasks to perform. To ensure they remember and complete each task, supply checklists they can tick off as they go along. This also serves to make each staff member accountable if guests do raise any issues with their room.
Always ensure your supply closet is stocked up with everything they need. If you run out of toilet cleaner or rags, you can’t blame your housekeeping department for doing a poor job. Without the right resources, they may even resort to using the guests shower gel or hand towels to get the job done.
Stock up and place orders in advance to ensure standards don’t slip.
Staff members won’t feel valued or trusted if you inspect every inch of their work in every room. And this practice would certainly take a big hit on your productivity.
But random inspections will keep standards in check. To ensure these spot checks are seen as a positive, use them as a method for employee recognition.
For staff maintaining high productivity and high standards, they could receive monthly bonuses and a shot at employee of the month. Again, this shows staff they’re valued and appreciated. Studies also show employee recognition leads to better workplace performance while boosting their trust, productivity and retention.
Keeping track of each individual room status can often be overwhelming. While many hotels rely on paper-based procedures to manage their housekeeping operations, this can lead to a leak in resources, overlooked guestrooms, or a break in the lines of communication.
It’s your guest’s experience and bottom line that ultimately pays the price. But now there’s a far more intuitive solution available. By utilising a housekeeping app you can exponentially streamline your housekeeping operations and ensure staff understand exactly what needs to be done.
By using an app you open a direct line of communication between housekeeping and front of house. While housekeepers complete their daily tasks, they can update room statuses in real time. Use automation to alert supervisors when rooms are ready for inspection, and instantly identify how many staff members you need based on the number of guests in any given week.
Your housekeeping department is an integral operation that drives your success. When you develop great housekeeping practices your guest satisfaction improves and they’re more likely to return. The other obvious advantage is they’re also more likely to tell friends and family, or write a raving review online.
But if your housekeeping fails to deliver, a spread of negative stories can quickly destroy a hotel’s reputation. Start implementing these housekeeping best practices now and your guests will be itching to come back for more.