Full Departmental Outsourcing Raises Standards and Lowers Costs
A recovering hospitality industry is challenged to meet higher expectations from guests while working with reduced levels of staff and management. One solution for many hospitality organizations is full departmental outsourcing. These programs fully manage housekeeping departments from recruiting and training, to equipment and chemicals. HSS controls costs and drives quality so that the properties can focus on guest service and occupancy. HSS Outsourcing raises guest satisfaction scores while lowering costs by as much as 30%.
Is Outsourcing a Solution for COVID Recover?
For many properties, the impact of COVID came in layers. First came the extreme drop in occupancy and loss of revenue. This was followed by a loss of talent at all levels of the industry due to lay-offs, early retirements, and migration to other industries. The third wave came as occupancy levels rose and guests began to return amid a labor shortage. There is another component related to guests having a higher expectation of cleanliness. For many properties, full departmental outsourcing can be a solution to these challenges and may be the key to succeeding in coming months and years of recovery.
How Hospitality Outsourcing Works
Our outsourcing programs manage the entire operations of a department from the executive housekeeper down to the hourly employees, but it is important that these programs are fully tailored to the needs of a property to match quality standards. We start by identifying some of the key gaps and operation elements that HSS Outsourcing can offer. We combine cultural standards into our best practices to create exceptional service experiences and consistently train to the 10/5 rule, property knowledge and standards of greeting. To ensure that standards are consistently applied, we have a dedicated person that oversees our training as well as a director of quality control to make sure the cleaning staff is keeping up with the standards set.
Delivering Quality Results
Integrating your service brand culture with our business culture is standard operation procedure. We’ve adopted Forbes Three, Four, and Five diamond service standards as well as Quality Audit standards, all of which contribute to the excellent service we offer on a consistent basis.
Putting Concerns to Rest
Some hotel, resort, and casino operations leaders might feel reluctant about outsourcing fearing that they could lose quality control among their properties and even a sense of pride and ownership. But ownership, brand standards, and a tailored experience are are essential to our outsourcing model. We developed our training to match the brand of the current client and ensure that the outsourcing employees will follow just that, as well as meet the performance standards set by the client. Obviously, with the outsourcing model, we structure and build a model to fit the client’s needs. We develop and carry that through our division and have the resources to create that.
Building strong partnerships to overcome post-pandemic challenges
Hospitality Staffing Solutions was recently featured in Hotel Management International in reference to their recent partnership with Aimbridge Hospitality to overcome the challenges facing labor shortages caused by the pandemic.
Aimbridge Hospitality, a hotel management company, who has done business with HSS in the past, was looking for assistance when it came to staffing their hotels post pandemic. With the rise in travel, they needed to be able to staff their hotels on a moment’s notice. And that’s where HSS, the hospitality division of KBS, came to play. HSS can provide a national reach to meet to the staffing needs of Aimbridge properties. Together the team has produced strategic ideas and innovated ways to reach the needs of the hotels. HSS has assembled a “mobile team” of hotel room attends to travel to the designated areas to fulfil the hospitality needs of those hotels that require this additional assistance.
Understandably, now more than ever, Aimbridge is centered on guest satisfaction with the cleanliness of the public areas as well as the guest rooms. With that comes great focus on choosing the highest quality staff for their properties. Through HSS’ national recruiting network, they can place the best staff in the roles needed. HSS and Aimbridge Hospitality provide multiple extensive trainings to their employees to be sure they can meet the needs of the property in cleanliness and safety.
“There has always been a high expectation for cleanliness in hospitality,” says Burke. “Moving forward, these expectations are going to be even higher. Beyond guest rooms there will be more attention paid to the cleanliness of public areas, fitness centers, swimming pools, and food and beverage operations.” ED Burke, VP of rooms and engineering operations, Aimbridge Hospitality
Together in partnership, HSS and Aimbridge Hospitality are rising above the challenges to provide a clean and safe stay for all their guests. While serving over 220 properties, Aimbridge realized it is taking more than just housekeepers to keep their properties afloat, but with the bundled HSS and KBS family, they can help provide the hotels solutions to the challenges faced inside and outside of the property.
Aimbridge is grateful to finally have a partnership with the “[same scale reach and passion that we have.
After more than a year, some key areas of hospitality facilities may need attention
As organizations navigate this challenging period of the pandemic, many general managers in the hospitality industry are examining how to pivot their maintenance programs. While it is still important to reduce the spread of harmful pathogens through strategic cleaning and disinfecting, now is an ideal time to examine programs that may have been ignored or deemphasized at the height of the pandemic in favor of intense cleaning and disinfecting activities. This includes cleaning programs that are essential to preserving valuable infrastructure investments in hotels, resorts, and casinos, including:
Parking Lot Maintenance
High Dusting of Exposed Ductwork
While asset preservation programs have always been critical in the hospitality industry, now is the right time to focus on these activities as cleaning and maintenance programs are rebalanced during the transition to the “Next Normal.” Taking these steps builds trust with customers and employees while also adding to the health of overall hotel operations.
Extending Asset Lifespan
The main goal of asset preservation in hospitality has traditionally been to extend the service lifespan of areas like floors, carpets, parking lots, and HVAC systems.
For example, carpets and floors that appear to be clean can quickly degrade without regular and professional maintenance. The average lifespan of commercial-grade carpeting ranges from 12-15 years. Considering the amount of foot traffic in a hotel or the quality and type of carpet fiber, our experts have found that quarterly care protocols can maintain optimal appearance and meet or exceed their range of service.
Similarly, regular maintenance keeps floors looking better longer. After assessing individual use instances, a standard protocol of quarterly, biannual, or annual stripping and buffing can extend their lifespan, prevent permanent damage, and improve their overall appearance.
When considering the upkeep of parking lots, minor pavement fixes and the regular removal of weeds can defer more expensive repairs and significantly improve appearance.
Floors, carpets, and parking lots may have seen lighter use throughout COVID and required less maintenance for hotels and resorts that have been shut down or seen reduced use. However, deferred maintenance through this period can only last so long before permanent damage can occur.
Building Employee and Consumer Trust
Asset protection is always a sound strategy, but there is another reason to implement these programs today: the change in employee and guest expectations around the operational health of hotels.
Because of COVID, people have a heightened awareness and sensitivity to cleaning. While strategic cleaning and disinfecting programs should still be employed, people will also evaluate hotels based on appearance. Employees and guests are now better educated on air quality and filtration systems and cleaning and disinfection practices. Dirty, dusty, or worn-down resorts leave the impression that a hotel isn’t well managed – and even impact someone’s view regarding the overall safety of the building. These perceptions can affect customer and employee satisfaction and retention.
Maintaining Healthier Interior Environments
High dusting of HVAC vents and air intakes is another important asset preservation measure that helps extend the life of expensive HVAC systems. Today, there’s another reason why this particular cleaning measure is essential: airflow.
Optimized and efficient HVAC systems and superior airflow are top-of-mind due to COVID-19 guidance issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other global agencies. The regular high dusting of these areas by specialized teams with the proper equipment ensures a healthier space for employees and guests alike.
Preservation Means Healthy Operations – When Operations Resume
During the recovery, asset preservation should be part of an overall pivot to long-term healthy operations in the hospitality industry. General managers need to implement maintenance programs to account for the higher expectation of cleaning, while also moving toward more sustained programs that consider the needs of a resort over months, years, and even decades. Implementing asset preservation into a hotel maintenance program is a way to address both short and long terms needs for healthy operations.
Solutions for Hospitality Labor Challenges in 2021
The HSS team is working closely with its parent company, KBS, to offer hotels, resorts, casinos, and restaurants a truly comprehensive set of facility services solutions. This combination can help properties address shortages in labor during this critical time of recovery for the hospitality industry. KBS has just published Five Solutions for the Labor Shortages in Hospitality. The piece looks at how the combination of services can be combined to address labor shortages with:
Full Departmental Outsourcing
Bundled Facility Services
From the post:
As hospitality venues re-open and see increased demand from customers and guests, it’s clear: labor shortages could slow the recovery, hampering businesses trying to capitalize on the booming consumer demand. From kitchen staff to waitstaff to housekeepers to front desk managers, the hospitality industry is faced with one of the tightest labor markets in years amid an economic recovery from one of the worst crises in living memory.
As the hotels, resorts, and restaurants recover from what was arguably one of its worst years for hospitality, the labor shortage brings an additional challenge. With tight budgets coming out of a catastrophic 2020, it may be tempting to reduce outsource solutions. But this strategy will worsen the problem. Now is the time to bring new solutions to bear on tight labor markets that may ultimately lead to long term changes to how the industry addresses healthy operations. The industry may have been hit hard by the pandemic, but, with the right partnerships, there are strong opportunities ahead.
Survey of More Than 10,000 HSS Workers Shows Impact of COVID-19 and Eagerness to Return to Hospitality
Hospitality Staffing Solutions (HSS), the largest hospitality staffing firm in the United States, has released the initial 2020 results of its annual Survey of Hospitality Staff. The survey includes key findings around the impact of COVID and workforce inclination to returning to work safely during a long recovery ahead.
The survey was initially conducted among deployed HSS staff prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, and then updated in October 2020 to measure the impact of COVID-19. The survey includes responses from more than 10,000 back-of-house HSS employees surveyed across North America — primarily housekeepers, food service employees and janitorial staff.
Survey of More Than 10,000 HSS Workers Shows Impact of COVID-19 and Eagerness to Return to Hospitality
ATLANTA (November 20, 2020) — Hospitality Staffing Solutions (HSS), the largest hospitality staffing firm in the United States, has released the initial 2020 results of its annual Survey of Hospitality Staff. The survey includes key findings around the impact of COVID and workforce inclination to returning to work safely during a long recovery ahead. The survey was initially conducted among deployed HSS staff prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, and then updated in October 2020 to measure the impact of COVID-19. The survey includes responses from more than 10,000 back-of-house HSS employees surveyed across North America — primarily housekeepers, food service employees and janitorial staff.
“This survey reveals both the resilience of the hospitality workforce and their stated desire to return to the industry during the recovery period,” said Tim McPherson, President of HSS. “Throughout the pandemic, HSS has maintained and even grown its pool of workers and continues to employ people through a mix of hospitality and other sectors. Listening closely to this team and answering their needs will be an important factor moving ahead as the hotel industry continues its recovery in 2021.”
Some of the key findings from the report related to the huge impact that the global pandemic has had on the hospitality industry:
● 68% said that they saw a reduction or elimination of hours ● 45% said they found work in other industry sectors
The survey also shows that hospitality workers strongly align their career aspirations with the hotel industry and are very much looking forward to returning to work:
● 87% of respondents said they would like to return to work in a hotel or resort ● 81% said they would feel safe returning to work in a hotel HSS workers still employed in hospitality, generally feel safe in their day-to-day work at hotels and resorts: ● 91% said that they have received adequate training to work safely. ● 90% said they have the supplies needed to perform their jobs safely and effectively
HSS worked with with ClearlyRated to compile the data for this study. ClearlyRated (formerly known as Inavero) administers more staffing agency client and talent satisfaction surveys than any other firm in the world, reporting on more than 1.2 million satisfaction surveys from staffing agency clients and job seekers each year. The complete survey and analysis covering job satisfaction, pay, and other factors will be will be made available later in Q4 of 2020. # # # About Hospitality Staffing Solutions Founded in 1990 in Atlanta, Hospitality Staffing Solutions, LLC (“HSS”) proudly claims a leading market share at the world’s leading hotel brands and management companies, and looks to continue its expansion into new geographies through organic expansion of its branch office network, strategic acquisitions, and further development of its service capabilities. Hospitality Staffing Solutions earned the 2019 & 2020 Best of Staffing Client Award for service excellence based on client ratings. Learn more about Hospitality Staffing Solutions at www.hssstaffing.com.
HSS was acquired in 2020 by Kellermeyer Bergensons Services, LLC (“KBS”) KBS is a trusted partner to leading operations and facility managers across 75,000 client locations throughout North America. We provide essential facility services that deliver healthy operations to businesses through scalable solutions customized to meet client-specific requirements. Our expertise and technology enable our teams to anticipate issues, ensure quality, and maximize efficiency. With decades of experience in facility hygiene, including being on the front lines throughout the COVID-19 crisis, KBS is committed to partnering with clients to Stay Ahead of the Curve™ with the latest advances for maintaining healthy operations. For more information, visit www.kbs-services.com.