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Navigating Higher Guest Expectations

Executives Say Guests No Longer Accepting Pandemic-Era Reductions.

“The pass we got last year with limited housekeeping and limited [food and beverage] is over. If you’re not back to normal, you’re going to have very bad customer experiences.”
   — Sloan Dean, CEO and president of third-party management company Remington Hotels

As recently headlined in Hotel News Now, the verdict from hospitality leaders is in: “Executives Say Guests No Longer Accepting Pandemic-Era Reductions.”

During the ongoing recovery period, many hotels and hospitality venues are challenged with servicing returning travelers amid well-reported labor shortages in key markets.

“With average daily rates approaching or surpassing 2019 levels in many U.S. markets, guests have renewed expectations that hotel services and amenities are back in full, said speakers at the NYU International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference.”

While expectations of cleanliness, hygiene, and safety accelerated in the Covid-19 era, these are now supplanted by guest demands for standard full-service housekeeping and dining options.

“What guests expect now is radically different than what it was six months ago,” said Carlos Flores, president and CEO of Sonesta International Hotels Corp. “We had looked at our service offerings and operating standards and done things intentionally, like limit housekeeping. But now it’s a point of friction, with guests asking, ‘Why haven’t you come in and turned down the bed?’”

Given industry labor challenges, many properties are continuing to limit services and capacity which can ultimately hamper growth.

HSS is working with many of its clients to implement staffing strategies that help to bring back services guests expect from hotels and resorts. These strategies employ services such as: Contingent Labor, Direct Hire Recruiting, and Recruitment Process Outsourcing.

  • Contingent Labor can help hotels to quickly ramp up as travelers return. It’s a formula that’s historically been proven to work, enabling properties to build from their core team while retaining flexibility.
  • Direct Hire Recruiting is a fee-based service that has been aiding hotels in finding top-level talent to fill permanent positions. Partners with national scale combined with local knowledge help to make this process efficient and productive.
  • Recruitment Process Outsourcing provides a third pathway. This allows clients to off-board the entire process of finding, hiring, and onboarding new team members, while reducing recruitment costs.

Beyond housekeeping, many hotels are meeting the current guest surge by outsourcing other important functions, including regular kitchen cleaning, exterior and parking lot maintenance, third-shift janitorial services, and stewarding.

Full Article: HERE

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