Hotel Business Review: Week of Mar 02, 2015

Joe Ricci
  • Eco-Friendly Practices
  • A Better Way to Measure the Impact of Laundry
  • If you don’t measure it, you don’t manage it. If you don’t manage it, you can’t change it. No one is more aware of the wisdom of these adages than hotel operators, who measure many expenses on a cost per occupied room night basis. Yet this is generally not the case for their hotel owned or on-premise (OPL) laundry costs. Shouldn’t it be? Improved laundry practices can reduce a hotel’s carbon footprint and boost the bottom line, important objectives amid intensifying sustainability mandates. Read on...

Marc Stephen  Shuster
  • Hospitality Law
  • Investigating Sexual Harassment Claims: A Guide for Hospitality Employers
  • Although some claims of sexual harassment made by hotel and restaurant employees may not prove to be true, an employer’s failure to properly address sexual harassment complaints may render the employer liable for significant damages to a prevailing employee. Once an employee has complained of sexual harassment, an internal investigation is necessary to address and resolve the claim. This article describes best practices to take when conducting an internal investigation of a sexual harassment claim. This article also describes policies and procedures an employer can implement to help avoid sexual harassment claims Read on...

Paul van Meerendonk
  • Revenue Management
  • Revenue Management in the Age of Big Data:
  • For some time, the biggest buzz in business has been around the influx of Big Data and its application to hospitality – and specifically to revenue management systems. Historically, revenue management systems (RMS) were already the biggest data owners within the hospitality enterprise, with two or more years of detailed reservations data consumed by the system, across a variety of room types, customer segments, length of stays and more. With this data, RMS analytics generated billions of forecasts used for further optimization, subsequently producing billions of pricing, availability and overbooking decisions. That is to say, Big Data existed in revenue management systems before it was even known as “Big Data.” Read on...

Larry  Mogelonsky
  • Mobile Technology
  • Speed is King with Mobile Websites
  • Given the increasing usage of smartphones for travel-related online research and purchases, the importance of having a seamless mobile website presentation cannot be understated. Unless a hotel’s mobile website loads quickly, however, it runs the risk of dissuading consumers from direct bookings as well as utilizing the brand.com for subsequent inquiries. This is compounded by the fact that websites typically load slower on mobile platforms. While this is a constant issue for developers and programmers, there are many solutions that senior managers can initiate and undertake themselves. Read on...

MARCH: Hotel Human Resources 2015: Recruiting and Retaining the Best Employees

Cathy  Fyock

The workforce is aging, and many organizations remain unprepared for the changes necessitated by increasing numbers of retirements. What are the old assumptions about retirement, about productivity of older adults, and about what employers can and should do to effectively manage through these changes? This article outlines how the workplace will likely change, and suggest new assumptions and new strategies for maximizing the benefits of an aging workforce. Read on...

Roberta Matuson

The U.S. labor market in October reached its longest stretch of job creation since at least World War II. U.S. employers, which added 214,000 jobs to payrolls last month, are on track to post the best yearly gain in employment since 1999. The steady job growth has pushed the nation’s unemployment rate down to 5.8%, which is great news for job seekers and not so great news for anyone in search of talent. Read on...

Cindy Novotny, CHSE

After spending 13 years with the Ritz-Carlton Learning Institute and the last 15 years working with the best hotel companies in the industry, I have learned the best lesson in business today. Inspect what you expect and don’t hire the first warm body that comes through the door, even if they ‘look’ the part and talk a good game. Recruiting great talent takes a lot of time, will try your patience and bust your HR budget on professional recruiters, if you don’t have a plan. The best hiring practice is to ‘select’ NOT ‘hire.’ Read on...

Bernadette Scott

The intense competition to secure the best talent continues, with organizations engaging evermore creative recruitment strategies to ensure they get the best from international graduate pools. Fueled by new technologies, market globalization and frequent changes to business models, the demand for organizational talent grows. Talent supply, however, is another issue with the World Economic Forum and the Boston Consulting Group (2011) indicating shortage across 25 countries by 2030. A ready-supply of engaged talent is needed to enhance service quality and to achieve this, graduate talent skills sets must become culturally embedded investments across international hospitality industry organizations. Read on...

Coming Up In The April Online Hotel Business Review


Feature Focus
Guest Service: Customer Service is a Key Business Differentiator
In today's hyper-competitive, hyper-connected global marketplace, customer experience has assumed a major role as a key business differentiator. There is a growing understanding that competition based on products or price alone is no longer a viable strategy. Since feature or function advantages can be quickly duplicated and/or enhanced, product innovation is no longer the differentiator it once was. And competition based on price impairs profitability. On the other hand, research indicates that 86 percent of consumers said they would be willing to pay more for a better customer experience. To protect both market share and margins, hotel companies must provide customers with consistent, compelling experiences - before, during, and after their purchases - across all major channels. There are many things organizations can do to deliver a superior customer experience. Management must align everything a company does with the customer service experience in mind. They must assign high value to anticipation of customers' real needs and desires, and they must incentivize and reward personal initiative in the pursuit of customer satisfaction. They must respond quickly to customer requests. They must ensure that customer interactions are highly personalized, and they must deliver the right information to the right place at the right time. And perhaps most importantly, upper management must create a culture where customer service is valued and esteemed, taught and rewarded. Customer experience leaders who can drive this kind of cultural change will radically affect their companies? competitive position and business performance. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.