Selecting Environmentally Responsible Vendors

By Arthur Weissman President and CEO, Green Seal, Inc. | September 02, 2010

Why Green Your Supply Chain?

The benefits of incorporating environmental responsibility into your purchasing decisions can impact your bottom line and property efficiency in a number of ways, including:

  • Ensuring greater consistency in supplier performance;
  • A reduction in long-term risk and threats to your property;
  • A reduction in packaging, transport, waste treatment, and purchasing costs; and
  • Improved vendor relations and branding with your guests and community.

Most importantly, however, is that incorporating environmental responsibility into your purchasing decisions is not that different from the traditional purchaser's interest to minimize the cost of transportation, waste management, and time spent in managing stock. According to Deloitte"...maximizing transportation efficiency, reducing fuel and energy consumption, minimizing inventory and waste, and purchasing based on Total Cost of Ownership were considered leading supply chain practices, long before green considerations like carbon emissions and sustainability entered the equation." In addition to benefits for individual properties, your suppliers can also benefit from participating in your green supply-chain program in some of the following ways:

  • Lower production costs by adoption of "just-in-time production" methods;
  • Lower liabilities due to lower levels of stock in reserve;
  • Better relationships with regulatory agencies due to compliance with client programs; and
  • Streamlined management systems.

In addition to these business-to-business returns, local communities will also benefit indirectly though your adoption of a green supply chain program in the following ways:

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Coming up in April 2018...

Guest Service: Empowering People

Excellent customer service is vitally important in all businesses but it is especially important for hotels where customer service is the lifeblood of the business. Outstanding customer service is essential in creating new customers, retaining existing customers, and cultivating referrals for future customers. Employees who meet and exceed guest expectations are critical to a hotel's success, and it begins with the hiring process. It is imperative for HR personnel to screen for and hire people who inherently possess customer-friendly traits - empathy, warmth and conscientiousness - which allow them to serve guests naturally and authentically. Trait-based hiring means considering more than just a candidate's technical skills and background; it means looking for and selecting employees who naturally desire to take care of people, who derive satisfaction and pleasure from fulfilling guests' needs, and who don't consider customer service to be a chore. Without the presence of these specific traits and attributes, it is difficult for an employee to provide genuine hospitality. Once that kind of employee has been hired, it is necessary to empower them. Some forward-thinking hotels empower their employees to proactively fix customer problems without having to wait for management approval. This employee empowerment—the permission to be creative, and even having the authority to spend money on a customer's behalf - is a resourceful way to resolve guest problems quickly and efficiently. When management places their faith in an employee's good judgment, it inspires a sense of trust and provides a sense of higher purpose beyond a simple paycheck. 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.