Thanks for your great support of my posts in the last couple of weeks. It is very clear that as an industry there is a broad consensus to elevate the vital role of housekeeping within our industry. I also understand and appreciate that hotels have a lot on their plate right now in unprecedented times.
However, I think hotels themselves and our industry as a whole can positively change moving forward and one of those ways is through housekeeping. Now, is surely the time to turn the page! No longer is it acceptable to champion your cleaning credibility and not treat those key working staff appropriately. Moreover, all types of guests will be far more discerning in the future and many will choose hotels on their ethical stance as well as other factors. So, some concrete ideas:
- Ensure the Head of Housekeeping is on your Executive Committee. Not part of another role but THE most important department in the hotel.
- Pay all housekeepers a fair wage and in line with reception staff and other departments.
- Have the majority of HK staff on your staff permanently. This will provide a benefit in many different ways, improve their careers and they will be much more engaged employees in the future.
- Include all housekeeping staff as a central cornerstone of your COVID19 initiatives and provide relevant PPE.
- Rethink the time per room standard across the industry. I am not an expert but there are many out there who can come up with better than this. Surely a room is only acceptable when it is really clean not when the stopwatch has finished.
- Be transparent with guests and include these plans in your marketing collateral. Guests want to hear it and this positive change will benefit you in the future.
Lets prove that ‘we are all in it together’ and ensure we can turn this horrible situation into a force for good for our sector.
Which chain will be the first to pick this up? I would love to hear about it, not for my sake but for the army of key workers who deserve better.