As we head into the busy seasons of Spring and Summer, it’s more important than ever to have standard operating procedures in place.
We’ve already detailed why SOP’s are crucial for internal processes, and now we’ll further explain why they are just as crucial for enhancing the guest’s experience.
Hotels that clearly pay attention to small details and are committed to customer service will always differentiate themselves. A hotel with branded and recognizable SOP’s will not only stand out, but will attract faithful repeat clients again and again, one of the true keys to loyalty and ultimately long-term success.
Anything your hotel can do to provide a consistently spectacular experience for the guest, is well-worth the time, effort, and resources required. Here are three key reasons why, and how, SOP’s enhance the experience.
Guest Experience Management – Using SOP’s
Comfort and Familiarity
Traveling is unfamiliar enough. Chances are, your guests do not wish for the hotel operations to be foreign and unknown to them. This is why branded hotels, and hotels within portfolios, experience such success. People crave familiarity, and when a guest walks into a Hampton Inn, for example, they know exactly what to their guests experience will be (Complimentary Breakfast, 100% guarantee, clean comfortable room)
Guests should actually be able to envision what their experience will be like, based on previous experiences with the same hotel, or brand. For some brands, the restaurant names, the linens, and even the fitness equipment design is the exact same to promote familiarity, whether the property is in Italy or South Carolina, and guests enjoy that.
Imagine the added comfort your hotel will bring to guests when they return from a long and exciting day of exploring, where everything was new and unknown, to a familiar setting they feel comfortable and happy navigating. That is guest experience bliss, and that’s what you should strive for.
When traveling and vacationing, time is everything. No guest wishes to be stuck at the front desk dealing with a team member who is unaware of how to check-in guests who booked through an OTA, for example. If SOP’s are truly in place, then every single team member will be an expert in their respective SOPs, right down to exactly how a guest it to be greet the moment they enter the door.
Even if team members are brand new, if they’ve been trained according to the tried and true SOP’s, they will have no trouble completing their duties with efficiency and ease.
If a guest places the “do not disturb” card on their door, does the housekeeping staff have a go-to procedure of when to return? Will that guest return to a clean room, or will it turn into a grand miscommunication? SOP’s take away the unknown, and replace it with a consistent known.
Quality is Guaranteed
Competition in the hospitality industry is fierce. The number one goal should be guest loyaltyFaithful guests are like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow – not something to lose track of. How can you guarantee that they’ll have a familiar experience? SOP’s! And if, for some awful reason, they have a less than ideal repeat visit, how can you determine, to the best of your ability, what went awry? SOP’s!
If there are SOP’s in place for everything, then you can go back and figure out which one wasn’t adhered to, or if an updated SOP is needed. Times change, new processes become available, adjustments must constantly be made, but if no SOP was in place to begin with, it will be much tricker to update the process.
Three golden reasons why it’s time to get your procedures in place. There’s no time to waste, the last thing you want to worry over in the height of Spring and Summer break, is putting SOP’s in place.
If you are in need of outside help to develop and maintain your standards and initiate training, get it. The initial investment will pay off ten-fold when you receive excellent guest feedback, and an improved bottom line. HMG Hospitality has been advising and working with hotels for decades to ensure they’re operating at maximum efficiency. Contact Joe Zarrahy, Corporate Director of Development at (858) 673-1534. to get your hotel on track today.
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