In a hotel, maintaining peak performance levels requires many resources. Figuring out how to decrease waste while keeping performance standards and levels high, is a challenge to say the least.
Yet, not figuring out how to decrease waste is bad news for your hotel on two fronts – the environment + the bottom line.
Negatively impacting the environment may also negatively impact your hotel’s reputation. It’s no secret that consumers are much more environmentally aware, and take notice when establishments aren’t.
The fact remains that wastefulness must be avoided, with efficiency and sustainability taking it’s place.
Summer is coming to a close and fall is setting in – now is the ideal time to address wastefulness and surplus. The hecticness of time of summer makes it challenging to attend to hotel improvement, but fall offers a brief calm and renewed vigor for improvements.
Hotel owners may be surprised to learn that reducing waste doesn’t have to be an uphill battle. We have a few general guidelines to assist your team in reducing hotel waste and increasing profitability, reputation and process efficiency.
How to Reduce Hotel Waste for Profitability
Conduct a Waste Evaluation
The first step in figuring out where you need to go is determining where you already are. Where has waste been building up? Are there too many storage rooms full of old furniture? Too much paper being printed on? Insane amounts of excess foods from banquets and private events? Too many toiletries left over? Take inventory of every possible surplus or waste outlet and make note.
Make Sure Communication Channels Are Strong and Operating Well
Communication has to do with waste? Absolutely. If the individual team members aren’t communication with managers, and the managers aren’t communicating with one another, then how are the issues supposed to reach the appropriate ears? It isn’t uncommon for bad news to be avoided, if team members fear communication then you won’t ever be able to solve problems. So before any waste-reduction actions are taken, re-fortify the channels of communication, or unblock them if you discover some have become blocked.
Purchase With Quality and Durability in Mind
When it comes to purchasing goods for the hotel, purchase the green versions! Rather than the cheap light bulbs, invest in the LED light bulbs that last much longer and give off a nicer hue of light. Consider purchasing recycled items when applicable, instead of brand new. Avoid purchasing products with excessive packaging, and buy items that are clearly more durable than other versions.
Donate, Donate, Donate
Not every used item in the hotel has the ability to be sold. Old linens, unused toiletries and surplus food are all items that can be donated. Donations are a win win – get rid of surplus items while benefiting and helping the local community. As a hotel owner, it’s your job to set the example for your team. Show your team that being a good samaritan is a crucial aspect of life and business. Inspire them to think of other creative ways the hotel can donate and/or give back to the community.
Repurpose Goods Rather Than Throw Away
Renovations are commonplace in hotels. Oftentimes renovations bring an army of new furniture, fixtures, equipment (FFE), etc. There are two roads you can take regarding this issue: donation or repurposing.
Furniture, especially if it was well-made to begin with, has great potential to be reupholstered, reused or remodeled. It isn’t cheap to re-do furniture, but it may be less expensive than buying brand new, and it’s more sustainable. Reuse is one of the three R’s after all: reduce, reuse, recycle.
If reusing the furniture isn’t a valid option, donating the furniture, or even selling it are alternatives. There are plenty of services that will buy it, sell it or take it off your hands for a small charge or for free.
Convert Existing FFE’s to Sustainable Versions
There are hundreds of items in your hotel that have the ability to become more sustainable and efficient. With technology rapidly increasing every single day, the only real challenge here is keeping up with all of the new products and systems available.
Training is Key
As you begin to instate sustainable practices, the most important task is to implement training. None of your new and improved hotel practices will be followed if the team hasn’t been thoroughly trained on how to use them! As you begin training make it clear that management is always available to hear any ideas the team members may have for further sustainable practices. Make it a point to reward and celebrate team members who take the initiative to discern where improvements can be made!
Your hotel can be the envy of the industry. Set the bar high. Be the property that is so sustainable, guests notice and comment on it in their reviews. Save money, decrease your environmental footprint and be a good neighbor. There are endless positives to reducing waste, and it’s time for your hotel to discover them all!
If management help is needed on this front, don’t hesitate to contact the team at HMG Hospitality and get started on a positive future today.