Running a business means you need to think about several factors – and this is the same in the hotel industry. There will be different ways to make your establishment stand out from the crowd depending on which market you are tapping into. This will mean you will have to undergo extensive research to see what it is that’s working and what isn’t.
It’s essential to work out a marketing plan to help you get the best return on your investment. Figuring out your unique selling point is key to succeeding. However, one aspect which must be the same throughout every hotel is safety. Your guests’ safety is paramount to your business. Here, we look at how you can correctly safeguard your hotel:
While it may seem obvious, having corporate uniform is a must. Not only does it help your business look professional and smart, but it also gives your guests a clear view of who they can approach about a query, and who indeed is allowed in certain areas of the business. In guest areas, knowing who members of staff are is essential. This is because it shows that your company have guests’ safety at the forefront due to staff always patrolling the areas.
By installing CCTV cameras, your guests will automatically feel safer. IP CCTV systems are a great way to monitor your hotel and can even be accessed remotely. Certain systems also come with a voice command option, which means that if you spot any wrong-doing, you can quickly warn those involved to stop their actions.
Have a clear emergency response plan
Your team must be confident that they know what to do in an emergency. Regular meetings with law enforcement and emergency services should be scheduled so you have a good communication plan in place and can update it as and when required. In doing so, you can prepare your staff so that everyone is calm and knowledgeable in a worst-case scenario.
Aneil Handa, Director of The Cairn Collection, Cairn,said: “We make sure all our staff have sufficient training to know how to act in an emergency. Communication is key as it’s clear we must be calm and composed in critical moments as this can help us make sure both our guests and staff members are as safe as possible and can help avoid possible catastrophes.”
If you own a hotel or guest house, you must organise regular checks to gain an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR). This is because, since your business is constantly running, your systems can be subject to wear, tear, corrosion and overloading. Such a report, which must be carried out by a qualified electrician, will ensure that the electrical appliances in each room are fit for purpose.
If you carry out these checks periodically, you will reduce any risk of electrical shocks, fires and accidents. This will therefore reduce accidents in the workplace – something which is a legal requirement since the introduction of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989.
In the same way electric devices and appliances require it, your gas mains and appliances must be periodically checked. The Gas Safety Regulations 1998 states that you must arrange annual gas safety checks for any appliances that are serving guest accommodation, even if it’s sited away from the guests’ rooms.
You should also ensure that every staff member is fully trained on your gas appliances and able to spot obvious faults. This could include any damaged pipework or connections. While any new installations must be carried out by someone who is Gas Safe-registered, anyone can change a LPG gas cylinder or hose once they are competent to do so.
A carbon monoxide and dioxide alarm is also imperative. These alarms can signify any fault and help you avoid any catastrophes. They should give an audible alarm when levels are dangerous and should be able to automatically shut off your gas system.
It’s important to note that it’s not just the physical safety of your guests that you should focus on, either. Hotels have become a prime target for cyber attacks. According to a report by PwC, the hospitality industry has the second-highest number of cybersecurity breaches, with most of the prominent hotels in the industry having fallen victim to breaches.
Keep the risks to a minimum by regularly updating your systems. You should also be making sure that backing up your data becomes a habit, so you can eliminate the risk of losing it or having it irretrievably damaged. A recommended strategy is to use a cloud service daily, have weekly server backups, and follow these up with quarterly server backups and then yearly backups.
Password security is another way to reduce risk. Be sure to change it often and make sure you change it any time a staff member leaves to avoid any breaches.
Safety will always remain such a huge part of the hospitality industry. Therefore, it’s crucial to keep on top of the methods you are using. Following the above steps should help provide your business with a great insight on how to keep your guests as safe as possible.