Top Strategies to Improve Your Hotel Operations in 2023
Mar 01, 2023 • Guest Experience

Hotel operations can be complex. That isn’t too surprising—after all, they do encompass the entire process of running your hotel on a day-to-day basis. And there are tons of different teams, tools, and processes that need to be integrated in order to keep things running smoothly.

Clearly, this isn’t easy to achieve without a solid plan and the right guidance.

Not to worry, though—Fetch has you covered! Our platform is dedicated to ensuring hotels gain high guest satisfaction, better reviews, more bookings, and more revenue. So, we know a thing or two about how you can improve your hotel operations.

Want to learn more? Read on!

What Are Hotel Operations? 

Hotel operations is a term that encompasses the multiple, interconnected departments responsible for the day-to-day running of a hotel. These departments include:

  • Management of administrative tasks, such as reservation processing
  • Ensuring guests receive high-quality service
  • Maintenance of the hotel property
  • Tracking financial details, such as revenue and expenses
  • Staff management
  • Management of guest food and beverage services
  • Housekeeping

All these aspects make up hotel operations, and they need to work harmoniously to ensure overall efficiency and guest satisfaction. Therefore, successful hotel operations prioritize smooth integration and strong communication between departments.

Different Types of Operational Areas in Hotel Operations

To ensure your hotel runs seamlessly, it's important to have the right people and resources in each department. Most hotels have common operational areas that structure the roles needed to keep the hotel running smoothly.

Here are the six main departments you should focus on:

  • Executives & Management: These are the hotel's decision-makers, including department heads, directors, and managers. They make sure the hotel is running smoothly and that everything is in order.
  • Front Desk Services: This department is in constant contact with guests and handles most administrative tasks, like bookings, check-ins, and check-outs. It's important to arm this department with detail-oriented individuals, as well as a front office management system that streamlines tedious processes.
  • Marketing & Sales: Promotion and marketing help spread the word about your hotel. This department is responsible for communicating the hotel's brand message to prospective guests and converting them into customers. Communication plays a key role in this department because their promotions need to match up with what the other operational departments are delivering.
  • Accounting & Finance: This department is often directly answerable to the executive team because they track the revenue and expenses of the hotel. The evaluation of finances helps top management identify where support is lacking and how funds can be accurately allocated to the appropriate services.
  • Housekeeping & Maintenance: This department is the backbone of the hotel. They ensure that rooms and all spaces of the hotel are well-kept, so guests can have a comfortable stay. This also includes utility maintenance to ensure all appliances and services are working properly.
  • Kitchen Staff: If your hotel offers room service, on-site dining, or both, a competent kitchen staff that prioritizes food and health safety is crucial. This department should ensure that orders are met on time and that any guest food preferences are taken care of.

Why is Effective Hotel Operations Important?

Attracting top talent

It's no secret that the hospitality sector has been affected by a labor shortage. A survey of over 500 hoteliers conducted by the American Hotel & Lodging Association revealed that 97% experienced staff shortages. The shortage was highest in the housekeeping department, which tends to be neglected.

When you prioritize all operational areas in your hotel, you can build a culture that attracts and retains essential talent. People are more willing to be part of a team that emphasizes their value in a community, and this encourages them to perform better.

Keeping up with hotel and hospitality trends

Staying on top of your hotel operations is crucial to remaining relevant in the competitive hospitality marketplace. This includes monitoring evolving performance trends and marketing strategies that are specific to the independent hotel market.

Some specific trends to keep in mind are:

  • Hospitality technology and software that can be integrated into your departments (e.g., mobile check-in services)
  • Experiential marketing that sells an experience (e.g., destination-focused marketing campaigns)
  • Online and social media marketing

Improving employee engagement

Efficient hotel operations encourage higher employee engagement across different departments, as everyone is working towards the same goal. Since staff is a crucial part of ensuring the hotel runs smoothly, it is essential to provide favorable working conditions and encourage them to be invested in doing their job effectively.

To manage your hotel operations effectively, provide regular feedback and praise to your staff to help them uphold the hotel's values. The feedback should also enable them to work towards career development, which will motivate them further.

How To Improve Your Hotel Operations

There are a multitude of ways you can improve the way your hotel operates. Here, we will discuss our top six strategies that will help you streamline your processes. 

1. Choose the right hotel operations software

Incorporating the right hotel operations software can make a huge difference in elevating your hotel operations. With the right technology, you can simplify your processes, improve task management, enhance guest engagement, and monitor performance analytics. This takes a lot of pressure off your staff so that they can provide guests with high-quality experiences.

At Fetch, we offer top-notch operations software that helps you keep track of who is doing what and when. Our platform covers end-to-end guest management using messaging, ticketing, and live alerts, allowing you to fix issues efficiently. It's also user-friendly, so your staff can learn it in a short amount of time. 

Don't believe us? 

Just ask The Lucerne, who took advantage of our platform to improve their operational efficiency. With Fetch, the hotel was able to track incidents in real-time, assign tasks to staff, and monitor performance metrics. The result? Improved response times, staff communication, and guest satisfaction.

2. Communication is key

Communication is essential for ensuring smooth operations in a hotel. You need to maintain effective communication between your managers, staff, and guests on a daily basis.

Staff members at all levels should be aware of what’s going on and know who to go to when specific problems arise. Important information includes VIP guests, hotel events, or special room bookings such as for anniversaries.

Here are some ways to establish a company culture that prioritizes communication:

  • Encourage staff to stay informed by emphasizing the importance of updating themselves on new information at the beginning of each shift.
  • Use digital communication systems so that important information can always get where it needs to go. Take Fetch’s Operations Hub, for example—features like tagging staff and departments, leaving notes, 2-way texting, and 2-way emailing make it easy for staff to communicate with each other from wherever they are.
  • Have a separate communication process for emergencies so that urgent matters can be addressed immediately.
  • Provide a consistent employee training experience for each staff member so that everybody is on the same page when it comes to processes and tools.

3. Cross-train your team

Having an adaptable staff that understands how the different parts of a hotel work together is a major long-term benefit. Teams will be able to easily notice gaps in communication and learn better ways to problem-solve. Therefore, cross-departmental training is great for helping your entire team understand the hotel's operations as a whole.

For example, a bellman can learn more about delivering room service orders, and a front-desk operator can understand how the housekeeping procedure works.

Of course, employees are hired for their specific positions because that's where their strengths lie. However, to help operations flow smoothly and allow for flexibility when unprecedented situations arise, employees need to be prepared to handle different tasks.

4. Take guest feedback seriously

Incorporating guest feedback is essential to gain an outside perspective and identify whether your operations are truly running smoothly. It's important to know if your guests are satisfied with the services you offer.

Fortunately, you can now automate this process by sending emails to guests after they have left your hotel. Guests will appreciate that you value their opinion even after they have departed, and you will receive valuable market research.

Fetch can help you collect guest feedback using email or SMS, eliminating the need for guests to download an app. Additionally, you can track your online reviews as they are posted, saving you the hassle of a manual search.

5. Keep your staff happy

Having well-informed and satisfied staff leads to smooth processes and happy customers. Therefore, hotels must make a genuine effort to consistently educate and reward staff for achieving customer satisfaction goals. This helps empower your staff to strive for excellence and lessens the risk of frustration resulting from a lack of knowledge about hotel operations.

Here are a few ways to educate and empower your staff:

  • Make the training process fun and engaging by using gamification techniques (e.g., awarding points for well-performed tasks to win a prize).
  • Listen to their grievances and make the necessary changes.
  • Forgive employee mistakes while encouraging them to learn from them to maintain their morale.
  • Praise good effort as often as possible.

6. Standardize your procedures

A hotel's Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) are essential to the overall operations of the establishment. SOPs structure processes to run smoothly and provide top-tier service for guests.

It is crucial that all staff members are aware of these SOPs so that they are well integrated into the hotel's processes. Therefore, it's best to make sure that they are as specific to the hotel as possible.

For an independent hotel, SOPs can include:

  • Emergency SOPs: This outlines what to do in case of fires, injuries, sickness, death, natural disasters, power outages, or if a guest damages a room.
  • Operational SOPs: This relates to day-to-day processes and guest interactions. For example, early check-in procedures, late check-out procedures, what to do in case of overbooking, and dealing with an angry guest.
  • Housekeeping & Maintenance SOPs: Create a checklist of which areas need routine cleaning, which appliances will need routine maintenance, and what to do in case of pest infestations.
  • Staff SOPs: These SOPs guide staff management like onboarding new recruits, unexcused absence & tardiness, and the consequences for violating policies.

Elevate Your Hotel Operations With Fetch

A hotel's success is highly dependent on its operations. To provide positive guest experiences, it is essential to have well-planned and streamlined hotel operations processes.

Fortunately, Fetch can help you get started. Our central solution for all teams can ensure that your hotel operations run smoothly. With access to front office operations, room analytics, and guest engagement all in one unified tool, your staff can focus on creating the best experiences for your guests.

Don't hesitate to request a meeting with us to see how Fetch can elevate your hotel operations!

Let’s get happier heads in beds.

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