he extent to which hotels and resorts manage costs has always been critical to their success and profitability. With the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated financial impact it has had on the industry for nearly a year, cost efficiency has risen to a whole new level of importance both now and for the post COVID-19 future.
We researched several sources for money saving tips and here are most frequently cited tips we found:
- Analyze Expenses – If you are not already carefully tracking expenses monthly, put this at the top of your to do list. The saying “out of sight, out of mind” definitely applies here. And this needs to be more than just tracking expenses. It should include analyzing expenses with an eye toward identifying potential waste as well as cost saving opportunities.
- Cross Train Your Staff – By cross training staff, you’ll be able to seamlessly cover unexpected absences or provide qualified assistance as staffing needs in specific areas fluctuate from day to day. Three important considerations to keep in mind when cross training:
> Limit cross training to only one additional area of expertise.
> Match the cross training to the individual’s demonstrated proficiency and satisfaction in their primary area of work. For instance, someone who is outstanding in customer service may not be a good fit to receive cross training in the field of hotel maintenance.
> Keep in mind also that an individual who is in a position where their job responsibilities are already full time and the requirements do not change may not be a good fit for cross training as it may overwhelm an already full workload.
- Be Energy Efficient – Make sure appliances, light fixtures, HVAC and the building infrastructure are all taking advantage of energy saving opportunities.
- Reuse Towels – Encouraging guests to reuse their towels (among same household/family members) can generate significant cost savings in utility and labor expenses as well as the cost to replace worn out towels. It also lets your guests know that you are doing your part to conserve energy and resources.
- Perform Preventive Maintenance – Opting to perform regular preventive maintenance on appliances as well as major systems such as HVAC, laundry and kitchen equipment will not only keep equipment operating at peak efficiency, it can also prevent catastrophic breakdowns and expensive repair costs.
- Apply Technology – Technology in the hotel and resort industry is constantly evolving. As a result, opportunities abound for time and labor savings as well as improved guest service. When you consider taking advantage of the benefits offered by technology, it is recommended that cost, ease of implementation and ROI be carefully evaluated.
- Practice Smart Marketing – Be sure to accurately calculate the ROI on paid marketing. Just because you are paying for it doesn’t guarantee it is helping you grow. In addition, take advantage of inexpensive or free opportunities for organic marketing provided by social media. Quality content and great photographs posted on Facebook and Instagram present excellent free and organic opportunities to grow your market.
- Utilize Unused Spaces – This will require some creativity but look for opportunities to monetize your unused space. During times of low occupancy, perhaps unused guest rooms could be made available to businesspeople who need to “work from home” but do not have a private area in their home that works for them. Maybe a part of the lobby could be used for a yoga class. Again, this will require a bit of thinking outside the box, but there may be opportunities to monetize unused space that could be uncovered with a little creative thinking.
As we noted at the beginning of this article, intentional and planned cost efficiency will always be crucial to profitability. Hopefully the tips we have provided will benefit you now as well as in the post COVID-19 future!