One of the most important decisions that need to be taken is regarding the number of cleaning employees that are required and the frequency at which the cleaning will be conducted. These are all about the public areas where the house keeping has to be active. They also have to look after the guest room areas. The area near the guest rooms consist of the elevators through which the guests will be traveling, the corridors which they will use to reach their rooms, the stairwells through which also the guests may go and finally the guest rooms themselves. (Housekeeping)
Well one can say that the other areas are semi-public while the rooms are absolutely private, and in those the cleaning has to be done in agreement with the guest or in their absence. After cleaning, it has to be realized that the housekeeping staff are the only persons from the hotel going into the rooms once it has been occupied they have to confirm to the front office about the real status of the room meaning whether it is really occupied or not, and to the engineering or maintenance department as to whether they have to take some action about maintenance. Before getting a new guest in the room, they have to properly clean the room, generally get it certified as clean by another member of the housekeeping department, and then report to the front office that the room has been cleaned so that it can be allotted to another guest. (Housekeeping)
Since it is not possible to cover all areas of any function, let us now look at another area of housekeeping that is generally a cause for concern - the employees. To avoid trouble, they should be treated with respect at all times, their supervisors should be very good in their capacities, get an approval from them that the room cleaning procedures used in the hotel are fair, continuously keep training them as equipment and material in the room keep changing, try to provide a method by which the housekeeping staff can move to better positions. At the same time, the housekeeping department policies should be applied consistently and fairly, the safety of the room attendant has to be ensured by the hotel and the policies should be changed for that purpose, the payment to the housekeeping staff should be fair and in line with prevailing wages in that area, and finally the wages that are paid to them should be viewed by them as being fair.
At all stages, it should be remembered that housekeeping employees are a large group and if they are dissatisfied there could be major problems in running the hotel. The nature of the job is also physical and these employees are the ones generally to meet with accidents during performance of their jobs. To avoid accidents, housekeeping employees should only handle those machinery items and supplies that they have been trained to handle. There are different dangerous processes like chemical handling, different cleaning procedures, and correct techniques for lifting items, correctly entering guestrooms, and being able to handle some situations within guestrooms. There may be many dangerous items in guest rooms like firearms, animals not in cages, different individuals who are seen as threatening, ill or unconscious guests, drugs and other material concerned with drugs, blood and probable infections that may come from blood. They are responsible for service to guests, security of the guestrooms and also have to go through lost and found procedures for the entire hotel. (Housekeeping)
There are many issues that have to be resolved in the food services that have to be resolved and the first of these are the planning issues. These require the determination of menu, and that has to be decided by what the guests want or prefer or need. At the same time, the menu has to take care of different operational difficulties in preparation of the item. Adequate labor and equipment have to be collected and that includes labor for production, services and cleaning up. For the purchase there should be a system for purchase of the items. At all times, the emphasis should be on giving consumers what they need and along with that is the marketing concerns and getting repeat business for the products so that the food services can be profitable in themselves. (Food and Beverage)
The financial position of the food services business has to be evaluated and for this purpose, it is important to have operating budgets for them and also prepare income statements, balance sheets and cash flow statements to ensure that the business is making money on its own. There is necessity for establishing standard operating procedures and that means establishing standard procedures for purchasing, receiving, storing, and pre-preparation, preparation, serving and service. These should be studied carefully so that minimum costs can be achieved while maintaining the desired standards.
The entire process is an eight stage process with one step following another. It starts with purchase, then comes receiving and recording that it has been received, then it has to be stored, then issued from the stores to the kitchen or the outside supplier, then comes the stage of pre-preparation generally done by an outside supplier, and after pre-preparation the material goes to the kitchen for preparation. Then are the final stages on the way to the consumer - the material going for serving and then landing up with the buyer. Another very important aspect is the meeting of sudden additional demands on the food services. These provide high profits to the hotel and cannot be left. So it is important that staff have to be trained in some standardized procedures for meeting these demands, and the managers should provide clear cut instructions to the employees for meeting these demands. At the same time, instructions are not enough and the materials have to be made available. For this purpose, it may be worthwhile to look at the possibility of delegating some authority to other staff when the manager is not in the hotel. (Food and Beverage)
Sales and Marketing
Another very important function in the hotels is of sales and marketing. Here a similar role is played by the front office which sells off the extra rooms or transient rooms that are available, sales and marketing tries to sell rooms when the hotel is a part of a group. The general effort of the groups is to sell all rooms of the group. This department prepares the sales strategy and marketing strategy for the hotel. To ensure that the other party which is buying the rooms will have to be given contracts in a timely manner and that is also the responsibility of this department. The maintenance of records of sales, forecasts and histories also become the responsibilities of the department. They also have to coordinate and fill up the requests of special clients, host these special clients during their stay and take them out on special tours if that had been the agreement earlier. All hotels always depend on various events to help them meet their sales targets. The different events are catered events, guest rooms for groups, hosting of conventions, hosting of weddings and special events, hosting of conferences and hosting of meetings. There are hotels which specialize in some of these types of events and that helps them to reach their final sales target. (Sales and marketing)
The types of guests who come into hotels are also of different types. Some are business travelers and they demand the best of service and pay the highest rates. These guests do not stay for a very long time. On the other hand there are many who come to stay in the hotels for long periods. These guests stay in the hotel for long periods; their occupancy is guaranteed; their rooms are easy to clean; they are generally uncomplicated guests - but they always like to take up the rooms at the lowest rates. Then there are the tourists or leisure travelers who come and stay in hotels. They come for various reasons like vacations, weddings, visiting friends of other members of families and many non-work related reasons. The difficulties with this group are that they are totally dependent on the advice given by their travel agents. There are also groups which come into a town and stay in a hotel there. They may belong to social, military, educational, religious or fraternal organizations. Depending on their own specialties, a hotel may decide to target any of these groups also. (Sales and marketing)
Engineering and Maintenance
Another very important function of the hotel which seems to go on in the background most of the time is the engineering and maintenance function. This function is essential to protect and maintain the financial value of the…