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A few tips on successful planned maintenance at your Hotel

publication date: Nov 7, 2014
author/source: Michael Witherspoon

A few tips on successful planned maintenance at your Hotel

Business Development Executive - Property Services at Ian Williams Ltd 

No matter how large or small your cyclical maintenance programme, one of the ways hotel owners can ensure completion within a defined budget is to select contractors that can show evidence of:-
• Working in an operating hotel
• Understand the need for compliance with current building standards
• Can show evidence of completing work with a short down period
• Have a thorough H & S and Risk Assessment manual
• Have a clear vision of the project
• Have defined standards for time, cost and quality
• Can develop a schedule to ensure smooth transition for guestrooms in and out of service
• Can decorate 24m² per person per hour (including preparation & cutting in)

A well thought out timeline for projects is critical due to the impact on guests and operations. It is crucial to incorporate operations tasks within it. Operations must remove operating elements from rooms before work begins and then re-organize all rooms before they are put back into service.

If possible, renovate one typical room before starting the entire process. Doing this will answer most previously un-asked questions and provide contractors with a chance to fine-tune their processes.

Stay focused on time standards, its critical since guests will probably be staying at the property and operations staff must be able to do their job. Not accounting for guests and operations during a project is disastrous. 
Have a clear and agreed process for reviewing and accepting completed rooms. The more involved owners or managers are, the more efficiently rooms can be put back into service. 

Work hard on communications, proactive communication between operations and contractors will bring reliability to the time it takes to renovate and re-activate guestrooms. 

It is also important to communicate to guests the positive aspects that the wonderful changes will bring – good signage will keep curious guests informed. 

Ensure that neither too few nor to many rooms are out of service at any one time. 

Insist that work crews be identifiable with clean uniforms, are methodical and organized. 

Keep work zones and guest areas separate and distinct. Design all work processes to avoid interaction between guests and operations. 

Never allow guests in a work zone or contractors in guest zones. 

Maintain clean work and welfare areas daily. If potential exists for guests or operations to be around a work area, be certain to use proper signage and barriers to protect everyone. 

While renovating a hotel can be challenging, proper planning and being prepared for the unexpected makes the process smoother and helps maintain positive guest relations.

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