The importance of sanitation and hygiene in hotel and restaurant operations cannot be understated. As service providers that regularly interact with customers, prepare food, and clean shared spaces, hotel and restaurant employees must be properly trained and must always have supplies available to ensure defined procedures are followed. The potential consequences of not following sanitation protocols could be illness, loss of trust, and long-term damage to your brand.
Importance of Sanitation and Hygiene in Hotel Operations
Hotel patrons are more aware and concerned about sanitation practices than ever before, and with occupancy down due to the pandemic, hotels are taking extra steps to make guests feel safe. And it seems that these measures are working. When enhanced hygiene protocols such as hand washing, masks, and clear barriers at check-in desks are implemented, one survey indicated that 8 out of 10 travelers say they would be comfortable staying at a hotel.
The same survey showed that cleanliness is the most important factor people consider when choosing a hotel. However, 86 percent of guests would prefer to suspend daily cleaning during their stay to minimize the amount of time that others spend in their room. Expectations for hotel cleanliness are high, but customers are willing to change some of their behaviors to protect their health. Giving your guests options is one key to keeping them satisfied.
Travelers are also more savvy than they used to be when it comes to sanitation. One survey indicated that 70 percent of people would be more likely to choose a hotel if they trusted the cleaning products the hotel was using, and 55 percent of them would be willing to pay more for a room if the hotel was using a trusted brand of cleaning products. It is evident that travelers have high expectations for hotels, which is why it is so important to implement sanitation and hygiene best practices.
Importance of Sanitation and Hygiene in Restaurant Operations
Restaurants are also under closer scrutiny these days. Although restaurants have always had protocols and checklists in place to prevent foodborne illness, patrons now have higher expectations of restaurants when it comes to protecting their health. As with hotels, brand recognition and trust goes a long way. One survey showed that 58 percent of diners would be more likely to pick a restaurant if they knew the business was using a brand of cleaning products they personally knew and trusted.
Customers also want to see cleaning in action—70 percent expect more thorough and frequent cleaning, stating that bathrooms, buffets, tables, chairs, and counters are the most important areas to clean. Health inspectors are also changing their requirements to ensure that restaurants are complying with guidelines to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, further emphasizing the importance of sanitation and hygiene in restaurants. If you aren’t already taking steps to implement more robust sanitation protocols, now is the time.
What Brands are Doing to Protect Customers and Employees
Recognizing the importance of sanitation and hygiene in hotel and restaurant operations, brands are taking steps to make customers feel safer. Marriott has incorporated electrostatic sprayers into equipment inventories to make sanitation easier for hotel staff and improve efficiency. Hilton is also using advanced technology with UV light emitting robots roaming the hallways. However, there are some drawbacks to this approach, because UV light degrades materials quickly, requires a long and steady contact time, and does not hit hard-to-reach places.
Restaurants are also responding with new protocols to protect employees and customers. At TGI Fridays, employees must wash their hands for 20 seconds after handling cash to help protect them and reduce the potential for cross contamination to other customers. Brands like The Cheesecake Factory and Applebee’s have designated sanitation specialists at each location, with the sole role of sanitizing surfaces and frequently touched items throughout the day.
How Decon7 Helps
Decon7 products are being used in the hospitality and restaurant industries because they are both effective and easy to apply. In addition to providing employee training to ensure the products are applied correctly, Decon7 also provides customized checklists, placards, and signage to demonstrate sanitation practices to customers. If you’re responsible for sanitation in a hotel or restaurant, download our free Restaurant and Hospitality Disinfecting Checklist to use as a starting point.