How effective task management drives memorable guest experiences in hospitality
When it comes to laying a foundation for future growth in hospitality, nothing is more important than the guest experience a brand offers. And that memorable experience is driven by operational consistency.
“Consistency allows travelers to rely on the brand they choose,” explains travel industry expert David Black. “When customers know that they can expect the same level of service, amenities, and overall experience every time they stay at a particular hotel or travel with a certain airline, they are more likely to become loyal customers. This helps build a strong and reliable customer base, which is essential in any industry.”
Ensuring that associates are well-trained, confident in their roles and responsibilities, and possessing a deep understanding of the guest’s expectations and the ways by which they can help meet them, goes a long way toward developing and maintaining this consistent experience.
Achieving this, however, is much more easily said than done. And, when considering the need for multi-branded hoteliers and other multi-faceted hospitality groups, arriving at operational consistency across a network of locations, properties and experiences, the challenge seems that much more daunting. In fact, recent research for The Deskless Report found that 30% of hospitality corporate leaders feel that inconsistent task execution is impacting the overall success of their organization. And 21% of hospitality workers and managers said that “difficulties getting tasks completed well and on time” was significantly challenging their day-to-day work.
Consistency in the guest experience through effective operational alignment
When it comes to scaling up operational consistency, one of the most effective tactics hospitality leaders can use is operational support—specifically, task management. Prioritizing task management to monitor and support your SOPs and overall guest experience ensures that every interaction a guest has with your brand is consistent and high quality.
What does effective task management look like? This will differ from organization to organization, but at its core, it will have the same characteristics of any effective frontline enablement strategy:
- It’s fast and in the flow of work
- It is easy to access and use
- It’s personalized and adaptable to the user
But let’s dive deeper.
Here are four reasons why effective task management can maintain operational consistency, which in turn drives memorable guest experiences, for hospitality organizations:
1. It provides staff with a deep understanding of roles and responsibilities
Leveraging a system that connects employees to a centralized set of procedures and tasks not only gives your people a deep understanding of their individual tasks; it provides broader visibility into their role within the organization as a whole. This visibility leads to efficiencies, which leads to a higher-tier level of service provided.
2. It allows all employees of the brand to operate within the same parameters
Consistency becomes particularly challenging in multi-brand hospitality organizations, where company-wide expectations and responsibilities sit alongside operational expectations more specific to individual brands or regions. An effective task management system allows for these tiers of SOPs and requirements to flow seamlessly together, prioritizing one over the other as dictated by leadership, to ensure that employees always know exactly what needs to be done to achieve individual and collective goals.
3. It reduces the reliance on “gut instinct”
Quick: is every location promoting your recently-relaunched loyalty program? How do you know for sure? Scaling up operational support means that managers and leaders don’t need to rely on anecdotal evidence to track program effectiveness or success of key events. In fact, with the right task management in place, leadership can even start to predict the success of key events before they have even happened—and adjust accordingly.
4. It reduces the administrative burden on your managers
Our recent research indicates a strong prevalence of burnout in hospitality managers. In fact, 54% of managers are feeling burned out on a daily basis due to a lack of access to the technology and tools that would enable them to effectively act as an intermediary between their workers and head office. Having a task management system in place empowers managers to assign and track operational execution at scale, quickly identifying problems or knowledge gaps, so that they can focus their attention on coaching or managing employees that need support to deliver a next-level guest experience—rather than making clipboard checklists and racing around locations seeing if tasks were completed.
Embracing the value of digital task management
The value of an automated task management system in hospitality organizations can’t be overstated—especially when it comes to achieving the operational consistency crucial to that all-powerful memorable guest experience.
And organizations see it. Our research shows that while only 36% of hospitality corporate leaders polled are currently using technology to impact inconsistent task execution, a whopping 42% want to start using it. Furthermore, 78% of all hospitality respondents, including corporate leaders, managers and workers, believe that task management can effectively impact frontline challenges and help workers thrive.
The need for hospitality leaders to empower their employees to deliver exceptional guest service may be more important than ever before. And, enabling them with the digital tools necessary to ensure that this objective is achieved, that the same incredible experience is offered during each guest interaction, in every location across an entire network, may serve to be one of the greatest drivers of growth for the foreseeable future.