CHICAGO — Hyatt today announced a Global Care & Cleanliness Commitment to further enhance its operational guidance and resources around employee and guest safety and peace of mind. The multi-layered commitment builds on Hyatt’s existing protocols and will include an accreditation process by the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC) at all hotels around the world, employee training and support resources, hotel-level sanitization specialists, and a cross-functional working group of medical experts and industry professionals that will contribute to various aspects of the hotel experience.
Hyatt is the latest hotel brand to announce new cleanliness initiatives: Hilton announced this week that the company will collaborate with RB, maker of Lysol and Dettol, and consult with Mayo Clinic to develop elevated processes and employee training; Marriott launched the Marriott Global Cleanliness Council last week and announced changes to its cleaning processes; and Accor recently joined forces with Bureau Veritas to certify that appropriate safety standards and cleaning protocols have been achieved to allow businesses to reopen. In addition, the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) launched “Safe Stay,” an initiative to enhance industry-wide hotel cleaning standards.
Global Cleanliness Accreditation
In May 2020, Hyatt plans to introduce a GBAC STAR accreditation through a performance-based cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention program that will focus on establishing hotel environments that are sanitary, safe, and healthy. GBAC is a division of ISSA, the worldwide cleaning industry association, and is composed of leaders in the area of microbial-pathogenic threat analysis and mitigation, designed specifically to deal with biological threats and real-time crises like the COVID-19 pandemic. Hyatt is the first hospitality brand to announce plans to commit to GBAC STAR accreditation, which will include detailed training at more than 900 Hyatt hotels worldwide. Hyatt intends to complement this with regular internal and third-party auditing.
Hotel-Level Sanitization Specialists
In response to COVID-19, Hyatt is continuing to develop new work procedures and mandatory trainings in an effort to ensure safety for employees and guests. Daily employee surveys will be introduced to measure staff comfort, a hotel’s cleanliness, working order, and customer service, enabling hotel leaders to address opportunities, make adjustments as necessary, and meet employee’s needs in real-time.
Further, as part of Hyatt’s Global Care & Cleanliness Commitment, by September 2020, every Hyatt hotel will have at least one person on property trained as hygiene manager who will be responsible for their hotel adhering to new operational guidance and protocols, some of which may include:
- Employee certification, trainings, and recertification process for hygiene and cleanliness;
- Increased frequency of cleaning with hospital-grade disinfectants on all high-touch surfaces, guestrooms, and shared spaces;
- Implementation of enhanced food safety and hygiene protocols for restaurants, room service, and group meetings and events;
- Prominently placed hand sanitizer stations throughout hotel public and employee areas and entrances;
- Exploring purification and sanitization device installation in an effort to ensure enhanced air quality;
- Protective masks and other equipment for hotel staff; and
- Social distancing guidance in public areas across hotel properties.
Cross-Functional Panel of Industry Experts and Professionals
At the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, Hyatt assembled a global cross-functional response team and engaged infectious diseases and occupational health experts to support efforts with COVID-19 research findings and information, which enabled Hyatt to promptly update detailed guidance to hotels and address specific needs and situations.
Hyatt continues to engage additional medical experts and leading industry professionals as part of its commitment. The goal of the working group will be to provide counsel on key areas of Hyatt’s business, challenging Hyatt to act even more holistically in this new environment. Topic areas and advisors include: health and hygiene (Dr. Daniel Lucey, M.D., M.P.H., Infectious Diseases Professor, Georgetown University Medical Center; Fellow, Infectious Disease Society of America; colleague safety (Dr. Charles Yarborough, M.D., M.P.H., Preventive/Occupational Medicine Expert, and affiliated with Johns Hopkins Department of Medicine and Johns Hopkins School of Public Health); food and beverage safety (Dr. Elaine Black, Ph.D., Food Science and Microbiology, Ecolab); travel journey (Julie Rath, Vice President, Customer Experience, Innovation and Delivery, American Airlines, and David Peckinpaugh, President, Maritz Global Events); space design (Tom Ito, FAIA, LEED AP, Global Hospitality Leader, Principal, Gensler); technology (Ahmad Ouri, CEO, Sonifi); and wellbeing (senior leadership from the Global Wellness Institute).
“As a key part of our loyalty collaboration with Hyatt, we are committed to looking at the holistic experience of our customers with a special focus on their wellbeing,” said Julie Rath, vice president, customer experience, innovation, and delivery American Airlines. “The benefit of this collaboration is that we can share insights from our enhancements to cleaning and protective procedures while applying best practices from Hyatt to elements of our operation.”