OperationsHousekeepingRoom Attendant Oversights That Really Irritate Guests

Room Attendant Oversights That Really Irritate Guests

As the poet Emily Dickinson reminded us, “If you take care of the small things, the big things take care of themselves.” Indeed, often it is the small oversights by room attendants that can really frustrate a guest, create dissatisfaction, and lead to lower Intent to Recommend scores that will harm any property. Here are a handful of frequent guestroom maintenance oversights that should be at the top of any hotelier’s focus list:

Guestroom Electronics

Imagine checking into a guestroom and the TV remote control does not work. Or worse, there is no remote control to be found. Worse yet, the TV is unplugged, and you cannot reach behind the cabinetry to find the cord or an outlet. Now imagine if you attempted to call the front desk to report such a concern but the guestroom phone is inoperable! Such scenarios frequently happen in many hotels, but they need not. If the housekeeping inspector took the time to check each of these items, the guest would not be forced to seek a resolution via the front desk. So, what small oversight upsets guests the most? Undoubtedly, it is when the alarm clock goes off at 4 a.m. and wakes up everybody in the guestroom who planned to sleep later. Many of today’s electronic alarm clocks will activate each day for the last alarm time set, if not deactivated. And many are hardwired to an outlet because of smartphone charging capability; hence, unplugging the clock from the wall may not be viable. Thus, figuring out how to silence an alarm clock after being awoken from a deep slumber can be a trying experience.

Bedroom and Bathroom Amenities

Other common oversights that frustrate guests include missing closet hangers and laundry bags, an unplugged refrigerator or microwave oven, no ice bucket liner provided, burned-out light bulbs in lamps, missing towels and bath amenity items, no extra roll of toilet paper, and a missing or non-functioning hairdryer. As hotels continue to use large-format bath amenities in bathtubs and showers, it is imperative to ensure that bottles are at least 30 percent full, and that each bottle’s contents are clearly labeled. Remember that guests do not wear their eyeglasses in the shower, so large lettering is appreciated! And ensure that bottles are placed in the correct sequential order, left to right: shampoo, conditioner, body wash.

William D. Frye
William D. Frye
Dr. William D. Frye is a hospitality educator, researcher, consultant, and former hotel general manager. He is the co-author of AHLEI’s housekeeping textbook Managing Housekeeping Operations.