Behind the Scenes Teams That Impact a Guest Experience

Behind the Scenes Teams

Or, EW … that’s gross! But thanks for cleaning it up!

Did you ever wonder how and by whom the place you are in gets cleaned? Some properties make it seem so effortless, while others truly need to take another pass at cleanliness before you’d consider coming back. The best properties tackle this problem with both science and good old-fashioned “elbow grease.” From the dishwashers, to the EVS facilities team and to the hotel housekeepers, each provides services to maintain, clean and prepare for an exceptional experience for you. Their secret is more about finding the best formula and process to sanitize without much, if any, interruption or awareness of the guests’ they clean for. What you don’t know … is that sometimes this job is completely thankless.

Dishwashers clean a constant flow of dirty plates, pots, pans and glassware that have touched the dirtiest of mouths. It’s a hot, wet environment of smelly dishes that have to be scraped, rinsed and sorted even before they begin to clean them in either a three-compartment sink or a dishwasher with scalding water. They are constantly fed more and more items to clean through the entire meal period and only get some relief when the last guest has gone for the night and they can run the final load. They are tired and exhausted and rarely get any appreciation.

Good operations – clean with soap and water and wash as dishes arrive.

Great operations – manage pH and sanitizer levels of machine and rinse water, while having a pre-sort and scrape process by servers to stage work for the dishwashers to manage. Water temperatures are boosted high enough to kill bacteria or chemicals have been modified to accommodate lower temperature machines. Breaks are given often to minimize exhaustion, and appreciation and support is constant.

EVS Facilities Team cleans the public spaces in the casino, including the bathrooms, gaming floor, convention and meeting rooms and entertainment venues, as well as the offices and back service areas of the property. They also clean up vomit, garbage, cigarette butts, grease traps, blood and other very foreign material that you really don’t want to see or smell.

Good operations – vacuum and sweep as guests leave a trail of crumbs and garbage.

Great operations – have an ongoing maintenance circuit, touching each area several times per day. They follow demand levels and anticipate needs before the spaces get too dirty. They use chemicals that have a pleasant odor and give a sense that attention is being focused on cleanliness. They add scents to the public space to mask smoke and use pleasant smelling chemicals to mask the … chemicals. They are seen, but rarely, and only when really needed. They are taken for granted when they do their job well.

Hotel Housekeepers – clean hotel rooms after guests have done anything imaginable and sometimes unimaginable. They are expected to enter a guest room, not knowing what to find, but to return it to perfect rentable condition, that is … like new – every time. They find rooms that have had parties, rooms that have been damaged, rooms that have left all sorts of bodily fluids in places hard to clean. They are not only expected to restore the room to new, but they are expected to do that 16 times in seven hours. This job is by far the least wonderful job in the industry. It comes with low pay, high expectations and little room for error because the next guest is expecting it to be perfect for their stay.

Good operations – hire and train their housekeeping team to clean rooms as quickly as possible and show appreciation through team building and by celebrating housekeeping week in October.

Great operations – use systems to make it easier for housekeepers to stock and clean their rooms. They train to clean in three circuits for no duplication and efficiency. They modify room credits or rooms assigned based on the condition they find the room in and give assistance to the team when needed. They incent performance and reward ingenuity. They have team meetings daily and appreciate all of their work, as it would be impossible to function without them.

These three teams are crucial to a successful operation and make or break your experience at a hotel or casino. Next time you visit a good or great operation, make sure you take time to appreciate what they do to make your experience a clean one – especially considering how bad the previous guest left it. Ew! It was disgusting, too!

Brett Magnan
Brett Magnan 11 Articles