Oahu Properties Transform Guest Response Processes with Help of GuestWare
|HONOLULU, HAWAII—April 24, 2007—Guests visiting the Outrigger Reef
on the Beach and the Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach are there for a reason:
to experience all the natural beauty and culture that Oahu has to offer—without
having to worry about being inconvenienced during their stay. To make sure
that does not happen, the two Outrigger hotels, both within steps of the
warm Pacific Ocean, are using GuestWare to efficiently manage and respond
to guest requests.
GuestWare, customer relationship management software produced by Seattle-based Diversified Computer Corp., has been installed at the two Outrigger properties since the fall of 2005. Before that time, both hotels had manual, paper-based processes in place for handling guest calls—everything from a towel request to a leaky faucet.
“We did not have an electronic database,” says Elliot Mills, general manager at the Outrigger Reef on the Beach. “We tracked everything in log books. Having to look up a request or incident manually was very tedious.”
“Before GuestWare, there was a lot of paperwork,” adds Brian Fong, Guest Services Manager at the Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach. “A lot of phone calls and radio calls were made from one department to another. Communication could fail in a lot of different ways. Housekeeping was getting inundated with calls. With GuestWare, that has changed. GuestWare reduced the number of calls between departments and tasks are now completed in a timelier manner.”
Request, Incident Tracking Process Automated
Thanks to GuestWare, personnel at both Outrigger hotels now have an automated process in place to respond to guest requests and quickly address on-property incidents. When guests do have requests, or when hotel associates or guests wish to report an incident—a phone call is made to a call center. There, a hotel associate enters the issue in GuestWare. A Request Entry screen uses customizable hot buttons and drill-down menus to ensure that the request can be entered in a minimal amount of key strokes.
Once the guestroom number is entered, the guest’s name fills in automatically, thanks to an interface with Stellex, the property management system used at both hotels. After the type of request is entered, an alert pops up on a monitor in either the housekeeping or engineering departments. Housekeepers and engineers are stationed in those departments to monitor GuestWare for pending requests. Once the issue has been resolved, the housekeeper or engineer closes it within GuestWare. If the task is not completed within a predetermined period of time, it pops up again on the call center representative’s screen as well as in the assigned department. An alarm will also sound if there is an issue past due.
“We make sure that two people take ownership of each request,” Mills
says. “If necessary, our call center representative will radio the housekeeper
or engineer to make sure the issue is resolved quickly. We do follow-up
calls to our guests to make sure they are satisfied with an issue’s resolution.”
Trend Analysis Made Easy
Using reports generated out of GuestWare, managers at both Outrigger hotels can analyze response and dispatch time, labor productivity, request frequency, requests by time of day, problems by room section, top 10 incidents and recurring problems. Because GuestWare compiles a record of every incident at each hotel, it is easy to spot trends.
At the Outrigger Reef on the Beach, for example, Mills says a recent incident report showed exactly where in the hotel batteries were losing power in door locks. Thanks to that report, engineers were able to see where they needed to be proactive about replacing batteries.
At the Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach, Fong says incident reports revealed a recurring issue with a certain light bulb type. Engineers stopped using that bulb and guest calls regarding them disappeared.
“GuestWare’s Executive Summary report lets me see the types of requests we are getting,” Mills says. “They are broken down by department. I use those reports in my staff meetings. The reports also help with staffing because I can pinpoint what times the largest number of calls come through. Thanks to GuestWare, we have reduced the overall number of requests.”
“We run a manager’s report for incidents that other departments need to know about—damage to a room, for example,” Fong says. “The Executive Summary report shows me what calls are outstanding. On the maintenance side, it has been a great help knowing what has been done to guestrooms. Engineers have a better handle on what needs preventive maintenance.”
“Our awareness of what guests are calling about is much greater thanks to GuestWare,” adds Mills, whose property is currently undergoing a $100 million top-to-bottom renovation.
At both the Outrigger Reef on the Beach and Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach, the implementation of a new operating model for processing guest requests is paying big dividends—enhanced guest satisfaction, faster response times, greater staff accountability, better labor planning, and improved incident tracking and reporting. The bottom line is that GuestWare ensures that no guest request ever goes unanswered.
GuestWare provides property and enterprise CRM solutions specifically to the lodging industry with more than 700 hotel customers and more than 15 PMS interfaces. GuestWare enables hotels and management companies to streamline and enhance service delivery and guest recognition processes. GuestWare was the first company to develop a comprehensive Rapid Response problem resolution system integrated with guest recognition and essential to successful customer relationship management.
GuestWare is developed, marketed, implemented and supported by Diversified Computer Corp., Seattle. GuestWare’s suite of software products includes Enterprise, Guest Recognition, Rapid Response, Incident Tracking, Facilities Maintenance, Comment Card Tracking and Communication Server. For more information about GuestWare, go to www.guestware.com, or contact Mike Benjamin at (888) 504-8378.
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