Changes could lead to a smaller hotel workforce in the years after the COVID-19 pandemic
ECONOMY. The industry foresees short-term changes / Pixabay
As Americans travel more, they encounter a hotel industry that has undergone dramatic transformations and may never return to its pre-pandemic business model.
Some properties, particularly in leisure-focused areas like Florida, are struggling to find enough workers to staff the bustling properties. Many others, meanwhile, have yet to bring all of their workers back amid a continuing slump in travel.
But one thing hotels in general are considering is whether many of their customers are willing to accept fewer services than before, such as daily room cleanings and sizable breakfasts, analysts say, and that could mean a smaller hotel workforce in the United States. years after the pandemic.
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The leadership of hotel brands such as Hilton, Park and Host have increasingly touted savings and increased efficiencies from reducing labor costs on services such as cleaning calls and investor presentations since the economy began to recover last year.
“The work that we’re doing right now at each of our brands, including Tru and Hampton, everything else is about taking, turning them into higher margin businesses and taking, creating more work efficiencies, particularly in the areas of cleaning, food and beverage and other areas, ”Hilton CEO Chris Nassetta told investors in February. “When we come out of the crisis, those businesses will have a higher margin and require less manpower than before the covid.”
Adapt to change
Jim Risoleo, the CEO of Host Hotels, one of Marriott’s private sector owners, said the industry was increasingly moving toward “opt-in to cleaning services rather than opt-out in the future.” on a call with investors in November.
“And it’s going to vary in, frankly, the type of property we have and the personal profile of the client,” he said.
It’s just one of many ways that companies are adjusting to the challenging year of the pandemic by finding ways to operate with fewer workers. Meanwhile, many hotel stocks have recovered in the last six months in anticipation of more travel and a change in the business model; Hilton is up about 20%, Host nearly 18%.
Analysts like Michael Bellisario of the Robert W. Baird & Co. Finance company said many hotels were looking to permanently cut back on services like cleaning and free breakfast, amid other cuts.
The Washington Post. Free translation by El Tiempo Latino