In this topic will be considered one of the main sectors in tourism – hospitality. Its essence and main characteristics will be presented. Its origin, history and development will be considered. The importance of hospitality in the tourism system will be revealed. The types of shelters, their classification, categorization and certification will be presented. Organizational and management structures in the hotel industry will be presented. The duties and responsibilities of the types of staff, the requirements for job descriptions, the management styles will be explained. Ways of forecasting and planning revenues and expenses will be considered. The place and role of the clients, ways for their attraction and fuller satisfaction of their needs will be presented.
The individual training module for self-study on the topic “Hospitality Management” has a total duration of about 5 hours (300 minutes), including the time to get acquainted with the additional resources provided on the topics of the module.
|Topic 1||Topic 2||Topic 3||Topic 4|
|Introduction to hotel management||Origin and development of the hotel industry||Types of establishments for residence, classification, categorization and certificationc||Hotel service technology|
|Topic 5||Topic 6||Topic 7|
|Personnel management||Revenues and expenses in the hotel industry||Customer relationship management in the hotel industry|
Up To Date Curriculum
In this topic will be considered one of the main sectors in tourism – hotel management. Its essence and main characteristics will be presented. Its origin, history and development will be considered. The importance of hospitality in the tourism system will be revealed. The types of accommodation, their classification, categorization and certification will be presented. Organizational and management structures in the hotel industry will be presented. The duties and responsibilities of the different members of staff, the requirements for job descriptions, the management styles will be explained. Ways of prognosis making and planning revenues and expenses will be considered. The place and role of the clients, ways for their attraction and better satisfaction of their needs will be presented.
At the beginning of the new millennium, tourism is proving itself as the fastest growing sector in the world economy, providing significant foreign exchange earnings and job creation in individual countries. Tourism, in the classical meaning of the term, is called a trip for recreation and entertainment. It can also be considered as an economic branch that serves the tourist activity. The term originates from the French word “tour”. Nowadays international tourism is an important factor in the balance of payments and provides some of the highest export earnings worldwide.
During their trip, tourists need many basic and additional services through which they satisfy their needs during their stay in the respective tourist destination. Objectively, the stay in the tourist place is related to the use of hotel services.
The hotel industry is one of the main branches in tourism and is realized only within this industry. While other tourist activities can exist independently, the hotel service is an integral part of the tourist activity.
The basis of hotel management is hospitality. The hotel industry connects organically and naturally restaurants, cafes, transportation and excursions in an integrated chain of tourist and excursion services.
Nowadays the hotel industry as a type of economical branch includes services offering and organization of long-term paid accommodation in hotels, motels, camping sites and other accommodation buildings and itself is a powerful economical network in the region or the tourist centre itself.
hospitality generates 10% of the global gross domestic product (GDP) and secures 313 million jobs worldwide. In other words, this “is 9.9% of the total amount of jobs and 20% of the net jobs worldwide, created in the last decade”.
The term “hospitality” originates ancient Rome and inherits the roman word “hospitare”, meaning “to host a guest” and “hospes”, meaning “guest”. That was the word “hospitality” came to be. According to Merriam Webster “hospitality” is “hospitable treatment, reception or disposition” and is being applied to “the activity or business of providing services to guests in hotels, restaurants, bars, etc.”. Knowing the origin of “hospitality” and the word`s interpretation towards the nowadays` conception of the hotel industry grants perspectives of its growth.
Originally “hotel management” was refereed only to granting accommodation services. Gradually it evolved to a number of services, granted in exchange for payment, referring to accommodation and residence of local and foreign guests in accommodation buildings (B. Koprinarov, 2006).
The following aspects may be defined: Business activity is found. Sale of a specific service, referring accommodation and residing of the guests in accommodation buildings. Guests` reside in these buildings is temporal.
More-precisely analysed, hotel management may be concerned as a number of activities, aiming production and realisation of a specific product, fulfilling physiological, social and spiritual needs of people, travelling and temporarily residing out of their permanent place of living.
Hotel management`s specific product are mainly the services, granting accommodation, feeding and residing in specially created for that need establishments. The type, category and specialisation of the residing establishment define the assortment`s specifics and the quality of the services, offered.
According to the Law of tourism of the Republic of Bulgaria “Hotel managing” is accommodation providing in categorised or registered places of interest.
A “hotel keeper” is an individual, committing hospitality in :
а) registered accommodation buildings;
б) or every kind of categorised accommodation buildings according to this law;
в) or in accommodation buildings, having temporary certificate of ongoing categorization procedure;
г) touristic huts, touristic educational/training centres and touristic bedrooms.
In the Law of tourism of the Republic of Bulgaria are stated certain responsibilities, issued to the hotel keepers According to article 114 of the Law of tourism of the Republic of Bulgaria they have to:
- provide touristic services in a categorised or registered point of interest or an object with a temporary certificate of ongoing procedure of categorisation;
- provide touristic services in a point of interest, suitable to the requirements of its category towards article 121 paragraph 5;
- place the sign, according to article 132 paragraph 1 near the entrance of the point of interest as well as the following information:
- the corporation, the seat and address of execution of the trader;
- the working hours of the point of interest – of the feeding establishments and the places of entertainment;
- full name of the hotel manager as well as their telephone number.
According to article 115 of the Law of tourism of the Republic of Bulgaria the individuals, committing hotel management have to:
- declare the prices of stays and the other services, provided by them, by a price-sheet near the reception, placed on an observable by the customers location;
- declare the prices in such a way, that they are easily understandable, written in an easily-readable way and not cause misunderstanding to the customers;
- declare the prices, obligatory in BGN, if needed in other currencies, according to articles 3 and 4;
- obey the laws of the Republic of Bulgaria, settling tourists` stay on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria.
Through hotel management is being realised the connection between the touristic resources and their customers. The main reason for a tourist to visit a certain country, region or settlement outside of their place of living are the touristic resources it can provide. Through hotel management touristic services and the customers (tourists) are being connected. Without the presence of specialised facilities, providing a number of services, neither in-country, nor international tourism are developable.
Users of hotel services are tourists. According to the World Tourism Organization, in order to be defined as a tourist, a person must spend a minimum of three nights in an accommodation establishment outside their place of permanent residence. In practice, however, it has become necessary to define a tourist as a person who travels and stays for more than 24 hours (but less than 12 months) outside their permanent residence and whose main purpose of the visit is not to engage in remunerated activity from the respective destination.
In summary, “hotel business” is a set of activities that offer services and on this basis the derivative concept “hotel product” is formed. The content of a “hotel product” expresses the existence of a close connection between the material and technical base and the tourist resources, as a result of which a hotel service is created, ie. the offered product accepts the form and the content of an intangible product – service.
In the narrow sense of the term, the hotel industry excludes the activities of restaurants to hotels and hotel complexes that provide food to tourists. In a broad sense of the term, the hotel industry also includes the restaurant business, intended to serve tourists. Furthermore, the normative documents for star categorization of hotels explicitly state what kind of restaurants must include a hotel complex in order to be given a higher star category (three, four and five stars).
The hotel industry is characterized by the following distinctions:
- type of economic activity in which a process of sale of specific services related to the accommodation and stay of guests in the accommodation facilities is carried out for a certain period of time at a certain price;
- the human factor has a leading role in the production and sale of the hotel industry`s product;
- a great variety of services offered exists, significantly determining the economic efficiency of the hotel business;
- service is limited in time, which depends on the length of stay of the guest in the destination. The tourist practice in Bulgaria reveals, that the average stay of foreign tourists visiting the country for recreation varies from one to three weeks (B. Koprinarov, 2006)
- creates and realises the connection between the tourist resources and their users – the tourists. The connection is two-sided – on the one hand the presence of consumers-tourists determines the need for accommodation establishments, and on the other hand through the accommodation establishments an opportunity to use the tourist resources is created.
The hotel industry, as a type of economic activity, is distinguished by its specifics:
- significant amount of investments needed for its launch;
- relatively high costs for maintaining the quality of the offered services, incl. periodic renovation of the buildings;
- ensuring the uniqueness and attractiveness of the offered services;
- uneven work quantity of the sites offering different hotel accommodation.
Modern trends in hospitality:
- Exceeding the hotel supply compared to the hotel demand – main trend;
- Europe ranks first in terms of hotel facilities;
- The specialization of hotel products is intensified in order to satisfy more and more segmented tourist needs;
- Creation and development of thematic sites;
- Competitive struggle for customers – increases the complexity of the tourist product through continuous saturation with additional services;
- The luxury and economical markets are developing in parallel. In this situation, the middle categories report the lowest growth rate due to the competition of the low ones (similar comfort, but with price advantage);
- Participation of diverse capital in the hotel industry – of banking and insurance institutions, airlines, powerful intermediaries;
- Vertical integration (development of hotel chains in the direction of consolidation within continuous mergers, resales and transformations. Large corporations are formed, highly concentrated in developed countries.
Hotel management is essentially the control of every operation in the hotel. This requires the manager to have deep knowledge in the field of finance, distribution, customer service, personnel management, marketing and more. In the management process, the manager has to constantly develop their knowledge and, if necessary, hire staff with specific knowledge necessary for successful business management.
The short definition of hotel management is “a field of business and research that seeks the operational aspects of the hotel, as well as a wide range of related topics, such as: accounting, administration, finance, information systems, human resources management, public relations, strategy, marketing, revenue management, sales, change management, leadership, gastronomy, etc. ”
According to the classifier of economic activities NACE.BG-2008 sector “I HOTELS AND RESTAURANTS MANAGEMENT” includes two sections – 55 Hotel management and 56 Restaurants management.
55 Hotel management
This section of NACE.BG-2008 includes: presentation of accommodation facilities and places for short accommodation. It also includes the provision of long-term accommodation for students, workers and others. Some units only provide accommodation only, while others offer food and / or entertainment as well.
In this section are not included:
- activities related to long-term accommodation in houses and apartments, usually rented on a monthly or annual basis.
55.10 Hotels and similar accommodations
The provision of accommodation and short-term accommodation, usually for a day or a week, is classified in this class. This includes the provision of furnished accommodation such as guest rooms or apartments with daily housekeeping and bed doing. A number of additional services can be provided, such as drinking and catering and / or entertainment services, parking, laundry services, swimming pools, gyms, as well as rooms for seminars, conferences or congresses with additional aids.
- provision of short – term accommodation in:
- apartment (studio) hotels
Does not include:
- – provision of furnished or unfurnished houses, apartments or rooms for long-term use, usually on a monthly or annual basis.
55.20 Tourist and other short-term accommodation
The provision of short-term accommodation, usually for a day or a week, is classified in this class. Accommodation is in separate rooms, such as fully furnished rooms or accommodation with cooking facilities or full kitchen equipment. These can be apartments in small detached multi-storey buildings or a complex of buildings or bungalows, chalets, villas and wooden houses. In some cases, minimal additional services are provided.
- provision of short – term accommodation in:
- holiday and touristic villages;
- bungalows and apartments;
- villas and other wooden houses without other services;
- tourist dormitories and chalets.
Does not include:
- – provision of furnished places for short-term accommodation with provision of daily cleaning, making the beds, services of drinking establishments and restaurants and entertainment establishments;
- – provision of furnished or unfurnished houses, apartments or rooms for long-term use, usually on a monthly or annual basis.
55.30 Camping sites and terrain for caravans and camping cars
- provision of places for short-term accommodation in campsites, caravan sites, places for recreation, hunting and fishing;
- providing terrains and the necessary facilities for camping cars;
provision of places for short-term accommodation in tourist shelters or in terrains with the necessary conditions for placing tents and / or sleeping rags.
Does not include:
- tourist dormitories and chalets, wooden houses.
55.90 Other accommodation means
The provision of temporary or longer-term accommodation in private or shared rooms, dormitories for students, seasonal workers and others is classified in this section.
- students’ dormitories;
- pupils` dormitories, boarding schools` dormitories;
- workers` dormitories;
- single rooms (private accommodation means) and boarding houses (hostels);
- sleeping wagons.
Sources and additional information on the subject:
- Law of tourism of the Republic of Bulgaria;
- Bulgarian Classifier of economic activities – 2008.
Historical development of the hotel industry
Hospitality is inextricably connected to the history of human society. Hotel services have existed since ancient times. Their emergence is dictated by the needs of travellers for shelter and food. Initially, these needs were met through the hospitality of the people in the place, and later this service become to paid. The first establishments for residence were set-up
In ancient Egypt were being built primitive facilities for the residence of pilgrims and other travellers.
In ancient Greece, for the needs of balneology, cult travel and Olympism (Olympic Games), various residence facilities were being built. During the sports festivities during the Olympics, temporary accommodation facilities were being built – leonidaions for the rich and noble guests and pritaneions for the poorer people.
In ancient Rome, due to the enormous size of the empire and the constant military and official movements, the empire developed an extensive network of brick-paved roads throughout Europe and Asia Minor. Stations for changing horses, accommodation and feeding have been built along the roads. Near the mineral springs the Romans built mansions, which offered accommodation, food and treatment with mineral water. At the beginning, these facilities were primitive. By the time the Roman Empire grew, the inns were already well established. Among the buildings of ancient Pompeii preserved under the volcanic ash nowadays can be seen the prototypes of modern places for touristic accommodation: hospice and cation.
With the collapse of the Roman Empire around 500 AD. the inns in Western Europe were forgotten for many years. Trade in Europe was mere and travel was rare. Due to the small number of passengers there was no great need for their service. The church was beginning to play a dominant role in society and is the only universally recognized authority. Monasteries and other religious buildings were used to accommodate travellers. The use of the rooms was not paid, but it was expected that a donation would be made by the overnight stays. The poorer travellers were accommodated in more remote rooms, and the richer ones enjoyed special honours and respect and were accommodated near the rooms of the abbot of the monastery.
The first real guest houses can be traced back to the beginning of the eighth century in Japan. In 705, the first hotel in human history was founded – Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan. Shortly afterwards, in 718, Hoshi Ryokan was founded in Japan. It is an interesting fact about it, that 47 generations later, it is still owned by the family that founded it.
From 1096 on, The Crusades, which lasted nearly three centuries, caused a real social revolution in Western Europe. Trade was revived and a middle urban class of merchants and craftsmen was formed. Travel at that time became an indication of prestige, education and culture. All this provokes the revival of inn-keeping.
With the spread of Christianity in the IV century for the needs of cult tourism around the temples arose xenodochia (hotel with bedrooms and dining room).
In the Far East, caravanserais were built for the needs of traveling foreigners, which were a resting place for caravans on the Silk Road. In the 15th century, inns intended for travellers appeared. They offered accommodation, meals, wine until dawn and a place for horses. From the 15th to the 19th century, those inns were to be found all over the lands of the Ottoman Empire.
In France, at the beginning of the fifteenth century, hotels were introduced by law to keep a register. English law also introduced rules for inns at that time.
During this era, more than 600 inns were registered in England.
A new stage in the development of the hotel industry occurred at the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th century. During the technical progress in transport, the trips of merchants, bankers and industrialists increased.
The Industrial Revolution, which began in the 1760s, made it easier to build hotels everywhere in continental Europe, England, and the Americas. Initially in New York and then in Copenhagen, hotels were set up in city centres. The Royal Hotel was built in London in the early 1800s. Holiday resorts began to flourish on the French and Italian Riviera. In 1860, the first seaside resort was established – the French Riviera, covering part of the Mediterranean coast between Menton and Cannes.
Ryokan guest houses are emerging in Japan. The Tremont House in Boston is the first luxury downtown hotel.
The First World War ceased the development of the hotel industry. Many hotels were destroyed, others were used as hospitals. Inflation made some hotels close.
The post-war period gradually stabilized the hotel business. The 1920s are considered to be the period of the first boom in the construction and opening of hotels. The development of motoring was also contributing to the rise of the hotel industry. Cars became extremely popular in the mid-20th century. Long-distance travel become more convenient due to the well-connected road network. It was at this time that the first motels appeared in the United States. These motels are built next to the main highways to accommodate more and more people who may want to rest for a few hours or stay overnight during their trip. At that time, hotels were built not only in the cities but also in the mountains. Since then they are the first ski resorts in Switzerland (Saint-Moritz, Gstaad, Montana, etc.)
World War II inflicted heavy losses on the hotel industry, many hotels were destroyed and looted.
After the Great Depression and the war, the 1950s were considered the second period of boom in the hotel industry. Club Med created the revolutionary for the time, but nowadays well-known concept of a club village. During these years, the first casino hotels were being built. A number of airlines were also entering the field of hospitality and were starting to build their own hotels. In the United States, the Holiday Inn and Howard Johnson motor homes appeared. Between 1939 and 1960, 35 000 motels were built.
In the second half of the 20th century, thanks to various social and economic factors, the middle class had more time and money to travel. Hotels were beginning to diversify, serving different budgets and interests (SPA centres, casinos, motels, hostels, resorts, conference hotels) and offer a diverse range of services.
In the 60’s, the traditionally proved themselves countries with success in the hotel industry – Switzerland, France and Austria were joined by new countries with a modern hotel industry – Greece, Yugoslavia and especially Spain. Portugal and the Scandinavian countries soon joined the group. These countries successfully utilised their good geographical and climatic conditions for the development of tourism, and hence the expansion of the hotel business.
In 1964, in the United States of America, American airlines introduced the first ever reservation system.
Since 1970, intensive construction of hotels aimed mainly at business customers has begun. This trend was caused by a number of factors. At the first place is the desire of airlines to enter even more seriously into the hotel industry. The next reason is the sudden increase in the wealth of some countries in the Middle East, thanks to the “black gold” – oil and the orientation of businessmen from around the world to this region. This catalyses a trend to increase the number of business trips. The number of hotels serving people from business circles was growing, especially in the Middle East – Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh and Jeddah, Europe and North America.
Hotel chains, sensitive to the requirements of their customers, were beginning to offer more and more diverse services. The rooms become bigger and the cuisine more sophisticated.
Gradually, a number of first-class hotels (such as former palaces and hotels located in urban centres), which were currently struggling to survive, were introducing systematic renovation programs.
In the late 1970s, China opened its borders to foreign tourists. This was also the period when the first congresses of international hotel management experts were held.
The third boom in the hotel came to be in the early 1980s. This is the period in which the marketing policy and adaptation of the hotels to a certain type of clients became. This determined the orientation of the construction of hotels near airports, the construction of resorts and hotels near yacht clubs, the construction of hotels for ski vacations and resorts.
In the early 1990s, the hotel industry was undoubtedly in recession, caused by the reduction in travel budgets of multinational companies and the growing crisis in the Persian Gulf. The Gulf War led to creating great insecurity for both people and businesses. 1991 is considered the “dark year” of the hotel industry.
Simultaneously, the development of technology had a strong influence on the hotel industry. During the digital era, software companies began to develop new tools for the hotel industry that are still evolving nowadays, including customer databases and reservation systems, room and household management, customer preferences, loyalty programs, and more. Reservation systems are becoming more efficient and offer hoteliers a new opportunity to maintain customer loyalty. The individual data about the visits of each client allowed the emergence of personalised marketing programs and also allowed the hotel to meet the personal needs of each client upon arrival. The first hotel management systems appeared, which offered hotels greater independence from human resources. The hotel industry was becoming increasingly competitive. Business travellers and retirees were becoming sought-after customers. Gradually, most of the hotel chains were moving towards unification.
At the beginning of the 21st century – global corporate hotel chains merge and take on a different shape. The InterContinental Hotel Group now attracts the Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza. Marriot owns the Renaissance brand. AccorHotels owns the Raffles, Sofitel and Novotel brands.
Establishment and development of the hotel industry in Bulgaria.
In the nowadays Bulgarian lands, previously part of the Roman Empire there was the same type of shelter and residence typical of ancient Rome. Near settlements with mineral springs Hissarya, Kyustendil, Stara Zagora are created balneological complexes with opportunities for accommodation, meals and entertainment. Shelters were built on the Roman roads near road stations. The crossroads of the country, the intensive trade between Moravia and Byzantium, the continuous military travels were the reason for the construction of many means of rest and shelter in our territories at that time.
After the adoption of Christianity in Bulgaria, monasteries, which were formed as religious and cultural-educational centres were built. They had small inns, in which food and accommodation had been offered. Richer people and intellectuals and less often ordinary visitors stayed in the inns to the monasteries themselves. There were inns at that time in the villages and in the towns as well.
After the fall of Bulgaria under Turkish rule, caravanserais were built for the needs of travellers from the administration and post offices on the main roads and large administrative and commercial centres. These were relatively large buildings for passengers and horses. The stay was free and the food and blankets were carried by the passengers. Later, taverns began to be built, which were mainly used for residence. Separate rooms for inns or pubs were attached to the large taverns. In the XIX century the conditions and the service in them were significantly improved. Beds and duvets, food and drinks, coffee, entertaining games were offered. Subsequently, shops were opened in some of the inns and various goods began to be sold. With the development of crafts and the growing role of the guilds, guild inns were created. The most famous inn during the Renaissance was called “Nikoli inn”, built by Kolyo Ficheto in 1850.
The first hotels were built in the 19th century. They were primitive and just a little different from the inns. As the transportation at that time was by horses and oxen, animal stables were located under the guest rooms.
After the Liberation of the Tsardom of Bulgaria until the beginning of the XX century in Bulgaria the main means of accommodation remained inns and taverns.
The first better hotels were built in the early twentieth century, and their owners were mostly foreigners. The railways were being built as well. The flow of passengers was growing and this required an increase in the hotel base. Hotels were being built in the centres of large settlements and were displacing inns towards the outskirts.
In 1928 in Sofia were 63 hotels, among which Imperial, Union Palace, Bulgaria and others are to be mentioned.
In 1944 in Bulgaria were about 370 hotels with 12,000 beds and many inns and taverns. After September 9, 1944, private property was liquidated and the means of residence became state-owned.
In 1947, municipal enterprises were established to operate hotels, restaurants and shops, later called Horemag. In 1948 Balkantourist business enterprise was established (in 1953 it was renamed state business enterprise Balkantourist) with the main task of building a new material and technical set of hotels and restaurants designed to serve mainly foreign tourists. Later, with the construction of the first large tourist complexes, good preconditions were created for the development of the hotel industry in our country. The construction of the large tourist complexes Golden Sands (1957) and Sunny Beach (1959) began. The main part of the hotel bed base is managed by Balkantourist. In 1960 there were 12,000 beds in its system, in 1965 there were 29,300 beds.
In 1973, tourism was established as a branch of the national economy, which created a unified system for recreation and tourism in Bulgaria. A Committee for Recreation and Tourism is established, with the rank of a ministry. At the end of 1982, the enterprises of the Tourism Committee system managed 58% of the hotels and 79% of the hotel accommodation, 55% of the campsite establishments and 85% of the campsites
In 1996-97 a mass privatization of the hotel base began. Only a small part of the base changes its form of ownership towards restitution. Basically, privatization takes place through privatization in the form of mass and cash. Mass privatization is realized through privatization vouchers. In the cash privatization different forms of sale are used – auctions, direct saling (with negotiations).
In 2001, 96% of the tourism base was privatized, nowadays we can talk about entirely private property of the hotel base.
As can be seen, the history and development of the hotel industry has not been linear. Rapid technological advances have had a huge impact on the industry in many ways. Hotels have been finding it difficult to keep pace. Today, they have to adapt almost daily. However, the core business of the hotel industry has not changed significantly. Hotel guests in the 21st century have different desires and needs than the ones, guests in the 18th century had, but the basic principles of accommodation and the tourism industry have remained the same.
However, as circumstances around the industry change, hotel management nowadays requires in-depth knowledge. Knowledge of business management, online marketing, planning and revenue management is increasingly necessary for successful management.
Sources and additional information on the subject
- Stamov S., Aleksieva Yor., Hospitality, Sofia, ed. Kota 2005;
- Manol R., Maria St., Preslav D., Lyubomira Gr., Restaurant and Hotel Management, Sofia, ed. Trakia-M 2007;
- Hotels, A Brief History – By Jacques Levy-Bonvin;
 In Bulgarian, the first syllables of the words hotel, restaurant and shop are “ho” “re” and “mag”.
The criteria for determining the different types, types and categories of establishments can be grouped on the basis of different principles and this reveals their extremely wide variety.
Based on the possibilities for satisfying different demands, they are classified as:
- shelter – hotels, motels, villas and tourist villages;
- accommodations – family hotels, boarding houses, holiday resorts, villas, houses, private rooms, campsites and bungalows;
- tourist huts.
Based on the place, they are situated in:
According to the time during which they are open for visitors:
According to their capacity:
- small (up to 15 rooms)
- medium (15 to 50 rooms);
- large (more than 50 rooms).
In the national classifier of economic activities for statistical needs, the establishments for residence are divided into three groups:
- Touristic and other short-term accommodation
- – holiday and tourist villages;
- – bungalows and apartments;
- – villas and other wooden houses without service;
- – tourist dormitories and chalets.
- campsites and terrains for caravans and camping cars
- Other accommodation means
- students’ dormitories;
- pupils` dormitories, boarding schools` dormitories;
- workers` dormitories;
- single rooms (private accommodation means) and boarding houses (hostels);
- sleeping wagons.
One very interesting type of grouping based on the level of services provided is the comfort level feature. In this classification the hotels are distributed as follows:
- • Luxury class. These sites are more often located in the city centres, in the most prestigious buildings, have a large service staff. They have an excellent, often thematic design of the rooms with exclusive furniture, very good equipment, good kitchen, high class rooms. Usually in such hotels are no more than 400 rooms, often much less.
- • High-quality hotels. These sites can have a large number and variety of room types and are located mainly in cities. They are characterized by high quality design and modern equipment, perfectly trained staff and a wide range of services at prices higher than the national average.
- • The middle level: Middle-class hotels can be very large, the number of rooms includes both apartments and budget options, the design is standard, so is the list of services. The staff is professional, but not very large. Such hotels can be located in the city and in the suburbs, and prices are average for the region.
- • Apart-hotels Special type of apartments – type of hotel with kitchenette. The staff only prepares the rooms for the accommodation of the guests. Usually the utilities there are quite modest, but there is everything needed, including kitchen equipment. The rooms in them are few, the prices are average.
- • Economy class hotels. Such sites are designed for mass tourists, there are a minimum of utilities, staff and equipment, but the prices on the other hand are low.
The following approach is applied in the Law on Tourism in determining the types of hotels:
- according to the period of the year for its use:
- a) whole-year hotel;
- b) seasonal hotel;
- according to its location::
а) seaside hotel;
б) mountain hotel;
в) city hotel;
г) out-of-town hotel;
- according to their purpose and functions:
- a) apartment (studio)hotels;
- b) hotel-residence;
- c) business hotel;
- e) medical Spa hotel
- f) SPA hotel;
- g) wellness hotel;
- h) thalassotherapy hotel.
The great diversity in the needs, requirements and financial capabilities of the tourists is the reason for the diversity of the accommodation means.
The specific nature of the hotel service does not allow the user to determine in advance whether their service will meet his needs and capabilities. For this reason, the categorisation of tourist sites plays a very important role in creating a clear vision of the type and quality of services that different establishments offer and the opportunities they provide to meet consumer demand. The categorisation informs consumers about the level of quality and price level. Helps investors determine their investment policy according to the market segment they are targeting. At the same time, the categorisation supports the process of state regulation and planning of tourism development. Each country applies its own system of categorisation based on the accumulated experience, traditions and specific conditions towards development of tourism.
In Bulgaria, according to Article 111 of the Tourism Law, hotel management is carried out only in categorised or registered under this law tourist sites. The categorisation is carried out by the Minister of Tourism and by the mayors of municipalities or by officials authorised by them – for the types of sites and categories specified in the Law. The registration is done by the mayors of municipalities or by officials authorised by them. According to the Tourism Act Art. 121 the accommodation places are three classes – “A”, “B” and “C”.
The types of accommodation, defined by classes, are:
- class “A” – hotels, motels, apartment tourist complexes, holiday villages, tourist settlements and villas;
- class “B” – family hotels, hostels, boarding houses, holiday resorts, guest houses, bungalows and campsites;
- class “C” – guest rooms and guest apartments.
Class “A” accommodation is categorised into the following categories:
- hotels – “one star”, “two stars”, “three stars”, “four stars” or “five stars”;
- motels – “one star”, “two stars” or “three stars”;
- apartment tourist complexes – “two stars”, “three stars”, “four stars” or “five stars”;
- holiday villages – “three stars”, “four stars” or “five stars”;
- tourist settlements – “two stars”, “three stars” or “four stars”;
- villas – “three stars”, “four stars” or “five stars”.
Class “B” accommodation is categorised in the following categories:
- family hotels – “one star”, “two stars” or “three stars”;
- hostels – “one star”, “two stars” or “three stars”;
- boarding houses – “one star” or “two stars”;
- holiday resorts – “one star”, “two stars” or “three stars”;
- guest houses – “one star”, “two stars” or “three stars”;
- bungalows – “one star”, “two stars” or “three stars”;
- campsites – “one star”, “two stars” or “three stars”.
The characteristics of the accommodation places and of the food and entertainment establishments, which are subject to categorization, are determined by an Ordinance on the requirements for the categorized accommodation places and food and entertainment establishments, on the procedure for determining the category, as well as on the terms and conditions for registration of guest rooms and guest apartments. For each category the ordinance determines the requirements towards the construction, the requirements towards the furniture and the equipment, the requirements towards the service, the requirements towards the provided services and the requirements for professional and language qualification of the personnel.
The categorisation reflects the compliance of the hotel with a wide range of requirements. The higher the category of the hotel, the higher the standard of service it offers. The categorisation achieves standardization, so that people know what to expect from a hotel. For example:
✮ – One-star hotels are very modestly furnished, offering only the most basic services. The rooms are very small (about 8 square metres single room) and have a bed, wardrobe, bedside table and sink. The bathroom may be outside the room. There is a telephone only at the reception. There may be a restaurant or a snack bar.
✮✮ The two-star hotels have small rooms (about 9 square metres single room), and in addition to the basic furniture, they have a private bathroom, telephone and TV. Breakfast is usually included in the stay price. The hotel provides garage or car park for hotel guests.
✮✮✮ – The three-star hotels are of middle class, whose rooms have their own bathroom, TV, telephone and air conditioning. Those hotels offer daily linen and towel changes, as well as room cleaning. The hotel must have a guarded parking lot, a restaurant, a laundry room, as well as facilities for entertainment and recreation.
✮✮✮✮ – The four-star hotels are of a higher standard, whose rooms are equipped with comfortable furniture, sofa, armchairs, access to daily newspapers and more. The four-star hotels have conference rooms, two restaurants, a gym, a beauty salon and in-room internet.
✮✮✮✮✮ – Five-star hotels are luxury hotels with the highest quality of service, with spacious apartments. They are located in urban or business centres. Each room has a separate parking space. The room service is permanently open and the reception staff speaks at least two foreign languages.
Each country applies its own categorisation system, and although it is based on generally applicable rules in determining the criteria and requirements, it should be noted that the categorisation of hotels may differ significantly in different parts of the world.
In 2019 in Bulgaria was created Ordinance № 04-14 of October 9, 2019 on the terms and conditions for certification of “Balneotherapy (Medical SPA) Centre”, “SPA Centre”, “Wellness Centre” or “Thalassotherapy Centre”. The ordinance determines the terms and conditions for certification, the minimum mandatory requirements for construction, furniture and equipment, service, services offered, professional and language qualifications of staff, which the relevant centres have to meet in order to obtain a certificate.
According to the services provided, the types of centres subject to certification are devided into four groups:
Balneotherapy (medical SPA) centre is a centre, in which health procedures based on natural healing factors (mineral water and / or healing mud) are applied and various therapeutic programs are offered, which are carried out in specially equipped offices, halls and premises intended for diagnostics, treatment, rehabilitation and prophylaxis
SPA centre is a centre in which various procedures, programs and rituals are applied, including the usage of water – mineral, spring and other, permitted by law, and / or healing mud, and / or sea water, and / or other natural factors. , by applying classical and non-traditional methods of impact, aimed at anti-stress, relaxation and psycho-physical recovery, as well as aimed at the beauty of the human body.
Wellness Centre is a centre that offers a variety of recreational and cosmetic procedures, programs and anti-stress rituals, as well as holistic approaches to achieve physical, emotional, spiritual, intellectual, professional and social well-being of the individual. The usage of water and natural factors in the centre is not mandatory
Thalassotherapy centre is a centre that offers programs and rituals, including the usage of sea water and / or natural derivatives, and / or estuarine mud, through classical and non-traditional therapeutic methods of exposure aimed at restoring psycho-emotional and physical health, as well as aimed at the beauty of the human body, which are held in specially equipped offices, halls and premises. The thalassotherapy centre is being built at coastline.
According to Ordinance № 04-14 the balneotherapy and thalassotherapy centres are established by medical establishments under Article 8. paragraph 1, item 2 and Article 9, paragraph 1 of the Medical Establishments Act, which carry out activity in the medical specialty “Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine”. For the SPA centres and wellness centres the requirement is to be listed in the public register of the sites with public purpose by the order of Article 36. paragraph 1 of the Health Act.
Sources and additional information on the subject:
- Vasil T., Hotel Operations, ed. Matcom 2008;
- Brother K., Hotel and Restaurant Management, ed. “Episkop Konstantin Preslavski” 2005;
- Ordinance on the requirements for the categorized places for accommodation and restaurants and entertainment, on the procedure for determining the category, as well as on the conditions and the procedure for registration of guest rooms and guest apartments;
- Tourism Act 2013;
Ordinance № 04-14 of October 9, 2019 on the terms and conditions for certification of “Balneotherapy (Medical SPA) Centre”, “SPA Centre”, “Wellness Centre” or “Thalassotherapy Centre”
The service process in a hotel business significantly affects the choice of tourists. Good hotel service is a key prerequisite for the return of the guests and their conversion into regular customers. Therefore, the details of this ongoing process must be thoroughly known and qualitatively performed by all members and associates of the hotel staff.
The technology of hotel services in the specialised scientific literature is considered as “a set of all operations related to the implementation of hotel services and their use, which are performed in a certain relationship and sequence” (Belyaev, 1986).
These operations can be summarised in several separate consecutive cycles:
Technology of the front office service
The technological operations at the front office cover several technological phases:
The preparation phase covers actions related to the preliminary information about the requirements of the arriving guests, about the time of their arrival, etc. This phase also includes the operations of training the service personnel in the reception block – porters, administrators.
The reception phase includes the physical reception of guests at the main entrance (by porters and administrators, and sometimes by senior staff) and the carrying of luggage to the reception.
The registration of the guests is done at the reception, which is specially designated for this purpose. The registration of individual guests with pre-registration includes making a reference in the information system for the existence of a reservation; specifying the type of room, the length of stay; filling in a registration card; taking the guest’s passport and preparing the hotel’s passport; acquaintance with the details of the hotel; handing the key to the customer. When registering guests without prior reservation, the desired room, duration of stay and method of payment are specified. Then a registration questionnaire is filled in; taking the guest’s passport and preparing the hotel’s passport; acquaintance with the details of the hotel; handing the key to the customer. The reception of organized tourists is based on provided rooming lists, that describe all customer data – period of stay; room type; type of feeding service – only breakfast, half board or full board; additional services; specialised requirements; date of departure, etc.
After registration follows the accommodation. In this phase, the guest, with the help of the bellboy or someone else, occupies the room they have booked and paid for. They are escorted to the place of accommodation and their luggage is being carried.
The activities performed during the reception, reservation and accommodation are key activities. Their efficiency largely determines customer satisfaction and significantly affects the final financial result of the site.
It is very important that front office staff follow certain signs of behaviour in serving incoming customers, such as:
- the guest must be greeted and served quickly regardless of the current occupancy of the administrator;
- if the client is standing the administrator has to meet their guests standing as well;
- if the administrator has a business telephone conversation, they must apologise to their telephone interlocutor, greet the guest and ask them to wait for a moment, trying to end the telephone conversation as soon as possible;
- the administrator politely inquires whether the guest has travelled well and wishes them pleasant stay at the hotel;
- Sufficient attention must be paid to each client so that they do not feel that they are being neglected;
- Sufficient information must be provided on the locking system, the location of the room, the dining area, additional services, etc.;
- whenever there are complaints from customers, the administrator must listen to them carefully, with due care and seek solution that would satisfy the guest.
Maid service technology
The technology of maid service consists of four stages:
It is very important for the maid staff to follow some basic rules for their preparation for work, on which the quality of the work performed depends. In general, these rules consist of:
- Working hours – The accuracy of arrival at the workplace should be expressed in 10-15 minutes earlier arrival at work.
- Appearance and workwear – Must be in good condition. Work (uniform) clothing should be individualized. heavy earrings and bracelets should not be worn, as well as other such jewellery.
- Work carts – Should not be overloaded. They are being prepared at the beginning of working hours or after work. Depending on the size of the hotel and the number of staff members, the preparation can be done by the maids themselves or the controllers.
The technology of the room treatment includes several procedures, consisting of cleaning, arranging and charging the individual units – bedroom, restroom, hallway. Before starting all these operations when entering the room, the maids must perform a general examination of their condition. Check the lighting and other elements of the electrical installation; hot and cold water; the serviceability of TV, refrigerator, air conditioner, etc. Report irregularities in the room as well as deficiencies. The treatment of the rooms starts with cleaning the restroom. It is being cleaned first! The room is then cleaned. Fixing the bed is the last, but it is one of the main technological operations for the treatment of the hotel room. Finishing the treatment of the rooms is done by closing the windows, turning on the air conditioning according to the approved standards, filling in a report on damage and forgotten items, making the so-called “last look”, locking the door and wiping any dust from the outer side.
Additional specialised services include daily inspection of rooms that have not been occupied, maintenance of specific furniture and equipment in studios and apartments, re-service at the request of customers, additional arrangement, cleaning of the refrigerator (so-called mini-bar), weekly window cleaning, windows, bottoms of lockers, backs of lockers and wardrobes, etc..
The treatment of the common areas includes cleaning of areas that are used by all guests, as well as those that are not visited in general. These are lobbies, corridors, staircases, conference halls, elevators, common toilets, business centers, other utilities, offices and more.
Depending on the size and type of hotels, their category and number of staff members, different approaches are applied in the organisation of the treatment of the rooms. Individual service and collective service are applied. In the individual service, each maid has a certain area with rooms that has to be served. In the collective approach there is a specialisation in the operations that the individual maids perform. Some of the hotels use external companies` services mostly for external cleaning. By the seasonal hotels, processing is applied in time in accordance with the usual residence of the tourists.
Technology of operations related to the provision of additional services
The development of the hotel industry and the growing demands of customers in terms of quality and variety of services, require the means of accommodation to constantly supplement the range of additional services. In this way it responds adequately to the competitive struggle, the change in the tourist demand and the striving for better financial results.
This type of service is based on the principles of supply and demand. The technology for providing additional services in a hotel is such that the staff in no case should impose, but offer these services, and the client in turn chooses what they need. The list of these services with prices and opening hours of the facilities that provide them, in hotels with high comfort, is usually provided to customers when staying at the reception or through a different set of information in the room and lobby. Restaurants in the hotel industry should strive to ensure that the additional services offered in hotels fully meet the needs of their customers.
The possible list of additional services includes:
- To begin with, the services of catering establishments: buffets, cafes, restaurants, bars.
- Equally important are the services of entertainment companies, discos, nightclubs.
- Transport services – booking tickets for all types of transport, ordering taxis and all kinds of vehicles, car rental.
- Consumer services. There is a very large list of paid services. To begin with, everything related to the repair of clothing, shoes, equipment. Rent of different appliances from the kettle to the latest electronics and ergometer. Storage of expensive items. Having a hair salon or salon, often with a massage table and many other additional services is highly recommended.
- At the disposal of the clients of the tourist complexes are a bathroom, a sauna, a wellness complex with a swimming pool and a fitness centre.
- There are additional services in hotels for tourists staying with the whole family. They often use the help of a nanny, an educator who can communicate in their native language. Care and supervision for pet owners traveling with their pets should be provided.
Sources and additional information on the subject:
- Manol R., Maria St., Preslav D., Lyubomira Gr., Restaurant and Hotel Management, Sofia, ed. Trakia-M 2007;
- Bratoi K., Hotel and restaurant business, ed. “Episkop Konstantin Preslavski” 2005;
- Vasil Tod., Hotel Operations, Sofia, ed. Matcom 2008;
Elements of the personnel management system
“The hotel is as good as its staff.” That’s why every accommodation needs qualified staff who provide exceptional customer service, otherwise even the best hotel will fail.
The management process can be defined as a purposeful way of influencing the behavior of the organisation to achieve pre-formulated goals (Angelov A.)
A characteristic of hotel services is the simultaneity of production time with consumption time. In the hotel industry there is an absolute predominance of the intangible product. In the hotel industry, the main product is supplied by the human factor. The quality service of the hotel guests is directly dependent on the work of the staff in them. Friendly and smiling, highly qualified staff are the most valuable resource of the hotel. They are the ones who can turn the stay of the guests into an experience or ruin their vacation and the reputation of the hotel. Therefore, human resource management is key to the successful operation of shelters.
The elements in the human resources management system (including the hotel industry) are all activities that must be carried out within its framework: analysis and design of positions, human resources planning, selection, training and evaluation of staff, remuneration, ensuring safe and healthy working conditions, improving labour relations.
Job analysis – includes a systematic study of the content, responsibilities and relationships of positions and the requirements towards the employees, performing them.
Job design – is the activity of determining the content, functions and relationships between positions, which takes into account both the technological and economic requirements of the work and the individual needs of executioners.
Human resource planning – this is an activity to determine the needs of human resources and to formulate appropriate actions to meet them so as to achieve the goals of the organisation
The designing of the positions and the planning of the human resources largely depends on the type, size, location, period of employment, category and type of the services offered in the hotel.
The selection of the staff – covers the attraction and evaluation of job candidates, on the basis of which the most suitable one is selected in view of the requirements of the position and the organization and the procedure for their appointment is carried out. The selection of staff is one of the most important activities in the hotel industry, because the staff is in direct interaction with the hotel customers and this largely determines the quality of the service provided. Forms of staff selection can be:
- conducting an interview – the interview assesses whether the candidate has the necessary qualifications, whether they are suitable for the position;
- setting requirements for the different categories of staff in terms of their qualifications, educational qualifications, experience, other skills;
- requiring recommendations from the candidates, gained from companies in which they have previously worked.
In European practice, the most appropriate method of effective recruitment is the method of selective interview. Although it allows for subjectivism, it is a good method in tourism to assess whether the candidate is suitable for the job. Two selective interview options are used:
- with a commission (“panel”).
The first alternative provides the candidate a calmer atmosphere, which predisposes them to express themselves more fully, but the one-on-one interview allows easier expression of subjectivity in the assessment. The alternative option assumes a more objective decision-making; the direct supervisor, with whom the candidate will work, also participates in the commission.
Staff training and development – covers activities to improve the knowledge, skills and attitudes of employees in order to increase the level of their performance and provide career development opportunities, taking into account the individual needs of employees and future needs of employees and the organisation. The level of staff training must correspond to the level of services provided by the company. Some positions require regular training and qualifications. Nowadays, regular seminars with specialists in the tourism industry, who can give valuable advice to staff, can be attended.
Staff evaluation – includes characterisation of the level of employment of employees according to the set standards and formulation of guidelines for improvement at this level. Evaluation objectifies the process of positioning the individual positions of employees and is the basis for its promotion in the hierarchy.
Remuneration is an activity of determining adequate and fair employee payments in the organisation in accordance with certain criteria. The correct and good pay guarantees calm, constant and dedicated staff. There is nothing wrong with adding bonuses to staff salaries – cash or in the form of vouchers. This way, employees will feel useful and there will be no need to search new staff members every month.
Ensuring safe and healthy working conditions – includes improving working conditions and protecting the health and working capacity of employees.
The improvement of labour relations is an activity of maintaining labor peace in the organization and the formation of favourable relations between managers and managed, between employers and employees.
Types of personnel
For the proper functioning of the management system is especially important having a thorough knowledge of job standards. In this way, it is possible to properly plan the types of staff that are needed specifically for the needs of each accommodation mean, as well as the relevant staff numbers. In-depth knowledge of the standards is especially important in the selection of candidates, because it will allow an objective analysis of the abilities of each candidate for the job.
The type and number of staff depends on the individual characteristics of each accommodation mean, as well as the number of visitors it serves. Each hotel is unique in its own way. Individuality is manifested not only in the interior or in the sophistication of the rooms, but also in the type of staff working there. If a small hotel can handle an administrator and several maids, then the staff of a five-star hotel can include several dozens of specialists. However, the peculiarities of the hotel business presuppose the existence of a number of positions and staff, which are mandatory for every hotel. These usually include the hotel manager, the administrator/receptionist and the maid. They are key staff members for the operation of any hotel.
The specific responsibilities and amount of contacts with clients or staff vary depending on the size of the hotel: hotel managers in larger organisations can be mostly office-based, while managers in smaller establishments often have frequent contacts with both clients and employees. Typical responsibilities include:
- Manages and organizes the overall activity of welcoming, accommodating and serving customers;
- Manages and organises in time the necessary delivery of the necessary equipment – beds, towels, cosmetics and hygiene products;
- Controls the quality of the offered services;
- Organises and controls the repairs, reconstruction and modernisation of the hotel;
- Investigates customer complaints about hotel services and takes measures to eliminate weaknesses and violations;
- Controls and organises the operational financial and economic results, the hotel and restaurant activity, makes proposals for their improvement;
- Approves the work schedules of the hotel staff and conducts operational meetings related to service technology and work organisation;
- Makes proposals for the recruitment, dismissal and reorganisation of staff members, for their inclusion in training courses.
- Controls the operation of security and fire hazard systems;
- Controls the state of financial reporting of working places;
- Conducts advertising and marketing activities to ensure fuller use of the hotel facilities.
The good functioning of hotels is largely dependent on the work of the manager. Here are some tips towards the manager for good governance:
- To communicate.
The manager is the one who has to solve the problems. They are the role model that everyone should follow, so they should give clear instructions, address concerns, and explain procedures in detail.
2 To delegate.
Delegation is key. The manager is the one who oversees all departments, but clear powers and responsibilities of department heads need to be defined. Employee reporting should be done directly to department heads. When department heads know what’s going on, they can manage employees more efficiently and effectively.
- To know what they are talking about.
If you are a manager: clean the room yourself to know how long it takes and what tasks need to be performed. Work in the kitchen to get acquainted with the menu and know how long it takes to prepare certain dishes. For a shift, work at the front desk to be aware of how many customer complaints arise and what problems your employees are dealing with. Talk to the valet and service staff to find out what a typical day at their area looks like!
- To hire the right staff members.
Do not rush the hiring process, take the time and be sure to ask the right questions. Try asking behavioural questions to get the best candidate on the team. Behavioural interview questions are intended to force the candidate to avoid giving a general answer, but rather to rely on their personal competence and intelligence.
- To reward / encourage.
When an employee does something extraordinary, praise them! Do it now, be honest and do it in public. If you have the Employee of the Month program, send a congratulatory message to the employee immediately and update the photo of the new “winner”.
- To create a positive work environment.
When employees have a positive work environment, they feel more positive and this is being reflected in their work.
The administrator welcomes and accommodates hotel guests, monitors their registration and provides them with the necessary assistance. Creates the connection between the guests and the rest of the hotel staff.
Obligations characterizing the position:
- Welcomes, registers and accommodates hotel customers;
- Checks and verifies the data from the identity documents and the data entered in the registration card;
- Keeps accounts of clients for provided basic and additional services and closes them upon request;
- Provides information and accepts requests for additional services at the hotel and coordinates their provision;
- Assists guests in resolving a problem; accepts requests for repair of damages in the rooms and service rooms and submits them to the maintenance staff members;
- Transmits to clients messages, shipments, letters, newspapers, magazines;
- Compiles information on the release of rooms in the hotel and the schedule for their cleaning and reloading;
- Monitors hotel occupancy, keeps room information available and provides information on request;
- Responds to inquiries about the services the hotel offers and creates reservations;
- Assists the administrative authorities in connection with passport control and registration regimes for temporary residence;
Maid at the hotel
Each hotel has its own maids. After all, it is these employees who are responsible for the cleanliness of the rooms, as well as for their improvement. However, it should be understood that the duties of the maid far exceed the ordinary sanitor.
In particular, the following tasks fall on their shoulders:
- Maintains hygiene in designated sites or premises.
- Replaces bedding, curtains, towels and dishes.
- Loads with hygienic materials and advertising brochures.
- Monitors the condition of the electrical system and electrical appliances installed in the rooms.
- Checks the material base. The maid must inspect all furniture and objects in the room to make sure they are intact. The same goes for electrical appliances, showers, locks, etc.
- Takes part in the cleaning of the common areas.
- Executes some paid services. For example, in order not to leave the guest without drinks, they should check the mini bar every day.
Every high-quality hotel has several employees in its staff, mainly responsible for meeting customers at the entrance of the building. They should greet visitors and open the door kindly. If necessary, they are also obliged to answer any questions or indicate the route to the reception.
In addition, their tasks include:
- Assisting guests in loading and unloading luggage.
- Calling taxis.
- Information about sights, places for walking, shopping, etc.
- Parking assistance (in the expensive hotels there is a separate category of employees for this job).
- Receiving letters, calls and documents for the guests
Staff, responsible for technical maintenance management
- Must solve all technical problems in the shortest possible time so that customers are satisfied.
- Must organise and coordinate maintenance work orders for the entire site for which he is responsible.
- Coordinates the delivery and acceptance of the necessary materials for maintenance and repair work.
- Checks the order and quality of work performed.
- Allows the export of materials, stored in the warehouse.
- If necessary, provides training to work with the equipment, materials and tools available in the facilities.
Who else is needed at the hotel?
Hotel work is very complex. Therefore, in addition to all the above positions, there are a number of other specialties such as:
- Most hotels offer their customers the opportunity to refresh themselves with drinks and meals. The cuisine can be both ordinary (omelette, oatmeal and black coffee) and very refined and varied (French, Italian, oriental dishes). However, each of the options presupposes the presence of a good cook and support staff in the kitchen.
- Dry cleaning workers. Prestigious hotels prefer to use their own laundry, as it is much cheaper to maintain it than to use the services of other companies.
- General workers. They are needed both for the daily tasks of the hotel (receiving bed linen, food, cleaning products) and to support guests (deliveries to the room).
- Economists. The more prestigious the hotel, the greater its profit. Therefore, management often recruits an entire economic department: HR managers, marketers, PR specialists, accountants, etc.
- Support staff. In order to stay ahead of the competition, hotels often introduce additional services. That is why they also recruit masseurs, fitness trainers, experienced guides, translators, interpreters etc.
Attracting well-qualified staff with the necessary experience is not enough to guarantee the high quality of the service offered. It is necessary to create an environment in which this staff can work as a team. The strategy for building a good team should include:
Motivation – a mandatory element and prerequisite for quality and conscientious performance of official duties by staff members.
Standard procedures – rules that are followed by every employee in the hotel, regardless of their position and rank.
Trainings – periodic investment in raising the qualification of employees from the first day on.
Appearance (uniforms) and behavior at the workplace.
Work environment – providing a positive atmosphere and adequate working conditions.
Delegation of responsibility and freedom to make decisions – according to the position occupied and in accordance to standard procedures.
Sources and additional information on the subject:
- Shopov D., M. Atanasova Managing of human resources, ed. Trakiya-M,-S.;
In essence, hotel revenues are receivables or receipts from the sale of a hotel product. Revenues characterize the amount of sales in the hotel system. In this sense, they represent the volume of hotel service consumption.
Revenues in the hotel industry have received the specific name “hotel turnover”. This is due to two main reasons. The first of them is that the structure of the hotel product is dominated by services. On this basis, the turnover of services is carried out in contrast to the sale of goods (turnover). The second reason is the amount of sales of the hotel product at set prices per night, which largely depend on the occupancy of the hotel base. Therefore, the greater the turnover of the capacity (room or bed), the greater the amount of revenue (hotel turnover).
In this way, the revenues in the hotel industry give an idea of the economic turnover that can be realized. The total amount of income characterizes the degree of usability of the total resources of the hotel company: material, labour, financial. Stable and growing revenues are an indicator of the normal functioning of the hotel industry.
Revenue management is the cornerstone of managing a profitable hotel. If revenue is not managed, then this management is “blind” management.
Revenue management revolves around measuring what customers in different segments are willing to pay, and this can only be done by measuring and monitoring supply and demand.
The best revenue management strategies are based on the understanding that hotel pricing is floating and can change on daily basis. That is why there should never be a fear of price increases. Customers actually expect an increase over time – most businesses where consumers spend money change their prices depending on demand and changes in costs.
Implementing effective revenue management strategies helps hoteliers by:
The best hotel revenue management strategies recognize that hotel pricing is volatile and can change from on daily basis. It is crucial for every hotelier to create a revenue management strategy that adapts to current conditions.
Every hotel business strategy must have the customer as its essential element. How do passengers behave in the current situation? How do they book and travel? How do they experience and explore? What do they require? What are their expectations? The better you know the guest, the more loyalty of the guests you can generate, which is extremely important for the recurrence of the income they generate.
Strategies in hotel pricing
There is no pricing strategy that is perfect for every hotel. Each site must consider the pricing strategy or strategies that work best for its specific brand. The revenue manager will spend a lot of time analyzing data and other influencing factors to ensure that the business operates with the best possible chance of optimizing revenue.
In pricing several approaches (strategies) are possible to be applied:
Dynamic pricing involves changing room prices daily or even during the day based on real-time market data. Taking into account supply and demand, prices must fluctuate regularly to maximise revenue. This pricing option is suitable for nowadays` market and many hoteliers choose to apply it.
Open pricing requires the flexibility of hotels` management to set the prices at different levels depending on the different target markets and distribution channels they use. For example, a high-end hotel can usually attract guests who do not have budget constraints, but in low-season reservations will decrease and the hotel`s management may reduce prices to attract customers who would not normally be able to afford a stay. As long as the average daily rate of the hotel will be lower, employment will remain stable and revenues will continue to increase based on the turnover.
Room prices can be set higher than those of local competitors, while offering more extras in the basic package. This creates the illusion that the hotel offers a first-class experience that focuses on value, but not just low prices.
Used in low seasons to increase employment by reducing base rates. Revenue can be generated by offering other services at the hotel.
Offering the same product at different prices for different types of customers. One such example is the application of the “family rate”.
Duration of the stay
When demand exceeds supply, this can help enforce a rule where guests are “obliged” to stay for a minimum number of days. In such cases, it may not be necessary to offer lower rates.
Here we have price, based on the strength and reputation of the brand.
Pricing, aiming market penetration
This approach seeks positioning type “the cheapest on the market”. Here you have to be careful how customers will perceive the hotel. simultaneously, sales at higher prices should be offered as well.
Here we have the positioning of the hotel among the most expensive. Leaders in this segment have the highest profitability, but consumers must clearly understand the reasons why they would pay more for their stay at the hotel.
When choosing a specific strategy or combination of strategies, the wide variety of factors that affect hotel revenues must be taken into account.
When making a decision while choosing a pricing strategy, managers should:
- Analyse the general market demand – This analysis should examine the total availability of rooms in the area where the hotel operates. It is necessary to check whether there are important events in the area that will increase demand.
- Study the competition – It is necessary to compare the occupancy of the hotel with the employment of direct competitors. Researching their prices is also very important. If the capacity of competitors is small, prices may increase.
- Apply a smart approach to customers – You need to consider to whom the rooms, that are being sold, are being sold. The profile of potential customers should be studied. On this basis, it will be possible to apply the most adequate pricing and reservation system.
How to increase the hotel revenue?
Many strategies lead to an increase in hotel revenue without this being related to price increases or price play.
If the product offered is universally recognized as quality product, there is reason to apply a higher price.
If guests feel as if they are getting the most out of their money, they are more likely to be willing to spend more. Getting more out of each individual guest staying at the hotel is a great way to increase overall revenue. For example, the guaranteed income from a guest who is convinced to stay one more night by giving them an extra night is definitely worth it, especially in off-season.
Here is a list of tactics that are suitable for improving hotel revenue:
- Use of online reservations
Nowadays, customers are increasingly taking use of the flexibility and convenience of online reservations. Connecting with more online travel agencies will easily increase revenue.
- Building a culture of increasing revenues
Who is on this team? Everyone! The proactive employee anticipating the individual needs of the clients, emotionally connected with the client, with demonstrated commitment and loyalty contributes directly to the realization of better income.
- Sale of other hotel products
Revenue opportunities go far beyond simply selling rooms. If the hotel has its own style and brand, products with that brand can be made to offer for purchase to its customers.
- Use of events and attractions
Local events and attractions are a great opportunity to make individual guest packages, to offer additional services such as transport, etc .. The benefits are twofold – guests will enjoy their stay more and the hotel will generate more income.
Doing business in the hotel industry generates revenue, but it is associated with making expenditures. Expenditures are a set of funds that are spent on the creation and implementation of the hotel product. They represent the monetary equivalent of the resources invested in this process. Resources can be: material, labor, overhead and others. The ratio between the individual structural groups depends on the macro-product of the respective accommodation mean. Material resources are divided into goods, raw materials, maintenance products, bed linen, etc. The labor resources are salaries, social security. Overhead resources are fees, rents, repair costs. The relationship of these three components shows their participation in the realization of the hotel product. According to the relations of the expenses with the realised turnover they can be: fixed and variable. Fixed costs do not depend on the number of nights – depreciation, rent, fees, salaries and insurance, interest on loans, depreciation. Variable costs are related to the volume of turnover. Variable costs include partly the costs for heating, water, electricity, laundry, etc.
If the variable costs are directly dependent on the number of nights, then the fixed ones are made regardless of whether there are nights or not. Therefore, knowing the level of employment, which will ensure coverage of costs and, accordingly, the realization of a certain profit is especially important in pricing.
The number of nights needed to fully cover the costs is calculated by the formula:
Q1 is the number of nights needed to cover the total costs, FC is the fixed costs, P is the price per night, VC1 is the variable costs per night.
The price per night is determined by the formula:
If the hotel sets a target profit, the formula for the number of nights (Q2) looks like this:
where TP is total revenue.
The price per night (P2) is determined by the formula:
With the help of formulas P1 and P2 the hotel management can determine the price at which it covers its costs and achieves the target profit, by determining in advance the values of fixed costs, variable costs per night and estimated occupancy rate of the bed for one year. The received prices reflect the average income per night, which is differentiated by room types, market segments, etc.
Practicing any economic activity, in particular the hotel industry, is dictated by the desire to make a profit from this activity. Profit in its essence is a resultant value, expressing the difference between gross revenues and the difference for the production and sale of the hotel product. Profit is an indicator that characterises the entire economic activity of the means of accommodation.
The amount of profit does not give a complete picture of the level of productivity. A more accurate indicator to reflect productivity is profitability. Profitability is a relative indicator that reflects the ratio of profit to a certain base, such as – income, expenses, starting amount of funds, etc. We will present several main indicators:
Profitability of sales revenue – shows the percentage of profit or loss of total sales revenue. It is calculated by the following formula:
Ros = annual profit / net sales revenue
Return on equity – shows the profit received from a unit of invested equity. Economists define it as a key investment indicator because it shows the profitability of the company from all activities. It is important both for the owners and for the managers, who according to its value make conclusions and recommendations, whether it should be increased or redirected to other activities. It is calculated by the following formula:
Roe = annual profit / equity
Similar to the return on equity indicator, the level of return on total, occupied (attracted), fixed and working capital can be calculated.
Another group of indicators with a much richer content than profitability indicators are efficiency indicators. Efficiency shows the ratio of the achieved results to the invested resources. It serves to assess the hotel business and its appropriateness. Such indicators are cost-effectiveness and revenue efficiency.
Cost-efficiency ratio /CER/
Cost-efficiency ratio shows how much revenue the company receives from the use of a unit of expenditure of operations. It is calculated by the following formula:
CER = profit/expenditures
Revenue efficiency ratio / RER /
This indicator is reciprocal to the previous one. It shows how many expenses are made per unit of income. It is calculated by the following formula:
RER = expenditures/profit
The efficiency of the accommodation facilities is also analysed through additional indicators for evaluation of the economic activities: number of staff servicing 100/1000 beds (seats); costs per 1 bed (room, seat); profit from 1 bed (room, seat, travel); average income per night (travel); average income per 1 tourist, etc. The last indicator is the ratio between the total amount of income and the number of tourists. It compares the profitability of serving tourists from different countries. The average income of 1 tourist day has a similar character
Sources and additional information on the subject:
- Milena Bor., position and importance of pricing in the sales policy in hotel management;
- Manol R., Mariya St., Preslav D., Lyubomira Gr. Restaurant and hotel management, Sofia, ed. Trakiya-M 2007;
 Two for the price of one, note of translator
Types of customers
The most important factor in the hotel industry is the customer. The tourist product, which is created and sold in this branch, is oriented towards them and their requirements. Satisfaction of customer`s needs directly affects the finances and financial stability of tourism enterprises. The tourist is a person with their individuality, feelings, preferences and prejudices, likes and dislikes.
The motives for choosing the type of hotel that customers have are different – rest, business meeting, escape from everyday life, unloading and recovery, romance. This, in turn, determines the approaches of the various means of accommodation in the organization of their activities – what type and quality of services to offer. All this requires consideration of the specifics of the place of their activity.
The analysis of the clients and the client flow is essential for the successful functioning of the tourist enterprises.
In general, customers may be grouped into two groups – business travelers and tourists traveling for entertainment. The globalization and internationalization of business is the reason for the constant growth of business tourists amount. This directly affects the investment process in the hotel industry. Hotels are being built entirely oriented to satisfy the interests of this group of tourists. They are positioned in areas with intensive business and places for business exhibitions and meetings. Meanwhile, in order to better meet the needs of leisure travelers, the complex of additional services that hotels are forced to provide is constantly growing. All this is dictated by the most important factor – the CLIENT.
In order to build a good strategy in the field of individual approach in serving different customers, it is especially important to capture the psychological motives that determine each customer`s behavior. Clients with their types of behavior may be grouped into several groups:
- overconfident guests – While working with them the staff must be careful, restrained, try to serve them quickly and well.
- nervous, excited guests – Contact with them should be quick and accurate, but at the same time calm, resistant to provocations.
- kind and talkative guests – The attitude towards them should be careful and tactful, without unnecessary unceremoniousness.
- indecisive and timid – They should be helped with advice. The service must be polite and careful.
- distrustful guests – They should be approached with restraint and care, committing detailed explanations in a calm and convincing tone. Avoid preconditions that create mistrust.
- capricious guests – More tact and skill is needed by the staff serving such guests.
By the individual approach is very important to goal achieving the client’s commitment to the hotel and its services. To do this, the guest must feel a certain way when interacting with the products and services of the hotel. Feelings, emotions – they rule the world and are especially important for travelers.
Strategies for attracting customers
The hotel business must ensure that it attracts the attention of guests and fulfills the emotional feeling they expect from their stay at the hotel. Several strategies can be applied for this purpose:
Communicating and building relationships as soon as possible
In order guests to feel comfortable and to be positive about the hotel brand, they need to feel at home. Open lines of communication are very important. This can be done by starting communication with them from the moment of booking. For example, by sending an email or message asking for feedback on the booking process if there is something they would like to know or any special requests they would like to state about their hotel room before arriving.
This extra comfort and attention will create in the guests feeling appreciation.
The same principles apply while the guest is already at the hotel as well. Please note that guests may be from another settlement or country and may need more assistance to find the hotel or explore interesting sites near the hotel.
Obsess your guests … and they will be obsessing you
For travelers staying at the hotel, it is nice to feel wanted. In fact, they expect to be made to feel like the most important person in the hotel, and the staff’s efforts should be focused on that. Guests must love the hotel. To do this, they should be surprised with individual offers and extras. This will allow guests to understand that something special has been done for them. This will improve their engagement, which will lead to better reviews that they will create, will increase social sharing, which will lead to more reservations and revenue for the hotel.
Use consistent messages in your hotel marketing
This is like online dating. Claiming to be funny and witty is not the same as being funny and witty.
Consistency is the most important aspect of building trust. If the emphasis in the promotion of the hotel brand is: fun, young, colourful and exciting, the welcome must be adequate to the advertised brand. If passengers are greeted by monotonous staff, standard rooms, no special events and mediocre amenities, they will be particularly disappointed because this does not correspond to the advertised message with which they were attracted.
Building up false expectations is the worst thing that can be done. This reduces trust, intensifies negative experiences and worsens engagement.
Essential customer service skills
Which are he essential customer service skills?
Here is a list of the most common skills that every hotel employee needs to master:
- Excellent communication skills:
While communicating with a guest, be simple and precise. There should be no doubt about what is expected and what will be obtained, so that there are no misunderstandings. Telling a customer that a fee or expense is “included” in the bill may make them think it’s “free” and you may adjust to the conflict later. Be specific and communicate clearly with your guests.
- Being patient:
Everyone says this – and with good reason. It is extremely important that you take the time to fully understand what the client is telling you and how best to resolve the issue. Make sure you understand what the customer really demands so you can give the solution that best suits their needs.
- Being positive:
Instead of saying “I may not” or “no,” you can turn most of the statements around to say the same thing, starting with “will” or “I may.” For example, if your client wants special accommodation in the room, instead of saying that “you may not” or that “no”, you can tell him what “will” be possible and what else “may”.
- Keeping composure:
Employees working with clients must be able to keep self-control. Even if the guest is angry and demanding, you must remember that this is not personal. You need to stay calm and solve the problem. This goes hand in hand with the ability to “read” people and understand their emotional state.
- Thinking quickly:
There will always be surprises that you did not expect. You need to be able to think fast and have some idea in advance of what you can do whenever you encounter something you haven’t seen before.
- Being consistent:
Be the person who sticks to the client until the problem is solved. Your work ethic should motivate you to do whatever it takes, no matter how long it takes. When you follow the problem to the end, the client knows that you have travelled an extra distance and he will come back to you multiple times.
- Active listening:
This is crucial for building relationships and solving problems. This is the only possible way to find out what you are dealing with, because you listen to what is being said, as well as observe the general tone and unspoken expectations of the guest. Just “hearing” is not active listening.
It is important not only to hear and understand what your customer is saying, but it is also vital to recognize how they are feeling. Put yourself in their shoes and think about how you would feel in this situation and how you would like to be treated. This is the “Golden rule” and it still applies.
Sources and additional information on the topic:
Industry Leading Skills
Training of a less-experienced candidate in hospitality and tourism will give expected results in if she/he to possess the right personality and soft skills for the job. Candidates need to be an empathetic problem-solvers with strong time management skills and resilience under pressure, prepared for a teamwork and innovation.
Build Your Future With Continuous Education
Formal education should be considered just as start position. The things are changing and evolving all the time, so if you are not educating yourself you will become obsolete.