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The hospitality industry suffers from an unusually high turnover rate, which can prove very costly on a number of levels, such as replacement costs and dissatisfaction amongst remaining employees. So what can hotels do to ensure a satisfied staff and increase employee retention?

Motivate Individually: This starts right at the very beginning of the hiring process by making sure the hotel is hiring the right candidates not only for the position, but for the company. Ensuring an employee will fit in and have the skills to succeed from the beginning is the single best way to decrease employee turnover. After hiring the right people, keep them happy with consistent feedback, both positive and constructive criticism, attention to personal needs and flexibility where possible, and an attractive and competitive compensation package. Help them, as far as makes sense, advance in conjunction with their personal career goals, like providing opportunities to learn new skills. Respect and support them as valued members of the team.

Foster a Desirable Work Environment: This is key to retaining committed, productive employees, and involves proper training and expectation guidelines for managers to help them create an encouraging environment, as recognition from managers is an often overlooked factor of employee satisfaction, despite being one of the most vital. Maintain a good work-life balance among the team, giving employees the opportunity to get to know their coworkers outside of an office setting.

Supply Tools for Success: If staff are not given the proper tools with which to do their jobs, neither of the steps listed above will matter. It is vital for employees to have their expected tasks and the information needed to them at their disposal; for example, if an attendant is preparing a guest room, it’s important that she have the guest’s preferences and any special requests at hand so she can act accordingly. Additionally, the hotel should have a system for communicating between supervisors and employees, as well as within teams, in order to ensure that information and updates are efficiently transferred to the appropriate person.

Finally, implement these ideas as long-term solutions for employee retention, not just temporary fixes for an unhappy workforce, as the short-lived effort will be obvious to staff.

In short, to make employees want to work there is to make them want to produce good results. By bringing in employees on the initial expectation of a long-term relationship, giving them the tools they need to be happy and succeed, and demonstrating that the hotel is invested in them both on and off the job, it will become an employer for whom people want to work. Encouraging a positive environment both individually and as a group will fight off the “turnover contagion” and help employee retention.

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