Craig Coughlin on Outsourced Hotel Services, Tapping into Hidden Skills Sets, Eliminating Waste in Guest Accommodation

Outsourced Hotel Services, Tapping into Hidden Skills Sets & Eliminating Waste in Guest Accommodation

Craig Coughlin is the CEO of LUXXE Outsourced Hotel Services, a company that offers outsourced service solutions to hotels. I was keen to chat all things staffing with Craig. In particular, I wanted to get some tips on maintaining a healthy balance when employing a large number of people. Especially in the often-transient hospitality sector.

Outsourced Hotel Services

LUXXE Outsourced Hotel Services supplies staffing solutions for all departments within a hotel. Departments such as housekeeping, food and beverage, right through to entire executive management teams. Traditionally, hotels have their own in-house teams, employed and paid by the hotel. However, these days many hotels are choosing to outsource their services.

Often an entire department and in some case the entire existing workforce will transition to an outsource company, such as LUXXE. After the transition to LUXXE, staff continue to work in the hotel, however, all of their entitlements are provided by LUXXE. LUXXE recognise all leave balances and the workers receive the same pay rates. They attend meetings and events and receive in-house awards and recognition. There is no disadvantage for the staff and numerous advantages to the hotel, who no longer need to worry about recruitment, pay-roll relates costs or a number of other financial considerations that come hand in hand with employing large numbers of staff.

Tapping into Hidden Skills Sets

One benefit to employing a large number of staff, is tapping into the hidden skills that many of them possess. LUXXE has approximately 1,062 employees, from a wide range of nationalities. Many have internationally recognised qualifications, that unfortunately are not recognised in Australia. They may be working in hospitality while re-training, or trying out a completely new career path. Tapping into this pool of people with hidden skill sets can benefit the business, as well as provide the employee to practice skills they enjoy using. Craig chats about the types of skills some of his employees have, and how his business can pay extra for using such skills, but in turn save money by not having to source external consultants.

Eliminating Waste in Guest Accommodation

Craig acknowledges a huge shift in sustainability within the hotel space, with a renewed focus on climate change. In particular, Craig talks about individually packaged consumables such as shampoos, conditioners and soaps and guest’s expectations around access to them. Craig reminisces about the industry 20 years ago, when hotels attempted to make the switch to large volume pump bottles, and the kickback from guests. He admits that times have changed, with the elimination of individual amenity bottles top of the list of changes for many hotels.

Craig shares how some companies, like Soap-Aid, are really leading the way in this space. Soap-Aid collect used soap bars from hotels, then sanitize and recycle them. The bars are melted down and re shaped. Then they are sent to international countries that do not have access to hygiene items. LUXXE Outsourced Hotel Services alone is responsible for cleaning over 2 million hotel rooms a year in Australia. This gives listeners a bit of perspective on the positive impact hotels who work with companies like Soap-Aid can have. Craig also shares other changes LUXXE has made to cut down on waste. Ideas that would benefit any business in the industry, as well as our planet.

Additional topics discussed this week:

• Considerations when employing a multicultural workforce
• Full-time, part-time and casual staff
• Staff culture
• Staffing issues during seasonal changes
• Innovation in the housekeeping sector
• Craig’s hotel related pet peeve
• Learning through teaching others
• Core values
• Making mistakes

Link to listen to the podcast episode with Craig Coughlin