Talk to the Expert – Session 1

Outsourcing and Recruitment & Retention

During the first ‘Talk to the Expert’ session we heard from callers from Australia, Croatia, Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom and we touched on some very big topics. For this write up, we will look at two of them: outsourcing and recruitment and retention.

‘Talk to the Expert’ are free, one-to-one, 10 minute long consulting conversations. Callers can share their ‘pain’ and discuss housekeeping challenges with a housekeeping expert. The aim of the call is to provide guidance on how make a first step towards solving the problem.
In’s true spirit of sharing knowledge, a summary of some of the discussed challenges is provided in a short write up following the session.

Outsourcing Housekeeping Operations

The first discussion topic was about whether outsourcing the housekeeping operation of a hotel is a good idea or not. This is quite a complex question, which can’t be answered with a general ‘yes’ or ‘no’.  For the hotel in question, which has the housekeeping function in-house at the moment, it was about understanding what issues they want to solve by outsourcing this function fully. During the call we quickly we established, that due to ongoing recruitment challenges, many front line roles are already staffed using a number of outsourcing service providers. This, in the callers eyes, created a whole set of additional challenges. However, rather than jumping to the conclusion to either fully outsource or to fill all position with an in-house team, we discussed to capture the status quo outlining all challenges and to create the ideal housekeeping operation on paper. It is really about exploring what the housekeeping operation wants to achieve and how this can be done. Taking the time to write down the requirements, will guide the decision makers in the housekeeping department when exploring the in-/outsourcing options available.

Recruitment & Retention

Another topic discussed with two different callers was recruitment and retention. Both callers described the challenges they experience when recruiting for housekeeping team members. One of the two, also highlighted that ‘once we have trained them up, they move on and join a different department or another company’. Similar to the outsourcing question described above, there is not a ‘one fits all’ answer to solve this industry wide recruitment challenge. However, recruitment and retention can be managed better, especially if the management team understands what motivates applicants and existing team members. A good starting point is to really understand what makes your housekeeping department attractive to applicants and how can existing team members develop within your department. We also discussed the introduction of exit interviews with team members who are leaving the team; done right, this can help housekeeping managers understand what can be improved to influence retention.


All callers presented a unique set of challenges and demonstrated a real desire to tackle them. All wanted to look at long term solutions that will enable their operations to develop and improve over time. Usually, there is not a quick fix and it is important to understand the whole situation and its underlying issues – there is no benefit of fixing the symptoms only. The participants of the first ‘Talk to the Expert’ session, left the calls with some suggestions on how to move forward and if they require additional support, they know where to find a housekeeping expert.

Are you experiencing similar challenges and want to discuss your options? Please get in touch for a no-obligation discussion and email today.

Next ‘Talk to the Expert’ Session: Monday, 12. August, 2019, from 10am BST