research-report-96-coming-clean-contractual-and-procurement-practices.doc

Case study hotel the hotel selected for the case

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Case study hotel The hotel selected for the case study is part of a multi-brand international chain of hotels ranging from budget to high class. This case study belongs to a mid level brand which spans 3* and 4* categories but in this case is 4*. The decision to outsource is made by headquarters though individual hotels are able to bid to keep room cleaning services in-house; the other hotel belonging to this brand in the same city has done so successfully. The cleaning company specialises in hotel guest room cleaning, responsible across the UK for 7 million rooms; it also undertakes window cleaning, marble cleaning and back of house (non guest areas). It employs a total of 2,200 staff, the majority on zero hours contracts. It has a very international staff with 72 nationalities represented. 12 The current three-year contract between HotelW and CleanB was renewed in 2013 for the third time amounting to ten years of operations overall. Previously the work was undertaken in-house and the current housekeeper employed by CleanB is the only one of the hotel staff transferred to CleanB still in employment at the hotel. 8.2 Procurement Reasons for outsourcing The decision to outsource has been taken at the group headquarters’ level; according to HotelW’s rooms division manager the main motivation was to reduce 11 http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-19746297 12 Data on the proportion of migrant workers for the hotel chain as a whole are not available. 52
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HOTELW AND CLEANB costs and to ensure consistency across the various brands. However, although CleanB is the main contractor, other cleaning companies are also contracted by headquarters to maintain competition and to avoid becoming too reliant on one provider. Furthermore, HotelHQ will accept retaining cleaning in-house if the hotel can demonstrate a business case. In the other member of the hotel chain in the same city, the cost basis for keeping it in-house was that the management of room cleaning was undertaken by the hotel’s duty manager; to put in a head housekeeper employed by a cleaning company would have added a layer of management and additional costs. According to HotelW’s rooms service manager, most hotel managers would prefer to have the cleaning done in-house: ‘in an ideal world we would all like it back that way!’ Tendering The tendering is centralised at HQ level and HotelHQ makes the decision which hotel has a contract with which cleaning company. Room cleaning is bundled with public area cleaning but not conference/event room cleaning (included in event assistant roles) with leisure facilities which is now outsourced to another company. This was previously done in-house but standards were not high enough. External contracting is: ‘all about taking the responsibility for someone else to do it so we can put the ownership on them really’ (HotelW, Rooms manager).
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