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

The cleanb procurement manager stressed the need to

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see what the bookings are for the next few days.’ The CleanB Procurement manager stressed the need to provide more than a minimum shift, as ‘you wouldn’t pull somebody into the hotel for 2 hours work’. Half the staff start at 8.30am and half at 9.30am; this allows them to take a break for lunch at either 12.30pm or 1.30pm. If they were short staffed or needed later cleaning one solution was to bring in staff from other hotels in the area but the HotelW’s Rooms Division manager at the hotel was clearly unhappy about this as they often did not know the hotel’s standards. 57
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COMING CLEAN: CONTRACTUAL AND PROCUREMENT PRACTICES No transport for staff was provided at this hotel; in the cleaning company this was mainly provided for apartment cleaning in London as it involved multi-sites. Taxis were paid for at Christmas. Training The hotel sets the room cleaning standards but the cleaning company provides the training. The only training provided by the hotel relates to fire training for two hours. A new training scheme was being introduced by CleanB which was expected to make it easier to meet targets as it made the cleaning easier on the staff (called the 10 step programme but focused on how to bend and how to clean tiles with two hands for example). However, HotelW managers are concerned that the standards set by CleanB are not the same as the hotel requires. In addition to this bespoke training, the cleaning company does train for NVQ qualifications. Recruitment According to CleanB’s Area Contracts manager any recruitment has to be done through a formal advert which is also sent to head office to be placed at a Job Centre or Gumtree. Interviews are done by the head housekeeper. However, it is also noted that there are personal recommendations made and there tends to be clustering of staff with similar nationalities in the different hotels (Polish at HotelW but Portuguese at another hotel in the chain in the same area). Applicants must have experience: People with experience for this property because it’s a 4* hotel and I can’t take people just from the streets which is probably what used to happen ... I will also be requesting a reference as well .... we are talking about 1 or 2 years’ experience, not just a few months because it’s not enough. (CleanB Area Contracts manager). In practice 11 of the 15 room attendants are women and four men (for the heavy linen trolleys but at the same rate of pay) and four fifths are migrants, most from Poland. All have to have basic English to be hired. The age range is wide, from in their twenties to in their fifties. Criminal records checks are not used except for housekeepers. Zero hours contracts are recognised to be a possible explanation for the low share of non-migrants interested in a job and, if asked at the interview, CleanB would say they could not guarantee hours sufficient for someone on benefits.
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