The New Standards Your Corporate Accommodation Providers Should Be Meeting
MOBILITY PRACTITIONERS HAVE ADAPTED QUICKLY TO THE SWEEPING CHANGES THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC HAS REQUIRED THEM TO MAKE TO THEIR 2020 STRATEGIES, BUT WITH TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS SLOWLY EASING IN SOME PARTS OF THE WORLD, THERE IS RENEWED INTEREST IN CORPORATE TRAVEL AND WHAT NEW STANDARDS CAN BE EXPECTED OF ACCOMMODATION PROVIDERS.
Convido Corporate Housing Chairman, Chris Miller, says clients should expect considerable changes to the processes and procedures they were accustomed to before, during and after a guest’s stay, as well as increased flexibility to help manage the uncertainty this pandemic brings with it. “As Convido offers an essential service for corporate travellers, we have remained open for business these past few months, working tirelessly to remain abreast of current policies, regulations and best practice standards, in order to keep our guests, and staff, both safe and comfortable,” Mr Miller said. “Further to this, as executives transition back to work, we are offering flexible bookings and cancellations, with easing of minimum stays in some buildings where possible, as well as bespoke solutions where required. “Our clients need the space, facilities and flexibility their talent needs to maintain social distance in self-contained comfort, and we’re able to provide that, with the support of our incredible network of partners and suppliers, each of which has been reviewed and approved as meeting new best practice standards.” The best practice standards Mr Miller refers to have been developed by the industry body which delivers the International Serviced Accommodation Accreditation Process, the Association of Serviced Apartment Providers (ASAP). As an accredited member, Convido meets all current prescribed regulations and standards for safety, security, customer service and duty of care, and fulfils the new ‘ASAP Stay with Confidence Promise’, which offers guests complete reassurance around sanitisation. The new standard outlines that the cleaning process must as a minimum, detail:
- A communication and training process for all relevant staff, to ensure they fully understand the importance of and know the process, for looking after themselves and guests by observing, promoting and monitoring safe distancing and other prescribed measures at all times to significantly reduce the risk of infection.
- The specified personal protective equipment to be worn by housekeeping, front desk staff and other relevant team members.
- The specified COVID precautions and procedures to be adopted by staff when admitting access to external contractors or suppliers.
- That apartment pre-arrival cleaning is completed using approved disinfectant as part of the sanitisation protocol for all surfaces and high touchpoints, with clear signage of completed preparation on external front door”’ face for guest arrival/entry.
- That apartment air conditioning units are sanitised between guests’ stays. The duration that an apartment is kept empty between stays in order to allow for appropriate deep cleaning.
- Clear, concise communication to the guest, outlining precautions being taken by the company to ensure guest safety against the effects of a pandemic, together with the provision of a clear outline of the safety protocol expected of the guest upon arrival and during the stay.
- There must also be a regulation and review process in operation to keep the policy current, correct and fully understood and delivered by all relevant members of staff.
- What happens during the arrival procedure, giving the guest safe access to the property and allowing for hands-free entry wherever possible. Approved hand sanitising gel must be provided where appropriate, together with the provision of sanitised keys and key cards where relevant.
DURING THE STAY
- The procedure for guests in isolation in the event that a guest announces self-isolation or is suspected of being unwell by team members.
- The policy implemented on the guests’ use of approved food delivery companies and a delivery protocol to maintain their safety, and in so doing, ensuring that as many ‘home comforts’ as possible can be retained.
- A process agreed and communicated to the guest, for keeping the apartments clean and fresh linen provided during the stay. This must align with pandemic protocol precautions.
- A process for carrying out any essential maintenance to the apartment during a guest’s stay.
- A communication process that can be swiftly enabled in the event of an emergency within the property or apartment.
- That responsibility is taken to ensure that communal areas, lifts and entrances to stairwells are always furnished with approved hand sanitiser gel, and that frequent sanitisation of high touchpoints, such as switches and handles, is completed.
- An effective feedback process, updated to capture any specific comments around pandemic standards and measures.
- A system to capture feedback and suggestions for change which are fed back into the regular review process as outlined in the pre-stay section.
Mr Miller says Convido has always prioritised the duty of care of its guests, offering high-quality, secure residences that are fire and safety compliant, with global standards and procedures in place to ensure guests experience the same level of comfort and service around the world – however he is proud to have taken the actions required to meet the new best practice standards. “Corporate accommodation providers can’t resume ‘business as usual’ moving forward – steps must be taken to provide the flexibility and peace of mind clients and guests need to rely on as business travel resumes,” Mr Miller said. You can find out more about Convido Corporate Housing at https://convido.global. Read more about the International Serviced Accommodation Accreditation Process here. ********** To read more about what’s happening in the Global Workforce Management community register for the TEMI quarterly newsletter here. To learn more about the Talent Mobility Industry and earn your Global Mobility Professional (GMP1) Designation register here.