Study – Seeking Common Ground on Hospitality

Posted June 9, 2016 at 5:12 pm

A recent case study reviewed a successful relationship between a hotel operator and an outsource laundry provider that processes the hotel’s bed and bath linens.

Highlights of the study appeared in an online article by TRSA President & CEO Joseph Ricci in www.hotelexecutive.com. The article was titled “A Case Study in Hotel/Laundry Relationships.”

The subjects for the study included Sacramento Laundry Services, Sacramento, CA, and the Westin SFO hotel near San Francisco International Airport. An irony of the study is that the two key executives involved each had experience on both sides of the hotel/laundry outsourcing relationship. Specifically, Marc Kuder, customer service manager for Sacramento Laundry Services, had previously served as a housekeeping manager at a large California hotel. Jason Lustbader, housekeeping manager for the Westin SFO, previously had worked in a commercial laundry. With their respective backgrounds, the two men were well positioned to collaborate in a model hotel-laundry outsourcing program. “Their professional histories helped them find common ground that set a solid foundation for a collaborative working relationship that minimizes linen loss and maximizes sustainability efforts,” Ricci wrote.

For example, the laundry offered the hotel an extensive spot-cleaning program to help reclaim stained linens and thus help control textile costs. For its part, the hotel sends new housekeeping managers to tour the laundry and learn about its eco-friendly processes, such as its practice of reusing rinse water in tunnel washers to save water and promote conservation.

Kuder and Lustbader also hold regular meetings to ensure clear communication regarding developments related to managing the hotel’s linens. “Jason has a great understanding of the challenges we face when processing an average of 80,000 lbs. per day,” Kuder said of Lustbader. “We meet at least once a business quarter, or monthly if necessary.”

A series of best practices also appeared in the article under the subheading, “Principles that Underlie a Successful Relationship.” Among these were recommendations that hotel managers take steps to curb abuse of textiles by housekeeping staff and to ensure that laundry chutes are kept in good working order to prevent tears and other damage to linens. Click here for details.      

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