The Pursuit of the Perfect Bed
Most travelers would be surprised to find out how many steps are required make sure their hotel room is perfect when they walk in. At the Shadyside Inn in Pittsburgh, there are 147 steps that must be completed by housekeeping staff in every room when someone checks out. Each task must meet specific criteria to make sure the guest’s experience is the best it can be. There are 8 criteria for making the “Perfect Bed”, 34 for the bathroom. All these things and more must be done in the 60 minutes allotted for each room to turn them over for incoming guests. After a housekeeper completes each room, it’s inspected by a senior staff member to make sure everything is perfect. To make sure it’s all done right, they’ve used paper checklists for years. Every room gets checked off. Every person carries a clipboard for their assigned rooms and it all gets turned in to Karen Mason at the end of the shift. As Director of Housekeeping, it was Karen’s job to gather all this paperwork and then scan it into the computer, so they have a record of the days activity.
“We used the scanned copies as a record so if there are any issues, we can go back and see who was assigned to each room. The problem is, sometimes they forget to sign the sheets. Or sometimes they would inspect the rooms and just the fill sheets out at the end. Without looking over people’s shoulders, there was no way to ensure they were filled out correctly”, says Karen. “Plus, you have to print all the sheets, then make sure everyone gets a pen and a clipboard. It’s a lot of work. But then we got AmbiFi, and its changed everything. AmbiFi addresses all our needs, right on the phone. It’s all automated.”
Using the AmbiFi Web App, Karen replaced their paper-based system with a series of activities her people can use on their phones:
Picture Study Guides – Easy guides for new hires with a picture and clear instructions for completing each step
Process Guides – Procedural guides for completing more complex tasks
Suite Inspections Checklist – A digital checklist for inspectors with a clean interface and timestamps on every task for data collection.
All these activities require login by the employee and every step is trackable in the AmbiFi Admin dashboard. Karen can track her team in real-time throughout the day and run reports afterwards to monitor performance.
"No more clipboards, and printing, and lost pens. They do it right on their phones. It’s really transformed the way we run the hotel. I can check room status during the shift and let the front desk know when rooms become available. We have time data on every room and I don’t have to shadow people to make things are getting done right”. When asked about next steps, Karen smiles, “I’m building a new module for new hires that covers all the HR procedures and another one with short videos for cleaning each type of suite. My goal is to put everything we do in AmbiFi."