One of the things that annoys me the most in hotels (when traveling for business) is when the key room stops working.
After a long day (typically travel and a full days’ work) you finally get to the hotel, swipe/touch the card on the reader, and the red signal displays.
It can only be worse if it happens every single day of your stay, more than once a day. Forcing you to go back down to reception again and again.
It happened to me recently at the Herbert Park Hotel in Dublin (Ireland). A quite nice and well located hotel, where I stayed 3 nights and had an unexpected below-average experience.
What made it worth a blogpost was the fact that the reception staff blamed it on me, every single of the 4 times it happened: “The problem is that you put the card next to your phone”, without even asking if I had done so – it’s clearly the pre-default lousy excuse!
The fact is my card-holder is always on my jacket’s right-pocket, and phone always on left-pocket. So no, it wasn’t my fault! But even if that was the case, it’s down to the hotel to upgrade/change technology, to avoid it.
This situation frustrates in equal measure customers – forcing them to put unnecessary effort on up/down hikes to reception – as well as staff – who constantly need to deal with annoyed customers and spend time resetting keys.
Clearly something is wrong with the keys’ system. And it happens repeatedly. Why haven’t they fixed it? Simple: Herbert Park Hotel is not focused on the experience it delivers to guests and staff, nor on its own brand reputation.
If they were, they would have put in place:
1. a functioning process for customers to feedback
2. a functioning process for staff to report issues
3. a functioning process to review and action on both
4. a functioning process to fix issues and improve services
5. a functioning process for closing the loop (with guests and staff)