The last few months have seen events that have been unprecedented in the memory of the current generation. Unprecedented – we have used the word so often that it has now ceased to convey the gravity of what humanity is facing. The exogenous shock created by COVID-19 is expected to not only shape consumer preferences but also force high human touch industries to innovate.
In this short note we will talk about what we at OYO Hotels & Homes have done to help the community during the lockdown and what we plan to do for our guests as the world gets back to work.
OYO has actively contributed to community service by participating in three key initiatives:
- Extending quarantine facilities to governments and private hospitals
- We have reached out to several state governments to extend support by converting our hotel rooms into quarantine or isolation centers
- Providing OYO Hotels as quarantine facilities to Apollo hospitals
- Hotels for healthcare professionals & individuals
- OYO has started a worldwide campaign for healthcare professionals and first responders
- OYO has provided individuals an option to ‘Self-Quarantine’
- Embassy reach-out
- OYO has engaged with multiple embassies and diplomatic missions in India to facilitate accommodation support to stranded international tourists from countries like Mexico, Indonesia, among many others
Our hotel partners have looked up to OYO to provide expertise and knowledge in operating in these circumstances. Here are some of the measures that we took to help our partners before the lockdown was declared:
- Detailed written/visual instructions and SOPs on precautions to follow for COVID-19.
- Training of ground teams on SOPs to be followed in case any customer/hotel staff tests COVID19 positive
- War rooms configured to monitor and take immediate action in case of suspect cases at any given property
- Setting up of Corona Concierge to offer assistance to guests, hotel partners and employees
Post Lockdown – Sanitised Stays
As hotels start reopening post lockdown, it is important for us to enable our hotel partners to follow procedures that will provide better hygiene to our guests. Hence, we are launching the “Sanitised Stays” initiative to tag properties that follow enhanced hygiene procedures and provide a minimal-touch experience to guests.
As part of “Santised Stays” we will be encouraging our partners to incorporate the following:
- Proper sanitisation of hotels
- Ensuring enough inventory of masks, hand-sanitisers, and gloves
- Strict adherence for staff members to wear masks and gloves at all times
- Practicing social distancing amongst workers/guests at all points – e.g., check-in/out counters, minimum contact room service
- Requesting guests to carry their own luggage as far as possible (unless the guest is a senior citizen or has a physical impediment)
- Regular temperature checks of staff and also of incoming guests
All hotels will go through recurring audits for adherence to the above procedures.
- Properties which will clear the checks will display the ‘Sanitised Stays ” tag on our booking page
- Guest audits and feedbacks will be analysed to ensure continuity of the tag
In the first phase, we plan to implement these measures in 1000 hotels within the next 10 days and, as the lockdown relaxes, aim to implement the measures in all 18,000 hotels in the country
In the hospitality sector we expect consumers to look for an experience that is more technology driven, high on hygiene and provided by a brand that they can trust. In the post lockdown world OYO is confident that we will adapt to our consumer needs and continue to be one of their favourite brands.