Guestroom attendants (GRAs) had a difficult enough job prior to COVID-19 with the constant exposure to hazardous chemicals, ergonomics-related aches and pains, and guest harassment so common that panic buttons were required. Add on having to wear PPE, dodge guests who might have COVID-19, and deal with even more chemicals and you have got quite an 8-hour day. In my book guestroom attendants should be treated like royalty as frequently as possible.
This past week I learned that UMF Corp. is sponsoring the first annual Guest Room Attendant Excellence Award. “The award celebrates the often-unheralded workers who serve as the first line of defense in ensuring a safe guest environment,” UMF says. The deadline for nominations is Monday, Aug. 31, 2020.
Said UMF CEO George Clarke: “As UMF enters its 11th year recognizing healthcare environmental services workers with the Environmental Hygiene Specialist Award, we knew that now was the time to also focus attention on the invaluable contribution of the hotel housekeeping department and, in particular, the GRA. The GRA will play a critical role in guest satisfaction and safety in the post-COVID-19 era.”
GRAs Play Critical Role in Ensuring Safety
“Recommendations from organizations such as the CDC and AHLA underscore the crucial role that hotel housekeeping departments, and GRAs, in particular, serve in ensuring optimal cleanliness and disinfection in hotels,” added Clarke. “We created our first ever Guest Room Attendant Award to underscore their importance in hospitality, especially as the industry adjusts to a new way of operating amidst the global health crisis. As new technologies and hospital level infection prevention are trialed and adopted, the GRA will be the trained associate that operates and ensures these new technologies are used effectively to process the guest environments.”
Hotel managers are encouraged to nominate dedicated staff members for the award. The award recipient will receive an all-expenses paid trip for two, including airfare to a location of their choice within the 48 contiguous states. Nomination forms, available at https://bit.ly/304TcI2, should be submitted by August 31, 2020.
The UMF award is just one award. I strongly encourage your own company to develop its own GRA recognition award. It could be monthly or on a grander scale like the UMF award. Every little bit of recognition you provide will help make the job of a GRA that much more rewarding.