Owning a business in any industry involves taking on risks. Whether you own a retail store, an auto manufacturer, a SaaS brand, or a non-profit, your organization will face threats that can be either internal or external that will put the future of the brand at risk. This is also the case for hotel owners.
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Hotels are a unique sector of the hospitality industry. Pleasing their guests is all about having high-quality, clean facilities and valuable amenities that their patrons will find helpful. If the sheets are not properly cleaned, or the towels are not replaced, or the keycards malfunction, guests could have a bad experience that causes them to never consider your hotel for their next stay.
Security is another aspect of hotel ownership that can affect the guest experience. Often, when someone creates a plan for opening a new hotel, security is not a part of the equation from the beginning. But with crime rates rising, including those involving hotels which encompasses theft, assault, vandalism, and other acts, security matters for your hotel.
The Consequences of Weak Security
If you have not invested significantly in the security measures of your hotel, then your business could be at risk due to several factors.
When people who do not have access to the hotel property force themselves onto the premises, your hotel’s guests, employees, and finances are at risk. Many would-be criminals analyze the likelihood of being caught before committing an illegal act, and if your hotel is lacking security systems, then the property could be deemed an easy target.
Stolen property is another common issue faced by hotels. Guests trust you to have a certain level of protection for them and their belongings during their stay. Car theft is a common crime in hotel parking lots, and the lack of security measures for prevention could lead to a bad reputation with guests.
While there are certainly major financial ramifications in the event of a break-in, theft, or even vandalism, the resulting hit to your brand reputation could be the largest consequence. If guests leave reviews about feeling unsafe in your hotel or simply spread this message through word-of-mouth, your occupancy rates could take a big hit. Better security could have put your guests at ease, promoting a positive reputation for the hotel.
What Measures to Take
The systems that you put in place to strengthen security at the hotel can both prevent crimes from happening in the first place and make your guests feel safer during their stay. If incidents do occur, some of these measures could at the very least minimize the damage to the business.
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Better Access Control
Hotel security depends a lot on not allowing people into places where they shouldn’t be. This includes guests in certain areas of the hotel and non-guests on the property premises in general. By controlling access to certain areas with barriers, keypads, or other measures, you can limit access to only those who are allowed in these areas.
Prevention and comfort for guests and employees can both be achieved by hiring hotel security guards. Their mere presence is often enough to discourage the vast majority of crimes, making the investment worth the cost. Plus, if something bad does happen at your hotel, they are specifically trained to mitigate the problem or quickly contact authorities that can help. A safer environment will also make your guests and staff happier since they will know that the hotel is invested in security.
Entry Point Surveillance
Cameras are another deterrent method that can help hotels reduce crime rates on their properties. The presence of a camera is often enough to convince would-be criminals to look for easier targets that won’t result in them getting caught or identified. Strategic placement is critical, so pay special attention to entry points, high-traffic spaces, and isolated areas where staff may not be able to monitor the area regularly.
Even something as simple as lighting can make a big difference in your security efforts. A well-lit space is less likely to invite thieves or other criminals to commit crimes where they cannot be seen. For example, a parking lot with ample lighting and cameras could help prevent auto theft. Try to make sure that all vulnerable points on the hotel property have substantial lighting to prevent potential crimes.
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Security Feels Expensive Until You Need It
Hindsight is always 20/20, and choosing not to invest in security may become a decision that you later regret. It is far better to cover the costs of these security measures and avoid major losses for the hotel than to save money with skeleton security and end up dealing with high-cost crimes. With such high numbers of crimes occurring around the country, this expenditure is crucial to protect your hotel’s guests, employees, property, and financial assets.