Business travellers will be able to find a hotel practicing enhanced cleanliness via the new tool.
Business travellers will be able to find a hotel practicing enhanced cleanliness via the new tool.

Hotels of all sizes can now promote their cleanliness, guest hygiene and safety protocols to corporate travel bookers ahead of the sector re-opening via a new tech solution launched by corporate lodging platform and rate negotiation company, HRS.

The new program is aimed at the hotel industry and has been created in partnership with inspection and verification firm SGS, which is now working closely with several brands on new hygiene standards including Radisson Group.

The ‘Clean & Safe Protocol’ means that hotels demonstrating a particular standard of cleanliness and guest safety will be designated as such in HRS’ booking and procurement platforms, accessed by hundreds of corporate booking platforms around the world utilising systems such as Concur and Cytric. This designation that a property is verified as safe is also able to displayed on property websites, at a hotel’s physical entrance and as part of in-room marketing.

According to a survey of corporate booking partners conducted in May, HRS found 86% of companies highly active in business travel will only engage with hotels which have implemented revised safety and cleaning measures as a response to COVID-19.

Corporate booking firms can see which hotels are well versed in new cleaning routines.

Hotels can obtain a Clean & Safe Protocol designation through exhibiting improved safety in public areas, guest rooms and meeting facilities; improved infection prevention measures; social distancing; revised employee training systems and regular auditing and compliance. Hotels can apply to HRS to complete a self-assessment form, with hotel groups able to apply for all properties in one step.

HRS Managing Director ANZ, Southeast Asia and South Korea, Ana Pedersen, said the new hygiene verification system had important ramifications for the Australasian and Asia Pacific sector.

“More than 40,000 hotel rooms have been added to the country’s inventory since 2011 – nearly 20,000 of those in the last three years alone,” said Pedersen.

“The owners and managers of these hotels – keen to see return on their investment – are particularly motivated to take whatever steps are required to assure business travellers that their properties are safe. Earning a Clean & Safe Protocol label will help drive positive sentiment from both travel managers and everyday travellers once companies get back on the road.”