A survey of Chicago-area hotel workers reveals that 58% of hotel employees have been harassed by a guest, but of those who have experienced harassment, only 33% reported it to their supervisor.
Of those who did report the behavior, only 38% were satisfied with the response.
Moreover, most incidents of harassment aren’t required to be reported by OSHA, since they may not result in physical injury. But that doesn’t mean the victim isn’t injured. 58% of women who experienced harassment by a guest felt in was unsafe to return to work afterwards, and PTSD and symptoms of trauma commonly result from harassment.
When it comes to addressing workplace violence and implementing prevention programs, the hotel industry could learn a lot from is the healthcare industry.
Few other industries have received as much attention when it comes to determining the most effective solutions to workplace violence. For this reason, the hotel industry could benefit from a few key insights.
To truly prevent hotel staff from becoming victims of workplace violence, hotels need to provide outstanding violence prevention training, develop targeted solutions based on robust data, and develop a zero-tolerance culture around workplace violence.
Among the solutions that have seen proven results in the healthcare industry, these priorities stand out:
- Culture and communication
There are many training programs, and it’s important to choose one that feels specifically relevant to the people being trained. Some workplace violence prevention training programs are more relevant to the security team than the employees in other departments, and, once chosen, implementing a relevant training program means tailoring the program even further to the employees being trained.
Reporting and Analysis
Complete, efficient, and consistent reporting is the number one solution that enables all other workplace violence interventions to succeed.
You can’t know where your employees need extra support or which intervention will be most effective if you don’t know exactly what’s happening, where it’s happening, and when it’s happening. When you know exactly where and what your problems are, you can begin to develop an informed strategy for solving them.
Culture and Communication
Reporting is the one intervention that enables all others to succeed, but without the right culture and communication strategies, you won’t get the data you need.
Of the hospitality workers surveyed in Chicago, only 33% said they told a supervisor or manager when a guest harassed them. Underreporting is a significant problem in the hotel industry, and the problem starts with culture.
To overcome these obstacles and get the robust data your organization needs, it’s important to cultivate a culture of reporting. Reporting should be encouraged, supported, and required.
The Right Tools Simply Workplace Violence Prevention
Cultural change is important, but it’s difficult to implement an effective workplace violence prevention program without the right tools in place.
Make it easy for hotel staff to report incidents by using a robust records management system (RMS) with customizable fields and mobile capabilities. Reporting can be fast and simple and can take place wherever there’s a computer or mobile device.
Documenting workplace violence is only the first step, however. A good software solution will not only streamline reporting processes, but it will include easy and customizable report-generation capabilities that help your organization analyze and respond to the state of workplace violence on a regular basis.
Contact us to learn more or check out our comprehensive suite of software solutions designed for the hospitality industry.