Applying a hospitality mindset to facilities management

Can a hospitality mindset — where facilities managers treat office workers as valued customers — help organizations develop a winning employee experience?

According to the World Economic Forum, the Great Resignation isn’t over. One in five workers plans to quit their job this year.

With employees leaving workplaces at a consistently high rate, businesses have to offer more than just a decent salary to keep talent on board and attract new blood.

Hybrid working is now expected as standard. So what else can organizations offer their employees to improve their experience, particularly on those days when they’re based at the office?

Hospitality environments provide food for thought.

Let’s take a look.

The importance of a hospitality mindset for facilities management

As you may already have guessed, the hospitality mindset is most often found in hospitality environments.

Imagine a great hotel or restaurant. These places strive to give their customers an exceptional experience. They put customer comfort, enjoyment, and satisfaction at the heart of their work. In the process, they make their customers feel wanted and appreciated.

This benefits the business because happy customers are more likely to return and spread the word about the five-star hospitality they’ve experienced.

So how can we apply a similar hospitality mindset to facilities management?

Approaching facilities management with a hospitality mindset means treating your employees as customers. It means improving employee experience by giving workers the spaces, amenities, and facilities they want and need. This is important to a business for a couple of key reasons.

A hospitality mindset can improve employee productivity

When you treat employees as customers, you give them the spaces and the tools they need to do their job efficiently. You strengthen their motivation and engagement by showing them they are valued members of your organization, not simply cogs in the machine.

By reducing the amount of friction employees experience in their daily work — and providing amenities that increase comfort and enjoyment levels in the office environment — you help build a happier workforce.

This all has a really positive impact on employee productivity. But how much? Research conducted by Oxford University showed that workers are 13% more productive when they feel happy at work. And according to Gallup, an engaged workforce experiences a 17% jump in productivity.

A hospitality mindset can improve talent acquisition and retention

We’ve seen that a hospitality mindset can improve employee satisfaction, motivation, and engagement.

This inevitably feeds into an organization’s talent strategy. Employees who feel valued and motivated by their work are much more likely to stick around.

Selling your employee experience when recruiting new team members can also help you attract the best talent to your business.

When competition for talent is so fierce, a hospitality mindset can help you maintain the edge over your competitors.

How to apply a hospitality mindset to facilities management

So we’ve covered the benefits of adopting a hospitality mindset for facilities management. But how do you actually put this approach into practice?

Find out what your employees want

Agile Workspace

Great hospitality means providing customers with the experience they want. As a facilities manager, you can only discover what employees really want by asking them.

Some employees may be excited at the prospect of barista coffee or an in-office pool table. Others may place value on hybrid working and a flexible workspace environment. They may want a vibrant shared workspace — or somewhere quiet and restful for independent work.

Before you make any significant changes, get the consensus of your staff — with the help of surveys and feedback — so you can be sure you’re delivering an employee experience that meets the majority’s expectations.

Rethink office design

Place Productive

The office environment has a big impact on employee experience. And if your organization has adopted a hybrid working model, there’s never been a better time to rethink office design.

That might mean cutting down on desk space and developing a more collaborative workspace. It might mean incorporating a coffee shop for informal meetings — or a rooftop terrace so employees can experience a bit of nature during the work day.

Whatever you do, repurpose your office space to fit the needs of your workforce right now.

Up your amenities


Think about how you can bring more comfort and enjoyment to your employees when they’re at work.

Provide free tea and coffee. Also, consider providing a daily fruit basket or arrange for a food delivery service to visit the office.

Regarding the office environment, sensors for light and heat can help maintain optimal conditions for employees. And communal spaces facilitate collaboration.

Ace the basics

Self Certification

Some big corporations are really running with the hospitality mindset. Employees at firms including Goldman Sachs and Starbucks have access to perks such as spa facilities, tuition reimbursement, and daily Pilates classes.

While these amenities may be beyond the budget of your business, rest assured that excelling in the basics of employee experience can take you a long way.

Ensure your office space has plenty of natural lighting, and provide healthy dining options and ergonomic desk setups so your employees can be as comfortable and healthy as possible when they’re at work.

Empower your employees with tech solutions

System Intergrators

With digitally savvy Millennial and Gen Z workers making up a huge proportion of the global workforce, facility management software solutions are a sure-fire way to improve the employee experience.

Give workers access to a powerful room and desk booking platform. That way, they can book desks, rooms, parking spaces, and even lunch deliveries online, making hybrid work simple and seamless.

Want a five-star employee experience? Introducing Smartway2

Smartway2 Logo 2021

Businesses have a lot on their plate right now. The transition to hybrid working. The challenges of the Great Resignation. Both on the back of a global pandemic.

Smartway2 is helping businesses manage these challenges with the help of our exceptional facilities management software.

Improve your employee experience by giving your employees what they want and treating them like valued customers.

Request a demo today to find out how we can help.

Chris L'Hommedieu

Chris L'Hommedieu

Chris L'Hommedieu is VP of Product at Hubstar, with over 20 years of experience across engineering and product developing workplace technology solutions, and is passionate about building the new set of tools required for effective hybrid working.
Last updated September 2, 2022