6 Essential Things You Must Know Before Hiring a Laundry Service Provider for your Airbnb business

1. Is it backed by a guarantee?

Every business should have a guarantee.


If they don’t believe in their goods and services, why should you? The business

guarantee should be measurable and give some satisfaction to your main

concerns. No guarantee means the risk in the transaction lies with you, not the

provider.


Unfortunately, today we live in an age where ‘service’ has been dying,

false promises are made, and scepticism is rampant. The guarantee is a proof

element to your overall offer – proof of how confident the provider is about

delivering on every promise they have made to you.


In the laundry industry, you should look for a guarantee that covers the big

three:

1. Service

2. Deliverability

3. Wash results


You need to be confident that the laundry provider understands that your time

is precious, and any delays in delivery, and wash quality, affects your customers,

your reputation, and ultimately, your bottom line.


Putting your money where your mouth is, is always a reliable guarantee,

backed by a business who believes in its products and services. Not only does

this type of guarantee ensure you won’t be disappointed, misled, and out of

pocket for empty promises, but it shows they are prepared to show by actions,

and not just by words that they will deliver on their pledges to you.



2. Do they want to lock you in?

Make the risk theirs, not yours.


No one wants to be ‘locked in’ to anything unnecessary, let alone a bad

arrangement. Sometimes a contract may be necessary, especially if you’re hiring linen, and a lot of it. The laundry will be investing significantly in this stock for your business, so it

makes sense to share the commitment. In saying that, look for a guarantee in the

contract so there is an out, should the arrangement not hold true to form.


If there is no legitimate reason for a contract, other than for tying you down, don’t

be coaxed into signing one. If the service they are providing, is everything on

promise, you won’t go anywhere else ... so what's the problem? The problem is

yours is if the laundry provider doesn’t back their service.


By locking you in, there is no obligation to continue with the amazing service they

promised you in the first place. Little cracks will start to show, and these little cracks

can make a huge difference to how your business is running. No one wants to be in

a situation where you are under contract, but the linen is sub-par, deliveries are late

and staff are under stress because of shortages.


Always ask ‘why’ if you are asked to sign a contract. If you’re not happy with the

answer, stick to your guns and decline, or go elsewhere.


Your provider should operate on a “Love Us or Leave Us” arrangement. The risk

then lies within the provider, not with your business.



3. Do they have testimonials and references?

Do your due diligence.


It’s essential to research what others have to say about a provider before you change or

begin a new service.


Changing over can mean jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire if you haven’t

done your due diligence. Spend time doing this first, and save yourself a headache later!


Google and Facebook are an effective and easy place to start. Do they have an online

presence with an active, current and engaged fan base? Will they provide contact details of

current clients for you to talk to? If not, ask yourself ...why not?



4. Do they understand YOUR business? ...... AND does it really matter to them?

Your business is not just a number, don't be treated like one


As a result of COVID-19, guests are paying much closer attention to cleanliness

and sanitation than they ever have. Airbnb has therefore introduced an enhanced

cleaning protocol to ensure responsible hosting in Australia. Hosts who commit

to these protocols get a special highlight on their listing page, so that they know

you are following an enhanced cleaning routine. This of course will encourage

guests to choose your accommodation over others who are not taking cleanliness

as seriously as you!


As you can see, different industries require custom washing techniques to ensure

the best quality clean and to enhance the life of your linen. As you know, shorter

linen life is an additional, premature expense to your business, and an

unnecessary drain on your bottom line.


Does the laundry have a ‘one-wash-fits-all’ approach or do they customise to your

business’ specific needs?


Ask about their washing techniques and what chemicals they use to do the job.

Not only are wash results extremely important, so is recognition in fluctuations to

your business cycle. Do they offer flexible pickup and delivery times? If your

business is experiencing peak periods, can they provide a service that ensures you

don’t run out of linen? Are the communication lines open? Do you have a

‘decision maker’ who can ‘make things happen’ as your main point of contact?


Once, you're onboard, are you a 'set-and'forget' client? Do you have a settling in

period where changing providers or starting a new service needs some

adjustments to settle you in to a routine or do they want to charge you for the 'out

of service' adjustments you'll need to make?


Look for a partner...not just a provider!



5. Invoicing & property allocation

Ensuring your accounts are correct


Keeping records is challenging at the best of times, but when you're managing a

portfolio of properties, this can become a deal breaker, no matter how good the

service is.


When expenses relating to a stay are incurred by the owner, it's important to

have the invoice that relates to that property and that period invoiced as soon as

possible. Linen can be one of the biggest expenses incurred during a customer's

stay and therefore, it's imperative that the job is invoiced promptly and issued

with the correct property details for ease of matching up to your system. Mixing

this up, or by not providing essential information or timely invoicing can

produce a nightmare for your business and staff trying to manage the outgoings

for your portfolio of properties.


Ask and understand what their system and procedure is for managing multiple

properties!


6. Are you dealing with the actual service provider?

Don't be passed down the line


THIS IS A BIG ONE! Make sure you’re speaking with ‘the horse’s head’. You

need a 'mover and shaker' to contact direct for when things don't go to plan.

Can they resolve problems quickly and with the least impact to your customer's

and your bottom line? I can!


Some laundry services make promises they can’t necessarily deliver on because

they outsource their service. Control is then forfeited, and you don’t know

who’s doing your linen, or more importantly, how or where it’s being done!


Understand the process. If they can’t be specific with the detail, push for more

information. This is their business, just as you are passionate about your

business, they should have equal enthusiasm and knowledge about theirs.

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