If someone asks me what I do for a living, in 90 percent of the cases I only get puzzled looks for this answer. “I check whether companies work in accordance with the standards” – even further explanation won’t make all people understand. So I go a little further and explain that my job is super diverse. The fact that I get to know many companies and gain insights into other working methods and organizations is rarely exciting enough for my counterpart to deepen their knowledge of ISO 9001 and quality management.
But when I tell them that we are sometimes also undercover – as “mystery checkers”, the tide turns. “For example, we test the service quality in hotels and spas“. And they already hang on my every word.
So I tell them that we call hotels disguised as normal guests and reserve a room, get advice on wellness treatments or ask about the differences between massage offers. Before, during, and after the mystery check, we check every point-of-contact a customer has with the hotel.
How, for instance, is the website designed? Can I find all the information I need and are the images clear and appealing? How is the website structured? Does every content load correctly? How long does it take for the page to build up on the mobile phone and is the design responsive, i.e. suitable for viewing on the smartphone at all? Does the expectation that I have built up through the preliminary research agree with the impression on site? What is the check-in process like? Do the employees point out special offers? How clean is the room?
Money saved thanks to the aperitif test
The checklist for such a mystery check at the hotel is several pages long. It does not serve to control employees, but rather to determine which processes can be optimized and where money can be saved.
A simple example: The hotel operates a restaurant with 20 tables for four people each. The hotel restaurant is open 356 days a year and is used 60 percent of its capacity in a normal cycle. The quality management system in the service department requires every guest to be recommended an aperitif.
This results in the following small calculation:
20 tables a 4 persons = 80 potential drinks
Occupancy 60% = 48 potential drinks
Success rate of the recommendation 50% = 14 drinks per evening
14 drinks x 360 days = 5,040 drinks per year
Price per aperitif € 6,50 = 32.760 €/ year
What my favourite Mystery Check has to do with soccer, I’ll tell you in the next blog post. If you don’t want to miss it, subscribe to our free newsletter.
AUDITOR & PRODUCT MANAGER IN THE SYSTEMS DIVISION
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