This Harvard Business Publishing article discusses the importance of guests being able to reach knowledgeable employees on first contact.
Although the article studied call centers, it stresses importance of how hotel and restaurant employees need to be able to efficiently handle requests, inquiries, and complaints on their first shot. Guests may not want to be passed off to the front desk if they ask a quick question to a housekeeping staff member in the hallway. How often do restaurant guests get transferred or put on hold when they ask about menus, substitutions, or private dining requests?
In the study, 65% of the U.S. customers surveyed said that they wanted to reach knowledgeable employees immediately. It says that most of them defined knowledgeable as when staff members were able to immediately answer questions, without holds, searching for someone, or transferring.
The authors mention that customers are looking for a satisfying experience and will be loyal to the companies that provide it. Their study suggests that unsatisfied customers will leave without any complaints or warnings.
Read the article here.