Every customer-facing organization recognizes the value of the customer experience, or at least they should if they intend to stay in business. Not every organization, defines the customer experience in the same way, nor do all customers want the same experience, though. It’s reasonable to assume that the customers of a pastry shop and the customers at a football stadium are looking for a different total customer experience, but it is probable that each customer set is interested in the same customer experience in the restroom.
Clean and Sanitary
When I walk into a pastry shop at 8AM, I might order a coffee and a muffin, and sit down to read the news on my phone or tablet. At some point, I may need to use the restroom. If I do, I want to walk into a restroom that has clean floors, counters, toilets, and urinals, as well as fully stocked toilet paper and hand towels. My experience is complete if the restroom is either pleasantly scented or void of any smell at all. When I walk into a football stadium at 1PM for a game, I may order a beer before finding my seat, and at some point, I may need to use the restroom. The total experience is very different in these two examples, but I want the restroom experience to be the same.
Internet of Things
Without data, restroom cleaning staff use static service schedules to determine when and what to clean or how frequently to refill soap or toilet tissue. Yet, activity truly drives maintenance. Maybe there are peak times of use within your restrooms. Maybe one stall or sink is used most frequently and that impacts the customer experience if the cleaning schedule doesn’t ensure those high-use areas are pristine. What if you could harness the power of IoT to anticipate the needs of your guests and communicate with them about their experience?
Whether it’s new construction or a restroom remodel, the opportunity to use data to improve the customer experience is here and it is now. With stall availability lighting, smart soap dispensers, faucets that can sense conditions that breed bacteria, and toilets and urinal systems that disinfect all communicating cleaning information via the internet, the facilities staff responsible for restroom cleanliness can dynamically create cleaning schedules to offer a clean and sanitary restroom experience. It is often possible to reassign staff to other tasks and improve efficiency and cleanliness within the total facility because the changes in work loading can significantly reduce the time that staff spend on unnecessary tasks like looking to see if the soap dispenser is full or if the toilet paper needs to be refilled.
Not only is it beneficial to proactively work to improve the experience by using connected restroom devices, it is also valuable to solicit guest feedback. There are times when restrooms get dirty and guests are impacted negatively. I’ve seen businesses offer guest comment cards or display signs alerting guests to speak to management when they encounter unsatisfactory restroom conditions. These are helpful ideas, and they can be taken a step further. By offering your guests the opportunity to communicate with facility staff through a secure and anonymous text messaging system, your facility team can react immediately to turn a negative experience into a positive experience and reduce customer churn.
Without data, improvement opportunities are at best, a wild guess. Your customers are valuable. Guessing if they are satisfied is less than optimal. Instead, if you have data, you can analyze it, then use it to create improvements to the customer experience within your restrooms and around your entire facility.