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Know your risks: Top hotel risks to look out for, and how to prevent them

We come across risks every day. It’s a part of life. We often tell ourselves that sometimes risks can’t be avoided but, in many cases, they can. From putting additional control measures in place through to training your team, there are a number of ways hotels can prevent accidents or incidents from occurring. 

Improve your risk management procedures

You can’t stop risks cropping up, but you can but policies and procedures in place to help your team deal with them effectively. Learn to identify risks most likely to impact your hotel, and try to control them. 

For example, train your team to look out for and respond to potential hazards. If someone reports a spillage, make sure a wet floor sign is put out and the mess cleared up as soon as possible. Record the spill and how it was dealt with. It’s procedures like this that will help you keep your guests safe, and prove you have the right processes in place. 

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Be aware of common risks

Slips and trips have long been the number one risk for any venue open to members of the public. Look out for potential hazards, such as loose carpet or wiring, and rectify them immediately. 

Unpredictable incidents such as fire, floods and other natural disasters are also a fairly common risk, and one most businesses are prepared for. Put mitigation measures in place in advance (such as installing early-detection equipment for fires). Make sure you also have a Business Continuity Plan in place so that, if disaster does strike, you’re well prepared for it. 

Remember: unlikely risks could still damage your business

You might think your hotel won’t be the victim of cyber crime or an act of terrorism. However, these types of attack are on the rise. 

Be aware of key elements that could put your hotel at risk. For example, put additional measures in place to keep your customer’s data safe and keep your security measures updated. Train employees to be vigilant. It only takes one member of staff to click on a malicious link or fall foul to a social engineering attack. This can have an incredibly detrimental impact on your business. Not only could you lose money, a data security breach could cause reputational damage too. 

It’s recommended hotels have additional insurance coverage to protect them against these lesser known risks. Cover such as Terrorism or Cyber insurance will offer peace of mind that if your hotel suffers from an unexpected attack, you won’t be left out of pocket. 

The importance of claims defensibility

Claims defensibility is all about proving you’ve done everything you can to prevent an accident or injury from occurring. It’s all well and good putting procedures in place to mitigate risk… but you must also prove you’ve followed these procedures. Capture this information in the form of records and procedural checklists. If you have adequate evidence and documentation, you’ll be in the best position to defend your business if someone does make a claim against you. 

Protect yourself against unavoidable risk

It’s often the case that sometimes you simply can’t help an accident or incident occurring. You can’t monitor every single risk. However, if something does go wrong then it’s important to have the right insurance cover in place to protect you. Compensation payouts, damage settlements, legal fees and even the cost of excess all have the potential to cripple your business financially. With the right insurance policy in place, you’ll have peace of mind that your hotel can carry on running even if something doesn’t quite go to plan. 


Submitted by NDML

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