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Adapting office hospitality: a crucial shift in employee expectations

Employee expectations for office spaces have shifted, and discussions around this subject are widespread. The reasons for employees coming into the office centre around flexibility and experiences that contribute to their well-being, productivity and collaboration at work.

We recently had a discussion with our General Manager at one of our sites, who possesses extensive knowledge of hospitality and a deep understanding of employees’ needs. With more than 23 years of experience in hospitality, including serving as a food director in the United States, she underscores the significance of top service, easy access to food and beverages and ensuring an exceptional overall experience.


What are some specific ways we use to elevate our hospitality experience to keep employees returning to the office?

To enhance our hospitality standards and motivate our partners' employees to come back to the office, we tailor our services to their preferences. This means catering to individual tastes during regular meetings, including accommodating specific dietary requirements such as keto options. I recently introduced the "treat box" concept, providing a variety of snacks for extended meetings. This initiative brings a buzz for the teams and also encourages attendance onsite. By personalising our approach, we create memorable experiences that attract the 400 employees onsite.


Can you share examples of how improving hospitality standards has positively impacted satisfaction?

Extending our contract signifies our dedication to upholding exceptional standards. The recognition received from both our staff and leadership has been instrumental in sustaining our continued achievements. The retention of our partner further validates the excellence of our services.

With stunning views of Dublin city and unparalleled dining experiences, we have solidified our position as the top choice for hosting dinners and receptions. Our partners' client visits are now exclusively held in-house, showing the exceptional value we bring to their experiences.


In what ways do you empower the delivery of exceptional hospitality experiences?

I empower my teams to deliver exceptional hospitality experiences through a comprehensive training approach. Each staff member undergoes hands-on training, regardless of prior hospitality experience. We prioritise individualised coaching sessions, where we work closely with staff to meet our standards. Using tools and visual aids, we guide them on what to expect and how to behave during events. We also provide opportunities for staff to attend events themselves, allowing them to experience firsthand what we aim to deliver.


Can you discuss any challenges you have faced in implementing high hospitality standards and how you have overcome them?

Maintaining high hospitality standards can be challenging. With my high expectations, getting regular feedback from the leadership team on-site can be a bit hit-or-miss. Once, we received feedback about our coffee quality. So, I decided to put it to the test. We conducted a blind taste test, and to my surprise, they all identified our coffee as the most premium and high-quality. It was a wake-up call—sometimes people perceive quality differently, or they get accustomed to high standards and expect even more each time.


What measures do you take to stay updated on current trends within the hospitality industry?

Our culinary team plays a key role by highlighting innovative food concepts, taking our offerings to new heights. I prioritise client feedback, ensuring that their desires are met. Personally, I stay ahead of trends by frequenting visiting restaurants, touring various states and even exploring upscale hotels. This proactive approach ensures that we remain ahead of the curve and consistently deliver exceptional experiences.


Finally, could you explain why investing in elevating hospitality standards is not just important but essential for succession and growth within any industry?

Lately, I've realised that making guests and employees happy is at the core of any company. It's not just about teamwork and ethics, but also creating a warm vibe that goes beyond the physical space. Focusing on how things feel and look strengthens our connection with clients. Getting the hospitality vibe and story right is key to keeping clients happy and their teams motivated. That's what drives our growth and success.


Here to help

At Compass Ireland, we give your employees something to come into work for. Our flexible food and drink services help people feel mentally and physically well, fuels concentration, supports collaboration and boosts productivity. To find out more, contact our partnership team on saleslead@compass-group.co.uk