With almost 40 years in the hospitality industry, Steve Jung, GM of DoubleTree by Hilton Sonoma Wine Country, has seen and experienced a lot, including his share of wildfires. HSM recently caught up with Jung to gain insights on being proactive, prepared and ready for anything when disaster strikes. Below you’ll find the highlights of our conversation.
Jung: I’ve been in the industry for a long time, and with that comes a lot of experience, a lot of history and a lot of challenges throughout the years. I’ve been at my current hotel for eight years and have learned that as far as supply management goes, it’s really about preparation. In 2017, the Tubbs Fire happened in the middle of the night and really hit us by surprise. I was awakened by high winds and a phone call from a friend who ended up losing his house. When I got to the hotel around 4:30 am, the lobby was full of people who had evacuated – dogs, cats, kids, a bird, and I think we had an iguana, too. It was just mayhem.
Jung: After that fire, preparation is what has really set us apart. We’ve been impacted by a fire every year since then, including this year, on top of the pandemic. The first thing is knowing that your type of guest is going to change. It’s not your corporate or group traveler, and where we are located, we’ve become kind of the hub for evacuees. So, we generally get the same people back every year, and our team knows how to handle it – what we’re serving for dinner, for breakfast, what to expect with pets – knowing what’s going to happen helps us to prepare for the hotel’s needs and the guests’ needs.
Knowing how many emergency kits, masks, batteries and water supply is huge. Sometimes we go through hundreds of cases of water, and we need enough food on hand to feed people for three or four days. The minute I have any concerns, I call HSM, and they get us what we need; so I’ve never had a supply issue. And then they’re there to help us in the aftermath with whatever items or engineering needs we have.
Jung: During the clean-up after evacuees left, we had an issue with pest control because people brought all sorts of things into the hotel. Where HSM stepped in is they actually negotiated the deal with our national vendor Ecolab to get the whole property, or at least all of the meeting space, exterminated at a huge discount, which was a huge benefit for us. That’s where HSM stepped in – they will help you out with whatever you need.
HSM was also on a call with us every day, not only to make sure that supply chains were open, but also to secure price and product for air filters. That was another learning – we had to replace almost every air filter in the building because a lot of problems with fires are caused by smoke, which can travel hundreds of miles from the actual fire due to high winds.
Jung: HSM was instrumental in making sure we had the supplies that we needed because everyone in Sonoma County was trying to secure the same things, like air filters and N-95 masks, and HSM stepped up to the plate and made sure we got them. They played a critical role in ensuring that our supply chains were still open with our national vendors.
We work hand-in-hand with the Red Cross who uses our hotel as a volunteer site. We’ve also became a donation center for the community and have raised over $1M in kind giving. And we are in a position to reach out to them and say, “What do you need from us?” because HSM takes the pressure off. I know they will take care of it, so I don’t worry.
Jung: They play a critical role in our success, because whenever we are looking for items, it’s a quick email or call. I have friends at independent hotels who can’t find product; we’re all under pressure financially. During the pandemic, people have been so impressed that I had Lysol. With HSM, I have access to their buying power, and, whatever I need, I just call and they can always find it. That’s why this relationship is extremely important.
In the past few decades, the number of recorded annual hurricanes has been steadily rising, so it’s no surprise that HSM offers its most frequent crisis support in response to these natural disasters. In 2017 alone, there were 17 named storms, 10 hurricanes and six major hurricanes. And, just like in most crises, supply chain preparedness with a reliable partner like HSM plays a major role in an efficient response and effective recovery.
While hurricanes are somewhat unexpected, there are procedures HSM puts in place and steps hotels can take to be prepared to help mitigate the resulting supply chain risks. HSM has created a Crisis Committee that focuses on receiving and sharing critical information from our suppliers. This helps to determine the best path of action moving forward and to get ahead of potential issues, from logistics and IT to food supply and waste management. HSM has also made it a priority to develop relationships with our key suppliers, who will look to support customers as quickly as possible, and to establish a vast supply line to facilitate the coordination of alternative solutions.
HSM also helps our properties to be prepared for a crisis by sending out relevant and timely communication. In September of 2020, Shawn Kane, HSM Americas Director of Strategic Accounts, sent an email to partners in a hurricane’s impact zone which began, “I wanted to touch base and share some info regarding ‘Sally’ as you have hotels in the path and to see if you had any needs related or in general that I could assist with?” The communication included information on the path of the hurricane, where to expect delays and which suppliers had already been contacted to help mitigate impact of those delays. HSM also sends out communications reminding customers to review and prepare their checklists for key survival items and supplies before any potential disaster season.
The next step is to coordinate with hotels and suppliers in impact zones after they’ve been affected to evaluate needs and then to start addressing them. First, we do a wellness check-in with suppliers and hotels to assess damage, identify issues and make early estimates of when service can be resumed. Hospitals, emergency centers, the Red Cross, health care operations are the first to receive deliveries, then hotels and other customers. Next, we effectively communicate with our customers to report on deliveries, trace and track critical needs and work with suppliers to meet those needs. Once the initial threat is neutralized, we manage any one-off unique needs and coordinate with suppliers to provide post-storm relief.
When Hurricane Odile hit the tip of the Baja peninsula, Hilton Los Cabos was left with nearly 650 guests and employees stranded at the property with no access to internet service, landline phones, electricity or water supply. Within days, HSM coordinated an on-site crisis crew with ferries to deliver necessary supplies and equipment. We also helped organize and manage property recovery efforts to repair the damaged hotel. In the end, HSM’s buying power helped Hilton Los Cabos realize $150,000 of savings on a $650,000 spend.
A partnership with HSM not only comes with best-in-class savings and service, but also potentially life-saving support when disaster strikes. Through preparedness, communication, immediate relief and property recovery, HSM offers dedicated assistance, innovative thinking and agile supply chain solutions to get your property or business through the eye of the storm and safely to the other side.
While most people would not be aware of typical supply chain interruptions, 2020 brought a pandemic that impacted the global supply chain network and led to people feeling the ramifications of it on a very personal level. There was no better example of this than the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, when consumer panic-buying and factory closures led to a widespread supply chain collapse and empty shelves in stores across the world. During this time, HSM went into overdrive, activating supply chain solutions and pivoting procurement streams to help people where they needed it most.
Hilton Supply Management’s initial Covid response was largely based on strategic communication, established relationships and ever-evolving agility. When the crisis began in China, the first steps were to leverage regional partnerships to gain a full-picture understanding of what was happening, how it was affecting inventory availability and mapping out potential demand. As the virus spread out globally, HSM adjusted its focus to collaborate with suppliers and evaluated production capabilities in each region to ensure that open hotels were getting what they needed. Throughout the process, HSM Team Members kept constant communication with customers, providing updates on market conditions, as well as our commitment and effort to fulfilling their requests.
After mitigating the initial shock of supply route disruptions, HSM quickly shifted its focus to sourcing protective equipment for hotels who were staying open and offering guidance and support for those who were forced to temporarily close. To effectively procure protective equipment, HSM worked closely with Property Operations, developing sources and supplies for equipment needed to operate. HSM also played an integral part in developing and launching Hilton’s CleanStay program. For properties forced to suspend operations, HSM provided checklists, supplier communications and supplier support to help facilitate the process when closing and with eventual re-opening.
In addition to supporting hotels during the onset of the pandemic, HSM also worked closely with its vast network of suppliers to offer relief and to re-negotiate workable contracts. Having multiple suppliers in each category helped to keep supply lines open so that vendors could push products and customers could get what they needed most. As an intermediary between suppliers and customers, HSM helped mobilize resources by identifying factories with production capabilities, pre-paying for and physically securing deliveries of high-demand PE, securing financial relief for owners from key supply partners and establishing a global risk management team.
Of course, at the end of these supply chains are real people, many of whom suffered without basic supplies due to distribution disruptions. That’s why, in the wake of the coronavirus crisis, HSM and our program produce supply partner Freshpoint collaborated to provide fresh produce to employees and community members impacted by the virus in cities like Atlanta, Dallas, South Florida and Southern California. Overall, we partnered with our top suppliers to donate 500,000 pounds of food to 6,000 Team Members at 14 of our largest properties.
Most people don’t realize the crucial importance of keeping procurement streams moving, especially during a global crisis. Whether it was securing PE, negotiating relief agreements, offering risk mitigation resources or responding to immediate needs like hunger, HSM’s COVID-19 response was about leveraging supply chains to make a difference in the lives of those affected in the early days of the pandemic.
We all learned a few lessons in 2020, the most notable of which may be that there’s no way to predict the future. You may also have learned that when a crisis hits, it’s important to have a procurement partner with a powerful supply chain that can still deliver when disruptions occur. That’s why HSM makes it a priority to build a robust and stable supply chain that can endure market volatility and weather any storm … or wildfire, or earthquake or global pandemic.
The best defense, of course, is to have a strong offense – or in this case, a strong supply chain before disaster strikes. To achieve this, HSM relies on strategic supplier partnerships that are developed through a deep-routed process. First, we comprehensively vet all of our suppliers, which includes taking into consideration manufacturing capabilities, locations, material sourcing, distribution, sales volume, corporate structure and financial wealth. We also take a category approach, selecting dedicated supplier partners for each category, and identifying supplier strengths based on region to minimize cost and maximize efficiency. This level of strategy and due diligence creates a sturdy end-to-end supply chain solution.
That being said, it’s inevitable that disruptions can and will occur. For this reason, risk mitigation is a big part of our overall sourcing strategy, with both short-term and long-term solutions. When disruptions are brief, we can shift orders over to an alternate established supplier and keep the supply chain moving. For a collapse or larger disruption of a supply line, we leverage our extensive network of supplier partners for a replacement solution. This may be an interim solution at first to maintain consistent supply while we develop an ideal permanent solution. In either case, having established relationships with a wide network of vetted suppliers allows us to be agile and to ensure seamless transitions.
At HSM, we understand that our customers are conducting business in a world that is in a state of constant flux, and that can and will affect the flow of your supply chain. We are also keeping an eye on that world to be proactive when economic, political or natural upheaval occurs. HSM is a trusted partner who can help you anticipate disruptions when possible; mitigate risks before, during and after they arise; align your business with a wide network of reliable, high-quality suppliers; and offer you viable supply chain solutions to keep your business moving in the right direction. Like we’ve all learned, you can’t predict the future, but you can be well-positioned to meet it.
When it comes to hospitality – or any business, really – success comes from being your best in several categories, not just one. That’s why it’s so important to find the highest quality products and services at the best prices across all categories. Or better yet, have someone else do it for you. HSM leverages the volume of our entire portfolio to secure best-in-class pricing on products and services in a variety of categories, creating extraordinary value for you. We also offer leading-edge eProcurement software and dedicated customer support to promote optimization and efficiency within your supply chain.
Through our in-depth global supply chain knowledge, rigorous sourcing events, strategic partnerships and negotiated commercial terms, we’ve developed and negotiated global and regional pricing agreements with hundreds of industry-leading suppliers of hospitality products and services. This allows us to offer our properties unrivaled, value-based pricing, superior products and the highest quality service standards. HSM offers sourcing in numerous categories, including FF&E, F&B, equipment and operating supplies, like mattresses, TVs, linens and amenities. We’ve also negotiated 60+ service contracts, including elevator maintenance, waste management, pest control and chemical programs.
To assist in the ordering and purchasing of these products and services, our HSM eProcurement system helps you to save time and money by simplifying the process with a one-stop-shop ordering platform. When you log on, you can see suppliers and products to choose from and then order everything you need at once. You can even see your past purchases and re-order them to maximize efficiency and ensure consistency. Our proprietary eProcurement cloud-based platform simplifies the buying process, allowing you to track progress, control costs, shop supplier catalogs online, get electronic PO approval, gain descending checkbook functionality and leverage above-property reporting. HSM can also customize the eProcurement system to meet the unique service, support and adoption needs of your property, including offering the latest purchasing metrics for your properties at any time, anywhere.
Despite the extensive capabilities of this leading technology, we also realize that sometimes you just need a real person to help. That’s why HSM Strategic Accounts provides customers with a trusted, strategic team of advisors to ensure that they are taking full advantage of HSM’s programs, technologies and customer support. From onboarding new hotels to providing insight and opportunity reporting, we deliver account management for your business that is tailored to our customers’ needs and priorities. As hospitality people, HSM understands that supreme customer service and support is critical to help our customers deliver service excellence. So we also offer HSMx, our dedicated help desk, to assist with replenishment orders, eProcurement questions and whatever else you might need.
To ensure success across all of the product and service categories your business needs, consider partnering with HSM. Our category experts bring decades of experience and up-to-the-minute industry insights to supplying products, reviewing contracts, controlling costs and identifying trends. And if you need someone to walk you through all of it, we’ve got a category for that, too.
It stands to reason that your supply chain’s success is largely based on the strength of your supplier network. That’s why it is important to cast a wide net, but also to focus on the quality and diversity of the relationships you develop. Fortunately for those who choose HSM as their procurement partner, we have created an extensive network of more than 1,100 industry-leading suppliers who strengthen our supply chains through variety, diversity and responsible sourcing.
One reason HSM is able to offer consistent and reliable supply chain solutions is because we have made it a priority to diversify our distribution channels. Other purchasing programs often choose one avenue to market, while we like to expand our options to offer stability and flexibility to our customers. For example, HSM draws from a variety of established industry suppliers, including these and other options: Sysco, Guest Supply and Edward Don. This gives us a deeper bench of strength and more resilient supply chains so we can remain confident and agile.
HSM’s supplier network can also bring value to your business through our commitment to supplier diversity. At HSM, we believe that our supplier community should reflect the communities in which we all live, work and travel. To help push this ideal forward, we forge strategic partnerships, host informative events and offer empowering resources to businesses owned by women, minorities, veterans and LGBTQ individuals. Our award-winning Supplier Diversity program is a large part of this priority.
HSM has also made it a priority to promote social responsibility by partnering with our suppliers to eradicate any form of forced labor or trafficking. We perform supplier due diligence and train our procurement teams on risks of modern slavery in labor sourcing. To track our progress towards aligning with our environmental and social impact goals, HSM has developed a Responsible Sourcing Advisory Board and utilizes the latest technology to evaluate and address our suppliers’ sustainability risk.
The value in HSM’s extensive supplier network comes not just from the quality and diversity within, but also from the important relationships we’ve established. During major disruptions – like the hurricanes, wildfires and global pandemic of the past year – it’s these relationships that keep the supply chain moving. During difficult times for our customers, suppliers are encouraged to be more flexible with policies and payments because of the partnerships HSM has already developed with them. Our supplier network is really a community, one that we’ve worked hard to curate and that comes through in a crisis.
If you are interested in aligning yourself with a strong, far-reaching, diverse and ethical group of suppliers, HSM has already created this network for you. Contact us to learn more about our suppliers and how our relationships with them can benefit your business.
As we approach the coldest months of the year, serious weather can mean serious disruptions to your supply chain. Delays due to plummeting temperatures and winter storms are inevitable. Couple these delays with the existing driver and equipment shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and October through March could be a particularly cruel set of months for supply chain logistics. Fortunately, HSM has a few insights to share on how to be prepared for weather-related disruptions and how to power through potential logistical hiccups.
#1. Plan in advance. First and foremost, advance planning is the strongest mitigator to any supply chain disruption – whether it’s a winter whiteout, tropical hurricane, raging brushfire or global pandemic. While all of these events are unexpected and completely outside of your control, you can expect that at some point major natural events will interrupt your procurement plans. Knowing ahead of time where your goods are shipping from and arriving will allow you to determine the best route. As soon as you see trouble brewing, work with carriers and destination contacts to make them aware of potential delays. Be cautious; be early; be prepared.
#2. Safety is key. Supply chain management includes a responsibility for ensuring the safety of your drivers and goods. Achieving this goal comes down to one thing, good communication. If a winter storm is sweeping through the Northern Corridor or Upper Midwest, keep everyone involved continuously updated on what’s happening and how they should safely proceed. Protect your people first, and then be sure that the goods they are transporting are being taken care of as well.
#3. Lean on strategic relationships. Having the right networks and partners in place will provide a successful outcome almost every time. Being able to tap into a vast carrier network at your fingertips allows you to make adjustments behind the scenes, and unbeknownst to the customer, when a potential disruption presents itself. Having close relationships with suppliers also helps to foster timely communication and makes them more likely to be flexible when things don’t go according to schedule.
#4. Always have a backup plan. You’ve probably heard the saying, “Dig your well before you are thirsty.” Developing contingency plans when you don’t need them is the secret to coming out on top when you do. This helps to reduce risk at every point along the supply chain.
To sum it up, planning in advance, keeping people and goods safe, creating a powerful network and coming up with contingency plans before you need them are the secrets to a solid strategy for mitigating cold weather supply chain disruptions. Need help insulating your supply chain against the upcoming winter weather? Give HSM a call. We’ve got you covered.
Want to know how your business can benefit from leveraging the combined buying power of a group purchasing organization (GPO)? When you make HSM your procurement partner, you are backed by the unrivaled, value-based pricing that comes with a global network of 11,000 properties and billions in spending leverage. Partnering with a group purchasing organization can give your business big buying power, and if your supply chain is not already leveraging the power of a GPO, now is the time to consider it.
When purchasing as an individual entity, businesses are faced with higher prices, more responsibility and increased effort and inconvenience. Partnering with a GPO allows you to leverage the buying power of the entire enterprise, resulting in cost containment and the convenience of previously-negotiated prices. These relationships often also offer advice from industry specialists, up-to-date resources and market insights and solutions for improving efficiency and your bottom line.
So, now that we’ve covered why it’s so beneficial to join a GPO, we’ll take things a step further and share with you how you can maximize savings and optimize efficiency by choosing HSM as your dedicated supply chain partner. Leveraging the volume of our entire customer base, we create economies of scale that result in best-in-class pricing on all products and services, and our customers historically save 15% across multiple categories. We also offer service on standby with HSMx, your central resource for questions, supplier support, solutions and direct help with procurement.
In addition to savings and support, HSM stands apart from its competition by offering leading-edge technology, FF&E sourcing and a wide range of categories and suppliers. In a technology-driven landscape, HSM enables customers to keep pace with real-time project analytics and cloud-based eProcurement software. HSM’s FF&E team handles strategic sourcing and project procurement from start to finish by creating, developing and sourcing distinct products, as well as managing new builds, conversions and complete renovations from concept to completion. HSM has also makes it a priority to diversify our distribution channels, drawing from a variety of established industry suppliers. Whereas other purchasing programs often choose one avenue to market, expanding our options offers stability and flexibility to our customers.
Finally, HSM is a partner with a conscience. We recognize that the power and breadth of our program comes with a responsibility to drive positive environmental and social impact across our operations and supply chain. Therefore, we practice responsible sourcing in a way that benefits our customers, our suppliers, the global labor force and the planet. We are also committed to our award-winning Supplier Diversity program that strives to engage, support and create business opportunities in the communities in which we all live, work and travel. And we also believe in being upfront with our customers. Many GPOs require high spend thresholds or rebate programs. HSM would rather offer you the benefits of partnership outright with pricing that is negotiated to offset operational costs, margins that are minimal and an approach that is fully transparent.
To sum it up, the powerful and cost-saving benefits of joining a GPO are likely to transform your business. And if you are ready to harness the power of an industry-leading procurement partner, contact HSM for a risk-free, no-fee conversation about how the strength and breadth of our scale can help your bottom line.
Hilton Supply Management is a global procurement powerhouse, leveraging our size and reach to drive economies of scale to forge partnerships with best-in-class suppliers and negotiate industry-leading prices on the products and services your business needs most. When it comes to supply chain partnership, we are the experts. Wondering how HSM became the industry authority in supplying expertise? Well, you are in the right place.
The scale of HSM is in a category of its own when it comes to size, savings, service, solutions and experience. While HSM is the world’s only truly global hospitality procurement organization, we are well-equipped to service both hotel and non-hotel businesses. Backed by more than 11,000 properties around the globe using our programs, HSM leverages billions in spend power and supplies 120+ brands in 121 countries. We also have a vast network of more than 1,100 suppliers that go through a rigorous qualification process and must meet our sustainability and due diligence standards. With an award-winning Supplier Diversity program, HSM has partnered with more than 4,500 businesses owned by women, minorities, veterans and LGBTQ individuals. We believe in the power of relationships.
Partnering with HSM can benefit your business through extensive savings, unparalleled support, anywhere analytics and sourcing in every major category. Historically, HSM customers have experienced up to 15% savings across categories. We also offer a dedicated help desk, strategic account management and field resources to ensure our customers are well-cared for and taking full advantage of our services, like supply chain-savvy software. Leading-edge technology and our cloud-based eProcurement platform allow our customers to monitor trends, access real-time project reports and simplify the purchasing process at any time from anywhere. And when it comes to sourcing, we negotiate the best possible deals in every major category and offer 60+ service contracts, from elevator maintenance to waste management and pest control.
So, who is HSM? We are your friendly experts in the procurement industry who are here to offer unparalleled value, solutions, support and service to those in the hospitality business and beyond. Supplying Expertise – it’s what we do.
On December 10, Hilton Supply Management hosted the second annual Supplier Diversity Summit to bring together Hilton leadership, industry experts and our diverse supplier community. To kick off the event, HSM President and Global Head, Anu Saxena, highlighted the fact that underneath all of the major disruptions of 2020 – the global pandemic, natural disasters, social and political unrest – there have been opportunities for growth concerning diversity. This is also most certainly true within the supply chain.
In today’s business, a corporate commitment to diversity is essential if we want our supply chains to reflect those who live and work in the communities we serve, especially within the hospitality industry. The purpose of the Supplier Diversity Summit is to bring together those who are already a part of our diverse supplier community and those who are committed to furthering the important work of moving supplier diversity forward. This included engaging sessions, panels and breakouts with CEOs, senior vice presidents, founders and general managers from across the industry. HSM was also fortunate to partner with the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) to bring the summit to life, as well as the WBE Pacific Northwest Cookie Company who provided sweet treats that accommodated multiple dietary restrictions.
Hosting events like the Supplier Diversity Summit underscores HSM’s commitment to engaging, supporting and creating business opportunities in the local and global communities where we work and travel. HSM’s Supplier Diversity program is a large part of this priority. In the past 10 years, we have cultivated relationships with more than 3,000 women-, minority-, veteran- and LGBTQ-owned businesses, and our supplier spend with these types of businesses has reached more than $593 million. Our Supplier Diversity program has evolved into its own unique brand under HSM, not only buying from diverse suppliers, but also guiding, mentoring and empowering them. In 2020, these initiatives led to Hilton being ranked #1 for Supplier Diversity by DiversityInc.
It is not only important to us that we’ve been successful so far, but we want to continue, to evolve and to strengthen the work we are doing towards increasing supplier diversity. To do this, we will continue to innovate and work closely with our suppliers to identify how we can best serve and empower them. The CleanStay initiative was Hilton’s response to cleanliness and safety concerns that had to be addressed for guests to feel comfortable returning to hotels. The program, from inception to launch, relied heavily on the innovation, flexibility and partnership of suppliers.
While numerous big events from the past year have caused severe disruptions within the supply chain, they have also forced us to innovate and rely on important relationships within our networks of suppliers. These events have also presented us with opportunities for strengthening these networks to be more representative of the local and global communities we serve. HSM is committed to furthering supplier diversity through building strategic partnerships, empowering diverse suppliers and hosting meaningful events, like the Supplier Diversity Summit. It is our fundamental belief that by working in partnership, making connections and building community, together we can make a difference.
Built in 1882, the Tudor-style Hotel Roanoke has long been a gem of the city’s quaint and bustling downtown. Part of the Hilton Curio Collection, this property has historical ties to the Virginia Tech Foundation and the City of Roanoke and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. So when talk of renovation began, there was an understanding that changes were needed to provide guests with contemporary comforts while celebrating the historical significance of the property. The hotel soon brought HSM on board to help achieve this exciting and momentous task.
Working with hotel ownership, designers and suppliers, HSM procured furniture, fixtures, and equipment (FF&E) for the “1882 Lobby Bar” renovation. This piece of the project included multiple commodities, including custom upholstered softgoods, custom casegoods, custom mirrors, light fixtures, patio furniture and custom drapery. Leveraging its purchasing power, HSM was able to secure incredibly aggressive pricing while ensuring the integrity of the design which in the end provided significant cost savings.
In addition to sourcing products and securing savings, HSM offered value in managing the process to the property team by providing tracking and support. With daily monitoring, HSM managed all orders to ensure that they were placed on-time, approved by the customer and delivered without any surprises. HSM also provided pre- and post-delivery support, presented the owner with weekly summaries and was available for all questions that arose throughout the project.
Translating the design of the “1882 Lobby Bar” for an incredible re-opening, HSM successfully delivered cost savings that exceeded expectations by leveraging their hospitality supplier relationships. The project was completed on time and under budget and successfully achieved the desired balance of history and modernity. With beautiful millwork and a metal canopy, the space reminds guests of a 19th century railway ticket station. The ceiling is painted to resemble a night sky from that era, and the locally sourced cocktails and dishes bear names from days gone by.
Hilton Supply Management’s FF&E Project Procurement team was honored to be a part of this project, which helped to restore a legendary property that makes a significant impact on the city of Roanoke and is special to both local residents and visiting guests.
Curious to see how the project looks today? Take a video tour here.
As our founder Conrad Hilton once said, “It has been, and continues to be, our responsibility to fill the earth with the light and warmth of hospitality.” And 101 years later, Hilton and HSM realize that a big part of keeping that promise involves helping to protect our shared planet. That’s why through the Hilton Travel with Purpose program and HSM’s newly-formed Global Responsible Sourcing Advisory Group, we are committed to helping the world remain healthy and vibrant for future generations.
As responsible partners to the communities in which we live and work, Hilton is redefining responsible travel by driving social and environmental change across its operations, supply chain and community through its Travel with Purpose program. This initiative represents Hilton’s corporate responsibility strategy to drive responsible travel and tourism globally. With it, we have set 2030 goals to halve our environmental impact throughout our value chain by conserving resources in our hotels, reduce the environmental footprint of our supply chain and collaborate with our local communities to invest in projects that contribute to environmental stewardship and resiliency.
HSM recognizes that sustainable practices at hotels often begin with responsible sourcing within the supply chain. That's why we are constantly looking at ways to become more environmentally friendly, whether that means investing in sustainably sourced seafood and cage free eggs or developing alternatives to plastic straws and delivering them to thousands of hotels around the globe. As the innovation and logistics center of Hilton, HSM plays an integral part in delivering on Hilton’s promise to Travel with Purpose. Under this program, we are focused on both our environmental and social impact—not only helping our hotels drive improvements in how they manage energy, water, and waste, but also catalyzing economic opportunities, promoting human rights and investing in people and local communities.
To further this work, HSM recently launched the Global Responsible Sourcing Advisory Group to identify gaps in existing efforts and to execute new opportunities to advance our broader sustainability goals. The cross-functional responsibilities of this group include establishing foundational policies, external reporting, technology integration, communication alignment and corporate responsibility. Through Travel with Purpose and the creation of this new advisory group, HSM seeks to create positive environmental and social impact across our operations, supply chain and communities. We will continue to pursue best-in-class operational excellence, engage our guests and Team Members and use our innovation and influence to make meaningful differences in the destinations and communities in which we operate.
HSM’s Strategic Accounts team is like having your own personal supply chain entourage. We provide customers with a trusted, strategic team of advisors to help make sure that your business is taking full advantage of all of the programs, technologies and customer support that HSM has to offer. If the entourage metaphor isn’t working for you, think of Strategic Accounts as consulting partners, offering your business both top-level, strategic planning and individualized, property-specific support.
At the above-property level, Strategic Accounts offers support for owners and management companies that includes reporting, updates and portfolio-level support. Our business reviews supply in-depth, per-property spend analysis to help ensure compliance, provide accurate performance reporting and drive deeper savings. Our customer alerts offer real-time updates on commodity cost outlooks, product and commodity supply alerts, food safety alerts and new supplier bulletins that provide a high-level overview of newly-signed contracts. Sharing these alerts, along with new product development and testing, can be especially important during highly volatile times.
Our property-level tactical support for hotels starts with HSMx as a first point of contact for all things ordering- and supplier-related. This includes quotes for guestroom appliance and kitchen equipment, OS&E and Protective Equipment resupply, help identifying cost savings opportunities, FF&E renovation project procurement and serves as an escalation point for supplier opportunities. Each of our customers is also assigned a geographically-focused account manager to leverage opportunities for targeted supply chain solutions, provide unparalleled service, add procurement expertise to your portfolio and drive value through engagement. In relation to purchasing, we also offer support for our eProcurement system, which offers one-stop shopping with digital supplier catalogs, easy access reporting and the ability to add additional modules, such as inventory, accounts payable and receipt management.
As you can see, the “strategy” in Strategic Accounts is evident. Our team can help yours with both strategic and tactical support to ensure that you not only have access to the programs, technology and support you need, but also to the assistance that will help you optimize HSM’s services and maximize your results.
It’s not news that in early 2020 protective equipment (PE) was in short supply, with numerous industries trying to secure limited quantities of products. Manufacturers of items like face masks, disposable gloves and hand sanitizer simply can’t keep up with the demand. With priority being given to healthcare and government institutions, it has become even more difficult for hotels to get their hands on the important items that help safeguard employees and guests. HSM has responded to these challenges by doing what we do best – leveraging supplier relationships, negotiating premier pricing and sourcing the items our hotels need most.
The immediate and far-reaching disruption COVID-19 has caused to the PE market presents two big challenges for procurement, increased prices and decreased supply. At the onset of the pandemic, there was a frenzy to obtain protective equipment, and as a result, prices soared. Since then, disposable face mask pricing has fallen considerably as supply becomes more readily available. However, for disposable gloves and sanitizer product refills, demand continues to outpace production capabilities; therefore, prices are still high and products are scarce. The globally constrained glove supply is projected to continue through Q1 of 2021, and consumers will experience higher glove prices compared to the past six months. While PE supply constraint and price escalation are likely to be ongoing problems, HSM is using strength and strategy to help hotels get what they need to ensure the well-being of team members and travelers.
With industry-leading initiatives like Hilton CleanStay in place at hotels, HSM understands and is responding to the urgent need for protective equipment products. We have built a strong and resilient supply chain to procure various PE supplies, including face masks, gloves, disposable protective wear, eye protection and hand sanitizer. To establish a robust, long-term sustainable supply chain, we carefully evaluated manufacturing and distribution capabilities, pricing and commercial terms, and additional criteria, such as financial stability, experience and clientele, adherence to specifications and overall quality. As a result, HSM has partnered with multiple established suppliers for each product category, yielding significant savings for our properties.
Within our PE supply chain, HSM customers are already enjoying positive outcomes, and we are continuing to monitor the market to provide sourcing solutions. While the worldwide demand for protective masks and respirators is at an all-time high, manufacturers have responded by increasing production, resulting in ample supply in the marketplace and significantly reduced pricing compared to the onset of the pandemic. HSM offers multiple options for cloth reusable masks, as well as disposable masks, at competitive price points. HSM has also identified sources of refillable sanitizer dispensers, along with accompanying bulk sanitizer gel product, and continues to monitor the disposable glove marketplace to capture the most competitive pricing available.
During this time, HSM is working hard on behalf of owners to lessen the impact on their hotels, to provide regular updates with details of all terms negotiated with our suppliers and to offer resources for other COVID-19-related supply chain information. We understand the importance of sourcing PE items because they play a key role in keeping people safe. HSM will continue to focus on the health of your supply chain, so our customers can focus on safeguarding the health of their teams and guests.
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