Room Service Tray Myth

From Rayna Katz over at Meetings Industry Soap of her two peeves about luxury hotels and how a new hotel in North Carolina plans to solve it.

Peeve #1: guest corridors serving as the eternal resting place of used room-service trays. Nothing welcomes a meeting attendee back to the guest room at the end of a long day quite like discarded food and dirty plates in the hall. The solution: A micro chip in the trays that will alert the private dining department when the tray has been put in the hall and is ready for of the exact time and location of a tray’s migration from holder of a meal being eaten to unsightly remnant in need of collection. Genius, right?

Well, not so fast on the genius part. Might I suggest that the problem with those nasty room service trays is not so much knowing that they're there as it is making it a priority to go pick them up. This tech solution proposes that someone will go up each time the tray is pushed out the door...not practical, especially when you're busy.  Or, maybe they'll go fetch them when there's critical mass (not much better than the current situation). The root cause of the problem is motivating the staff (not just room service, but all staff) to about unsightly and sometimes hazardous junk in the corridor. Get people to make this a priority...and I think you can live without the micro chip...although, I must admit, it's a cool idea.