We encourage all of our accommodation guests, both at the inn and those staying in our self catering chalets and cottages, to complete a feedback form. Knowing what a business's customers think about it is nothing new, and it probably comes as no surprise that we find it an invaluable means of making sure that we keep on providing the best service possible.
Having just returned from a trip that involved a national budget hotel chain, an airport car park company and a budget airline, and having found my inbox full of requests for relentless box-ticking online surveys asking for my opinion on these, it left me wondering just who reads this stuff and what action is taken as a result.
Well, I can't really say. But for our own part, all of our forms are reviewed as soon as they are received. Time is sometimes of the essence. For example, occasionally there might be some maintenance issues that we have yet to pick up on, and this gives us chance to rectify these straight away.
Thereafter, the forms are collated and scored, weekly for the inn, monthly for self catering. This gives us a 'satisfaction index',and whilst the actual number is an arbitrary score, the consistency over a period of time is the real value.
The forms are reviewed at the weekly manager's meeting, which usually means that each one is read by two directors, the general manager and the assistant manager. We can't say that we always agree with everyone's opinion, but we can say that if you write it, we read it. It does make a difference.
The reality is that it's actually a real boost reading through the many positive comments we receive. Quite often, it's hard to see the wood for the trees, particularly towards the end of a long season. Here's a handful of our favourites that made us smile from this week's selection...
I have been coming for over 40 years and it gets better and better!
Room 2. 11th October
Room 25. 10th October
Fantastic stay! Fantastic place! Thank you. (smiley face).
Room 4. 8th October.
We were made to feel really welcome from the start.
Room 19. 5th October.
Check in staff member was funny, very helpful, efficient, and sorted out everything with minimum fuss and maximum sense of humour - Perfect!
Room?, 6th October.
And our pick of the week, which speaks volumes for the Clachaig tradition....
My dad was here about 70 years ago - a very basic hostel, and my husband was here about 40 years ago - a hotel. They both found the welcome and hospitality unchanged. Will bring the next generation.
Room 23. 10th October.
So, as we rapidly approach the end of another year here at Clachaig, many thanks for all your feedback. We'll keep on doing our thing here in Glencoe, so long as you keep on coming - and telling us how we did.