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Information is power: Hospitality sector to benchmark performance

A new tool will help "breathe new life" into hospitality businesses by enabling them to measure their performance against industry standards.

A new tool will help "breathe new life" into hospitality by enabling businesses to measure their performance against industry standards, say those close to the sector.

Last week Hospitality Association president Adam Cunningham, Social Development Minister Paula Bennett, and various MPs and industry executives launched Hospro, an online benchmarking tool designed to help small businesses improve productivity and profitability.

Cunningham said the project, which had been five years in the making, was already being used by 2000 operators.

It collects data anonymously via a questionnaire directly from companies in order to generate baseline indicators. Each new business using Hospro will add to the pool of information held in the database.

“These results will also suggest where changes can be made, giving business owners a clear idea about how to improve their business' productivity.”

Bennett said the hospitality sector was a major employer and the government supported any programmes designed to stimulate business growth.

“Detailed industry knowledge is like oxygen for small businesses and this new tool will help struggling business owners to breathe new life into their operations."

Cunningham said Hospro was practical and easy to use.

“It will make a significant contribution to lifting profitability across the hospitality sector."

Hospro was developed in conjunction with the Department of Labour, Hospitality Standards Institute and members of the Service Industry Training Alliance.

A 2008 survey found there were very few business assessment monitors available to the industry. Although some operators had productivity tools, few used them in a formal way or had clarity about the definition of the term.