2020 has been an unprecedented year for the hospitality industry around the world because of the global Covid-19 pandemic and the hotel industry in Vietnam has been significantly hurt, with many small and medium hotels having to close down and sell their properties while many others struggling to generate any revenue to help offset their expenses.
The Odys Boutique Hotel, in Ho Chi Minh City, decided that during the Covid-19 pandemic that it would need to adapt and that the skills taught in university and college hotel classes would require hands-on experience from the actual hotels if students in hospitality and tourism course are going to be prepared for the “new normal” that is the reality for both domestic and international hotels as the global hospitality goes on major transformations to stay relevant and develop.
During the last several months, Odys adapted to this new reality by training students from Hutech University, Saigon Tourism College, and the Van Hien University, University of Economy and Finance.
Through internships and on-job training at the hotel, students gained valuable experience on how a hotel operates and adapts to the unexpected waves of the time. A key focus of the students training was learning how a hotel can adapt to a lack of customers by developing new products such as food delivery to individuals and companies who live in proximity to the hotel, or how to develop 1-day and multiple-day “Staycations” that can appeal to people who want to get out of their homes and have a change of scenery. They also learned of new ideas on how the hotel can reduce its operational resources, saving the hotels thousands of dollars each month.
Vo Thi Thien Huong, General Manager of The Odys Boutique Hotel shared her thoughts on the student internships and said that, “Learning theories in class may not be enough for students to confidently apply for a job after graduation. They will also need many specific professional skills and soft skills as trained via actual hands-on experience.”
She added that, “The hotel always aims towards the best service quality. Training students also help us track our service procedure sand prepare for when the market reopens. Training staff and the future generation will always be our aim for a long-term developing strategy.”