To do this, properties must focus on customer satisfaction. For a casino, that customer satisfaction is closely tied to creating the right ambiance. In other words, the glitz, lights and often exotic equipment that are standard expectations for casino customers can make a casino very successful—but, unfortunately, make maintenance a daunting task.
Just like in hotels where delivering a five-star experience is key, casino maintenance to that high standard can lead to considerable costs and unending daily maintenance asks in an effort to offer their guests the best experience possible.
In essence, a casino has all the major challenges experienced in hotel maintenance in addition to managing all the other services that these establishments provide. Here are some of the big issues casino maintenance management has to tackle—along with possible solutions:
• Equipment maintenance—Casinos are known for excessive lighting: both to draw customers’ attention and to engage them for as long as possible. However, keeping so much lighting running at once can quickly affect other systems. For instance, let’s look at how lighting impacts the HVAC system in a typical casino. The heat generated by these lights, combined with smoking by patrons, means that indoor air quality is always a major concern. The maintenance team must ensure that the HVAC system remains in prime working condition without fail.
Maintaining this level of service includes placing each piece of equipment on a preventive maintenance schedule, conducting routine inspections of all the building’s equipment (including the individual HVAC units, air handling units, boilers, the lighting system, etc.) to identify issues before they deteriorate and require more money to fix. Taking this proactive approach to equipment maintenance will help to control overall maintenance costs.
• Energy efficiency—While other businesses generally look for innovative ways to keep high-energy consuming assets like lights and HVAC off, casinos are the opposite. Their lights must stay on almost 24/7, as do gaming machines and a number of other vital products and systems. If energy consumption is not monitored, the costs will constantly rise and erode the casino’s bottom line.
To prevent excessive energy consumption, there are several options that casinos can adopt such as using high-efficiency pumps, energy-tracking systems, significant use of LED lighting, or even building automation systems.
For example, with a building automation system, much of the energy management can be automated to minimize excessive cooling or heating; switch off lights in vacant areas; quickly detect sudden spikes in electricity usage and much more.
Assets that work smarter and not harder tend to live longer and experience fewer breakdowns—which frees up the maintenance team to focus on other pressing matters. Additionally, assets in top condition are known to spend less energy to operate, which is another reason in favor of doing proactive maintenance.
• Inventory management—The average casino will usually have a large variety of inventory items in stock ranging from machine spare parts to light bulbs and cleaning supplies. Such an enormous inventory comes with its unique issues.
The maintenance team has two challenges here, the first of which is managing inventory. Mismanagement of inventory causes significant financial problems in any business. To avoid this, casino maintenance will need to monitor the procurement and stocking of inventory items especially to prevent stockout or overstocking situations. In large casinos, this activity alone can consume a lot of time if done manually. A better option would be to use CMMS or a dedicated inventory management software, as they provide more visibility into inventory data and help to control the costs associated with inventory management.
The second challenge is keeping track of smaller mobile assets. Since people are constantly moving in and out, to discourage pilfering casinos need a system to help them track where smaller, portable assets are at any time. GPS asset tracking software can be used to pinpoint the exact location of a missing item.
• Hygiene and housekeeping—Another critical aspect of casino maintenance is the need to ensure the highest level of hygiene and general housekeeping. Like other businesses in the hospitality industry, everything from greasy, dirty floors to untidy restrooms will generate a lot of negative reviews that can ruin your bottom line.
Now more than ever, casinos also need to be mindful of hygiene practices in view of the coronavirus pandemic. Fortunately, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) has an exhaustive guide for casinos covering several issues like safe cleaning of equipment and healthy hygiene practices.
That aside, keeping the facility clean reduces the risks of trips, falls and related injuries, which potentially decreases liabilities stemming from an accident.
Granted, operating a casino is challenging especially with all the complex equipment that needs to run simultaneously. But, maintenance management does not need to be a hindrance. By following the few tips above, casinos can streamline their maintenance activities and focus on their core services.