How Hotel Night Auditors Should Spend Their Time

By Naomi Balagot

In today’s economy, many companies are focused on hiring employees with specialized skill sets. In recent years, there has been a push against putting “multitasking” on your resume after researchers found that handling too many tasks at one time can be detrimental to productivity.

However, a night auditor in a hotel is one job where multitasking should be a prerequisite. You want to hire someone who is a competent problem solver and who won’t get thrown off by potentially stressful situations.

Here are just some of the tasks and responsibilities that a night auditor must complete daily:

Money Handling & Financial Reports

It’s the crucial job of the night auditor to close out daily hotel financial activities. Business is done for the day, and now it’s time to tally results and reconcile receipts.

If a discrepancy is noted or an account isn’t balance, the night auditor must fill out a report for management. He or she works as an internal auditor to make sure the hotel’s day staff didn’t make errors in room rates, bar or restaurant tabs, etc.

Front Desk

It’s less likely during the week, but someone may show up in the middle of the night looking for a room. Overbookings become the problem of the night auditor, so the individual must know how to quickly accommodate a weary guest.

Customer Service

From someone smoking where they shouldn’t be to noise coming from the next room, responding to complaints becomes the night auditor’s responsibility once the day shift leaves. The night auditor must follow the hotel’s guidelines for customer service and remain professional. After all, exceptional customer service is integral to hotel brands no matter what time it is, and customers expect it.

Housekeeping and maintenance

A hotel simply can’t afford to have housekeeping and maintenance staff working around the clock, so it becomes the night auditor’s job to document everything that happens overnight, from a clogged sink to a guest who needs more towels. Tasks are assigned to appropriate staff members the following day.

Security

Safety is paramount in the hotel industry. All staff members must know how to call in emergencies and when to call the authorities vs. calling the hotel’s security guard. The night auditor must know the hotel’s procedures and protocols, and to be able to communicate effectively with police, fire, or EMT respondents if needed.

One former night auditor recalls, “Nobody had bothered to explain ANY emergency procedures to me (I eventually read the emergency procedures manual and became the most knowledgeable person on them other than the lead engineer who wrote them).”

Good for him, but that’s actually terrifying! For the sake of your guests, please train your employees and track their progress.

Shifting Responsibilities

Just like a vampire called into the night, the night auditor must vanish before daybreak. While it’s not that dramatic, eventually the shift changes and the night auditor must hand over financial reports and other documentation to the next shift.

Communication

When the night auditor changes shift, it is likely that he or she is tired, and the person coming on to work at the crack of dawn may also need a cup of coffee to wake up. Do everyone in your organization a favor by backing up your reports. The advantage of cloud software is that anyone in your organization who is authorized to view the information can quickly see it and sort through issues.

For example, perhaps you had a guest like rock drummer/famed destructionist Keith Moon visiting your hotel last night. The night auditor can assign maintenance staff in the morning, while housekeeping should get the hazmat suits ready.

Let’s hope this doesn’t happen, but you have to expect the unexpected in the hospitality industry!

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