One of the pleasures of staying in a hotel is having someone else take care of the daily chores for you. But most of us don’t give a second thought to where all those fresh towels and bed linens come from (and go to) on a daily basis.
For many hotels – as well as restaurants, hospitals, resorts and care facilities – there’s an entire supply – and resupply – chain in action behind the scenes, ensuring that every towel and every sheet is catalogued, washed, pressed and returned to its proper location. Managing this process has always been a challenge for laundry services, but thanks to the Internet of Things (IoT), Berendsen UK, a major UK-based laundry company, now has complete visibility into the location of every item, at any time, as well as the ability to analyze and report on the data for a company-wide and country-wide view.
The Microsoft News Centre UK feature story Berendsen UK’s fresh approach to the Internet of Things explains how this company uses the Microsoft Azure cloud, the Microsoft IoT Hub, PowerBI and smart tags in every piece of linen to track the status of one million (and growing) bed sheets, pillow cases, tablecloths, napkins and towels they launder and return every day to facilities around the country. The solution, which will continue to scale up as the company grows, enables Berendsen to track their inventory, streamline their operations and improve their service.
Thanks to the smart tags and data analysis through Azure HDInsight, the company can use their PowerBI dashboards to track operations; but they also gather valuable management data and insights, such as where losses occur, how long each towel or sheet lasts, and how linen items from different manufacturers perform over time. This not only keeps customers happy by reducing the speed of the laundry/delivery cycle, it also keeps costs from spinning out of control.
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