Project Description

The Hotel Employers Labor Relations Association is a non-profit association that represents the interests of a number of hotels with collective bargaining agreements throughout the Chicagoland market. The organization, established in 1984, provides expertise on contract interpretation, mediation of grievances, general labor and employee relations training. HELRA has helped elevate the Chicago hotel industry that is known worldwide. 

More than 51.1 million visitors come to Chicago each year, occupying some 45,000 rooms in over 140 hotels. Each year, conventions and group business occupy about a third of hotel stays in Chicago. And the demand keeps increasing. HELRA’s mission is to develop and foster a harmonious relationship between its hotel members and labor unions. 

HELRA boasts a 97% industry satisfaction rate for the hotels it represents.

While an established entity in the Chicagoland area, HELRA was in need of a digital solution that would bring together its membership, as well as serve as an impressive portal for visitors seeking to travel to the Windy City. With membership on the rise and the hospitality world increasing in complexity, HELRA needed a single-source solution. And it needed to establish an online presence. 

Marx Layne’s strategy was to establish an impressive and resourceful digital footprint for HELRA. Marx Layne conceived, designed and wrote a highly stylized, responsive and secure website for its members and Chicago visitors. On the membership side, members can securely log in and access important resources. It securely hosts important information about negotiations of the collective bargaining process. 

Additionally,, serves as a networking and idea-sharing place for its members. was launched in 2021 under the guidance of Marx Layne’s technical team. The website launch was announced to its membership as well as general media. The site offers: 

  • Single, secure sign-on so members can enjoy easy access to pertinent information 
  • Access to downloadable content 
  • Responsive design (mobile-, tablet- and, desktop friendly) 
  • Important industry news to benefit hotel and allied members was designed in a way so that the organization can effectively update news and thought-leadership content and more. 

Future Chicagoland visitors can also use the site to book a room from any one of the dozens of member hotels listed on the site. 

Since Marx Layne unveiled the website, HELRA members now enjoy a single point of information and have been using the website extensively to obtain information, download forms and use its many resources in the collective bargaining process. It also provides tools for members to improve employee relations to elevate the entire team. 

Members and visitors also consume industry-relevant content on such issues as staffing, trends in the Chicago hotel industry market, prepping for a pandemic and post-pandemic marketplace and, traveler behavior trends. also provides members with COVID-19 resources with online safety training courses and suppliers. 

Because of Marx Layne’s efforts, HELRA now has a stable and established online presence that not only benefits the organization in membership retention. It allows for membership growth, as well.  

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