Siegel Sez

September 14, 2018

Siegel Sez


by: Rich Siegel



When I started my business 26 years ago I got lots of advice. Some suggestions made sense and some of the advice I didn’t agree with. I remember being told that the one thing I needed to do was let people think my business was bigger than it is. I was told, people like doing business with larger companies, it makes them feel a bit more secure. I absolutely disagreed with that advice. I was proud what our little company could accomplish. Today Hospitality Upgrade is read in more than 110 countries around the world. Last week this little company brought technology leaders representing just about every major brand, all the large management companies and a slew of smaller companies that successfully battle the big guys. Seventy technology leaders from these companies joined us at our 17th CIO Summit in Seattle, and it was one for the ages. I will skip the details because you will see a recap in the next issue of Hospitality Upgrade with information as to where the industry is going, what the hot topics are and more importantly some really funny pictures from the summit. We thank Mark Fancourt for helping put together a great program. The emails and phone calls I have received from attendees this week confirm the great event and have simply been amazing, especially from the first-time attendees which included quite a few companies that crossed the border from Canada to experience the CIO Summit. Everything worked this year and the coolest thing was I got to fly a plane that was built in 1947. Trusting me to fly over the attendees at our night at Boeing was crazy, but everyone survived. There are so many pictures all over LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter (#2018CIOSummit) so if you aren’t connected to Hospitality Upgrade on these channels you should do that now. What a great week for this small company.  It isn’t the number of people, but it is the quality of the people that make companies succeed. We have a great group!
 
Yes, this is the season for conferences. I will be off to Phoenix in a week to lead a session at the Lodging Conference on how technology will impact the industry in the not so distant future. If you are attending the Lodging Conference I hope to see you there. Our session is on Wednesday morning at 11:15. Come join the fun. It should be thought provoking with the panel that has been put together. 
 
Here now is the real reason we are here, the latest technology happenings in the industry with Ron Hardin’s thoughts that were inspired by one of the many discussions last week in Seattle. I will see you at the end with this week’s attempt at you-know-what. To subscribe to Hospitality Upgrade in print or digitally, please go to www.hospitalityupgrade.com/subscribe.
 
Rich@hospitalityupgrade.com



Introduction


by: Ron  Hardin

Last week I had the distinct honor and privilege of attending my 14th consecutive Hospitality Upgrade CIO Summit in Seattle.  The weather was perfect and the program outstanding.  In attendance were technology leaders for hospitality organizations ranging from single destination properties up to the largest hotel companies in the world.  The consensus of many repeat attendees is that this invitation-only event has become the “must attend” item on their annual calendar. Kudos to Rich Siegel and his team at Hospitality Upgrade. And a big thank-you to all the sponsors who make this unique event possible.
 
One of the highlight events of the CIO Summit is a free-wheeling roundtable discussion session moderated by Jeremy Rock of RockIT Group.  Among a wide range of topics this year was the subject of whether hotels should still be installing telephones in guestrooms.  The combined factors of virtually zero usage (other than in-house service requests), zero revenue generation, and the cost of installation and maintenance are driving many owners and operators to actively discuss this question.  Some new hotels have opened without guestroom phones. 
 
One example cited during the roundtable forgoes a guestroom phone in favor of the guests’ own mobile phone, linking the guests’ mobile phone numbers to their guest profiles, and backed up by a small supply of IP phones that can be connected in a room upon request.  In a follow-up discussion, another attendee noted that the no-phones concept will run afoul of local codes and ordinances in many jurisdictions according to a study they commissioned.  I have also been researching this issue, and I believe the legal and regulatory restrictions are probably not as prevalent as the fear of liability – that seems to be the big driver to maintaining the traditional in-room telephone.  Kari’s Law was signed earlier this year by President Trump.  This Federal law requires multi-line telecom systems in businesses and lodging establishments to support direct-dialing of 911 with no other leading digits, and for those systems to notify the business staff that an emergency call has been placed.  I’m sure most of you recall the tragic incident that spurred this legislation, in which a young mother was murdered in a motel room by her ex-husband in the presence of their 9-year-old daughter, who was unable to reach 911 because the PBX still required a “9” to reach an outside line. 
 
We teach our children from an early age to dial 911 in an emergency, so it makes perfect sense to ensure that telephones in guestrooms – when provided – be able to route a 911 call correctly.  Increasingly, however, our homes and even many businesses are foregoing the traditional land-line phones in favor of mobile phones.  To many young children now, exposed only to mobile phones, a guestroom or office phone would be a strange and unfamiliar device.  There are good alternatives to the traditional guestroom telephone, ranging from the guests’ own devices to multi-function devices installed by the hotel that provide voice communications among other services and features.  If local codes and ordinances require an actual hardwired telephone set, we should work toward getting those regulations updated.  And while risk should always be a factor for consideration, we should not let blind fear of potential liability stifle innovation.
 
The big news today, of course, is Hurricane Florence.  As a native of North Carolina, my thoughts and prayers go out to all those effected, particularly those whose livelihoods are dependent on tourism and lodging.  The end-of-season nice-weather shoulder period after Labor Day is crucial to many before the weather turns cold and the vacationers disappear.  So, Florence has already inflicted the first economic blow – let us pray that the wind and water spare our colleagues and neighbors.
 
 
Ron Hardin, CHTP
RonHardin.TECH Consulting
Ron@ronhardin.tech


Recent Headlines, From Hospitality Upgrade




TOP O' THE NEWS



- All Suites Brands by Hilton Open 34 Properties, Ink 35 Hotel Deals in Q2 2018
__________ 

All Suites Brands by Hilton Open 34 Properties, Ink 35 Hotel Deals in Q2 2018
The All Suites brands by Hilton have continued their strong growth into Q2, opening 34 new hotels and bringing the total number of All Suites properties to nearly 1,000. 




MERGERS and ACQUISITIONS



- Phonesuite Acquires Asteria Solutions Group and Adds Full Service ACD (Automated Call Distribution) to its Voiceware Platform

- Sabre and Carlson Wagonlit Travel Expand Long-Term Business Partnership With New Strategic Agreement
__________

Phonesuite Acquires Asteria Solutions Group and Adds Full Service ACD (Automated Call Distribution) to its Voiceware Platform
Phonesuite, a leading provider of hotel voice technology solutions, announced that it has further expanded its Voiceware platform to meet the needs of today’s hotel customers through its acquisition of Asteria Solutions Group, a provider of voice communication and call center solutions to leading companies including Trip Advisor. 
http://www.phonesuite.com/
 
 
Sabre and Carlson Wagonlit Travel Expand Long-Term Business Partnership With New Strategic Agreement
Sabre Corporation and Carlson Wagonlit Travel have announced a new long-term agreement that broadens their long-standing business partnership and deepens the companies' close collaboration on technological innovations being developed for mutual growth and success.
https://www.sabre.com/



PEOPLE ON THE MOVE



- AHLA President & CEO Katherine Lugar Announces Departure & Joins American Beverage Association

- New Head of Spain at SiteMinder Says, “Technology Opens a New Future for Hotels.”

- BirchStreet Systems Announces Steve Markle as the New CEO to Drive Scale, Growth and Execution

-
The Rainmaker Group Appoints Hospitality Veteran as New Head of Sales


For more information on People On the Move for 9/14/18

GUEST MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS



- StayNTouch CEO Jos Schaap Shares His Vision for the Future of Hotel Technology

- Maestro PMS Takes Its Sales and Catering Module to the Next Level with Expanded, Integrated Mobile Operations and More

- New Agilysys DataMagine™ v8.7 Brings Administrative Enhancements and Automation

- Scandinavian Hotel Group Story Hotels Brings PMS Flexibility to Its Portfolio With StayNTouch's Cloud-Based Solutions


For more information on Guest Management Systems for 9/14/18

RESERVATIONS



- SHR Selected by GreenTree Inn Hotels as New Distribution Partner
__________

SHR Selected by GreenTree Inn Hotels as New Distribution Partner

SHR, Sceptre Hospitality Resources, a pioneer of advanced hotel distribution technologies and developer of Windsurfer® CRS, has been chosen by GreenTree Hospitality Group, a leading hotel owner, operator, and franchisor of the GreenTree Inn and GreenTree Inn & Suites branded hotels, as its strategic distribution technology provider.
https://shr.global/




REVENUE MANAGEMENT



- IDeaS Revenue Solutions and Guestline Expand Strategic Partnership
__________

IDeaS Revenue Solutions and Guestline Expand Strategic Partnership
IDeaS Revenue Solutions, a leading provider of revenue management software and advisory services, has expanded its partnership with Guestline to include IDeaS G3 Revenue Management System (IDeaS G3 RMS), allowing hotels the ability to analytically optimise room pricing by utilising transaction-level data.
 http://www.ideas.com/




MARKETING/MANAGEMENT



- Cendyn Is Asia’s Leading Data-Driven Marketing Agency 2018 as Voted by Prestigious World Travel Awards

- Cendyn Has Been Nominated for Four Prestigious World Travel Awards 2018

- TravelClick Partners With The Guestbook To Bring Its Cash Back Rewards Program to Independent Hotels

- Flight Centre’s Hotel Management Business BHMA Selects TravelClick’s Award-Winning iHotelier® Central Reservations System


For more information on Marketing/ Management for 9/14/18

BACK OFFICE



- Oliver Companies Goes Mobile: Installs Aptech PVNG Enterprise Accounting for 18 Properties
__________

Oliver Companies Goes Mobile: Installs Aptech PVNG Enterprise Accounting for 18 Properties
Aptech Computer Systems announced that Oliver Companies, Inc. upgraded its back office financial processes to PVNG Enterprise Accounting.
http://www.aptech-inc.com/




COMMUNICATIONS/INFRASTRUCTURE



- Marriott International to Provide Personal Alert Devices for Housekeepers and Other Hotel Associates Across the US and Canada

- Beekeeper Improves Employee Communication for Feather Falls Casino, Lodge & Brewing Co.

- Hoteliers + Non-Desk Hotel Workers to Benefit from Beekeeper’s $13 Million ‘Series A’ Extension


For more information on Communication and Infrastructure for 9/14/18

PAYMENT PROCESSING



FreedomPay Receives Elavon UK Certification As It Expands It’s Award Winning Commerce Platform Across Europe
__________ 

FreedomPay Receives Elavon UK Certification As It Expands It’s Award Winning Commerce Platform Across Europe
FreedomPay, a global leader in secure commerce technology for lodging, gaming, retail, restaurants, stadiums and other hospitality merchants, has announced the receipt of the Elavon UK certification for their Commerce Connect eCommerce and PCI-validated point-to-point encryption (P2PE) compliant ePayments solution for the European market.
http://www.freedompay.com/

 



SECURITY



- The Three “C’s” Webinar Series: Clear, Concise, Comforting: Responding to Privacy Regulation FAQs

-  Marriott Maracay Golf Resort Enhances Security with Adoption of ASSA ABLOY Hospitality Technology

- Champion Hotels Taps dormakaba for First IHG avid™ hotel, First Tru by Hilton

- Video: dormakaba Confirms Leadership with Total Enterprise Solution



For more information on Security for 9/14/18

HOSPITALITY EDUCATION



- HFTP and HTNG Sign Partnership Agreement to Strengthen Resources for the Hospitality Industry
__________

HFTP and HTNG Sign Partnership Agreement to Strengthen Resources for the Hospitality Industry
Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP®) and Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG) announced during Hospitality Upgrade’s Annual CIO Summit that they established a partnership geared toward strengthening the progression of the technology in the hospitality industry. 
https://www.hftp.org/
https://www.htng.org/




HOSPITALITY EVENTS



- AAHOA Northwest Charity Golf Tournament Raises Over $100,000

- HFTP Announces 2018 CHAE of the Year Recipient: Elijah Spiritoso, CHAE

- America’s Hoteliers Meeting With Lawmakers, Aiming to Boost Tourism, Tax Cuts

- Hospitality Executives Tackle Technology and Distribution Challenges at HSMAI’s Curate

- Marriott Hotels And TED Deliver Inspiring ‘Women In Innovation’ Salon That Sparks New Perspectives Across Asia Pacific



For more information on Hospitality Events for 9/14/18

PIQUED OUR INTEREST



This Airport Has a Jumbo Jet Transformed Into a Hotel
 
- Meet Gen Z and Here’s How Your Hotel Can Appeal to Them
 
- Sold! The entire town of Tiller, Oregon to turn into a resort
 
- Consumers Want Amazon to Be a Travel Booking Site – What Can Hotels Learn?
 
- How Hotels and Airlines Are Helping Out Ahead of Hurricane Florence



For more information on Piqued Our Intrest for 9/14/18

You-Know-What



And now for you-know-what …  A few points to ponder ...
 
There was an elderly couple who in their old age noticed that they were getting a lot more forgetful, so they decided to go to the doctor. The doctor told them that they should start writing things down so they don't forget. They went home and the old lady told her husband to get her a bowl of ice cream.
 
"You might want to write it down," she said.
 
The husband said, "No, I can remember that you want a bowl of ice cream."
 
She then told her husband she wanted a bowl of ice cream with whipped cream. "Write it down," she told him.
 
Again, he said, "No, no, I can remember: you want a bowl of ice cream with whipped cream."
 
Then the old lady said she wants a bowl of ice cream with whipped cream and a cherry on top. "Write it down," she told her husband.
 
Again, he said, "No, I got it. You want a bowl of ice cream with whipped cream and a cherry on top." So he goes to get the ice cream and spends an unusually long time in the kitchen, over 30 minutes. He comes out to his wife and hands her a plate of eggs and bacon.
 
The old wife stares at the plate for a moment, then looks at her husband and asks, "Where's the toast?”





want to read more articles like this?

want to read more articles like this?

Sign up to receive our twice-a-month Watercooler and Siegel Sez Newsletters and never miss another article or news story.