Tech Talk

Recent posts

Definitely Doug 10/18/19
Posted: 12/06/2019

Sustainable Innovation
 
Sustainability can yield multiple benefits to hotels. Saving energy and water yields direct cost savings. Revenue can be generated by guests who prefer to deal with businesses that minimize their environmental impact. And many would argue that conserving scarce resources is simply the right thing to do.

Definitely Doug 12/6/19
Posted: 12/06/2019

Meetings Innovation
 
The sale and delivery of groups and meetings is perhaps the most significant and under-automated functions for many hotels. Even though groups often account for 30% to 60% of revenue, most group bookings are still handled manually for most if not all of steps, as they move from a meeting planner’s research to a confirmed booking.

The biggest enemy to any system is complexity. In a system of inputs and outputs, such as an enterprise system, more complexity means more parts are used in interaction with inputs to create the outputs. Every part that must be built and maintained costs time and money

Tracking the evolution of key performance indicators (KPIs) over time allows hoteliers to identify meaningful trends, create forecasts and budgets and assess the results of different strategies. To perform this kind of analysis, data has to be recorded within consistent time intervals and in chronological order. This is known as a time series.

Definitely Doug 11/15/19
Posted: 11/15/2019

Every time I turn around these days, I see a new vendor or product promising something called a complete Guest Experience Management, Guest Journey Management, or Guest Engagement (or some variation on those words). This week I looked at some of the emerging products claiming to be in this space, both to try to better understand it, and to see what promising ideas it may hold.



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.

x
 

The HITEC of Yesterday and Tomorrow

06/17/2016
by Michael Schubach

I was recently asked if HITEC is different today than it “used to be.”  This, of course, is code talking; the question less politely phrased was actually “how was it in the olden days when you first starting coming here?” Admittedly, it has been some years – OK, decades – since I first attended HITEC and the experience is admittedly different.  However, that has less to do with the evolution of the HITEC experience and more to do with how I’ve changed over the same span of time.

Nearly half of my HITEC journeys have been as an attendee, meaning that I went to HITEC representing a hotel, a resort or collections thereof, rather than as a vendor. I was there to buy rather than to sell, and the flip side of that coin is entirely different. First and foremost, attendees seeking financial approval to attend this or any other industry event usually find themselves in the position of detailing the tangible benefits of attendance and justifying the expense. That’s easy enough to do when you have a budget initiative or a mandate to purchase, install or upgrade a system or feature. It’s a little murkier when you just feel like you want to put your finger on the pulse of change, important as that might be. Rarely did my CFO send me off saying, “just go and see what you can see, come back a better person for the experience, and send me the bill.” Mostly I needed to know what I was shopping for, what I needed to better understand and how I could firm up budget expectations for projects that might be one or more fiscal years away. With that mandate, HITEC was a fact-finding mission with a particular topic in mind or a particular objective to be reached. Educational sessions were key, and the rest of the hoopla, show giveaways, vendor parties and serendipitous discoveries were icing on the cake. 

The vast remainder of my HITEC visits was as an exhibitor. In those circumstances, the show floor and booth staffing were the driving force, and everything else was collateral. For the vendors, the HITEC emphasis is on starting new relationships that can lead to new business in an environment that where the customer seeks you out rather than you having to find him or her through campaigns or cold calls. We were there to facilitate burgeoning relationships with students, lookey-loos neophytes and old hands at the industry. We were there to close add-on deals with existing customers, make time for any of our problem children and smooth over old wounds by covering them in cocktails, canapés and promises of atonement. 

The educational part of HITEC really didn’t fit into the exhibitor schedule; in fact, vendors weren’t highly sought after as presenters (or attendees) in the olden days. Then – and now, to a great degree – unidentified flying exhibitors weren’t exactly a welcome sight at your booth. At best, visiting exhibitors can be a distraction that pulls focus from the business of selling – and this is, after all, a marketing/customer event. If you’re that vendor who just dropped by to cop a quick meeting, why, you’re sure to be as welcome as a dead battery in a rental car. And at worst, booth staffers often look upon the other vendors who take time to shop the floor as if they are spies from the shadowy world of corporate espionage, there to steal the company’s secret ideas as well as all the pens.

For the last two years I’ve attended HITEC as a consultant. This is a vague in-between world, wherein you represent a client to the vendor and a vendor to the client. It can feel like a bi-directional conflict of interest, but your goal is to aid your client in successfully solving his/her business challenge by matching him or her to the vendor best suited to succeed. This process is as dicey as a newest version of anyone’s software, which is always due out early next year, no matter what the product, vendor or specific issue may be.  

All told, HITEC is and will continue to be where people who buy, make or live and breathe hospitality technology come to discover the state of the art.  New products and relationships are constantly being forged, such that an event that has basically stayed the same is forever different. Enjoy the rest of HITEC 2016 and see you again at HITEC 2017!

About The Author
Michael Schubach




Michael Schubach is a regular contributor to Hospitality Upgrade.

 
Comments
Blog post currently doesn't have any comments.
Leave comment



 Security code