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Enterprise System Pitfalls: Summary
Today I’m wrapping up a series of posts on the broad topic of Enterprise System Pitfalls. In this series, my hope was to help shed light on the primary problems that cause us to miss budgets, fall short on capabilities, or completely fail when implementing an enterprise system. 

The Year in Review
 
As 2019 comes to a close, it’s time to count our blessings. One of mine has been the privilege (and fun!) of being able to reach out to so many interesting companies and get them to tell me what they’re doing that’s different, disruptive, and game-changing. The list of things I have to write about in future columns has only gotten longer in the nine months since I started writing this column.

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.

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



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Forging New Guest Connections

05/20/2014
by Eric Harte
As connected, mobile, always-on travelers become the norm, hotels and other travel providers are increasingly using wireless communications to improve services, to enhance guest satisfaction – and to drive bottom-line business performance.

Guests, staff, and partners now carry a dazzling array of mobile devices. Wireless networks are more ubiquitous. Machine-to-machine (M2M) software applications are driving a growing number of everyday transactions and guest service activities. To fully appreciate the importance of IT and networked communications, consider how a highly-connected Millennial now expect to interact with a hospitality provider.

Web-based technology often comes into play before a room is booked, when tech-savvy consumers consults social media to assess brands or shop properties. Premier loyalty members, for example, typically book a stay via the hotelier’s own website or through a discount booking channel. 

Once they reach the property, advanced capabilities allow premier members to bypass the check-in process and go directly to their room. Near-field communications (NFC) technologies are used to send hotel room key, along with welcome messages and other details, directly to a guest’s mobile device. 

A virtual concierge service may be displayed, with personalized information addressing the loyalty member’s unique preferences. The hotel may also offer an augmented reality capability that allows the guest to view hotel amenities, local attractions, and nearby services. Properties are also using these technologies to deliver coordinated loyalty program and partner affinity offers to guests before, during, and after their visit. 

Leveraging past history, forward-looking hotels recognize a premium guest, and automatically set the room’s temperature control to the guest’s specifications. If there is an issue with the climate control, maintenance is automatically notified to address the issue, and if the issue cannot be resolved quickly, the guest is automatically re-assigned to a new room. 

Those same systems can be used to stock the mini bar and pre-configure the in-room television to suit the member’s preferences. The connected property provides robust business services, including convenient cloud-based access to personal and work information – so travelers can stay connected and productive while on the move. 

Busy travelers can then check out from the room or from their smartphone. Checkout is fully automated, and once checkout is confirmed, housekeeping is notified.

Next-gen technologies also simplify the billing process. Bills can be forwarded via email or to a mobile phone, and for business travelers invoices can be forwarded to corporate travel expense accounting, along with the details needed to support managed corporate travel. 

By fully leveraging the Internet of Things, hospitality firms can streamline operations, drive innovation, and deliver a more customized, satisfying guest experience.

About The Author
Eric Harte
Vice President, Travel and Transportation Industry
HP Enterprise Services


 
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