Tech Talk

Recent posts

A great deal has been written over the years about the viability of moving a hotel’s property-management system (PMS) to the cloud to take advantage of the latest technologies, but hoteliers need to realize that it’s not the only viable option. All platforms have advantages, including self-hosted, private cloud and on-premise solutions that leverage the latest mobile, contact free and web-based technologies. Independent operators can still enhance the digital guest experience, support personalized and mobile check-in, deploy contact free technologies, and secure hotel/guest data even if their PMS does not reside in the cloud. It should not be a question of “Cloud or On Premise?” but rather “Does the PMS solve your business objectives in both technology and service?”

Much has been written in the mainstream hospitality press about the challenges COVID-19 has presented to the industry. Hotels are in more pain than at any time in our memories. Because of the extensive media coverage, I won’t dwell on this topic further in what is primarily a technology column. But it’s the background for this week’s column, and so merits acknowledgement.

Are You All In?
Posted: 07/27/2020

Imagine everyone in your organization engaged, aligned, and performing to their potential. Imagine everyone playing “All In.”

Great organizations have synergy. Their culture allows them to play to a rhythm at a different tempo than the average organization. How do you get that at your organization?

Many front-line hospitality workers rely on tips for a significant part of their paychecks. If not for tips, many hotel associates who serve as waitstaff, bartenders, housekeepers, bell staff, concierges and pool attendants would soon be looking for other jobs. This is a regional issue: in most of Asia and Europe, staff get higher base pay, and tips are either not expected at all, or are truly discretionary. But in the U.S., Canada, Britain and other countries, tips are an important reality, and one that’s not likely to change anytime soon.

As somebody who’s helped to grow a company from 13 people to nearly a thousand, I know very well the excitement that comes with having a mindset focused entirely on growth. Every newly acquired customer, every new office and every milestone means the gap between you and your nearest competitor is that much bigger and that much harder to overtake.



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 Changing Face of the Business of Hotels And the Role of Technology: Part One

11/12/2013
by Dan Phillips

Hotels are a business, and as such need to make money to stay in business. Hospitality is the art of the hotel business. Once the business was all about getting heads in beds, and driving customer satisfaction and loyalty by providing the best accommodations for the price, today the business is different. Today, hospitality is all about the customer experience; it is not sufficient to merely offer the same quality of stay at a similar price.

A significant difference in the business of hotels today is that as in the rest of the world outside of this industry, marketing and technology have converged. Every company, and many individuals, has a digital presence today. To do so, marketing people must use technology to establish branding and manage their multiple forms of communication, all of which are supported by yet more technology. For hotel companies, this convergence is changing the face of business, but more specifically it is changing the roles of staff responsible for technology. From CTOs down to IT managers the skill sets must be widely broadened in order for hotels to compete for shrinking market share.

This white paper will highlight some of the new trends and thoughts from experts in various fields, all of which can be applied to the hotel industry. Though these concepts may appear disjointed at first, when combined into an overarching strategy, one of convergence and one directed at the demographics of today’s travelers, one can see the synergy. The goal is to direct management styles to be more service oriented, increasing guest satisfaction and therefore improving the bottom line.

The old sales model looked something like this:
Product Services & Amenities + Customer Service = Long term loyalty, advocacy and referrals 

Notice the plus sign. In the past, a hotel could be a leader in any given area and fail in some other area and still be successful.
 
The new sales model equation might be better represented as this:
(Customer needs, wants and expectations) X (hotel staff) X (a culture of service excellence) X(business environment) X (product and services/amenities offerings) = exceptional experiential value

In this case the formula is multiplication, not addition. If any of those multipliers is a zero, then the final equation results in a zero. (Brett Patten, Hotel Sales Formula that Goes Against All Conventional Wisdom, http://ehotelier.com/hospitality-news/item.php?id=P26072&goback=%2Egde_110108_member_271836286#%21

In the second equation above the ultimate goal is the generation of exceptional experiential values for the hotel’s guests. Hoteliers can no longer be considered successful by simply providing a clean room with a big TV. Today’s traveler, and more importantly tomorrow’s traveler, is after an experience and not only just a good night’s sleep. This experiential factor is a driving motivator in the convergence of marketing and technology; specifically how it is tailored and deployed to facilitate experiences.

One of the key components of creating an experience begins with communication. Communication is now digital. It isn’t just voice anymore; it isn’t just email. Communication has exploded into Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, text, websites, mobile, apps, social media, and more. Hotels have been forced into the digital media age. Once the first online booking sites started, hoteliers have been in the digital footprint, many of which have been playing catch up ever since. Hotel companies need to become more mature with their digital strategies.

Digital maturity is the combination of digital intensity plus transformation management intensity. Digital maturity is the combination of a company’s investment in technology enabled initiatives plus the vision to shape a new future by developing new IT/marketing/business operations relationships to implement technology based change under governance.

From a company perspective, digital maturity can be broken into four levels of acumen:

  • Beginners – do very little with advanced digital capabilities
  • Fashionistas – experiment with sexy applications but lack the vision to gain synergies
  • Conservatives – favor prudence over innovation
  • Digirati – truly understand how to drive value with digital transformation

Hotel companies fall into the four levels as listed below. Due to online booking, every hotel company is past the beginner stage. What may be significant here is that 50 percent of our industry is simply spending money to look good while developing no real positive results.

  • 0% Beginners
  • 50% Fasionistas
  • 19% Conservatives
  • 31% Digirati

Why is it so important to become a Digirati? When compared to competitors, companies that can achieve the digirati level of digital maturity are driving 10 percent more revenue, are 26 percent more profitable, and have a 12 percent higher market value.

What is needed to bring the old way of hotel business up to the demands of hospitality today is a radical change in the role of the CTO and IT staff inside of hotel companies.

Please check back on Thursday for part two of this column and for more insight into the Changing Face of Business and how you can transform your business to the digirati level.

About The Author
Dan Phillips
Owner
Dare to Imagine


Dan Phillips is the owner of the consulting firm, Dare to Imagine (www.dare2i.com). He started behind the front desk of a Holiday Inn in 1987 and has been consulting to hotel companies since 1991. Dare to Imagine enlists hotel experts with decades of C-level experience at many of the major hotel companies in the world. He can be reached at dphillips@dare2i.com or by phone at 678-852-5913.

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



 Security code