Like in any other industry, there is no dearth of significant technology innovations in the hospitality enterprise. Many globally leading hotel chains have leveraged them in the recent past and have witnessed immense business benefits. You need to know what you want out of your technology investment. Or, in other words, what are your areas of concern that hospitality technology can help you address. For this, you must adopt the latest hotel technology at the right time to stay ahead of your competition.
What is in store for hotel chains?
Major technology upgrades should be your number one priority if you want to –
- Automate multi-property operations
- Sell more rooms
- Increase occupancy
- Enhance performance
- Cut costs
- Save time
- Boost revenues
- And ultimately, to serve guests better
Start with a cloud-based Hotel PMS
This would be undoubtedly your initial yet significant step toward realizing the power of technological innovations. If you are still using a legacy/on-premise application, it is now time to move away from that. They are obsolete for a reason. Look around, and you will find the answer. Almost all the largest hotel chains in the world have embraced the cloud. And if you are using one of the cloud-based hotel software, ask these questions to yourself – have you achieved the desired results? Has it helped you attain ROI? If your response is negative, you have to amend things right now.
The crux is that everything else will fall in line once you implement the right cloud Hotel PMS. Here are some essential aspects to keep in mind during your Hotel PMS selection phase –
Multi-property operations with centralized control
Your new Hotel PMS should help you manage all your properties spread across locations from a single point. It should offer single sign-on access to empower your Central Reservation Office (CRO) to manage bookings across your member properties. See if it assists you in managing group-wide rates, distribution, and revenues centrally. It must let you connect your hotels to your group website to handle all online availabilities and sales in real-time.
Moreover, ask your potential Hotel PMS partner if their application is capable enough to support you in accessing –
- Guest profile from across all the properties
- MIS reports to make data-driven, informed decisions
Moreover, you should be able to access the Hotel PMS on the move via your smartphone or handheld devices. This way, you don’t have to be at your desk/office all the time to know business-critical KPIs. If they have a Mobile Hotel PMS, then go for it. You can run your entire hotel operations – right from the front office to housekeeping from your smartphone. This saves time and improves your overall operational capabilities.
A Hotel PMS alone will not suffice. To ensure 360-degree hotel operations, you need many other third-party hospitality technology solutions, including channel manager solution, web booking engine, revenue management solution, online reputation management solution, loyalty and CRM, business analytics, back office, and POS. The Hotel PMS must integrate with each one of them.
Let’s look at guest experience enhancement technology
With the solutions mentioned above, you can reduce the burden of manual operations to save time and dedicate the same toward guest service. But out there, the market is inundated with several new-age hospitality solutions specially designed to enhance your guest service capabilities. The emergence of guest-facing solutions has changed the whole game. Some of them are –
Mobile check-in and checkout
Allow your guests to check-in, settle bills, and checkout using their phones so that they don’t have to waste time waiting near your front desk. Offer them a mobile key facility, and they are going to love it. It not only saves your guests’ time but also improves your personalization potential.
Enable your guests to control room temperature, lighting, and curtains via their smartphones. Another way is to install voice command-enabled devices. This would help guests operate entertainment devices as per their wishes. Some hotels have also gone a step ahead in this. They are now assisting guests in placing room service and book hotel amenities through IoT-powered voice-activated devices.
How can we not talk about robots when we are looking at hospitality technology innovations? We have got these machines at some of the largest hotel chains globally, revolutionizing the way a hotel interacts with its guests. You can use a robot as a butler to make room deliveries. Or, if you want, use one of them as a concierge to help guests with their required information. By the way, you can make use of one at your front desk to greet and welcome your guests.
You can leverage this piece of technology to attract guests – before booking. Just imagine that you are planning to book a resort on a special occasion. The moment you log in to the resort’s website to look and book, you get to take a 360-degree tour of the property via a digitally augmented and computer-generated simulation video of the property. Moreover, what would be your reaction when you feel like being physically present at the resort? You will go ahead and book your stay, right? And now, we know that you want the same technology at your property, too.
Beacon technology can play a significant role in improving guest experience while offering you a cost-effective way to market, promote, and up-sell your services. This technology sends push notifications to the guest sensing their proximity to a specific location in your hotel. For example – when your guest walks past the spa, they will receive a special offer. When they are in your bar and restaurant, you can promote your most popular dishes, discounts, and many other things.
Content marketing tools
Communication is key to staying in touch with your existing customers while attracting potential guests to your property. You can do this with email marketing, social media marketing, search engine optimization, PPC ads, etc. There are several hotel marketing tools available for each of them. All these are good to have solutions to market your property and promote your offerings.
Changing hotel guest expectations will always lead to hospitality technology innovations. Be it a Hotel PMS or any other guest-facing solution, they all can help you improve your overall business while transforming the guest experience. Just be sure that you have the right set of solutions at your disposal. It would help if you stayed alert to see how technology changes in response to the market dynamics and guest expectations.
Hotelogix Editorial Desk
Hotelogix’s team of researchers and writers are constantly innovating to share the latest trends from the travel and hospitality space. Got suggestions? Write to us on email@example.com.