Hospitality today is scarcely the industry of yore. Hoteliers everywhere have adapted to an increasingly fast-paced industry which changes on the daily. The cause of this is of course the speed of technological evolution which is unprecedented in modern history.
Technological updates are so frequent that hoteliers and guests alike are treating them as the new norm. The moment a specific tool or device hits the market, the countdown for the next one begins.
This has brought innumerate benefits to hospitality. There are three pivotal parts to modern hospitality, and as you can see technology is now part of them. This has led to both industry praise but also been a source of concern. Let us examine what is the underlying truth between these two viewpoints:
Hospitality is the business of accommodating and welcoming people from anywhere and treating them with integrity and kindness. It is in its core a deeply personal social contract in which one person opens their doors to another. And that’s the beauty of it.
But automation makes service easier, at the expense of this very personal touch that has given the industry its name. As such hoteliers fear that the ever-increasing levels of hotel technology involved in a guest’s stay might corrupt this process and turn it into something else entirely.
It is true that there are many hospitality solutions involved in the guest end nowadays. Most hotel chains have their own hotel self-service app run by their onsite property management system , which makes booking services so much easier for the guest and your staff, but it does deny them the direct interaction that they would have otherwise had.
This might seem like a concern for some, but the truth is that it’s the guests who demand these changes. Mobile technology has made it so easy to go about one’s daily life without having to speak to a single person directly that the lack of implementation of mobile tools would put hoteliers at a major disadvantage particularly in the face of the overgrown digital hospitality marketplace.
If hoteliers did not employ, say a mobile-friendly booking engine for their hotel then guests would simply focus on booking through online travel agencies whose booking practices are mobile-friendly.
So the contrary ends up being true in order for hospitality to retain its welcoming and inclusive quality it needs to actively adopt technological innovations in order to keep up with guest demand.
With so many hospitality solutions hoteliers are becoming overwhelmed and are finding it hard to keep track of their data flow. Naturally, hotel software developers responded by teaming up to create integrations which allow hoteliers to maintain a uniformed database between their integrated hospitality solutions.
Integrations nowadays are a permanent part of modern property management systems, so much so that hospitality software developers are actively racing to acquire more such integrations in order to improve their hotel software’s selling points.
But every hotel is different and the decision as to which solution will work best for them will also have to be independent. Thankfully, integrated hospitality software solutions make it easier for hoteliers to pick the solutions they want from various different companies, based on which ones integrate best with each other as well as serve the needs of their property.
An integrated channel manager is an example of such a tool, as it suggests it creates a two-way integration between the various distribution channels representing the hotel and the hotel’s inventory as registered in its PMS.
Read more: How Integrations Enhance Hotel Management
If a guest books a room through an OTA, the channel manager will automatically update the room inventory across all other channels. It further allows for automated revenue management and mass rate updates which keep your rooms competitive in the online hospitality marketplace.
The benefits of this level of automation are instant. You no longer have to worry about how your inventory is being sold, and whether your revenue is consistent with your segment expectations, as integrated hospitality solutions allow for a more systematic data management strategy which will aid you in making accurate forecasts on ROI as well as improving your overall RevPAR.
Hospitality providers are directly reaping the benefits of hotel technology. Many of your staff have had some aspect of their daily routine unburdened by the implementation of new hospitality tech. Let’s take for instance your check-in desk staff. If you equip your lobby with a self-check-in kiosk, queues are going to pass through significantly faster.
The hotel’s kiosk will allow guests to register, choose their room from your hotel’s room inventory and complete the transaction by paying with their card. Then they pick up their keycard and respect themselves to their room, all without further need of assistance.
The hotel self-check-in kiosk is a great hospitality loyalty tool as loyal guests are less likely to need instructions of any kind and are much more likely to walk up to the kiosk, complete their transactions and be on their way. They effectively free up your staff to help guests who are less tech-savvy or simply more inclined to talk to the person behind the counter.
Solutions such as the hotel kiosk can help you rethink how to allocate staff duties, the length of shifts, training and recruitment. With so many solutions being added to your toolbox with each innovation you are allowed more freedom in managing your hotel in the way which is most optimal for your business model.
Read more: 5 Benefits of Check-In/Out Hotel Kiosks
Some establishments have centred around the idea of contactless hospitality, where the staff on site is only there to aid guests in managing the technology they need to use for their stay. But those are extreme cases, and hospitality will remain primarily a person to person experience. But the experience can be increasingly customized and improved on both the consumer and provider’s end.
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About Clock Software
Clock Software is a global provider of cloud-based property management systems (PMS), integrated online distribution, online & kiosk hotel self check-in solutions and mobile & in-room guest engagement systems with customers in more than 65 countries.