In today’s world, it’s imperative that companies and businesses constantly evolve. Simply put, if you’re not keeping up with the latest advancements in technology, your company will lag behind.
In the hospitality industry, there are two different groups of people that you need to cater to as a business: your guests and your investors. Both of these groups of people are looking for the most efficient and accurate delivery of information on a daily basis. For guests, this might mean hotel rates or room/concierge service. Investors, on the other hand, want detailed information regarding their investments, especially in a constantly changing market like this one.
To many, this whole technological revolution seems daunting. And as a business owner, I definitely agree. However, I believe that the key is to surround yourself with experts who will help guide you on the right path. Technology can seem overwhelming and infinite, but it can also be your greatest ally in this industry. With millennials at the forefront of pretty much everything, you have to be able to speak their language.
From personal experience, I can say that without a doubt, technology has helped my business grow and improve exponentially. There are certain key things to consider in order to begin integrating tech in your business. If implemented correctly, it can help optimize everyday procedures and render them more efficient. The first step is to analyze the current systems and processes that exist in the hospitality industry. Once you determine what need can be enhanced through technology, you can begin to search for the right solutions for your business.
There are several essential functions of technology in the hospitality industry. Below are some that I consider the most important.
As a company that communicates and works with investors, we found it important to improve the way that we were distributing and sharing information with them regarding their investments. We partnered with a local software development company to create a virtual platform that would allow our investors to immediately access any pertinent information from the comfort and privacy of their own computers. The program not only provides our investors with a more convenient and transparent experience; it also allows us as a company to be more efficient. Prior to this — and still today in other companies where no similar program exists — investors constantly need to email or call in search of specific information regarding their investments. Some investors are involved in multiple projects, which makes the matter more complicated when it comes to briefing them and providing the information they request.
Software like this is popping up all over the world, as more and more businesses are seeing the extreme potential and benefit of using technology to complement and elevate everyday procedures. This would be a useful starting point for any hospitality company looking to streamline relations and communications with investors.
Guest Service And Communication
Providing the highest level of service to our guests is a hotelier’s main goal. Now more than ever, people expect immediate service in their daily lives. The same goes for their expectations when they stay at a hotel. Simply put, if everything they need or want is available at the click of a button, why shouldn’t it be possible for them to do the same when they stay at hotels?
It seems pretty obvious to combine service with technology, but it’s actually relatively uncharted territory in the hospitality industry. While many companies and apps currently exist to help hoteliers communicate more efficiently with guests (be it by email, phone call or text) and improve guest experience, many hotels have yet to fully implement these systems. To rectify this in our own, we teamed up with a company that provides digital solutions to facilitate communication with guests through a concierge app, and SMS messaging to allow guests to communicate with the hotel’s front desk and receive immediate assistance.
I firmly believe that the future of the hospitality industry is heading in this direction, and I encourage leaders in the industry to explore, test and implement these systems and see the benefits for themselves.
All of that being said, as with anything in life, technology has its pros and cons. For example, I was afraid of losing that sense of humanity and personal connection that tends to disappear once technology is involved. It’s sometimes difficult to steer your company forward and evolve when you feel like you may lose the essence of your business. However, with time, I’ve learned that the most important rule is to use technology as a complement, and not as a crutch.
So go ahead and implement all of the cool, high-tech systems you want. Just remember to keep the human beings on the other side of the screen in mind and make sure you continue to provide that same level of personable and friendly customer service that characterizes our industry.