Helping Hotels Find Success Through Digital Transformation
The June 2019 issue of HospitalityTechnology is focused on the customer experience. More specifically, the theme is how guests determine how brands deliver services. A quote from one executive in the issue said, “Consumers feel a greater sense of loyalty to a brand when they’ve played a key role in the creation of their experience.”
At Amicis Solutions, we could not agree more with the statement above. As hotels and restaurants empower guests to dictate much of their customer journey, there is a heightened expectation that requests will be executed exactly as specified. Or that the customer can control his or her own experience with a few clicks on their mobile device. According to Hospitality Technology, hotels in particular are pivoting to technology investments that facilitate both consistency and responsiveness throughout the discovery, booking, stay and support phases of their trip.
Below are a couple of key best practices featured in the magazine and penned by IDC Retail Insights to help hotel businesses find success through digital transformation:
Get comfortable with a “first mover” / “fast follower” technology adoption pattern.
In the past, the hospitality industry was characterized by low margins and relatively predictable demand. Organizations that were on the forefront of the technology adoption curve typically faced more risks and fewer benefits. That’s changed considerably with the introduction of digital disruptors like Airbnb and TripAdvisor. Digital transformation across a wide variety of industries is changing consumers’ expectations and behaviors. As such, a conservative approach to technology is a detriment to hospitality brands. Those that fail to transform will quickly fallout of favor with prospective guests.
Hotel executives should consider adopting a “first mover” or “fast follower” mindset when it comes to solutions designed to improve the customer experience. They should brainstorm more advanced use cases that can build off foundational technologies like cloud, big data, analytics, mobile and social. Finally, they should combine guest data with survey feedback to determine whether the initiative is having the desired effect, and to understand how to course correct if it is not.
Don’t forego back-end improvements to complete in-room technology enhancements.
In the hotel business, CIOs determine where best to spend the organization’s money, time and resources. Multiple hotel brands often exist under one umbrella. CIOs must consider that customers often have different expectations and require different experiences depending on the brand. Hotels also often operate under a franchise model, which could mean that buy-in from thousands of decision makers is needed to make a change. To top it off, legacy systems may not adequately support the desired in-room technologies.
Hotels should take the initial step of consolidating their data into one centralized system. This will help generate a holistic view of the guest across brand, franchise and property lines. The use of foundational technologies should be extended to frontline staff to allow them to quickly and effectively respond to guest needs, while freeing them from more manual tasks. Putting the right foundational systems in place will set hotels up for success as they adopt newer, cutting-edge solutions designed to exceed customer expectations.
Amicis Solutions can help hospitality brands with the points above. We are the only Microsoft partner solely focused on serving the hospitality and retail industries. The Microsoft Dynamics 365 offering brings all of your financials, inventory management, sales and service onto a single platform for more informed decision-making that positively impacts the bottom line. Our proprietary solution, Amicis Lifestyle, helps hospitality brands create a truly unique, memorable and seamless experience for their guests.
Contact us today to learn more!