Changing Times and How Hotels Must Change Too
Even before a major global event changed the landscape for the hotels, the hospitality industry was already in transition. Digital transformation and digitalisation continue to be topics that shape the conversations, goals, and strategies of industry leaders. Yet now in this current environment, the themes of change, adaption, resilience is more pertinent than ever.
How must hotel and resort organisations continue to adapt to economic conditions that have changed the game for nearly every industry? What are some of the ways they can strengthen the technology foundations to weather the storms of current events and those that may be on the horizon, too? Here are some key areas to think about to kick off important conversations about resilience, preparedness, and longevity.
Think about the role of the hotel location and how spaces are used
In recent news, some hotel organisations have worked closely with governments, healthcare sectors, and other parties to help communities adapt to sudden changes in the economic landscape. They’ve redefined the role of their properties – rooms, common spaces, and more – to serve the needs of the present where they can. Along with how admirable these actions have been, it’s also demonstrated an important long-term principle, which is the importance of adaptability at short notice. If spaces can be used for a range of purposes in such narrow windows of time, then that opens up a lot of potential for how those spaces can be used for other commercial uses going forward, too.
To map this out means creating greater fluidity and flexibility as to how to leverage value in all kinds of spaces. Systems and processes that take a single event space and turn it into one to accommodate many events at the same time is one example at work right now. That same principle can be applied to turning outdoor spaces and grounds into destinations for outdoor events, or kitchen spaces for culinary-related ones, or spas and gyms for fitness and wellness events or programs. It means investing in PMS that allows for long-term stays and lease functionality, too. Using brand-wide reservations and event management technology, revenue management solutions, and creative communications and marketing, this idea of the adaptable space is a powerful way to engage local markets and make hotel locations that serve a wider range of guests in more diverse and creative ways.
Think about what the guest experience looks like, and will look like
Support for a modern guest experience has been changing all the time, particularly lately with the advent of social distancing and the need for contactless processes. Hotel industry leaders have invested in hospitality technology solutions to help staff manage those spaces and processes efficiently to meet these sudden and essential conditions to help ensure comfort and safety. The hospitality and gaming industry’s mission has always been about guest comfort. But yet again, our current environment points to a wider opportunity to staying resilient in the future as well as in the present.
Recent events have taught the industry how important it is to be maneuverable, to listen and respond quickly to what is required, and what must be in place to deliver the best service within a new paradigm. With all locations on a centralised operational platform supported by omnichannel functionality, mobile-based processes, and digitally enabled interactions, developing a plan to create the modern guest experience in the 2020s becomes a lot easier to envision. When hotels and resorts plan around how present conditions are likely to shape the future, doing so based on data and integrated systems determined by digital transformation processes and the embrace of cloud technologies, serving the evolving nature of the guest experience becomes a proactive and more constructive pursuit.
Think about how to stay resilient in the 2020s
Times change, and unexpected forces can impact the status quo very suddenly. In the hotel industry lately, this has been very starkly illustrated. What has also been illustrated is the potential to redefine the approach to how to manage spaces, properties, and brands to serve new demands, new challenges, and new expectations on the road to continued success. What makes that easier is to understand how to make the right connections between economic forces, cultural trends, and the technology that’s needed to support all that. To do that, what must every hotel organisation know to ensure resiliency in the 2020s?
We’ve created a resource that explores that question to weather the storm in times of disruption and uncertainty to help hospitality organisations create a vision for prosperity and longevity in a changing industry.