In Newsletter #3: The Airbnb threat continues...; How technology can deliver a seamless travel experience; One out of four hoteliers still use pen and paper to manage properties in the US.
Why it matters: Corporate business is the hotel industry’s bread and butter.
Until now, the sharing economy has mostly catered to the leisure and budget traveler. What if that changed? How would you respond? If you have the mindshare, you might want to start acting now rather than reacting later. Just ask the NYC taxi community.
Why it matters: Will one piece of technology ever do it all? We don’t think so, not at least for a very long time.
But there are places where the traveler experience can already be seamless. Let’s take the hotel experience, which itself is quite disconnected. To you (the hotelier), housekeeping lives back of house, concierge, front of house. To the guest, however, it’s all the same house! We already have the technology that lets you connect services for your guests, regardless of their location (on or off-premises), their device, or the phase of the customer journey (from pre-arrival through to post-stay). If you’re not providing guests with a seamless hotel stay, then someone else is doing it for you: Hotel Tonight with Aces, Facebook with M, American Express with their concierge… the list goes on.
Why it matters: Although the results of this study are hard to believe in today’s digital age, the findings really resonate: pen and paper (and radios) are still our biggest competition!
When we and other software providers launch hotels, we are asking staff and the hotel culture itself to become digital - something that doesn’t change employees’ work flow, but does change their tools. The data we collect is important, and being able to track work equally so.
This report also touches on another trend - the consumerization of IT. For us, this centers on design. If the technology you provide your employees isn’t user-friendly, it won’t be used for long. Design matters for everybody, not just for consumers and guests. Look at that beautiful iPhone of yours… why should you be able to use beautiful products at home but not at work? The answer is you shouldn’t… companies should prioritize design in tools they want staff to use or expect them not to use it.