How smart hotels leverage digital to deliver a safe and amazing guest journey. (Part 2: In-stay)

Luzangela PULIDO 17 June 2020
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Deliver better and more personalized service with fewer staff. Look how hotels leverage digital hotel tech to improve guest experience.

Hotel operations used to be labour intensive and staff stood for 50% of OPEX. COVID-19 changed the rules (Read our article on hospitality after COVID-19). This context gives you the perfect opportunity to leverage digital technologies to reduce your labor costs while aligning your guest experience with their new expectations.

Let’s look at how you can create a great stay experience while maintaining physical distancing.

Give your guests some space!

Provide as many ‘remote services’ as possible. This includes offering generously spaced tables in dining rooms, in-room entertainment like video games or movie night packages, bookable slots for the gym and plenty of distance between your beach chairs. 

Hopefully, you’ve already spotted the potential for creating fun cross-selling offers around some of these services… (and yes, they can be conveniently promoted via digital platforms such as Oaky).

Leverage mobile technologies to keep a close relationship with your guests

To minimise the need for direct guest-employee interactions, use an innovative cloud-based PMS like MEWS or Clock to offer remote check-in and check-out as well as cashless payments. 

Revamp your F&B offering to push breakfast, lunch or dinner boxes or no-contact in-room dining. You can also eliminate buffets. 

While cleanliness is higher on the priority list than ever, guests may be more reluctant to let attendants into their rooms once they’ve checked in. Make it easy for them to opt out of daily housekeeping service. Some hotels such as Teleport Amsterdam were already offering housekeeping opt-out before COVID-19 against a freebie and people loved it. This way customers don’t feel that you are cheating them… While technically, a beer is 2€ and Housekeeping 20€/room. 

Of course, hotels need to maintain their service standards despite physical distancing requirements. Direct guest messaging is a fantastic tool to make remote guest interaction quick, easy and effective. (More details on how to use WhatsApp for guest service

Say a guest needs fresh towels or has a question about nearby sights to visit. Previously, they may have come to the reception about this on their way to the restaurant. 

With WhatsApp or Facebook, guests can send a quick message instead. Just like during the booking process, chatbots can be used to promote the hotel’s services, answer common questions and even ask for feedback during the stay, so you can make sure your guests are 100% satisfied. See it in action 

Make sure your staff is safe and optimize your operations

Your employees’ safety is just as important as your guests’. If your staff is afraid or gets sick you won’t be able to remain open. There are plenty of good initiatives to protect your staff but an excellent way to  allow your team to maintain physical distance is to reduce the number of staff at the frontdesk, which becomes possible with chatbot, upsell and check-in/out automations!

To deliver the same level of service with fewer staff, you need to increase efficiency.  Operation management platforms such as Hotelkit can help you  ensure fast and efficient communications while limiting physical contact between staff members. 

In recent years, operation management platforms like Hotelkit have emerged to help your team effectively communicate via an intuitive interface everyone has access to. Now you can input all requests, feedback and complaints into one system and the right person will immediately be notified and can act on it. And if your operations management app integrates with your chat app, all of this happens automatically. Talk about an amazing experience, both for staff and your guests!

Let’s talk!  If you would like to know how hotels leverage digital hotel tech like chatbots and AI increase operational, feel welcome to contact Benjamin Devisme at bde@quicktext.im

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