In the past year the industry has seen a strong resurgence as guests headed back to leisure vacations and business travel started to pick back up. Still, the industry does not look the same as it did before the pandemic, and innovations that were a necessity at the height of COVID-19 have become mainstays that are never going back.
As we move into 2023, we will continue to see hotels leverage technology to not only increase operational and staff efficiency, but also meet changing guest expectations for a high-value, but a relatively low-touch experience.
For more insight on industry trends & predictions for 2023 read our latest eBook: Targeting Greater Profitability In 2023. Download your free copy today: https://www.duettocloud.com/special-reports/targeting-greater-profitability-2023-trends-predictions-to-boost-your-revenue-strategies
Below are the technologies that will continue to transform the industry this year:
1. Hotels will prioritize guest convenience and choice by presenting offers for upsell and ancillary products and services
Airlines and retailers have trained consumers to not just accept upsell or ancillary offers, but to look out for and expect them. Hotels have no choice but to step up to this new level of guest expectations.
A recent Oracle study found that 81% of hoteliers surveyed expect a big service model shift between now and 2025, and 49% strongly agreed that special amenities and upgrades are critical to their revenue strategy. In tandem, more than half of consumers (54%), said they are willing to pay more to choose their view; 38% to choose their room; and 32% to choose their room floor; etc. Consumers want what they want, and it’s up to hotels to provide options for guests to customize their stay, and to present those offers throughout the guest journey, from booking to check-in (digital or in-person) to on-site.
Every touch point provides an opportunity to give the guest the ideal stay. But to achieve this, hotels need to evolve away from rigid and siloed business models and adapt to new guest expectations. By blending accommodation styles and focusing on wellness and experience, hoteliers can also more effectively compete against short-term rentals.
2. Automation, supported by AI and machine learning will improve operational efficiency and support new revenue streams
Automation – once considered a "nice to have" in the hospitality industry – is now essential. A growing number of innovative hoteliers are taking initiative to fundamentally change the way they operate their hotels and best serve their guests by leveraging AI and automation to transform day-to-day hotel operations – the areas that are historically admin heavy. For example, intelligent, rules-based systems that can determine, in real-time, the most efficient housekeeping schedule while correctly prioritizing guests' needs can trigger notifications to other users directly in their primary system, enabling frictionless communication between departments and swift action. Similarly, finance automation can auto-balance transactions for daily audits and uncover any discrepancies or imbalances proactively.
Second, guest service is boosted via AI-based automation, particularly with apps and chatbots that provide guests a digital choice to instantly fulfill their requests or interact with hotel staff, while giving back employees the most valuable thing: TIME.
And last, automation can assist hotels with revenue management and new revenue streams, whether collecting and analyzing data, or determining the right room, attributes, and ancillary services for each guest. Machine learning can target a precise combination of initial and subsequent upsell offers that maximize conversion while keeping the guest engaged throughout the entire reservation cycle.
3. A modern UX, including self-service tools and gamification, will become essential in optimizing staff efficiency
Hotel staff, like employees everywhere, want the same user experience on professional software as they have on consumer software – intuitive user interfaces that are quick to learn and easy to use. And when dashboards and workflows can be customized through the power of configuration at brand, property, role, and even user level, applications can easily adapt for maximum efficiency for everyone.
With today’s staff churn, fast onboarding is critical, so the more self-service tools, the better – from onboarding digital learning to intelligent knowledge bases. Application-guided learning identifies first-time users and takes them step-by-step through their tasks, helping them learn on the job and eliminate extra training.
Gamification, or the use of game design elements in non-game contexts, can be a powerful tool for attracting and retaining employees, making work tasks more enjoyable, rewarding employees for reaching certain milestones or achieving goals. Leaderboards, comparing the performance of employees based on relevant metrics, like check-ins or upsells, or room cleaning, can introduce transparency and healthy competition, not to mention a bit of fun.
We are looking forward to working with our early adopters and integration partners this year to deploy OPERA Cloud Central, offering brand enterprise management, loyalty, distribution, and call center functions.
To read more of our predictions for 2023, please visit the Oracle Hospitality Blog.
Discover more trends & predictions from industry leaders in our latest eBook: Targeting Greater Profitability In 2023. Download your FREE copy today: https://www.duettocloud.com/special-reports/targeting-greater-profitability-2023-trends-predictions-to-boost-your-revenue-strategies