In our previous blog, we have walked through the concept of a Smart Hotel model, in today’s one, we will continue to talk about the technologies behind it. Many hotels seek shortcuts and easy ways out by arguing every guests’ request can be solved just with a single phone call. Ideally, that would be right, however, with hundreds of requests per hour, prioritizing and assigning these manually seems like a nightmare to any front desk.
Before COVID-19, hotels focused on building brand loyalty, customer satisfaction through different branding and marketing strategies. Things change, hotels need to adjust their strategy and operations to survive and move forward. Sanitary standards, contactless, and definitely health-related elements are concerned. That is when the Internet of things (IoT) technology actually comes into play. Here are the few things hotels can start putting into consideration to transform your ordinary hotel into a smart one.
The cloud technology
You might have heard of it, not once, but multiple times, technically everywhere on the net. It’s beneficial not for the hospitality industry alone but applied for all sectors. Cloud computing allows customers and hotels to simultaneously connect and communicate through applications conveniently on mobile devices. It also reduces costs overall for hotels by relieving them from heavy IT investment on server infrastructure, database storage, and full-time IT staff to maintain, monitor and update. The advantages of cloud computing can go on, it’s why we have chosen to build our CiHMS Hospitality Management Solution on it, details on all the reasons, can be found in our previous blog post.
A robust hospitality management solution
A hotel management software serves as the heart and soul of a hotel, just as our human brain transmits orders for our body to act upon. It keeps the hotels’ operations running seamlessly and efficiently. Hotel management software helps to automate the manual work from the front desk to housekeeping, saves manpower, and offers scalability as your hotel grows. The system enables hotels to record guests’ profiles, centralizes room reservations management, executes hotel daily tasks effectively, and many more. There is various hotel management software out there for hotels to choose from, however, looking for an ultimate software is not an easy quest.
We, CiHMS are also a proud developer of an All-in-one solution cloud-computing hospitality management solution. Our CiHMS software offers hotels jump-start their own digital transformation journey to evolve as the technology is constantly revolutionizing. To discover the CiHMS journey, read them here.
Overall contactless experience
Automatic check-in / check-out with QR code
Guests post COVID-19 would likely expect a contactless experience as soon as they arrive. Self-service kiosks are questionable for sanitary standards. Check-in and check-out via their own mobile devices seem to be the way of doing it. Most hotels allow guests to automatically check in themselves by scanning a QR code, available at the reception counter. The guests would have to fill out the necessary information, take proper required personal identification photos to submit, and receive their electronic key rooms right on their phone.
Convenience yet? This mobile key grants access to hotel elevators, their hotel rooms, banquet, and other facilities included in their room package. Hotels can be able to monitor and know exactly where their guests are, what they are doing, and the activities they enjoy the most in real-time, again thanks to your cloud-based hotel management system. When your guests are ready for check-out, they can proceed with the similar procedure they went through while check-in, by scanning a specific QR code provided at the check-out counter. Cashless payments proceed on guests’ mobile phones for maximum security purposes, no physical contact is involved during the process.
Facial recognition technology
If your hotel wants to step up a bit further, facial recognition technology is another option to look at. The technology had been developed and used daily, especially for smartphone users. Undeniably, it is extremely convenient for guests, giving them extraordinary hotel experience throughout. Vinpearl has applied this technology to allow check-in/ check-out, entry to amusement parks, safari, and all of their restaurant facilities just with facial recognition devices.
Human-less concierge counter
The availability of human-less concierge to assist your guests 24/7 on just about everything they need the answers to. Powered by AI, installed voice recognition software, together with an extensive database constructed by past questions from guests, a robot can serve your customers just as your ordinary concierge counter: from book taxi, switch room, reserve room, make a restaurant reservation, request in-room services, and so on.
Apart from the concierge, robotics can be used for front-desk activities: greet, meet, check-in, and check-out guests accordingly. They can also help with luggage delivery to guest rooms, operate the elevators, and take guests on hotel tours easily. For hotel restaurants, robots often are in charge of serving customers to their tables, chopping and dicing stations behind the kitchen, bartenders serving at hotel bars, and delivering foods & drinks to guests’ rooms upon requests.
In housekeeping, robots would do all the vacuuming in lobbies areas, lounges, and other public common areas. Transporting laundry items to or from guests’ rooms, deliver amenities such as towels, sanitary equipment for guests without having any unnecessary human interaction. Guests can enjoy maximum personal privacies and feel absolutely comfortable at the same time.
With IoT technology, all room’s facilities, such as lighting, AC and heat, curtains, TV, can be controlled through your smartphone or via an AI built-in device similar to Alexa for hospitality. It lets the guests freely discover tourist information, getting to know the hotels within their personal space. During your guest’s stay, their preferred temperature for AC/heat, lighting levels, curtains habit, TV channels will be recorded on their profile to use for future visits. For all the perks the voice recognition technology has to offer, hotels are embracing it truly.
Hotels welcome thousands of guests per month. The database regarding their stays is huge and considered as big data, which hotel owners can base upon to make decisions on their marketings or hotel strategic plan. These data can also be used for revenue management, giving our personalized offers to targeted groups, and to have an impact on guest experiences. Data means nothing unless they are analyzed and interpreted.
The possibilities of technologies are endless and not limited to the ones mentioned above. Guests are no longer coming to hotels just for sleep. They pursue comfort, foster personalized experience, adore the technology to satisfy their curiosity, or merely just to savor memories. The smart hotels model provides all the solutions to enhance your guest experience, making sure to meet your guest expectations, while being sustainable in the long run. Not all of these features mentioned in this blog are feasible or practical to your hotels at the moment, but rather depending on the current hotels’ infrastructure as well as its financial status.
Hoteliers who are capable of acting promptly in time to minimize their operational costs and rationalize the business processes efficiently are the ones who focus on building their scalable technology infrastructures and integrated with an open API earlier on. These all aim to achieve the best connectivity throughout the hotel property, ensure all high-tech applications and components are working properly, transmitting real-time data and performance. This depicts the future of the hospitality industry and how hotel owners should adapt gradually to staying relevant. If there is a quote that represents the smart hotels model, in short, we thought we should share, Shep Hyken’s quote is pretty close to it:
Whenever you see the opportunity to create a WOW! moment,
act on it.