February 18 2016

Hotel Industry Trends: Self Service or Personal Interaction

Hotel technology self service

If you follow this blog and read all the posts you might think we are offering some conflicting pieces of advice…

On one hand we are total advocates for hotel guest self-service through the use of mobile check-in, check-out and mobile keys – all of which allow you to bypass the front desk and reduce your need to interact with hotel staff.

On the other hand, we sell Rover, a mobile PMS that is built to help staff go where the guests are and have more personal interactions with the guest anywhere.

So, which one is it? More staff interaction or less? The answer is: whatever the guest wants. After all, that is the essence of service.

Traditionally, the approach to building guest satisfaction saw hotels focused on services such as carrying your bag, 24-hour gourmet in-room dining, choice in pillows (foam, feather, super-fluffy), bathroom amenities, laundry service, wake up calls etc. In summary, the more you can wait on the guest, the better the service.

However, our love for mobile devices is based on being able to move around while still being connected whenever we want. Our notions of happiness are now focused on freedom and choice rather than on being pampered.

So with mobile technologies, guests no longer must conform to the business operations of the hotel, such as waiting in a long line to check in. They have the freedom to skip the front desk and head straight to their room after a busy day.

And if you ask any guest about the best parts of their stay, they wouldn’t mention the big marble front desk. Tablets and smartphones now help staff get out from behind their desks to have real, personal interactions with customers in places that are convenient to the guest.

So there really isn’t a paradox in what we are saying. It is simple. Our products facilitate choice and empower guest freedom.

By Jos Schaap, StayNTouch