June 11 2014

New Technology In Hotels: Mobility Through Hotel Apps Makes A Difference

Every traveling arrangement I’ve made this year, I have done via my phone or tablet, so there was no surprise in learning that mobile bookings increased by 84% and revenue increased by a staggering 121% over the past year (HeBS Digital). Guests locate hotels, flights, and other traveling accommodations and book them via their tablets or smartphones. In fact, tablets generated 218% more room nights and 311% more revenue than mobile devices (HeBS Digital), because even though people research hotels on mobile phones, they are more likely to turn to tablets to finish their booking. The tablet and mobile phone have become so integral to the hotel booking process; it does not make sense for that mobile technology to end when they reach their destination. Savvy hotels and other hospitality companies are choosing not to overlook opportunities to integrate mobile devices into the everyday operations of their businesses – and they’re seeing great results.

Now is a good time to invest in hotel apps for staff and guests!

Mobility allows one to redefine the guest experience the moment their guests step foot on their property. Innovative hoteliers are using mobile technology to streamline operations and impress guests throughout their stays, from arrival through check out. More importantly, they are increasing employee productivity and efficiency by arming them with mobile tools at the workplace. Employee productivity via mobile solutions is the reason tablet use in the workplace is increasing, with a survey by Ovum in 2013 reporting that 17.6% of employees had already been provided with a tablet by their employer.

When a guest enters a hotel and is greeted with digital menus displayed on tablets or smart TVs they are ensured they are at a hotel that is tech-oriented and innovative. When concierge is equipped with a mobile device, they can complete the process with just few swipes of the finger – it eliminates the need for a check in desk. Tablet devices have allowed workers to access information remotely on a setup that’s suited to more advanced tasks, therefore increasing productivity. By integrating apps into existing systems, guest orders can be automatically entered into the order system at the hotel restaurant or guest services desk, saving time and freeing hotel staff to perform other tasks. These kinds of experiences create brand loyalty and most importantly, a higher customer retention rate.

Several hospitality companies have already begun using tablets to heighten their guests’ experience and increase employee productivity. American Airlines is giving tablets to flight attendants, to do everything from taking food orders to checking on connecting flights, according to TabTimes. In the dining sector, using tablet menus is quickly growing into a mainstream trend for restaurants. Tablets are not only versatile, but the cost cutting opportunities and the potential to enhance customer service is immense. DineEquity, the owner of Applebee’s and IHOP are getting 100,000 table-installed tablets this year, with software designed to manage the dining experience from beginning to end – thus reducing time and saving money.

Hyatt Hotels is working to roll out tablet apps that would allow visitors to book rooms, add personal requests, and even set up spa dates. Hyatt saw steady growth in 2013 which is the reason they feel confident investing more in mobile tech in 2014.

By using the mobile tools that guests are already using everyday, companies can greatly benefit. Employees become more productive because they have tools that allow them to be mobile and high-functioning. Guests are impressed by hotel apps and tech tools that allow for a highly customized experience that creates memorable visits each time. The companies that choose to invest in mobile tech solutions are staying ahead of the curve, and more importantly, staying competitive.

By Ronnie Coleman, Sales Executive at StayNTouch, Inc.