Hospitality is changing rapidly. With evolving guest expectations and an unrelenting flood of data, hospitality’s digital horizon is disrupting classic distribution and guest stay models. Technology has become so interwoven with business strategies that the two are hardly distinguishable.
Technologies such as mobile devices and the Internet of Things (IoT) are fundamentally redefining the way customers live, work, and play. Other innovations such as artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain, and in-memory computing are opening up new playing fields and replacing traditional processes. For example, AI and machine learning are modernizing reservations, guest services, and operations. Meanwhile, consumer wearables, smart devices, virtual reality headsets, and online games are becoming points for brand interaction. It’s all happening at a breakneck pace.
Hospitality needs to act fast to stay ahead of the disruption curve. For example, using the power of predictive analytics, hoteliers can now identify high-value guests, uncover profitable items and services to promote, anticipate demand, and manage inventory more effectively.
The Future: Priorities for Hospitality
Faced with a huge opportunity along with new market entrants, today’s hotel companies must focus on the right strategic priorities to drive digitalization across the business. By successfully embracing the opportunities offered by new technologies and addressing the following six strategic priorities, companies can lay the foundation for successful digitalization and stay ahead of the innovation curve.
Own the Guest Journey with Enhanced Distribution and Shopping Models
Transform the Guest Experience
Digitalize the Workforce
Unlock Business Value Across All Data Sources
Enable Smart and Connected Hotels and Ships
Drive Global Growth and Accelerate Brand Strategies with the Cloud
Reimagine Hospitality The digital economy offers infinite new opportunities. In a connected world where every company is becoming a technology company, smarter products and services will refocus commerce on business outcomes and blur industry lines.
Own the Customer Journey
LOYAL CUSTOMERS WILL SHOP DIRECT - A digital and mobile world changes the way customers book travel. Based on changing behaviors, hoteliers are learning from retailers and adopting similar approaches with guests. Hotel companies that don’t adapt to digitalization risk being simply a supplier in the travel chain, leaving others, such as the Internet giants or new players entering this industry, to control the traveler conversation.
TRANSFORM THE SHOPPING EXPERIENCE - Offers have to be personal, contextual, relevant, and seamless, regardless of the touch point or device. Hoteliers need to know their travelers and capture as much information as is available from internal interactions and social media data. They must use this data to create useful offers at the moment and location where they are most relevant. This retail approach is vital to have direct access to the traveler, expand reach in the guest journey, and increase revenues with ancillary products, partner products, and merchandising. Technological capabilities enable this process.
BROADEN DISTRIBUTION MODELS - Distribution models are changing as the digital world requires new ways of selling. Powerful new digital players are entering the travel market. Hoteliers want more control of the products and services they offer, whether they sell directly or indirectly. But mostly they want to own the guest journey and attract more travelers to buy directly from them. The ideal approach is to have a single view of available room inventory, amenities, promotions, descriptions, and rate plans across channels and third parties while refining inventory to drive higher sales. This allows hotels to up-sell noninventory room items, meeting rooms, activities, and amenities. It’s a bit like supersizing a meal in a more personal way.
Drive Global Growth and accelerate brand strategy
INCREASE BRAND VALUE - Build brand extensions by combining omnichannel commerce and digital technologies to move into new segment offerings. Configure and deploy new promotions and rate plans rapidly, and push distressed inventory to the direct channel of choice.
Unlock business value across all data sources
ACCELERATE AND SIMPLIFY PROPERTY ACQUISITIONS - To achieve a real-time view of data and system interoperability, your company needs a comprehensive platform approach. Cloud-based, standardized solutions enable hotel companies to innovate faster, manage master-data complexity efficiently, adhere to country regulations, and deliver quickly in the global economy. SAP can help you lead your organization’s digital journey and address the challenges of data proliferation from enterprise data, Big Data, the IoT, and beyond. We can also help you transform all data – the foundation of a digital enterprise – into insight to drive innovation and create business value.
TRANSFORM ASSET MANAGEMENT - The platform approach enables real-time visibility into the condition of assets by measuring, predicting, and alerting when incidents occur. To do so, the platform links asset data to an intelligent asset network that provides performance benchmarking, up-to-date service documentation, and real-time visibility of spare-part replacements. The platform also connects asset data from OEMs, operations, and service providers – creating a collaborative solution for sharing asset information with business partners.
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