I’d like to start with an apology for not writing for a while. I felt that perhaps we were all a little ‘social media’d out’ during previous lock down periods and perhaps the hospitality world needed a break from reading articles from hotel technology vendors! Like you, most of us are fed up with hearing about COVID, so this blog is not going to talk about that but will instead focus our attention on what matters to a guest, in a normal world.
The Google definition of hospitality is “the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests”. So, it’s no surprise then that in the hospitality industry, the customer experience is the focal point. Guests are pretty much at the absolute heart of everything within it – or they certainly should be! The core offering of a hotel is the experience. From the reception, to the staff, to the room décor, to the quality of the beds – everything is there to be judged and, hopefully, enjoyed by those staying with you. For a hotel to thrive, the experience it offers needs to be great. Failing to meet guest expectations, in the current world of highly visible online reviews (and fewer travellers), means others won’t book to stay with you, if they’re put off by negative feedback. No bookings… no hotel! Guests are beginning to expect a certain standard of experience. They want to enjoy certain criteria and certain services when stopping at a hotel. Gone are the days of a comfortable bed, a clean room and a standard terrestrial television being all that they anticipate. People are expecting more.
Let the trend be your friend
It’s this trend of increased expectations that we’ve recognised at ROOMNET and subsequently built our offering around. Our in-room entertainment solutions are designed to contribute to, and improve, the overall guest experience, with our mantra being a ‘home-away-from-home’ experience. Speaking of trends. Did you know that ROOMNET was the first technology vendor in the world to put Apple TV’s into guest rooms for Airplay content casting, years before Chromecast or other casting services were introduced. So, I hope that this encourages our readers to heed our comments. We always look to the future in everything that we do, so our customers can be prepared for the present and the future! The internet has facilitated the development of technology at a tremendous pace. The entertainment opportunities afforded to us in our homes these days are marvellous, with the opportunity to personalise so much to suit our individual preferences. We no longer have to rely on what the BBC or ABC is choosing to broadcast at 9pm for our entertainment. We can watch practically whatever we want, whenever we want. It’s this that guests are now expecting from a hotel.
Time to take a break?
A hotel break is designed to be a relaxing and enjoyable experience – and in-room entertainment is all part of that offering. Hotels need to offer the full scope of the customer experience, not just focusing on the aesthetics of the lobby/the room and the civility and competency of the staff. It’s therefore vital that they get on board with emerging technologies now. Standing still in the hospitality world is a sure-fire way to see you left behind. As others innovate and evolve, you need to too if you want to prosper. The customer experience really is everything in the hospitality world – so it’s essential that your offering is geared towards maximising that in every way you can. Don’t sit on the side-lines waiting. Technology moves on too fast for you to afford that wait and see approach anymore.