Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Murphy

Hilary Murphy

Professor & Researcher, Ecole hoteliere de Lausanne, HES-SO//University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland

Hilary Catherine Murphy PhD, MPhil, MCIM, PGdip BIT, BA is a professor and researcher at Ecole hoteliere de Lausanne, HES-SO//University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland and, additionally, an Honorary Research fellow in the Marketing Faculty at Strathclyde University, Glasgow. She has a PhD in the diffusion of information and communications technology in the hotel sector from the University of Wales, UK; an M. Phil, also from the University of Wales; a post-graduate diploma in business information technology, a Bachelor degree in business administration, marketing and law from the University of Strathclyde and a diploma in data processing from Louisiana State University in the USA. Dr Murphy has extensive business experience in sales and marketing management, primarily in the US in the hospitality and leisure sector, in addition to her experience as a teacher and researcher. She currently teaches Digital Marketing on the final year of the undergraduate programme and Masters programme at Ecole hoteliere de Lausanne (www.ehl.ch). Currently, Dr. Murphy is now working on several Swiss government funded projects in addition to industry-funded projects, notably the annual IT BENCHMARK REPORT that includes competitive set information on IT spend (by room, property, region) plus capex & opex breakdowns and is available at www.strglobal.com. Her current academic projects focus on the impact of social media on hotel consumer buyer behaviour, particularly "recall" of social media and the emotional component of social media. Previous published academic work has been on a variety of IT related subjects such as; "An Exploration of the Key Hotel Processes implicated in biometric adoption", "An Investigation of Data Management and Property Management Systems in Hotels" and "Do small and medium hotel exploit search engine marketing?" Dr. Murphy has published many technical articles in academic journals e.g. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Journal of Tourism and Hospitality Management and is a frequent presenter at key industry and academic conferences worldwide (ICHRIE, EuroCHRIE, Frontiers in Services Marketing) and throughout Europe. Please visit http://www.ehl.ch for more information.

Ms. Murphy can be contacted at 41-21-785-1496 or hilary.murphy@ehl.ch

Coming up in April 2018...

Guest Service: Empowering People

Excellent customer service is vitally important in all businesses but it is especially important for hotels where customer service is the lifeblood of the business. Outstanding customer service is essential in creating new customers, retaining existing customers, and cultivating referrals for future customers. Employees who meet and exceed guest expectations are critical to a hotel's success, and it begins with the hiring process. It is imperative for HR personnel to screen for and hire people who inherently possess customer-friendly traits - empathy, warmth and conscientiousness - which allow them to serve guests naturally and authentically. Trait-based hiring means considering more than just a candidate's technical skills and background; it means looking for and selecting employees who naturally desire to take care of people, who derive satisfaction and pleasure from fulfilling guests' needs, and who don't consider customer service to be a chore. Without the presence of these specific traits and attributes, it is difficult for an employee to provide genuine hospitality. Once that kind of employee has been hired, it is necessary to empower them. Some forward-thinking hotels empower their employees to proactively fix customer problems without having to wait for management approval. This employee empowerment—the permission to be creative, and even having the authority to spend money on a customer's behalf - is a resourceful way to resolve guest problems quickly and efficiently. When management places their faith in an employee's good judgment, it inspires a sense of trust and provides a sense of higher purpose beyond a simple paycheck. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.