Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Young

Alan E. Young

CEO & Co-founder, Puzzle Partner, Ltd.

Alan E. Young began his travel and hotel technology focused career 25 years ago in operations at the Four Seasons Hotels in Toronto. As his passion for the technology aspect of the hospitality industry intensified, he transitioned from operations and began to focus on the technologies that were going to be propelling the hotel and travel industry forward for many years to come. Today, Mr. Young is the President and Co-Founder of Puzzle Partner Ltd., a strategic and tactical marketing and public relations firm that specializes in helping travel and hotel technology companies achieve winning performance and dramatic growth. Through the implementation of proper messaging and content strategies, Puzzle Partner enables their clients to garner greater visibility and ultimately an increase in revenues. Previously, Mr. Young has held key executive positions with Newtrade Technologies (Expedia), Hotel Information Systems (Softbrands), Hotel Booking Solutions and Infor, the worlds third largest ERP software company Mr. Young is past Chair of the Board of Directors of the Open Travel Alliance, a global hospitality/travel industry technology standards association. Mr. Young has also been very involved with other industry organizations most notably AHLA, HEDNA and HTNG. He is a sought-after guest speaker that has been invited to present at World Travel Mart, ITB, HITEC, HEDNA, The HOT Conference and several other global industry events. Mr. Young also sits on the Advisory board of several innovative travel technology firms helping them develop their sales, branding and marketing strategies in order that they gain a very quick foothold in an extremely complex and competitive industry.

Please visit www.puzzlepartner.ca for more information.

Mr. Young can be contacted at 705-241-5244 or alan@puzzlepartner.ca

Coming up in March 2020...

Human Resources: Confronting a Labor Shortage

With the unemployment rate at its lowest level in decades (3.7%), what has always been a perennial problem for human resource professionals - labor shortage - is now reaching acute levels of concern. It is getting harder to find and recruit qualified applicants. Even finding candidates with the skills to succeed in entry-level positions has become an issue. In addition, employee turnover rates remain extremely high in the hotel industry. As a result of these problems, hotel HR managers are having to rethink their recruitment strategies in order to hire the right talent for the right job. First, hotels have been forced to raise their wages and offer other appealing perks, as a way to attract qualified candidates. Secondly, HR managers are reassessing their interviewing techniques, focusing less on the answers they receive to questions and more on observable behavior. Part of this process includes role-playing during the interview, so that the recruiter can gauge how a candidate works through specific problems and interacts with other team members. Additionally, some HR managers are also creating internal talent pools as a way to address labor shortages. Instead of utilizing department resources to find new hires with specific skills for needed positions, hotels are cultivating talent pools internally and preparing their employees to assume leadership roles whenever the time comes. They are also placing greater emphasis on a company culture that is more performance-based, as a way to curb employee turnover, increase employee satisfaction, and assure higher levels of customer service. Finally, recognizing the importance of employee retention as a way to lessen the impact of a tight labor market, some HR managers are instituting generous reward programs in order to retain their top performers. The March Hotel Business Review will explore what some HR professionals are doing to address these and other issues in their departments.