Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Bleeker

Floor Bleeker

Vice President Business Solutions, Jumeirah Group

Floor Bleeker, a Dutch national, joined the Jumeirah Group in 2001 and currently holds the position of Vice President Business Solutions. In his role he is responsible for the company's IT portfolio, business systems, software development, data warehousing, IT innovation, projects, IT investments, relationship management and digital strategy. He is a member of the Group's Executive Team. In support of Jumeirah's rapidly growing portfolio of luxury hotels and hospitality businesses, a number of large IT programs including cloud enabled Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), property management, Enterprise Content Management (ECM) and Central Reservations Systems (PMS and CRS) have recently been implemented. The Group has grown its revenue generated through Jumeirah.com and other digital channels exponentially over the last few years and technology continues to play a critical part in the company's strategy going forward. Recent IT innovation announcements included a global roll out of public Telepresence rooms and a ground breaking mobile guest information and services platform. The centralised IT function at Jumeirah Group employs over 100 specialists and won regional and international awards. The department adapted COBIT as its process framework and ITIL for its service delivery organisation. Prior to joining the Jumeirah Group, Mr. Bleeker worked as Director of IT for the Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management in Dubai (UAE) and as an IT Manager for the Radisson SAS regional office in Brussels (Belgium). He worked in different IT positions in Europe, the United States and the Caribbean. Mr. Bleeker holds a Masters degree in Business Administration (MBA) with a Marketing specialisation from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, and a Bachelors (BSc) degree in Hospitality Administration with a Finance specialisation from the Hotel School The Hague. He is currently serving on the Board of Hotel Technology Next Generation (HTNG), the world's leading hospitality technology trade association and holds a number of advisory board positions for other non-profit organisations. Mr. Bleeker is living in Dubai with his wife Anne and daughter Lauren.

Mr. Bleeker can be contacted at 971 4 348 5030 or floor.bleeker@jumeirah.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.