Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Allard

Matthew Allard

Chief Executive Officer & Founder, Runtiz

Matthew Allard comes from a technology and hospitality background and founded runtriz in Los Angeles in 2006. runtiz launched the worlds first “iPhone Hotel” at Malibu Beach Inn in 2008, and since has continued to innovate new products and technologies for the hospitality industry. As president and founder of runtriz he leads innovation and product development as well as business development and overall strategy. Mr. Allard has spoken on a number of panels including Cal Tech Mobile forums and the Intelligence Group's Trend School with Creative Artists Agency (CAA) and has taught masters level computer science classes at USC on mobile application development. Prior to founding runtriz, Mr. Allard acted as Web Manager for SBE Entertainment, where he led the development, design and architecture of their corporate website and venue web sites such as Hyde lounge, Katsuya, Bolthouse productions, Privilege, MyHouse, Crimson and Lobby nighclub. He also created a custom VIP management tracking solution for the hospitality and entertainment industry that allowed managers to receive end of night reports, and track VIP spend and activity at restaurants, nightclubs and hotels. Prior to SBE, Mr. Allard worked for Swap Drive Data Backup in Washington, DC, which was later sold to Symantec. While there he led innovation developing cross platform compatibility components that allowed users to have the same experience across different OS and browsers, and have drag and drop file backup functionality in the browser. Prior to Swap Drive Mr. Allard worked for Northrop Grumman in a development role, creating middleware for dynamic team formation with focus in military scenarios. Earlier in his career, he worked at AOL on the Modern Home research project, integrating software and hardware to create a ubiquitous computing experience in the household. Also worked on AIM (AOL Instant Messenger) and created bots for home automation through chat. Mr. Allard earned his BS in Computer Science from George Washington University and also played on the GW Golf team.

Please visit http://www.runtiz.com for more information.

Mr. Allard can be contacted at 323-230-9727 or matt@runtiz.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.