Enhancing Guest Experience with a Methodology Based, Service Oriented Approach

By Michael Waddell Managing Director, INTEGRITYOne Partners | September 02, 2010

The emergence of Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) has changed traditional thinking when it comes to envisioning, designing, and building information technology (IT) systems in the modern hospitality enterprise. SOA brings a renewed emphasis on improving leverage of IT investments through reuse while simultaneously allowing unprecedented amounts of business flexibility.

Hospitality business processes are typically replete with similar actions and activities that are used in many functions, sometimes crossing the boundaries of quite different parts of the business. Being able to use this reality to create competitive advantage can go a long way toward ensuring success in this competitive industry.

It's Not Just About the Technology Anymore

Even with the best technology available at guest servicing locations, enhancements to guest experience are not likely to occur unless the technology is combined with necessary adjustments to business processes. In some cases these are very minor adjustments to the way guests are serviced on property, and in other situations there are more complex changes that may need to occur. Either way, any changes that must occur can be managed through application of a comprehensive guest experience enhancement methodology.

There are two significant goals that must be achieved through the methodology. The first is the comprehensive analysis of possible guest experience touch points and the probability of capturing meaningful guest experience information at each touch point. Second, the business must define a suitable topology of guest experience events, generic enough to be leveraged across multiple brands and multiple properties yet extensible enough to accommodate the need of individual properties.

An extended event might include more detailed elements that capture specifics that may be only meaningful for the property at which the event occurred.

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Coming up in June 2019...

Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.