Procurement Personalities: The Architects of the First Seven Seconds

By Jason Bramhall VI Senior Director, Procurement, The Gettys Group | July 08, 2018

Did you know that it only takes seven seconds for your mind to determine a "first impression" of something? For that reason, hospitality property owners invest a significant amount of time, money and resources into crafting the perfect design for their hotels that will create engaging and authentic experiences for their guests. Guests walk through the door and those short seven seconds begin.

Just as when the curtains draw up at the beginning of a Broadway show, we first engage with what we see, the stage. Without the stage, there is no context, no place for the story to unfold. It sets the tone and allows us to emotionally engage with the environment and transports us into the vision of the playwright.

Behind the scenes, there is a team that infuses their passion, personality, and perspective into bringing that initial emotional experience to life. The same is true for the "first impression" that guests have when they walk through the doors of a hotel. Enter the procurement team.

Whether it's a new build, a restoration or a renovation, there are an array of decisions, big and small, that go into the creation of a well-designed hotel property. But even after every design decision is made, it is the procurement team that deciphers the creative intent and translates that ethereal vision into tangible and engaging outcomes.

The Perceptions

Although they are often considered a behind-the-scenes, commodity-driven piece of the interior design puzzle, procurement teams are passionately and equally invested in meeting the specific needs of clientele, regardless of whether they're working on a luxury project, select-service property or something in between. Effective procurement teams take the time to learn and fully understand the objectives of a project so that they can stay intimately involved throughout the entire process and, ultimately, deliver the best implementation of an original design concept.

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Coming up in January 2019...

Mobile Technology: The Future is Now

Mobile Technology continues to advance at a relentless pace and the hotel industry continues to adapt. Hotel guests have shown a strong preference for mobile self-service - from checking-in/out at a hotel kiosk, to ordering room service, making dinner reservations, booking spa treatments, and managing laundry/dry cleaning services. And they also enjoy the convenience of paying for these services with smart phone mobile payments. In addition, some hotels have adopted a “concierge in your pocket” concept. Through a proprietary hotel app, guests can access useful information such as local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, event calendars, and medical facilities and services. In-room entertainment continues to be a key factor, as guests insist on the capacity to plug in their own mobile devices to customize their entertainment choices. Mobile technology also allows for greater marketing opportunities. For example, many hotels have adopted the use of “push notifications” - sending promotions, discounts and special event messages to guests based on their property location, purchase history, profiles, etc. Near field communication (NFC) technology is also being utilized to support applications such as opening room doors, earning loyalty points, renting a bike, accessing a rental car, and more. Finally, some hotels have adopted more futuristic technology. Robots are in use that have the ability to move between floors to deliver room service requests for all kinds of items - food, beverages, towels, toothbrushes, chargers and snacks. And infrared scanners are being used by housekeeping staff that can detect body heat within a room, alerting staff that the room is occupied and they should come back at a later time. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in this exciting mobile technology space.