So HITEC 2013 is in the can. I can comfortably say that for me, this was the best HITEC in many years. I figured I’d close out the year with a few topics that sprang forth from my brain post show, in no particular order:
Sessions and Keynotes
This year, the session and keynote topics converged very tidily with my own personal interests. It was actually pretty easy to put together a full palette of educational panels and presentations to fill each and every day. In the past, it’s been a challenge for me to fill my days without just mindlessly wandering the show floor looking for something to do or someone to chat with.
Take it for what it’s worth, but I actually extended my planned stay and put off a day of vacation to attend a session on in-room technology the last morning. That’s good planning and I, for one, hope it continues!
The Old Guard
The old guard companies were represented in force as usual. It was good to see that the whales aren’t resting on their laurels; they’re pushing forward with new products and improving the robustness and stability of current offerings. This hasn’t always been a given year over year. While I’m notionally a vendor by trade and not an hotelier, I think this is a great thing for hoteliers, a trend I hope continues. … Frankly, it’s refreshing. Read More »
In two years we will have forgotten that there was actually a “year of the tablet.” As mobile, hand held computing will become so ubiquitous in the operation of our business.
Tablet productivity will come from two sources. The guest and the hotel employee.
The guest becomes another user on your system without the training you would normally give to your staff. They make reservations, will check themselves into your hotel, order room service, request towels, all with no training.
Now just think of the effect tablets in the hands of your employees will have. They will be mobile, but more importantly, training times will be greatly reduced. You will even be able to train a general manager or director of sales to check a guest into the hotel. Read More »
The REALLY Big Show
The “rise” occurred on Tuesday afternoon and It was a REALLY big show starring senior people from Facebook, Google, Trip Advisor and Room 77. The stage was groaning with all these heavyweights in one place. Cindy Estis-Green did a great job in getting each to discuss their strategies of:
She had two pundits that started the Q&A into a frank and lively discussion. Read More »
I think in terms of return on investment. If you think that hotels are gilded palaces to guest experience, then this post is not for you.
You are cordially invited to stop reading now.
Still here? Okay. Good.
Here is the underlying premise to Brad’s Unwritten but Logical Laws for Successful Hotel IT: Hotels are businesses.
They exist for the sole purpose of making money for their owners. Period. The End.
If you think differently, then this post is not for you and you are once again cordially invited to stop reading.
Still here? Wonderful.
You are hearty stock and shall be rewarded generously with the following knowledge. Here are the laws. Read More »
HFTP Connect is featuring four guest bloggers throughout HITEC 2012. The bloggers will be providing you their insights on all things HITEC. Before we get to Baltimore next week, get to know our guest bloggers.
Let’s meet our final guest blogger, Tyrone Davis.
Tyrone Davis is been in hospitality IT management for the past six years, currently at the Grand Hyatt Washington. As a member of HFTP, he has served on the board of directors for both the New England Hotel and Greater Washington DC Hotel chapters. You can network him on LinkedIn or through e-mail.
What is your specialty in hospitality and why do you enjoy your job?
I became IT Manager of a travel-industry company very closely related to hospitality over 12 years ago. Having made the transition to managing IT directly in hospitality six years ago, I’m currently at my second property now.
The honest fact that unlike many branches of technology, no two weeks are the same in the hotel business — the variety is enjoyable.
Emerging technologies, interesting associates to support, something new to learn all the time and lately, even more involvement in satisfying the unique technology needs of groups (ie. our robot will need a fixed IP address on your wireless feed). Read More »
Last week HFTP hosted a webinar “Why Mobility” featuring a presentation by Shawn Tsetsilas, director of business development for Cellular Specialties. Shawn presented some new ideas how hotels can capitalize on their Wi-Fi networks. Hotel Wi-Fi networks can be used as an additional touch point for guests and can be a revenue generator, similar to the old telephone networks that provided revenue in the past. Read more on Hotel News Now>
With Wi-Fi demand up, can you capitalize? [Hotel News Now]
In my previous post, I cited a 2010 J.D. Powers and Associates study in which more than 53,000 guests who stayed in hotels between May 2009 and June 2010 were asked which amenity they felt was most important when choosing a hotel.
Almost across the board, Wi-Fi access topped the list, with complimentary breakfast barely edging it out of the top spot in only one market — the mid-scale limited service segment.
Wi-Fi Should be an Asset – Not an Amenity
While the actual results of the study are important for the obvious reasons, it also brings to light one very significant fact: Most people, hoteliers included, still view Wi-Fi access as an amenity.
I may be biased, but I certainly don’t put the ability to connect a laptop, mobile device or iPad to Wi-Fi to access work files or download entertainment in the same class as pillow-top mattresses, free parking or a flat panel TV. For me, it’s more of a necessity than a luxury.
And for you, as an hotelier, it should be more of an asset than an amenity.
Can You Take the Cost of Wi-Fi Off the Guest But Still Make Money?
With the US hotel industry enjoying resurgence in spite of the trying economic landscape, there may be no better time than right now to tap into additional revenue streams that Wi-Fi access make possible.
According to the Hotel Operating Statistics (HOST) Study for 2010, compiled by STR, the US hotel industry ended 2010 with $127.7 billion in total revenue, up 0.4 percent over 2009. While this may seem like a modest increase, it is an increase nonetheless and one that can easily be built upon.
Studies Show That Wi-Fi is Important Fact in Guest Satisfaction
By now, it’s common knowledge that hotel guests not only desire Wi-Fi access — they demand it. Consider the results of a 2010 J.D. Power and Associates study in which more than 53,000 guests who stayed in hotels between May 2009 and June 2010 were asked which amenity they felt was most important. In virtually every industry segment, Wi-Fi access topped the list.
Similarly, a 2004 survey conducted by the Hilton Dallas Lincoln Centre found that two-thirds of guests made their decisions on which hotels to stay in based on the availability of wireless Internet access. Read More »
Wireless Internet is becoming a “must-have” for the hospitality industry. In the recent past, guests would expect either a hardline T-1 connection or cable in their room, or possibly some form of wireless availability on a slow network.
Times have certainly changed!
Hotel Wireless is For More Than Just Checking E-mail
Today’s travelers carry iPads, laptops, wirelessly enabled smartphones and other mobile data devices. And they have the expectation of being able to connect all of their devices to the network wirelessly – using a fast connection. Read More »
The growing use of smart devices presents clubs with several challenges
Apple launched the iPad2 today. New features include:
- Video conference using “Face Time”
- Faster (9x graphics and 2x CPU), thinner (8.8 mm vs. 9.3mm) and lighter (1.3 lbs vs. 1.5 lbs)
- The A5 — first tablet mass produced dual core processor chip
- New optional magnetic cover (which puts your iPad to sleep when closed)
- Adapter that allows you to plug your iPad2 into any HDMI ready screen
- New apps — iMovie (edit movies) and Garage Band (create music)
A year after the original iPad debuted, the tablet computer has made huge strides in how we communicate and gather information. But along with new technology, comes challenges in not letting technology take over your club.
As technology adapts, clubs must determine how new technology fits with its club and members. Club rules, which are drafted to promote cooperation among members and to establish guidelines for acceptable conduct, vary depending upon the club’s culture.
Regardless of the large number of useful applications for the club and the member, each new generation of tablet computer is going to continue to create challenges and opportunities for clubs.