New research from hotel technology provider SiteMinder has revealed key insights into how hoteliers feel about future technology.
SiteMinder asked hoteliers, both independents and groups, to rank priorities, challenges, and issues from high to low on everything from financial plans to focus areas, and of course, the future.
Chapter six inside ‘SiteMinder’s Global Hotel Business Index 2017: A visual look at financial plans, focus points, and future predictions’ asked hoteliers to predict which types of technology would be dominate in 10 years time.
In order to gauge an understanding of the importance they place on emerging and established technology, hoteliers could choose from a matrix of priorities –
- Apps and mobile will dominate the guest booking experience
- A powerful new guest booking method will emerge
- Online travel agents will continue their industry dominance
- Metasearch will become the leading channel for travel bookings
- Technology such as Artificial Intelligence and robots will become commonplace
Hoteliers around the world of all sizes believe apps and mobile will dominate the guest booking experience over the next 10 years – with a ranking of 75%.
Least likely to dominate, according to global hoteliers, is technology such as Artificial Intelligence and robots – ranked at 35% suggesting a lack of belief that this technology won’t become commonplace across the industry.
What did hoteliers tell SiteMinder about future hotel technology?
Going beyond just ranking their priorities in order, hoteliers were also keen to expand on the detail and submitted thousands of comments throughout the survey.
More than 120 insights made the final cut and here’s what hoteliers had to say about technology over the next 10 years:
“I don’t think we know what will be the accelerant in our sector. I don’t think it’s been invented yet.”
“Besides the new technologies, the hospitality business will always be a person-to-person service.”
“People will have access to much better algorithms to streamline their search for the absolutely perfect guest experience they seek. This should tie in with other local places of interest to the hotel and give the guest a lot more information than they currently get.”
What’s the SiteMinder perspective on the findings?
Chapter six presented some interesting insights when it comes to how hoteliers track new technologies and consider their usage.
It was fascinating to see hoteliers use the comments section in this chapter to drive home their sentiments around human interaction in the hospitality sector. While many comments embraced technology, many more referenced the guest experience emphasising global hoteliers’ defiance when it comes to people-first.
One hotelier resolutely said: “The basis of this industry is hospitality and only humans can do that…no robot. Nothing can fill that space. Workers and management must be in a good space all the time and work with the best equipment and systems.”
However, another respondent looked to the future with optimism and noted future technology will feature “…things we cannot even think of!”.
Other chapters in the report include –
- Planning Your Hotel’s Finances
Which areas are you likely to distribute the largest proportion of budget in the next 12 months?
- Achieving Your Hotel’s Business Goals
What are your biggest business focuses at your hotel in 2017?
- Tackling Your Hotel’s Biggest Rocks
What are the biggest challenges currently facing your hotel business?
- Understanding Your Industry’s Issues
Thinking about the broader sector, what do you believe are the biggest issues facing hotels?
- Recognising Your Motivations
As a hotelier, what are you most passionate about during the day-to-day?