While every hotel property has unique operational needs, there are some general guidelines that can help hotel managers apply the platform strategy to streamline their operation and drive tangible results.
From Amazon in retail, to Uber in transportation and Airbnb in hospitality, a variety of businesses across multiple industries are embracing platform technology strategies.
For the hotel industry, this new model offers an opportunity to use technology to deliver services in more convenient, faster and more transparent ways.
But simply installing a new piece of software by itself isn’t enough to capture the value of a platform. It’s easy to make the mistake of conflating a platform with an app or a website, but a platform isn’t just a piece of software. The real value comes from operational gains that result from combining different systems together into a seamless whole.
In order to leverage the power of a platform, hotels need to put in place a unified system across guests and staff in every department, allowing for open integration of external tools, channels, and vendors. They must also seek to become sticky by engaging guests with deep context through their channel of choice.
While every hotel property has unique operational needs, there are some general guidelines that can help hotel managers apply the platform strategy to streamline their operation and drive tangible results. Here we discuss what it means to be more unified, open and sticky, and how these can be achieved.
The first challenge of a hotel is to put a system in place that unifies the operations across each department.
The system needs to be centrally accessible, redundant, and deployed in the cloud. This system will serve as the foundation that the rest of the platform can be built on. It needs to be flexible enough to manage the workflow of any department while providing an aggregate view of the hotel as a whole.
A General Manager should be able to understand the actions of their entire staff in one simple view. It is fine to start implementation with a single department, but the system must be capable of eventually connecting all departments.