We live in a relentlessly digital world. Every industry on the planet is being impacted in one form or another by our explosive technological growth. And hospitality industry trends show us that this is an industry that greets the future as warmly as it greets guests.
The hospitality industry and technology have always been, if you’ll forgive the pun, interesting bedfellows. The transition from traditional keys to punch cards in the 1960’s and 1970’s, and later from punch cards to magstripes, established hospitality as an industry not only receptive to, but also reliant on, emerging technologies.
Fast forward to the 1990’s.Travel websites like Expedia, Travelocity, and Priceline were amongst the earliest disruptors in the digital world, charting the routes of the ecommerce superhighways that shape our world today. The landscape of the internet as a whole would be wildly different without those early startups and their successes.
Having a crystal ball to predict those game changing advances could’ve made you pretty wealthy. But you don’t need sorcery to know that hospitality trends are increasingly pointing us toward a mobile future.
The proliferation of smartphones and wearables means every facet of the hospitality domain is on the precipice of major lasting change. From seating guests in a restaurant to helping them reach the airport for their departing flights, mobile technology is on the cusp of redefining what the hospitality industry is all about.
More and More Guests Want —and Expect— Mobile Solutions
Mobile solutions have left such a meteoric impact on our world that consumers are now coming to expect these solutions in every facet of their experiences.
A majority of respondents —66 percent in all— say they have a better experience when using the latest technology, while 70 percent say they want technology to speed up getting what they want.
These emerging hospitality industry trends are finding widespread adoption, too. Nearly three quarters of respondents —74 percent in all— plan on facilitating smartphone check ins. Meanwhile, 69 percent hope to roll out methods of tracking guest locations, monitoring facility usage and knowing when guests are on the premises.
The Future of Hospitality is Mobile
Most consumers today are already using the Internet to shop around for the best deals and book their trip. But mobile solutions are going to shape upcoming hospitality industry trends in exciting new ways, and the earliest adopters of these technologies will be pioneering a revolution in guest experiences.
Imagine a guest arriving at a hotel. Their smartphone or wearable endpoint, loaded with a cutting edge, user friendly app, alerts the valet of the guest’s arrival moments before they pull up. The guest’s car is being unloaded and parked while they walk directly to the elevator, guided through the lobby by their app. There’s no need to visit the front desk or check in. They just walk directly to their room.
Once they’ve arrived at their room, the app unlocks the door remotely via Bluetooth. And from here, the guest can control the thermostat, flip on the TV and rent a movie, order room service, call for more towels … the app facilitates it all.
After they’ve freshened up, your guest can head for your restaurant and order dinner straight through their phone, then walk into and sit down at their table just as their hot food comes out to them. When they’re done, they simply get up and leave. The whole transaction is handled by the app itself, right down to the tip. The guest doesn’t need to bring anything other than their phone or wearable.
When it’s time to check out, their experience is seamless and hands-free. They can use the app to call for an extended checkout, but otherwise, they simply hit the “Check Out” button in the app. Their bags will be brought down, their car will be brought out front, and all the guest needs to do is walk out the door and drive away.
Hotel Analytics on the Go
There’s no denying how beneficial an app like this can be for guests. But are there benefits for the company, too?
Our fictional guest’s movements on the property can be tracked using the app, provided the guest gives their permission of course. And this can tell us a great deal about that guest’s behaviors and preferences, which in turn lets us provide even better service to those guests when they visit again in the future.
What times did the guest visit the pool? How warm or cool do they want their room to be? Do they have a favorite table or booth in the restaurant? What’s their favorite meal or drink, so we can offer them a loyalty discount? What times of year do they frequent our establishment?
Hotel analytics can help us predict emerging hospitality industry trends locally and globally, while providing guest-facing operations with fundamentally valuable information that can enhance guest experiences. And this can be used to enable and encourage guests to offer their feedback, allowing the company to grow into the shifting needs of guests.
Securing the Mobile Future of Hospitality
With the vast majority of your guests utilizing personal smartphones to check in, order services, check out, access loyalty programs, and more, there’s one big resounding issue some of you might be thinking about: security.
The hospitality industry’s adaptation of mobile solutions will require employees to carry or wear devices. And whether they’re enterprise assets or BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) endpoints owned by employees, there’s no getting around the fact that each device is a potential attack vector. Hospitality companies have sensitive information (credit cards, room numbers, addresses, dates of birth, etc.) that they need to keep confidential. Many employees have the potential to expose your systems, other employees, and guests to the sorts of dangers that keep IT professionals up at night.
In the near future, mobility will enable hands-free room access, location-based services, automated billing, and more. But this means more apps. More endpoints. More potential vectors a cybercriminal might use to wreak havoc.
Mobility in hospitality is going to be a huge leap forward for guest convenience. It’s going to equip your staff with exciting new options for taking care of paying customers. But we live in a dangerous world. A world where hackers are just as passionate about infiltrating your security as you are concerned with safeguarding it.
Hospitality Industry Trends Point Toward Mobile. CTS is Ready
It isn’t enough to simply visualize these emerging hospitality industry trends. You need to secure them, too. And that’s where Complete Tablet Solutions can make all the difference.
In hospitality, staff needs are varied and versatile. Concierges, waitstaff, groundskeepers, and security officers all have different needs and will require tailored mobile solutions to fulfill their goals.
CTS offers a host of products and services designed to guide the hospitality industry’s easy and secure transition into its mobile future.
We’ll work with our deep bench of partners to provide the best mobile and peripheral platforms for each individual class and tier of your staff, including phones, tablets, laptops, mPOS, POS, and cutting edge wearables. We’ll also help you develop the cyberspace infrastructure you need to connect and manage your entire fleet of mobile tools.
CTS will make sure all of these endpoints are secured with multi factor authentication, single sign-on, and advanced MDM suites tailored to your devices, your staff, and your needs, all while ensuring regulatory compliance from top to bottom.
Our deployment services simplify the process of going mobile even further. We’ll box and kit your devices, peripherals, and accessories, all with environmentally-friendly waste disposal. We’ll handle imaging and asset tagging. And we offer training and continued support to ensure your platforms are operating smoothly well into your new, mobility-enhanced future.
Hospitality industry trends are dominated by mobile. And with CTS on your side, your company is prepared to take that mobile future head on. Contact us today to find out how CTS can enable your mobile future.