The use of technology, an opportunity for the hotel industry

I recently shared with you my 2021 predictions for the real estate industry.
This sector can also be seen from an asset management angle and often concerns the hotel industry, which has been largely impacted by the Covid-19 crisis. Here is a work of research that I carried out concerning the benefit of the use of technologies to revive the hotel industry.

Have an amazing reading,
Flavien Darius Pommier

In a context of economic uncertainty, the hotel industry is beginning to transform thanks to recent technological investments and strict health and safety rules. The Hospitality sector is not immune to changing tastes and trends. Over the past decade, it has undergone a massive transformation, with new entrants nibbling away at incumbent market share while reshaping consumers’ booking habits. However, the need to keep up with changing customer expectations has remained constant. Today, as the hospitality industry adapts to the post-covid-19 situation, businesses must strike a balance between economic recovery, new health and safety measures, while personalizing offers that strengthen ties. with customers.

In recent years, the industry has invested heavily in technological innovation and adapted its service offering. There is no doubt: the use of technology and artificial intelligence has started the transformation of the Hospitality industry as we know it. Through the use of data and new hardware, hotels are now able to offer their guests a whole range of modern experiences. These include self-service check-in solutions and smart rooms that offer more personalization in terms of services, entertainment, temperature control and lighting.

On the one hand, if we look at the geographic differences, we notice that Chinese customers are more enthusiastic about the use of Artificial Intelligence than their European counterparts. For example, they prefer automated check-in and check-out processes, as well as innovations such as robotic translators.

On the other hand, and by paying attention to different customer profiles, while business travelers mainly seek efficiency, alternative criteria become more and more important for others. If we focus on millennials, we see that the global experience and atmosphere are now major factors in their decision-making processes. But their expectations are even more complex: Driven by an environmental conscience, they not only seek a unique experience, but also want to see the values ​​and commitments they uphold in their personal lives (for example, a low carbon footprint and a lean approach).

It seems that technological innovation cannot go further. Hospitality businesses will therefore need to combine technology with human interactions if they are to satisfy customers who seek ease of use coupled with personalized experiences.

How has the covid-19 crisis changed the industry and how is technology helping it? The hotel industry is facing new challenges due to the recent covid-19 pandemic. This unique event forces us to reflect on our habits in a globalized world. Health and safety measures are going to be scrutinized like never before as we reconsider our perception of safe travel. While hygiene and health have always been important aspects of the hotel and catering industry, they could now be the decisive reason for winning — and losing — customers.

We can therefore expect that new technologies facilitating health and safety measures will be created and applied. Self-sanitizing door handles, and facial recognition, which facilitates contactless check-in, may become a “must” in the near future.

Indeed, if some tools were previously considered fun gadgets, they could become indispensable for business continuity. For example, in the study “Artificial Intelligence: a revolution for the hotel industry”, we observed that virtual reality is already very popular among travelers. In the current context, the use of virtual reality could increase, in particular with the aim of helping potential customers of hotels in the reservation phase, by offering them a virtual tour of the premises and by verifying that the rules of social distancing can be applied. Likewise, robots and intelligent assistants could be used to process customer requests, thus limiting the risk of contamination.

It is evident that if the situation demands long-term reduction of human contact, the industry will have to rely on other technological innovations to maintain its operations and improve the customer experience, even when the personal interactions between the staff. and customers are limited.

What could the future of the hotel industry look like?
The current pandemic will force the hotel industry to reinvent itself again. This time around, we believe that the change will be structural, as customers will opt for different tourism experiences.

If a real paradigm shift is imaginable, we can be sure that the hospitality industry has the capacity to reinvent itself. Indeed, in the recent history of the hospitality industry, we have seen how the sector has evolved through massive investments in data and technology. The challenges ahead are many, but the sector — renowned for its resilience and dynamism — is ready to face its future.

Thank you for reading,
Flavien Darius Pommier

Entrepreneur. Real Estate Developments. Featured on Forbes.com, Bloomberg and multiple newspapers about previous businesses. King’s College Analysis Alumni