Collecting data on guests has long been a regular practice in the hospitality industry. For decades, hotels and motels placed comment cards in guests’ rooms for business travelers or other individuals to fill out after their stay; these cards would then be turned over to upper-level management for analysis.
According to a 2012 article in Hotel News Now, access to guest data has become priceless. Author Jason Q. Freed notes that hoteliers now use advanced electronic platforms and loyalty programs to “gather guest data, understand guest behavior and monetize guest preferences”. By taking advantage of the enhanced data collection capability of computer technology, upper-level executives can develop better marketing programs that are more likely to resonate with hotel guests and further increase company profits.
In addition, using a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet computer is rapidly becoming a more popular way to book individual rooms, suites or conference rooms. More people are using these electronic products to find nearby lodging when needed; Google once estimated that as many as 50% of hotel guests find their rooms via mobile devices.
However, the potential for data collection goes far beyond the conventional needs of satisfying hotel guests and increasing revenue. Data collection can also be utilized to streamline business efficiency and supply chain management, identify operational issues so that solutions can be more quickly found, and provide data for more accurate decision making for CEOs and other upper-level executives.
A mobile data collection system such as COMMANDmobile® could be adapted to serve various sectors of hotel management:
Room quality: COMMANDmobile could be utilized to record when rooms were inspected for cleanliness. Other potential uses could include rooms requiring service after guest-related damage or the natural deterioration of light bulbs or battery-powered remote controls for television sets.
Kitchen quality: Many hotels and motels provide one or more meals for guests from kitchen facilities; these facilities are inspected by state inspectors. Adopting a mobile data collection system for state inspections or intra-company inspections would reduce the necessity of recording data onto paper forms and would enhance accuracy by eliminating the need to transfer data from paper forms to an electronic database.
Safety inspections: By law, lodging facilities are required to keep safety equipment such as fire extinguishers available and to ensure that swimming pools are clean and safe. COMMANDmobile enables customized inspection forms to be easily created and filled out by inspectors so that safety-related data can be quickly captured and stored.
Supply chain management and intelligence: Five-star supply chain management and intelligence tools help keep customers happy, monitor fluctuations in demand, help rate distributors and manufacturers on service quality, and monitor and ensure food safety. Increasingly, hotels and restaurants employ spend management, procurement, audit/compliance, and inventory systems to gain visibility into, and control of, purchasing.
For more information about the COMMANDmobile system or to request a demo, contact us for details.
Getting Personal With Digital: Mastering the digital revolution in the lodging industry (PDF)
Hospitality Technology: The Property Management Puzzle
Supply chain management
Logistics and Supply Chain Management (PDF)
Sustainable supply chain management