From Check-In to Check-Out: How Cloud Technology is Transforming Hospitality

BY:

Exceed customer expectations. Streamline operations. Increase profitability. They’re all yours in the cloud.

 

Key Takeaways:

Today’s guest is tech-savvy, and yours has to keep up.
Guests also demand a hyper-personalized experience that makes them feel valued.
The same technology offers data analytics for better decisions.
Conquer the competition by keeping ahead of the curve.

Cloud computing has revolutionized the way every industry does business. By providing on-demand availability of computing services such as servers, storage, applications, and more, the cloud facilitates operational efficiency, lowers operating costs, and scales with your business.

For hospitality operations, the cloud offers unparalleled agility, flexibility, and connectivity. Data is updated in real time for hotels, vastly improving the customer experience while creating a competitive edge. Guests get a personalized experience while you gain valuable insights through data collection.

In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of the cloud for the hospitality industry. From a streamlined check-in and check-out process to personalized guest experiences, the cloud enhances operational efficiency and cost management.

The guest experience and the impact of cloud technology

Today’s guests are tech-savvy and informed, so they want a restaurant hotel that uses technology to improve their experience. Personalization is a must today in any customer interaction. Cloud computing lets you collect and analyze data for individual guest preferences for a tailored experience. 

This type of experience satisfies and charms guests, converting a first-time visitor into a loyal patron. It fosters a deeper connection that makes them feel valued and cared for. Hotels can use guest profiles when they check in, offer personalized amenities, and offer recommendations for local activities they might enjoy.

No one wants to wait in a long line at the front desk. Check-in and check-out can be made quick and easy by integrating guest-facing applications, including mobile check-in and check-out. 

The impact of cloud technology on operations and cost management

Cloud computing simply makes everything faster and more efficient and improves your bottom line. Instead of systems updating only overnight, these solutions update in real time, so availability is always current and overbooking becomes a thing of the past. 

From managing reservations to room assignments, cloud-based systems automate routine, mundane tasks, including managing reservations and assigning rooms, and this frees up your staff to focus on more important tasks.

That traditional system you currently have is probably costing you more than you think. First, you had to purchase hardware and software. Then there’s maintenance and upgrades.

You’ll be happy to know that cloud computing operates on a subscription model. You only pay for what you use when you use it, with no upfront investment aside from migrating your data, which is best done with professional assistance. 

The cloud is also flexible, so you can scale up or down depending on need, whether it’s the off-season or a holiday rush. It’s a win-win. Your guests get a stellar experience, and you can allocate resources where they really count: making guests happy. And happy returning guests fill the rooms.

Energy management

Today’s hotel guests are concerned about sustainability, the planet, and energy conservation. The analytics available with a cloud-based system help you monitor and reduce your energy consumption, better manage waste, and track the sustainability of your supply chains. 

Enhance your services with cloud applications

The internet of things (IoT) is the future of the hospitality industry. IoT is a network of devices that collect and transmit data through an application connected to the internet. This application uses technology like artificial intelligence (AI) to analyze data and then communicate decisions back to the device to perform a function.

Some uses for IoT in hospitality include

  • Smart thermostats that automatically adjust the room temperature based on occupancy, the time of day, and the sun’s location. This means energy isn’t wasted when a room isn’t occupied, yet it creates an optimal environment for your guests. 
  • Voice assistance that enables guests to access amenities and services from the comfort of their room using voice commands such as “order room service” or “I need more towels.” You can customize features to fit your brand and your guests’ specific needs. You can also collect analytics to generate reports on guest engagement.
  • Smart mirrors. These mirrors offer a touchscreen display for a customized content and media experience. Personalize a greeting to make guests feel welcome. They’ll be impressed with the ability to check the weather, get news updates, and get information on things to do.

Cloud-based customer management systems

Cloud-based customer management systems (CRMs) are key to efficient operations and contented guests. A hospitality CRM:

  • Improves the guest experience. You can create detailed profiles of each guest based on their preferences, interaction history, and any feedback. This hyper-personalized experience enhances room assignment to add-on services.
  • Optimizes management of reservations and occupancy by using your data to predict periods of low or high demand to fine-tune pricing and maximize occupancy. 
  • Enhances communication and customer service before, during, and after their stay. You can send personalized reservation details via email, provide updates on new services, promote events, and collect feedback.
  • Streamline operations by automating repetitive tasks. Your CRM also centralizes information, which means no more mind-numbing back-office tasks. Instead, your staff can focus on your guests while operational efficiency is improved and time and resources are saved.
  • Enables data-driven decisions. No more guesswork. A detailed analysis provides the means to identify booking trends and guest preferences while highlighting areas for improvement. You’re better able to meet the market’s needs and meet the expectations of your customers.

A cloud-based CRM system also helps increase loyalty. It retains information on guest preferences and needs so you can offer personalized service for every stay, making guests feel valued in every interaction with your establishment.

Security and data management in the cloud

Your business was built on a foundation of trust and discretion. The expectation is that private information will be protected. In addition, there are laws that govern guest privacy. These vary by state and even by locality, but all are designed to ensure the privacy and confidentiality of guests’ personal information and activities.

This means you must keep your data secure. The danger lies in inadequate access controls, data storage, transmission, and processing, insufficient monitoring, and over-reliance on your cloud vendor.

Most cloud service providers work on a shared responsibility model that varies by provider. For example, Amazon Web Services’ model states that they are responsible for protecting hardware, software, networking, and facilities that run their services. 

You, however, are responsible for securing what is under your direct control, including information and data, application code and logic, identity and access, and platform and resource configuration. You also must secure everything that connects with the cloud, including user devices, networks, applications, and internal and external communication layers. 

Backup and disaster recovery

What if there’s a fire, a flood, or your system gets hacked by ransomware? The cloud offers an excellent location for data backup to quickly restore things back to normal. When you back up your data to the cloud, it is stored on one or more remote servers managed by your cloud service provider. This can be done on a continuous basis when something changes, which provides an up-to-date copy of your data, or on a schedule.

The future is in the cloud

You can do a lot in the cloud today, but upcoming technology trends will make cloud computing even more powerful. These include:

  • Contactless technology such as check-ins, mobile room keys, and touchless payment systems.
  • Artificial intelligence and machine learning are already being used to personalize the guest experience, optimize pricing, and increase efficiency. The more they learn, the better they become
  • Augmented and virtual reality will be used to boost the guest experience with virtual tours, augmented reality-guided navigation, and virtual reality entertainment.
  • Blockchain for better security in transactions, data protection, and supply chain transparency, offering a decentralized security method of managing sensitive information.
  • Biometric technology such as facial and fingerprint recognition can both streamline the guest experience and make it more secure. Biometrics can be used for payment authentication as well as check-ins and access control. 

Adoption challenges

Technology brings many benefits, but also challenges. These issues and their solutions include:

1. Legacy system incompatibility. Without the right technology, communication between sensors and IoT devices is impossible. Consult with your vendor to solve these issues.
2. Training staff. Some people are intimidated or confused by technology. Some staff may resist the change out of fear they will be replaced. Provide the right training, often, and keep the lines of communication open. Tout the benefits and how they can make their job easier, improve their performance, and enhance the guest experience.
3. Guest adoption. While technology can improve the guest experience, some guests may not be willing to use it. It could be a matter of trust, or it could be a lack of technological expertise. It can be intimidating for some. Promote the features, provide access to support, and be ready to address any concerns.
4. Continuing innovation. You must stay ahead of the competition. Technology can differentiate you, but it can also be a necessity. You might have smart TVs, but guests may expect a smart mirror. It’s critical to monitor and anticipate market trends and guest expectations. Be creative, be flexible, and customize technology for your brand.

It’s time for transformation

Guests’ expectations continue to rise. They expect the usual things, of course: cleanliness, free Wi-Fi, and a smart TV, but they are increasingly expecting smart room controls and mobile access for reservations, check-in, and check-out.

The answer to their needs? 

The cloud.

CloudHesive can migrate your data to the cloud and create a seamless environment for you, your staff, and your guests. We’re a cloud solutions consulting and managed services provider with expertise in all things Amazon Web Services. We have both the knowledge and experience to help your hospitality business realize all the benefits the cloud has to offer today and tomorrow. 

We work collaboratively with you to reduce operating costs and increase productivity, with a focus on security, reliability, availability, and scalability. With more than 30 years of experience, we leverage cloud-based technology to its full potential. Connect with us today.

Related Blogs

  • Cloud Migration Strategies for Mitigating Security Risks

    Cloud migration security strategies  Data is a valuable business asset, making it a prime target for thieves and malicious cyber actors (MCAs). The attraction of MCAs to the cloud is simply the...

    Learn More
  • How Higher Education Call Centers Match Student Needs Today

    Today’s college and university students have been raised with evolving technology and have high expectations that include personalized and efficient services from their educational institutions....

    Learn More
  • Evolving Threats, Emerging Solutions: Exploring Trends in Managed Security Services

    Trends in managed security services The managed security services industry is experiencing rapid growth due to the rise in the number of complex cybersecurity threats. The expansion of the threat...

    Learn More