The single, most consistent theme we have seen across the hospitality industry in the wake of Covid-19, is that all hotels are re-opening to the reality of a skeleton staff and budget. For this reason, it has never been more important to leverage technology to automate processes that would otherwise be time consuming and manual. 

Embracing technology to streamline your operations frees up your staff to focus on the things that matter most - running the hotel and providing memorable guest experiences. After all, hospitality is all about looking after people.

But where do you start first? Implement new technology to improve hotel operations, or upskill and train your remaining staff? 

How can you cut costs, maximize efficiency and still deliver an exceptional guest experience? Here are our three tips to get you started:

1. Identify low hanging fruit opportunities for CX automation

The the most common hotel operations to automate include:

  • Prompts for customers to leave guest feedback
  • Responses to positive or non-actionable guest feedback
  • Real-time notifications to alert you when guests leave feedback or message you with a question
  • Real-time email alerts when your brand is mentioned on social media, including when it is mentioned alongside keywords identified as important by your business (eg. cleanliness, safety, Covid etc)
  • Real-time notifications whenever a new online review is left on one of your review sites
  • Mobile-first interfaces into all tech tools used by your front-line staff, so they can interact on the go 
  • Pre- and post-stay emails to guests, including upselling offers
  • Converting visiting guests to loyalty members

2. Focus on your employee experience

Empower employees, engage them, and cross-train them.

  • Empower your staff. According to McKinsey & Company, “Frontline staff can also be powerful messengers and are a great source of insight for improvements or opportunities that a home office will not spot as quickly. Travel workers have been through a lot since the start of the crisis, both professionally and personally, and maintaining an open dialogue around their experiences - and acting upon their feedback - will be vital to ensuring that they feel safe and confident.”
  • Engage your staff. Behind every great customer experience is a great employee experience. Ramp up your employee engagement initiatives to ensure that you are regularly giving your employees the opportunity to provide feedback about how they are doing personally, and how work is going for them. Listen to their responses and address it where necessary. The better you look after your staff, the better they will look after your customers.
  • Cross-train your staff. With only a skeleton team on duty at any one time, consider cross-training your staff to increase their efficiency and capabilities across various functions and departments. Remember - everyone is a customer service agent, not just your front desk. Not only will this improve your customer response time, it will also aid in the career development of your employees looking to gain diverse experience and skills. 

3. Consolidate your customer experience tools

Chances are you’ve amassed a number of expenses over the years - for tech platforms, software, subscriptions, and the like - that you may be due to streamline now that your budget is tighter. Now is the time to review the tools your teams use and identify any overlap in functionality. Consolidating will not only reduce your expenses, it will also make your team more efficient. The combined functionality of Local Measure and Loopon by Local Measure gives users a single solution for customer feedback, WiFi splash pages, social media monitoring, UGC publishing, digital messaging via a centralized inbox, ticket management, reputation management, post-stay surveys, and NPS monitoring. 

By keeping your customers at the forefront of everything you do, you can cut costs, maximize staff efficiency and still deliver an exceptional guest experience that drives loyalty and repeat business.

Local Measure has compiled a comprehensive Covid-19 Re-Opening Playbook for the hotel and hospitality industry - a best practice guide based on observations from thousands of hospitality customers across the globe. Download the full guide here.