The New War of the Worlds: Technology vs. Hospitality
Change should not be anything new in the restaurant and hospitality industry. With the advent of the smartphone, camera phones, and social media, guests have affected our industry in ways that were not even imagined 20 years ago.
While some establishments are slow to pick up new technologies, others are forging ahead with grandiose ideas of craft beer vending machines in their lobbies or drones delivering meals.
Suffice it to say, technology is here to stay, and it can help many businesses run leaner…but at what cost?
When Technology Helps
There are several ways that today’s technology helps your business flourish, including:
- Software that allows the dinner shift run smoothly (any restaurateur’s dream)
- Acquiring data to assess guest pain points to provide a solution to overcome them
- Building customer loyalty via social media
- Getting your name in front of new people with great reviews
Again, this is all fine and good…when it is kept in line with why we are in business – to provide hospitality to our guests and patrons.
When Technology Hurts
I’m not here to tell you to throw out that new app that helps your guests check into their room without stopping by your front desk.
What I am suggesting is that technology should be tempered with the one requirement that makes hospitality…well…hospitable.
We’re talking about your team.
Deanna Ting made a valid point in her article “10 Hotel Trends That Will Shape Guest Experience in 2017” when she said, “We don’t mean to, but sometimes, in the pursuit of efficiency and profit, we as an industry have forsaken our biggest and most important resource: humanity.”
There are no more significant means for delivering fantastic hospitality than through those who provide the service.
If your company is aiming to make a bigger impact on the world, then getting your team on the same page is more important than a fancy new software system, especially when they will be the ones utilizing that software.
It’s when we forget the human part of our business that we run the risk of stifled employee-guest interactions, poor customer experience, and our brand being tarnished on social media.
The Bottom Line
Embrace all the benefits that technology brings – satisfied guests, sustainable business, and working smarter – while keeping in mind that nothing says hospitality like the human touch an engaged team can bring to the table.
Remember, you can thrive in the pursuit of your passion and excellence.