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Technology Foundation for Future Innovation: Hospitality

April 05, 2019

Today’s hotel guests expect a connected experience from the time they check-in to the time that they leave. Digital transformation is changing the hotel industry and to reap the benefits of this evolution, hoteliers must have a network with a strong foundation that’s ready to support their needs.

Technology adoption in the hospitality sector has shown a marked increase in the last few years, with more hotels and other hospitality organizations embracing services and technologies to improve their operations and provide optimum guest experiences. Mobility, connectivity and data all are driving digital disruption in the hospitality sector, as guests increasingly demand autonomy yet crave a high-quality, personalized experience.

Mobile apps, in particular, are changing the way guests engage with hotels. As such, smart hotels are providing features in their apps that enable guests to perform certain tasks on their own, such as choose the location of their guest room. Other features in mobile apps are designed to improve the overall guest experience, such as keyless room entry, beacon mapping to direct the guest around the hotel property and concierge services—through either a live representative or an artificial intelligence-enabled chatbot.

In the room, smart technologies are becoming commonplace, enabling guests to control lighting, temperature and window shades via a smart hub either in the room or on the mobile app. What’s more, cable and pay-per-view movies are giving way to entertainment on demand via streaming services accessed using guest’s personal accounts.

Data analytics, meanwhile, is helping hospitality organizations sift through data from internal and external sources to spot business trends, realize operational efficiencies and even understand customer sentiment. Such information is invaluable in helping these organizations improve their business operations and provide more value to their guests.

As hotels and other hospitality organizations continue to embrace new technologies and services to enhance operations and improve the guest experience, a solid foundation is critical to support those technologies. While new technology offers unlimited opportunity in scope and results, it’s as good as useless without the necessary underlying infrastructure. Smart hospitality providers understand that a solid foundation that addresses performance, reliability and affordability will enable them to grow their business faster and more securely and position them to take advantage of future technology advancements.

Performance

As the number of devices on any given network increases, so, too, does the amount of data generated by these devices. Users—both employees and customers—meanwhile, expect networks to be fast and highly responsive, regardless of what applications they’re using. A foundation of performance keeps systems, applications and services running at peak speed.

Flexibility

Likewise, as new technologies transform business models and processes and organizations become even more technology-enabled, networks must be able to adapt to new technologies without causing bottlenecks or slowdowns. A foundation of flexibility ensures that technology works for the business, not the other way around, and that the network can grow and adapt as new technologies are added.

Affordability

What’s more, today’s networking technology is open, vendor-agnostic and API-friendly—a far cry from the closed, proprietary legacy systems that organizations traditionally have relied on. A foundation of affordability ensures hotels and other hospitality providers can easily add new technologies that integrate seamlessly and offer greater processing power without expensive “bolt-on” integrations.

In building a foundation of performance, flexibility and affordability, hospitality providers must ensure the technologies they choose will provide benefits both today and down the road. Those organizations that understand and adopt such technologies will have a greater chance of success in digital business today and in the future.

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