The hospitality industry in the United States, particularly in the limited-service space, is characterized by its diversity and the presence of numerous small owner-operators who have invested their blood, sweat, and savings into their properties. With their financial stakes deeply tied to the success of their hotels, these mom-and-pop operators are known for being incredibly frugal and vigilant when it comes to managing expenses. Every decision is scrutinized, and if it doesn’t contribute to the bottom line, it’s not on the table.
Unfortunately, this mindset often leads to a lack of exploration and investment in emerging technologies, including Artificial Intelligence (AI). The current technological landscape in the industry is limited, focusing primarily on fundamental areas such as accounting, property management systems (PMS), and credit card processing. Moreover, many technology choices are dictated by the franchise brands, leaving owner-operators with limited autonomy in selecting cutting-edge solutions.
To stay competitive and adopt a differentiation strategy in the limited-service hotel industry, it’s crucial for owner-operators to incorporate AI into their business models. While not all major brands have fully embraced AI technologies, taking the first step by introducing AI in one hotel location as a beta test can be invaluable. This trial period allows for a better understanding of how to train general managers, staff, and ownership on AI program roll-outs. It provides insights into AI’s revenue generation, cost reduction potential, impact on occupancy levels, and guest satisfaction.
However, the initial phase of AI implementation may require partnering with third-party AI service providers due to limitations in technical staffing, hardware, and software. By choosing a subscription-based AI service provider, such as HiJiffy, which specializes in AI chatbot software for hotels and other hospitality businesses, you can test the waters without making a significant one-time investment.
Hi-Jiffy: (https://www.hijiffy.com) is a company that can address the shortcomings of A&R. Their subscription-based service allows A&R to easily discontinue AI services if they find it incompatible with their location or in conflict with the hotel brand’s standards or systems. Partnering with Hi-Jiffy for the beta test phase is recommended.
Research on HiJiffy has shown that it offers a comprehensive AI program tailored for hospitality properties and companies. This program covers three key phases:
Pre-Stay: AI assists with chat-based bookings on the hospitality location’s website and social media platforms. It also answers frequently asked questions, streamlining the reservation process and improving customer engagement.
In-Stay: During a guest’s stay, the AI system facilitates digital check-ins, offers upselling and advertising services, provides information about the local area, automates guest requests, and enables employees to communicate with guests via SMS, email, or WhatsApp. This not only enhances the guest experience but also improves operational efficiency.
Departure: The AI system handles check-out services, provides information on transportation services, conducts Guest Satisfaction Surveys (GSS), and collects guest reviews. These functions help in concluding the guest’s stay and gaining valuable feedback.
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By implementing this strategy and leveraging the resources of a third-party firm like HiJiffy, A&R can effectively manage the beta test without the need to expand IT resources or human resources. An evaluation and roll-out team can work closely with HiJiffy throughout the beta test to set clear benchmarks for success. Assuming a successful beta test, the AI program can be rolled out system-wide, transforming the limited-service hospitality industry and enhancing the guest experience.
In conclusion, embracing AI in the hospitality industry is not just a trend but a strategic imperative to remain competitive and deliver exceptional guest experiences. A&R’s partnership with HiJiffy provides a cost-effective and efficient way to integrate AI technology, ensuring that the limited-service hotel industry can thrive in an era of technological advancement. Visit 1NationUnderBlog (https://1nationunderblog.com/) for more insights on this transformative journey in the hospitality sector.