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Actabl Wants to Revolutionize the Way Hotel Operations Teams Leverage Data

Jordan Hollander
2 months ago

Commercial teams in the hotel industry have come a long way in leveraging data across departments like revenue management and marketing - but hotel operations for the most part still remain in the dark ages with hoteliers making decisions based on feel and conjecture.Remember when retail behemoth Target learned how to leverage website browsing data to predict pregnancy? The data that lead to this goldmine of an insight was somewhat surprising, “Many shoppers purchase soap and cotton balls, but when someone suddenly starts buying lots of scent-free soap and extra-big bags of cotton balls, in addition to hand sanitizers and washcloths, it signals they could be getting close to their delivery date.”  This insight gave Target a competitive advantage in the highly lucrative “new-mommy” category so imagine what kinds of competitive advantage could be unlocked at your property using similar techniques.Every hotel GM, operations manager and management company knows that there are a myriad of opportunities to generate more efficiencies (and profit) in their businesses but historically it’s been incredibly difficult for hotels to see true cause and effect in a brick and mortar environment.  The key barrier to making these connections is a lack of insight on the impacts between inputs and outputs.  In the Target example, the retailer’s ecommerce website analytics and sales data are fully integrated which made that insight possible - but the integration of inputs and outputs typically isn’t present in hospitality operations.For example, let’s say you want to run a test to see if sending a different sequence of upsell messages to guests yields a material change in total guest spend. Historically, hoteliers could see how those upsell messages directly converted but couldn’t see whether that guest was more likely to book a massage, for example, if they didn’t convert with that exact promotional campaign.  There are literally thousands of small experiments hoteliers can run to optimize their businesses. But, since inputs and outputs haven’t historically been in the same dataset it’s been challenging to justify outside the box experimentation.The secret sauce behind the success of tech giants like Google, Airbnb and Amazon are precisely in their ability to run consistent, rapid tests over extended periods of time to develop compounding gains (and a competitive advantage).  What if you could easily run dozens of small experiments in your brick and mortar hotel business that would compound over extended periods of time to drive dramatic improvements? The team behind Actabl believes that they can do exactly that by bringing data science into hotel operations.Actabl, launched on June 28th at HITEC 2022 in Orlando, is the brainchild of leading technology investment firm ASG and is a culmination of their vision for the future of hospitality.  ASG has strategically acquired several leading tech firms in the space and is now bringing them together to provide hoteliers with a completely new kind of operational tool that will enable rapid compounding experimentation.Actabl has some BHAGs (big hairy audacious goals) that they are aiming to accomplish that will unlock value for hotels. Actabl wants to: Combine insights and operations to create a feedback loop that will allow hotel operators to build a living playbook that serves as a new standard for operations. Empower hoteliers with actionable (or ‘Actabl’) data from across their tech stacks so that they no longer have to “shoot from the hip.” Allow hotel operations teams, for the first time ever, to set up optimization ‘experiments’ and measure the true impact of initiatives by controlling inputs and outputs under one roof. Launch a hotel operations data science renaissance like the ones that revolutionized revenue management in the 90s and digital marketing in the 2000s. Actabl’s vision is to bring digital attribution to brick and mortar hotel businesses.  For brands: Actabl will unlock opportunities for the big chains (who don’t control assets) like never before by bringing together operational data from franchisees into a single, actionable business intelligence dashboard. For independents: Small and medium sized operators will be able to run experiments like large enterprises and access data and benchmarks beyond the scope of their four walls.In this article, we’ll dive into the opportunities that are being unlocked as Actabl brings these historically distinct datasets under oneroof.

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Three Surprising Ways IoT is Saving Hotels Money

Alec Massey
6 months ago

To say the hotel industry has been through a lot in the past 24 months is an understatement. While the projected 2022 occupancy rate of 61.7% is a significant improvement from 2020 and 2021 levels, it will remain below pre-pandemic levels that hovered in the mid-60s for the 7 year period spanning from 2014-2019.  However, average daily rates are expected to nearly equal pre-pandemic highs from 2019, after strong rebounds in 2021 and 2022, and as a result, . RevPAR is projected to reach 93% of 2019 levels in 2022.  The tumultuous 3 year period, despite the gradual and controlled recovery that is underway, has led hoteliers to prioritize cost saving initiatives to stabilize their bottom line.In addition, a slow return to work for hotel staff has also been a catalyst for operational changes in the industry, with greater priority placed on technology that enables improved efficiency and productivity. In late 2021, unemployment for the hotel sector reached 12.9% compared to the national rate of 4.6%. The strong job creation to start 2022, where the industry added approximately 150,000 jobs in January, demonstrates how the industry had to adapt to do more with less during the rebound that has been underway over the last 12 months.Less staff, coupled with steadily increasing numbers of guests during the recovery, has made it more difficult to deliver the same level of service, safety, and maintenance upkeep that hotels delivered pre-pandemic. With hoteliers needing to do more with less, recent investments in the Internet of Things (IoT), and geolocation platforms in particular, have shown to be an unexpected source of value. From sensors to trackers to rapid response buttons to smart cameras, IoT - and geolocation platforms in particular - are helping hotel staff feel safer, achieve greater productivity, and reduce waste in support of environmental, social and governance (ESG) targets - all resulting in cost savings to the hotel.

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What is a Building Management System?

Hotel Tech Report
8 months ago

Are you searching for a solution to lower your hotel’s energy costs and usage? Building owners need an efficient way to manage HVAC equipment, smart building devices (internet of things / IOT), lighting controls, security, and access control at your hotel as you operate with a leaner team than in the past?A building management system is critical for large hotels and other commercial buildings with complex mechanical and electronic operations that have high energy consumption. Energy efficiency through smart control systems can save large buildings thousands (and sometimes millions) of dollars per year.   BMS systems are at the core of any building operation and preventive maintenance facility management strategy.The benefits of using a building management system aren’t limited to only the engineering team; using a building control system can reduce your utility costs, eliminate hours of manual work, improve sustainability efforts and even boost your guest reviews. In this article, we’ll explain the features and potential benefits of using a building management system so you can decide whether a BMS is right for your hotel.