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The Zetter Group's Managing Director on Leveraging Technology to Get Big Results with a Small Team

Discover how a boutique hotel group in London is revolutionizing their operations with innovative tech solutions, from using a dynamic upselling tool to streamline housekeeping management and cost controls, all while maintaining a personalized guest experience.

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Jordan Hollander in Operations

Last updated May 14, 2024

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Liutauras Vaitkevicius, the Managing Director of The Zetter Group, shares insights into the successful tech stack that has propelled his boutique hotel group to new heights in the latest episode of Hotel Tech Insider. With over 17 years of experience in the industry and a background in operations and revenue management, LV has led over 30 system migrations and built several tech stacks from scratch. His strategic approach to technology implementation, focusing on cost controls and personalized guest experiences, has earned The Zetter Group recognition as a leader in the industry. Dive into this episode to discover how LV leverages technology to drive success in the competitive hospitality landscape.

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Being High Tech But Keeping it Invisible to Customers

In the latest episode of our podcast, we delve into the dynamic and ever-evolving world of hotel management systems. As technology continues to reshape the hospitality landscape, understanding these changes is crucial for staying competitive and enhancing guest experiences. From the fundamental shifts in traditional Property Management Systems (PMS) to the strategic adoption of minimal in-room tech, we explore how hotels like the Zetter Group are navigating these transformations. Join us as we discuss five key areas that underscore the integration of technology in the hotel industry:

  • Evolution of PMS: The episode discusses the evolution of Property Management Systems (PMS) in the hotel industry over the last few years. Traditionally, PMS held crucial customer data and transactional information, but the role of PMS has been shrinking as new technologies emerge. The speaker emphasizes the importance of understanding customer data and behavior through analytical tools like CRM to enhance the guest experience and tailor services to meet evolving customer needs.

  • Housekeeping Management System: Implementing a housekeeping management system has made personalizing guest stays easier for the Zetter Group. By integrating technology that automates housekeeping tasks and maintenance requests, the hotel can ensure efficient operations and timely responses to guest needs. The system allows for seamless communication between housekeeping staff and maintenance teams, improving overall guest satisfaction and operational efficiency.

  • Minimal In-Room Technology: The Zetter Group consciously chooses to keep in-room technology to a minimum to maintain a human element in hospitality. By focusing on personalized interactions and avoiding intrusive technology, the hotel aims to provide a unique and boutique experience for guests. The decision to prioritize human interaction over excessive in-room tech aligns with the hotel's brand identity and commitment to delivering exceptional customer service.

  • Efficient Tech Stack: The Zetter Group utilizes a comprehensive and efficient tech stack to streamline operations and enhance guest experiences. By leveraging open API platforms and integrating various systems like CRM, distribution tools, and POS systems, the hotel ensures seamless communication between different departments and enhances data analysis capabilities. The tech stack enables the hotel to make data-driven decisions, optimize revenue management, and improve overall operational efficiency.

  • Focus on Cost Controls: The episode highlights the importance of cost controls in the current dynamic and fast-changing environment of the hospitality industry. The speaker emphasizes the need for real-time visibility into expenses and revenue projections to make informed decisions and adjust operations accordingly. By leveraging technology to monitor costs, analyze data, and forecast financial trends, hotels can effectively manage expenses, optimize profitability, and adapt to market fluctuations.

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The Zetter Group's Tech Stack and Philosophy

LV shares his critical views on the current state and future of Property Management Systems (PMS) and other legacy systems in the hospitality industry. Challenging the traditional reliance on these outdated platforms, he argues for a shift towards more modern, flexible solutions that can better meet the demands of today's dynamic market. In addition to technological upgrades, he also discusses the pivotal role of cost controls and the essential skills needed for hoteliers to thrive. Here are the key points he addresses:

  • He believes that legacy PMS and legacy systems are on a slow and painful decline, contrary to what many hoteliers may think. He argues that these systems are becoming outdated due to their limitations, lack of open API, and risk of data loss if hardware fails. Vaitkevicius emphasizes the importance of evolving technology and moving away from these legacy systems to more modern, flexible solutions.

  • LV also prioritizes cost controls as a key business objective, focusing on real-time visibility of expenses and revenue projections. He stresses the significance of using technology to maintain a clear overview of financial aspects, enabling quick decision-making and adjustments to ensure business success.

  • In terms of skills, LV highlights flexibility, decision-making, and continuous learning as crucial attributes for hoteliers in today's dynamic environment. He emphasizes the need to adapt quickly, make informed decisions, and stay updated with industry developments to navigate the ever-changing landscape effectively.

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Hoteliers, in the ever-evolving landscape of the hospitality industry, staying ahead of the curve is paramount. The conversation with Liutauras Vaitkevicius, Managing Director of The Zetter Group, sheds light on the crucial role of technology in driving success for boutique hotels. From the shrinking role of legacy PMS systems to the importance of flexibility and ongoing learning, the insights shared in this episode are invaluable for hoteliers looking to thrive in today's dynamic environment.

LV emphasizes the need for cost controls and the power of technology in providing real-time visibility into business operations. The focus on personalized guest experiences, efficient housekeeping management, and dynamic upselling techniques highlights the innovative ways technology can enhance customer satisfaction and drive revenue growth.

The discussion around the importance of networking, continuous learning, and the ability to adapt to new developments underscores the essential skills that hoteliers must possess to navigate the challenges and opportunities in the industry.

As the legacy systems fade into obsolescence, embracing modern, open API solutions becomes imperative for hotels seeking to stay competitive and deliver exceptional guest experiences. The insights shared in this episode serve as a guiding light for hoteliers looking to leverage technology to elevate their businesses and outperform the competition.

To gain a deeper understanding of how technology can revolutionize your hotel operations and drive success in today's digital age, we invite you to listen to the full podcast episode with Liutauras Vaitkevicius on Hotel Tech Insider. Tune in to discover actionable strategies and innovative tools that can transform your hotel's performance and set you on the path to sustainable growth.

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Jordan Hollander
Jordan is the co-founder of Hotel Tech Report, the hotel industry's app store where millions of professionals discover tech tools to transform their businesses. He was previously on the Global Partnerships team at Starwood Hotels & Resorts. Prior to his work with SPG, Jordan was Director of Business Development at MWT Hospitality and an equity analyst at Wells Capital Management. Jordan received his MBA from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management where he was a Zell Global Entrepreneurship Scholar and a Pritzker Group Venture Fellow.