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Radisson Hotel Group rolls out Oaky in EMEA

by
Oaky
3 hours ago

Today Oaky announced a strategic agreement with Radisson Hotel Group, one of the world’s largest hotel groups for the roll-out of Oaky’s upselling solution to more than 200 hotels in EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) by the end of 2019. Known for delivering memorable moments and focusing on personalised service, Radisson Hotel Group will use Oaky to promote customised offers to guests before their arrival and thus to create an individually tailored, unforgettable stay while driving ancillary revenue.      Oaky’s innovative approach to upselling relies on three elements. Firstly, the platform uses a data-driven approach to create personalised offers and promote them to guests. Secondly, Oaky’s user-friendly interface and fun style make it easy for travellers to pick and choose the deals that will make their experience unforgettable. Thirdly, Oaky communicates directly with the hotel, so all deal requests are handled smoothly and efficiently. In short, Oaky empowers guests to customise their stay before their trip and allows hotels to automate the entire upselling process and generate more revenue from every booking. After the successful implementation of Oaky at two pilot hotels, the Radisson Blu Hotel, Amsterdam City Center and Radisson Blu Palace Hotel, Noordwijk aan Zee, Radisson Hotel Group decided to roll it out to more properties in EMEA. Gaby Maaswinkel-vd Bosch, Senior Cluster Revenue Manager at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Amsterdam City Center implemented the application in 2015 and comments: “Working with Oaky was easy from start to finish. The set-up was quick, and we could immediately start upselling to our guests. The results showed a fantastic ROI. I shared this with my colleagues and soon several more properties were interested in using Oaky.” In regards to rolling out Oaky on a large scale, Guido Hoogveld, Director, Revenue Management Projects at Radisson Hotel Group said: “Redefining and optimizing our revenue management capabilities is a key element of the Group’s five-year operating plan. Our team exchanged their ideas and requirements with Oaky and we got the job done in record speed, onboarding the first 100 properties in 90 days. Now we look forward to working with Oaky and seeing a great ROI at all participating properties.”     “Guests look for fun experiences, great restaurants or transportation in a destination. With Oaky’s help, Radisson Hotel Group can offer travellers customised deals in these areas at various times of the guest journey on a variety of channels. This achieves two important goals: enhancing the guest experience and driving extra revenue from upsells. We are excited to work with our many new Radisson Hotel Group partners and to guide them on their upselling journey with Oaky,” Oaky Co-Founder Erik Tengen explains. # ABOUT RADISSON HOTEL GROUP Radisson Hotel Group is one of the world's largest hotel groups with seven distinctive hotel brands, and more than 1,400 hotels in operation and under development around the world. Radisson Hotel Group portfolio includes Radisson Collection, Radisson Blu, Radisson, Radisson RED, Park Plaza, Park Inn by Radisson and Country Inn & Suites by Radisson. Radisson Rewards is our global rewards program that delivers unique and personalized ways to create memorable moments that matter to our guests. Radisson Rewards offers exceptional loyalty benefits for our guests, meeting planners, travel agents and business partners. Radisson Meetings places its guests and their needs at the heart of its offer and treats every meeting or event as more than just a date on the calendar. Radisson Meetings is built around three strong service commitments: Personal, Professional and Memorable, while delivering on the brilliant basics and our signature Yes I Can! service spirit and being uniquely 100% Carbon Neutral. More than 95,000 global team members work for Radisson Hotel Group and at the hotels licensed to operate in its systems.

African properties getting guest experience right, losing out on online reputation

by
GuestRevu
1 day ago

Hospitality professionals and technology providers from across the continent came together at the fourth annual THINC Africa conference in Cape Town on Friday, 15 November, to discuss and explore the exciting future of tourism and hospitality in Africa. As an award-winning provider of direct feedback survey and online reputation management tools, GuestRevu’s CEO and Founder, Chris Alexandre, was uniquely placed to speak about the role of direct and online guest feedback in the African hospitality market, and how it compares to that of the European market. Armed with analysis of data collected during the 2019 Boutique Hotel Guest Experience (BoHo) Awards, for which GuestRevu was the data collection partner, Chris jumped straight in, pointing out that while African properties are getting guest experience right, they are not translating their positive guest experiences into a positive online reputation as effectively as they could be. This was based on the fact that African properties who entered the Awards saw higher direct feedback scores than their European counterparts, while their online review scores were lower.   GuestRevu analysed data that they received during the 2019 Boutique Hotel Guest Experience Awards to determine how African and European properties compare in both direct feedback and online review scores One reason for this discrepancy, Chris explained, is a concern that he often encounters during discussions with African properties in particular. “We often encounter hoteliers who say: ‘We don’t want to invite all of our guests to review us on TripAdvisor — what if their feedback is negative?’” However, Chris continued, GuestRevu’s recent analysis of 2800 reviews showed that 82% were positive, while only 3.4% included negative comments. “This shows that there is no need to be nervous,” says Chris. “The vast majority of feedback is largely positive, and even where negative reviews are received, they give you the chance to learn about your guest experience and improve it.” The importance of asking guests for reviews is essential, Chris explained, because it’s not only review scores that are taken into consideration when determining your ranking on platforms like TripAdvisor — volume and recency are also fundamental to the calculation. And, Chris continued, one of the best ways to ensure volume and recency is to ask your guests for reviews: “We have discovered that very often, simply asking guests to leave reviews online can drastically improve the volume of reviews, and the scores given. “Often it’s only exceptionally delighted and exceptionally disappointed guests who take time out of their lives to leave online reviews,” Chris explained. “However, the vast majority of guests are satisfied with their stay, but not so much so that they are motivated to write an online review unless they are prompted to do so by a tool like a post-stay survey with review integration.” Once that ‘silent majority,’ as Chris refers to them, do provide feedback, the insights that they offer can be enlightening, and occasionally surprising, as GuestRevu found when they analysed comments that guests left about the highlights of their stays at African properties over the course of one month.     GuestRevu analysed comments from over 17,000 reviews received in April 2019 to determine common phrases that are used when guests are asked what the highlights of their stay was. These are common phrases used in African properties (left) and European properties (right). Phrases such as “staff service” and “experience” featured more prominently for African hotels than in the comments for European properties, Chris explained, indicating that African properties have an opportunity to highlight the quality of their staff service and the value of the experience that they provide as differentiating factors. By asking all guests for feedback, properties in Africa have an opportunity to raise their online reputations, and gain the insights that they need to set themselves apart. It is not the experience that is falling short, as the data and comments show that experiences in African properties are top-class. With an increase in online reviews, and the voice of the silent, but satisfied, majority being heard, African properties can easily stand tall in the international hospitality market.

CPI Hotels engages SiteMinder to welcome a new wave of leisure travelers

by
SiteMinder
1 week ago

One of the Czech Republic’s largest hotel chains, CPI Hotels, has engaged SiteMinder, the global hotel industry’s leading guest acquisition platform, as it seeks to target a new wave of leisure tourists and broaden its traditional focus on corporate guests. This engagement sees CPI Hotels using SiteMinder’s technology to automate their online distribution and integrate smoothly into the Choice Hotels International network, of which CPI Hotels is the exclusive representative in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. It also sees the chain gain a newfound ability to maximize operational efficiencies and maintain room rates and inventory across their multiple distribution channels. Michal Vohralík, Deputy Director of Sales & Marketing at CPI Hotels, says, “As a part of our long-term strategy to become the strongest player in the domestic and broader European market, we needed confidence that our rooms were always available to potential guests of all types, at all times. We have become more reliant on technology to keep pace with how our guests are booking, and to have the opportunity to connect with over 400 of the world’s top booking channels through SiteMinder, we feel well placed to continue our strong pattern of growth into the future. “Especially at a time where an increasing share of CPI’s business is being generated via OTAs, it is important that we are able to monitor our room distribution, and ensure rate control, parity and restrictions across all of our integrated channels. SiteMinder has given our team this crucial capability.” Since opening its doors in 1993, CPI Hotels has expanded across the Czech Republic and grown internationally through the addition of upscale properties located in the heart of some of Europe’s most prestigious cities. The chain now operates a total of 30 hotels across Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Russia, Italy and the Czech Republic, welcoming a growing number of leisure guests while maintaining their strong footing in the corporate sphere. SiteMinder’s director of enterprise, Filipa Campos, says, “We are thrilled to be supporting CPI Hotels as they continue into their 26th year of business. As the demand for tourism steadily increases within Central and Western Europe, we are excited to be assisting the group to connect with new customers, generate more internal efficiency and take greater control of their supply.”

RoomRaccoon and GuestRevu Integrate Solutions

by
GuestRevu
1 week ago

Life in the hospitality industry can be chaotic at the best of times, which is why it’s so important to work with technology that streamlines and simplifies your daily operations. As such, GuestRevu and RoomRaccoon are delighted to announce their new system integration which promises to save hoteliers valuable time and help them better connect with guests.    The integration between RoomRaccoon’s property management system and GuestRevu’s direct guest survey tool allows feedback requests to be automatically sent once a guest checks out of a property, enabling the companies’ mutual clients to get more detailed feedback on a regular basis.As a TripAdvisor Platinum Partner, GuestRevu’s integration with the review giant also encourages guests to leave reviews on the platform directly from the questionnaire, ensuring hotels receive an increased number of fresh reviews and thereby improve their ranking. GuestRevu has helped their clients increase TripAdvisor reviews collected by more than 300% compared to those collected organically.Properties can view and respond to direct and online feedback on their GuestRevu dashboard, and are able to draw on valuable insights to make more informed operational improvements and provide the best possible experience to their guests.RoomRacoon is a rapidly growing company that provides an all-in-one PMS, booking engine and channel manager solution, helping hoteliers around the world increase direct bookings and save valuable time in daily operations.“RoomRaccoon and GuestRevu are a perfect fit. Both companies were built with the aim of making the lives of hoteliers as easy as possible,” says GuestRevu Founder and CEO, Chris Alexandre. “With RoomRaccoon’s consolidated solution and GuestRevu’s online reputation tools, hotel staff have the time, resources and insights they need to create incredible guest experiences.”GuestRevu is the top rated guest feedback and ORM solution in the world, winning first place in both the reputation management software and guest feedback software categories in the prestigious 2019 HotelTechAwards, while RoomRaccoon has received numerous start-up awards as it continues to expand in South Africa and abroad.Together, GuestRevu and RoomRacoon are able to provide properties with the feedback, reputation management and internal tools that they need to manage their premises, engage with their guests and identify opportunities for growth.“RoomRaccoon was created to revolutionise software for independent hotels around the globe,” says company founder Nadja Buckenberger. “Our integration with GuestRevu will streamline that process even more for our mutual clients, which is why we’re so excited about this partnership.”

Main Street Hospitality Group Chooses IDeaS for Time-Saving, Revenue-Enhancing Decision Empowerment

by
IDeaS
2 weeks ago

IDeaS Revenue Solutions, the world’s leading provider of revenue management software and services, announced today it will implement IDeaS G3 Revenue Management System (RMS) across Main Street Hospitality Group’s independent, New England-based hotel portfolio. With a fast-growing property count, Main Street could no longer effectively continue its manual revenue management processes and remain competitive. In need of a robust, scientific solution, Main Street selected IDeaS to deliver a range of unrivaled features and benefits. · Intelligent, time-saving automation – IDeaS G3 RMS will automate tactical decisions for each property to enable its limited revenue management resources to focus on bigger-picture strategy. · Granular room-type pricing – With a multitude of unique, complex room types at its historic properties, each with its own demand patterns, Main Street will leverage G3 RMS to streamline and optimize its room-type rates. · Immediate group evaluation – IDeaS’ group evaluation tool will unite Main Street’s sales and revenue management functions and enable sales to quote group rates quicker and more effectively.    Greta Kipp, vice president of revenue management and sales, Main Street Hospitality Group, said: “I’ve always been really impressed by IDeaS’ thought leadership and industry education efforts, and I’ve never worked with a group so thoughtful, accessible, and willing to walk through each aspect of their solution—not just showing me which buttons to push, but really digging into the revenue management best practices and use cases behind each feature of their robust system.” Dr. Ravi Mehrotra, president, founder and chief scientist, IDeaS, said: “IDeaS is proud to deliver revenue management automation and reliability to Main Street Hospitality Group. We look forward to working with them to build more profitability and efficiencies into their revenue management processes while helping advance a culture of revenue optimization across their outstanding portfolio.”   About Main Street Hospitality Group Built on 50 years of family ownership and operations, Main Street Hospitality Group hotels are for the independent traveler seeking unique experiences that are not overly trendy or traditional. Main Street takes inspiration from its locations, their history and culture, to create places that serve as the heartbeat of the community.  

SiteMinder launches the Hotel App Store

by
SiteMinder
2 weeks ago

SiteMinder, the global hotel industry’s leading guest acquisition platform, is today launching the Hotel App Store—the first marketplace allowing hotels of all sizes to easily discover, choose and connect applications to their business systems for greater guest experiences and revenue. The unveiling of the product at World Travel Market London is a significant step forward for hotels that have been challenged with changing guest behaviour but have lacked access to technology that keeps them ahead of those trends. Until now, marketplaces have been closed environments for hotels, accessible only by using a marketplace provider’s designated property management system (PMS). SiteMinder's Hotel App Store has opened up this access to all hotels, by allowing them to connect to more than 100 applications—including revenue management and upselling, guest messaging, guest review management, room controls, airport transfers and keyless entry—through a single interface and from a selection of more than 80 PMSs or SiteMinder’s channel manager. Among the applications available through the Hotel App Store are Cendyn, TrustYou, OpenKey, Welcome Pickups, and Oaky, as well as UK-headquartered For-Sight and upgrade2. Already, the Oaky app is being used by one of Europe’s leading leisure groups, Muthu Hotels & Resorts, an early adopter of the Hotel App Store. The hotel chain’s e-commerce manager, Nuno Sacramento, has increased both revenue and average daily rates since using Oaky to push out targeted upselling campaigns prior to a guest’s arrival. “The Hotel App Store is a great opportunity to find ready-made solutions we haven't thought of or are unable to find. It has become a trusted marketplace for services that, under normal circumstances, would come with the hassle of extra developments and integrations,” says Mr Sacramento. SiteMinder’s Hotel App Store will feature in-built smart technology that recommends only relevant applications to hotel users, based on their profile and past selections. It is the latest chapter in the evolution of SiteMinder’s platform, which in 2018 generated more than US$28 billion in revenue for 35,000 hotels worldwide. The Hotel App Store also adds to SiteMinder’s partner network of more than 800 hotel booking channel and management system providers, which collectively comprise the largest and most open ecosystem for hotels today. The Hotel App Store comes 18 months after the launch of SiteMinder Exchange, a connectivity hub that allows hotel data publishers and developers of hotel application software to transfer guest information between their systems. From today, hotels using a data publisher connected to SiteMinder Exchange—which includes property management systems (PMSs) and SiteMinder’s channel manager—can use the Hotel App Store to access applications. “Our purpose at SiteMinder has always been to liberate hoteliers with technology that makes a world of difference, and the Hotel App Store stands as a true testament to that purpose. Over the years, we have witnessed numerous hotel technologies emerge to better support hoteliers with their day-to-day, yet never before have hoteliers had the opportunity to select freely from those choices, using the system they know and trust. Hoteliers remain anchored down by the challenges of data and accessibility. We solved the data challenge through SiteMinder Exchange and now, with the Hotel App Store, we’re making accessibility another issue of the past,” says Dai Williams, Chief Growth Officer at SiteMinder.    

IDeaS Achieves Level III Global Support Certification

by
Hotel Tech Report
3 days ago

This week, IDeaS earned Hotel Tech Report’s Level III Global Customer Support Certification (GCSC) for its heavy investments into tools, processes and strategies to ensure the ongoing success of its customers earning perfect scores across all four of the key pillars of the GCSC Rubric including: pre-emptive support, reactive support, coaching and customer validation. The Hotel Tech Report GCSC certification program analyzes software vendors along critical dimensions of customer support infrastructure in order to help hoteliers minimize risk and maximize positive outcomes when selecting technology partners.  In order to become certified, companies must open their internal systems to Hotel Tech Report for assessment along HTR’s rigorous 34-point GCSC Rubric.   “When Sanjay and Ravi founded IDeaS in 1989, spreadsheets were in their early days, datasets were disparate and it was widely accepted that revenue management in hotels was to be based on gut feelings.  As the category creator, its not suprising that thirty years later where IDeaS' support and success operation really stands out is in their tireless efforts to educate hoteliers across the globe with a constant stream of educational content and high touch service.  What's also really unique is the sophistication of IDeaS' success monitoring for clients which includes a proprietary simulation system that runs real world parallel simulations of scenarios with no RMS in place and simpler automated revenue management tools to make sure their clients can clearly see the tangible benefits and ROI of their IDeaS investment.  This is the gold standard when it comes to educating clients on product value and something every company wishes they could implement--but only a company with IDeaS' technical wherewithal, extensive resources and 30-year track record can really execute on.  Hotels who investment in IDeaS' software therefore don't just get a product, but they get expertise and education that makes their entire organization more revenue saavy and profitable and that's something that shouldn't be underestimated when considering IDeaS as a partner.” Hotel Tech Report co-founder Adam Hollander. "Our constant commitment is not only to equip clients with the most advanced revenue management technology and analytics, but also provide the ongoing support, training and education needed to successfully use these tools to grow profits for their unique properties." Sanjay Nagalia, Co-Founder and COO The below GCSC assessment outlines the verified systems and processes that IDeaS has in place to educate, train, retain and support customers.   IDeaS' GCSC Assessment Summary  Rubric Score: 32/34 Certification Level: III Customer Orientation: Customer Centric Recommendation: Highly Recommended Support Team Size: 150+ Support Team Leaders: Greg Myers, Chief Client Officer Certification Period: November 6, 2019-November 6, 2020 Support Stack: Intellum, Salesforce, Qualtrics, WalkMe, Bright Idea   GCSC Support Rubric Section I: Pre-Emptive Support  The Pre-Emptive support pillar of the GSCG Scoring Rubric audits the tools and processes the vendor has in place to provide customers with easy access to self-help resources.  These self-help resources serve as a basis to offer easy troubleshooting as well as to preempt answers to product related questions before they arise providing a more intuitive and seamless experience for clients.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that IDeaS has in place for clients: Online knowledge base/help center: Vendor offers a searchable help center for customers to easily find answers to common customer questions. Online training videos: Vendor offers pre-recorded videos that clients can access 24/7 for self-teaching and deeper product knowledge. In-app guided tours: Vendor offers in-app guided tours that are embedded within their interface to provide coaching and education for users to organically discover and easily access while using the product. Tooltips: Vendor offers helpful tips and hints presented when users hover over buttons and UI elements in the interface. (min of 10 in-app tooltips) Implementation documentation/roadmap: Vendor offers clients a visual map of the steps, processes and stakeholders upon onboarding to ensure that all stakeholders are aligned to make the implementation process more seamless. Proprietary data recommendations: Vendor aggregates product usage data across clients to benchmark performance and provide recommendations to their users to help them learn about best practices, make better decisions and maximize product utilization. GCSC Support Rubric Section II: Reactive Support  The Reactive Support Pillar assesses the company's responsiveness to clients and their ability to resolve issues quickly when they arise ensuring prompt response and service to clients.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that IDeaS has in place for clients: Transparent process: Vendor has opened up their systems to Hotel Tech Report via screen share to verify their tools and processes in place to deliver customer support. Email support or phone support: Vendor at least one of the traditional methods of customer support channels, email or phone support (additional channels: phone, chat, email) Multi-lingual support: Vendor offers support in the languages where they have active clients (English, French, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, German, Bulgarian, Russian, Czech, Belorusian, Xhosa, Swedish, Norwegian, Slovak, Portuguese, Chinese, Romanian, Taiwanese)  Purpose built support and ticket management tool: Vendor utilizes professional customer support software that has functionality to effectively manage support tickets, followup, escalations and analytics. Live Chat support: Vendor offers website or in-app live chat as an alternative customer support channel. Contract SLAs: Vendor has service level agreement (SLA) terms in place in client contracts to guarantee that service levels are upheld. Feature request tracking: Vendor offers the ability for clients to easily submit feature requests and has a methodology in place for escalating high priority features. 24/7 support availability: Vendor offers 24/7 support to clients for around the clock assistance. Verified Contract SLA monitoring: Vendor has SLA terms fully integrated into their customer support software that has automatic notifications ensuring that SLA's are monitored and upheld.   GCSC Support Rubric Section III: Customer Success & Coaching While keeping customers happy is commonly thought of by software companies as the top priority, keeping them well informed is of equal importance. The third pillar of the GCSC Rubric identifies the key ways that vendors inform, educate and train their customers to realize successful outcomes with their products.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that IDeaS has in place for clients: Customer satisfaction monitoring (ex. NPS surveys, CSAT): Vendor has processes in place to regularly monitor customer satisfaction. Product updates/changes (release notes/changelog): Vendor offers easily accessible robust documentation of feature updates and product improvements to educate clients on new ways to maximize usage of the product. Quarterly success check ins: Vendor offers [at least] quarterly customer success check ins to review progress, share best practices and ensure that clients are successful and happy with the product or service. Performance reporting: Vendor offers reporting and analytics to show clients the value of the product or service. Managed Services: Vendor offers additional consulting and managed services to help clients maximize their usage of the product. Learning Management System (LMS): Vendo has a Learning Management System in place that offers videos, guided trainings and assessments for customers to be able to expand product knowledge in a structured way over time. Product certifications: Vendor offers certifications which allow users to have a structured path to becoming a product expert which can be leveraged in their career to strengthen their resume. Online community: Vendor offers and online community for customers that allows users to engage with each other as well as targeted content in a contextualized setting to enable self-service discovery and problem solving. Customer conference: Vendor produces an in-person or online user conference to build a community, share product updates and educate users on best practices. GCSC Support Rubric Section IV: Customer Validation The GCSC’s 34-point rubric and Hotel Tech Report’s verification of internal tools and processes validate the vendor's systems in place; however, the validation of the success of these tools and processes can most significantly be validated by the unbiased perspectives of real hotelier customers.  This pillar looks at unbiased verified client reviews and satisfaction scores to validate that the processes in place are working in the eyes of customers based on their satisfaction ratings.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that IDeaS has in place for clients: Extraordinary Public Feedback Validation: Vendor shows exemplary client relationships and is a top performer on Hotel Tech Report with more than 200 verified client reviews. >4.5* avg. customer support rating: Vendor has outstanding customer support ratings averaging more than 4.5/5 across all client reviews.   About the Hotel Tech Report Global Customer Support Certification (GCSC) Support is one of the most critical aspects of the vendor selection process and yet historically there has never been a way to know the quality of a company’s support, until now. Using Hotel Tech Report’s proprietary framework, companies are assessed along four key dimensions: pre-emptive support, reactive support, coaching/success and client validation to provide hoteliers unprecedented levels of transparency to more easily identify top technology partners.   For more information please visit: https://partners.hoteltechreport.com/global-support-certification/

Oaky Achieves Level II Global Support Certification

by
Hotel Tech Report
2 weeks ago

This week, Oaky earned Hotel Tech Report’s Level II Global Customer Support Certification (GCSC) for its heavy investments into tools, processes and strategies to ensure the ongoing success of its customers earning perfect scores across all four of the key pillars of the GCSC Rubric including: pre-emptive support, reactive support, coaching and customer validation.“ The Hotel Tech Report GCSC certification program analyzes software vendors along critical dimensions of customer support infrastructure in order to help hoteliers minimize risk and maximize positive outcomes when selecting technology partners.  In order to become certified, companies must open their internal systems to Hotel Tech Report for assessment along HTR’s rigorous 34-point GCSC Rubric. “Saahil and the rest of the support team at Oaky are quantitatively meticulous when it comes to a pulse on customers.  Combine that with their constant flow of fun, new educational opportunities and content for customers and its no suprise why Oaky's customers have rated them with such high marks year after year on Hotel Tech Report.  The Oaky team also has a keen eye on delivering pre-emptive customer support by way of a high quality product experience for clients.  From their seamless self service onboarding to elaborate in-app guided tours, making the most of the Oaky platform is always just a click away for hoteliers.” Hotel Tech Report co-founder Adam Hollander. "We strive to create Wow-experiences by combining intuitive technology with warm, knowledgeable and speedy support. Our customers are busy 24/7, so we focus on creating ways to pro-actively access our expert upselling knowledge, and making ourselves easily accessible via for example live chat. In our hiring process we focus on finding amicable personalities that are amazing with people, realising that our relationships with our customers is our most important asset." Erik Tengen, CEO @ Oaky The below GCSC assessment outlines the verified systems and processes that Oaky has in place to educate, train, retain and support customers.   Oaky's GCSC Assessment Summary  Rubric Score: 25/34 Certification Level: II Customer Orientation: Customer Focused Recommendation: Highly Recommended Support Team Size: 5 Support Team Leaders: Saahil Karkera, Head of Customer Success Certification Period: November 5th, 2019-November 5th, 2020 Support Stack: Jira, Tableau, Intercom, Youtube, Planhat   GCSC Support Rubric Section I: Pre-Emptive Support  The Pre-Emptive support pillar of the GSCG Scoring Rubric audits the tools and processes the vendor has in place to provide customers with easy access to self-help resources.  These self-help resources serve as a basis to offer easy troubleshooting as well as to preempt answers to product related questions before they arise providing a more intuitive and seamless experience for clients.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that Oaky has in place for clients: Online knowledge base/help center: Vendor offers a searchable help center for customers to easily find answers to common customer questions. Online training videos: Vendor offers pre-recorded videos that clients can access 24/7 for self-teaching and deeper product knowledge. In-app guided tours: Vendor offers in-app guided tours that are embedded within their interface to provide coaching and education for users to organically discover and easily access while using the product. Tooltips: Vendor offers helpful tips and hints presented when users hover over buttons and UI elements in the interface. (min of 10 in-app tooltips) Implementation documentation/roadmap: Vendor offers clients a visual map of the steps, processes and stakeholders upon onboarding to ensure that all stakeholders are aligned to make the implementation process more seamless. Proprietary data recommendations: Vendor aggregates product usage data across clients to benchmark performance and provide recommendations to their users to help them learn about best practices, make better decisions and maximize product utilization. GCSC Support Rubric Section II: Reactive Support  The Reactive Support Pillar assesses the company's responsiveness to clients and their ability to resolve issues quickly when they arise ensuring prompt response and service to clients.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that Oaky has in place for clients: Transparent process: Vendor has opened up their systems to Hotel Tech Report via screen share to verify their tools and processes in place to deliver customer support. Email support or phone support: Vendor at least one of the traditional methods of customer support channels, email or phone support (additional channels: phone, chat, email) Multi-lingual support: Vendor offers support in the languages where they have active clients (English, French, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, German, Bulgarian, Russian, Czech, Belorusian, Xhosa, Swedish, Norwegian, Slovak, Portuguese, Chinese, Romanian, Taiwanese)  Purpose built support and ticket management tool: Vendor utilizes professional customer support software that has functionality to effectively manage support tickets, followup, escalations and analytics. Live Chat support: Vendor offers website or in-app live chat as an alternative customer support channel. Feature request tracking: Vendor offers the ability for clients to easily submit feature requests and has a methodology in place for escalating high priority features. 24/7 support availability: Vendor offers 24/7 support to clients for around the clock assistance. Verified Contract SLA monitoring: Vendor has SLA terms fully integrated into their customer support software that has automatic notifications ensuring that SLA's are monitored and upheld.   GCSC Support Rubric Section III: Customer Success & Coaching While keeping customers happy is commonly thought of by software companies as the top priority, keeping them well informed is of equal importance. The third pillar of the GCSC Rubric identifies the key ways that vendors inform, educate and train their customers to realize successful outcomes with their products.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that Oaky has in place for clients: Customer satisfaction monitoring (ex. NPS surveys, CSAT): Vendor has processes in place to regularly monitor customer satisfaction. Product updates/changes (release notes/changelog): Vendor offers easily accessible robust documentation of feature updates and product improvements to educate clients on new ways to maximize usage of the product. Quarterly success check ins: Vendor offers [at least] quarterly customer success check ins to review progress, share best practices and ensure that clients are successful and happy with the product or service. Performance reporting: Vendor offers reporting and analytics to show clients the value of the product or service. Dedicated customer success monitoring software: Vendor utilizes dedicated customer success software to monitor product usage and coach users to succeed with the product. GCSC Support Rubric Section IV: Customer Validation The GCSC’s 34-point rubric and Hotel Tech Report’s verification of internal tools and processes validate the vendor's systems in place; however, the validation of the success of these tools and processes can most significantly be validated by the unbiased perspectives of real hotelier customers.  This pillar looks at unbiased verified client reviews and satisfaction scores to validate that the processes in place are working in the eyes of customers based on their satisfaction ratings.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that Oaky has in place for clients: Strong Public Feedback Validation: Vendor shows exemplary client relationships and is a top performer on Hotel Tech Report with more than 59 verified client reviews. >4.5* avg. customer support rating: Vendor has outstanding customer support ratings averaging more than 4.5/5 across all client reviews.   About the Hotel Tech Report Global Customer Support Certification (GCSC) Support is one of the most critical aspects of the vendor selection process and yet historically there has never been a way to know the quality of a company’s support, until now. Using Hotel Tech Report’s proprietary framework, companies are assessed along four key dimensions: pre-emptive support, reactive support, coaching/success and client validation to provide hoteliers unprecedented levels of transparency to more easily identify top technology partners.   For more information please visit: https://partners.hoteltechreport.com/global-support-certification/

Whistle Achieves Level III Global Customer Support Certification

by
Hotel Tech Report
2 weeks ago

This week, Whistle earned Hotel Tech Report’s Level III Global Customer Support Certification (GCSC) for its heavy investments into tools, processes and strategies to ensure the ongoing success of its customers earning perfect scores across all four of the key pillars of the GCSC Rubric including: pre-emptive support, reactive support, coaching and customer validation.“ The Hotel Tech Report GCSC certification program analyzes software vendors along critical dimensions of customer support infrastructure in order to help hoteliers minimize risk and maximize positive outcomes when selecting technology partners.  In order to become certified, companies must open their internal systems to Hotel Tech Report for assessment along HTR’s rigorous 34-point GCSC Rubric.   “Given that Whistle is a top rated messaging provider it didn't come as a suprise to find out that messaging is core to their customer interactions and support systems from live chat to actual text messaging.  What was suprising and unique about Whistle's support infrastructure were the elaborate tools and systems in place to engage customers and the fact that they care so much about support that the CEO and CTO are cc'd on every ticket which speaks volumes to how much importance the Whistle team places on customer support and satisfaction.” Hotel Tech Report co-founder Adam Hollander. "When our clients activate messaging as a channel at their properties, they unlock millions of interactions and data points just waiting to be turned into business value whether its in terms of creating a more seamless guest experience, saving time with workflow automation, driving ancillary revenue or improving staff efficiency--the possibilities are limitless.  Our support and success operation is strategically constructed to keep us as close to our customers as possible not just to ensure that our clients are getting the most out of the platform and maximizing their investment, but because our customers are essential in uncovering new opportunities to create more value for them and guide our product roadmap." Christopher Hovanessian, co-founder & CEO @ Whistle   The below GCSC assessment outlines the verified systems and processes that Whistle has in place to educate, train, retain and support customers.   Whistle's GCSC Assessment Summary  Rubric Score: 29/34 Certification Level: III Customer Orientation: Customer Centric Recommendation: Highly Recommended Support Team Size: 3 Support Team Leaders: Madison Van Alst, Customer Success Manager Certification Period: November 3, 2019-November 3, 2020 Support Stack: Support Bee, Vimeo, Chameleon, Insightly, Paperform, Google Docs, Pivotal   GCSC Support Rubric Section I: Pre-Emptive Support  The Pre-Emptive support pillar of the GSCG Scoring Rubric audits the tools and processes the vendor has in place to provide customers with easy access to self-help resources.  These self-help resources serve as a basis to offer easy troubleshooting as well as to preempt answers to product related questions before they arise providing a more intuitive and seamless experience for clients.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that Whistle has in place for clients: Online knowledge base/help center: Vendor offers a searchable help center for customers to easily find answers to common customer questions. Online training videos: Vendor offers pre-recorded videos that clients can access 24/7 for self-teaching and deeper product knowledge. In-app guided tours: Vendor offers in-app guided tours that are embedded within their interface to provide coaching and education for users to organically discover and easily access while using the product. Tooltips: Vendor offers helpful tips and hints presented when users hover over buttons and UI elements in the interface. (min of 10 in-app tooltips) Implementation documentation/roadmap: Vendor offers clients a visual map of the steps, processes and stakeholders upon onboarding to ensure that all stakeholders are aligned to make the implementation process more seamless. Proprietary data recommendations: Vendor aggregates product usage data across clients to benchmark performance and provide recommendations to their users to help them learn about best practices, make better decisions and maximize product utilization. GCSC Support Rubric Section II: Reactive Support  The Reactive Support Pillar assesses the company's responsiveness to clients and their ability to resolve issues quickly when they arise ensuring prompt response and service to clients.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that Whistle has in place for clients: Transparent process: Vendor has opened up their systems to Hotel Tech Report via screen share to verify their tools and processes in place to deliver customer support. Email support or phone support: Vendor at least one of the traditional methods of customer support channels, email or phone support (additional channels: phone, chat, email) Multi-lingual support: Vendor offers support in the languages where they have active clients (English, French, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, German, Bulgarian, Russian, Czech, Belorusian, Xhosa, Swedish, Norwegian, Slovak, Portuguese, Chinese, Romanian, Taiwanese)  Purpose built support and ticket management tool: Vendor utilizes professional customer support software that has functionality to effectively manage support tickets, followup, escalations and analytics. Live Chat support: Vendor offers website or in-app live chat as an alternative customer support channel. Contract SLAs: Vendor has service level agreement (SLA) terms in place in client contracts to guarantee that service levels are upheld. Feature request tracking: Vendor offers the ability for clients to easily submit feature requests and has a methodology in place for escalating high priority features.   GCSC Support Rubric Section III: Customer Success & Coaching While keeping customers happy is commonly thought of by software companies as the top priority, keeping them well informed is of equal importance. The third pillar of the GCSC Rubric identifies the key ways that vendors inform, educate and train their customers to realize successful outcomes with their products.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that Whistle has in place for clients: Customer satisfaction monitoring (ex. NPS surveys, CSAT): Vendor has processes in place to regularly monitor customer satisfaction. Product updates/changes (release notes/changelog): Vendor offers easily accessible robust documentation of feature updates and product improvements to educate clients on new ways to maximize usage of the product. Quarterly success check ins: Vendor offers [at least] quarterly customer success check ins to review progress, share best practices and ensure that clients are successful and happy with the product or service. Performance reporting: Vendor offers reporting and analytics to show clients the value of the product or service. Managed Services: Vendor offers additional consulting and managed services to help clients maximize their usage of the product. Dedicated customer success monitoring software: Vendor utilizes dedicated customer success software to monitor product usage and coach users to succeed with the product. GCSC Support Rubric Section IV: Customer Validation The GCSC’s 34-point rubric and Hotel Tech Report’s verification of internal tools and processes validate the vendor's systems in place; however, the validation of the success of these tools and processes can most significantly be validated by the unbiased perspectives of real hotelier customers.  This pillar looks at unbiased verified client reviews and satisfaction scores to validate that the processes in place are working in the eyes of customers based on their satisfaction ratings.  The following are the rubric items that Hotel Tech Report has verified that Whistle has in place for clients: Public Feedback Validation: Vendor shows exemplary client relationships and is a top performer on Hotel Tech Report with more than 115 verified client reviews. >4.5* avg. customer support rating: Vendor has outstanding customer support ratings averaging more than 4.5/5 across all client reviews. Vendor Confidence: The vendor has revealed their private internal customer satisfaction scores to Hotel Tech Report showing high degrees of confidence in their support infrastructure and outcomes which can be a strong indicator of transparency and positive vendor-client relationships.   About the Hotel Tech Report Global Customer Support Certification (GCSC) Support is one of the most critical aspects of the vendor selection process and yet historically there has never been a way to know the quality of a company’s support, until now. Using Hotel Tech Report’s proprietary framework, companies are assessed along four key dimensions: pre-emptive support, reactive support, coaching/success and client validation to provide hoteliers unprecedented levels of transparency to more easily identify top technology partners.   For more information please visit: https://partners.hoteltechreport.com/global-support-certification/  

Is Your Hotel Budgeting for Voice Technology?

by
Volara
2 weeks ago

Seventy-nine percent of hoteliers and 45 percent of travel brands reported voice-enabled technology investment plans this year. Devices from Amazon, Google and Smartbeings are competing for a spot on the bedside table as more and more hotel brands and independent boutique hotels work with solutions providers on new ways to use these smart speakers to engage guests, drive revenues and improve operational efficiencies. Hoteliers on the fence about adding voice to the 2020 budget should note that a well implemented solution pays for itself immediately, replacing existing costs. It also drives revenue day in and day out while staff time is freed up for hospitality operations that require a human touch.   Here are seven ways to measure the return on investment in a guestroom voice assistant environment.   1. Replace Existing Hardware and Eliminate Printing Costs Hoteliers have long been clamoring to consolidate bedside technologies and eliminate ugly printed in-room directories. By replacing the clock, Bluetooth speaker and soon the phone with one voice-driven device, guestrooms have never looked so clean and cost so little to furnish with cutting edge technology. The hard costs of multiple traditional bedside devices and all that printing and reprinting can add up to hundreds of dollars per room, while new popular voice assistant devices with all that functionality and more can be found for less than $50. 2. Drive Onsite Sales Contextually relevant suggestions - also known as promotions - can be incorporated into any voice-based interaction, supporting guests and encouraging additional on-property spending. Looking to fill your restaurant at breakfast? Your voice assistant can offer a fresh squeezed orange juice. Want to get your lobby lounge buzzing at happy hour? Your voice assistant can offer a 2 for 1 signature cocktail. By leveraging the power of voice technology, hoteliers can up-sell services through each voice interaction. For example, a guest may ask "Alexa, what time does roomservice close tonight?" Alexa can be programmed to respond: "Roomservice is available 24 hours, but may I suggest our all-you-can-eat Prime Rib buffet this evening in the hotel restaurant? It's open until 11:00 p.m." This type of voice-based interaction can be customized to drive sales of high margin amenities specifically when you have excess capacity in those amenities. 3. Improve Net-Promoter Scores, Increase Loyalty, and Generate Positive Online Reviews Guests love the comforts of home, and a well implemented voice assistant solution can exceed those at home comforts, especially when positive online reviews talk about the on-command experience of Alexa or another voice assistant. Here are a few TripAdvisor reviews touting interactions with Amazon Alexa (that also happen to be powered by Volara): "I fell in love with Downtown Las Vegas and Alexa who sang me to sleep each night." — Guest at Plaza Hotel and Casino "There was even an ‘Alexa’ in each room . . . that was a great touch!" — Guest at Westin Buffalo "The amenities are endless, and Alexa was a pleasant addition." — Guest at the Willows Hotel and Spa by Viejas "The staff couldn't be nicer & they were all so very accommodating right down to bringing me a toothbrush via my Alexa request." — Guest at EMC2 There is no better promotion for your hotel than a positive review or recommendation from your guests. 4. Increase Occupancy and Average Daily Rates Guests are seeking out hotels that differentiate themselves. Hoteliers that promote their voice assistant solution are competing on differentiation and technology-enabled service, rather than price. Offering this on-command service by voice assistant substantiates a higher average daily rate and it also gives hotels a new twist on service. Hoteliers have reported that a little PR linked to a landing page highlighting their voice assistant solution for prospective guests has driven direct bookings at more substantial rates. 5. Facilitate Staff-to-Staff Communications Has your hotel invested in powerful technologies for your housekeeping, engineering and operations teams yet not seen the utilization that you'd like? Voice assistants can be used to facilitate frictionless engagement with these technologies while they go about their other work. No need for staff to pull out an iPod Touch or tap buttons on the landline phone to enable the interactive voice response. Maintenance tickets, pickup requests and room status changes can all be made with voice command. 6.  Access Data that Will Drive Future Decision Making There is no better way to understand your guests needs than to understand and analyze their requests - even when they don't require staff action. Informational requests - such as "How do I get on the WiFi?" or "What time is checkout?" - take up valuable staff time and are rarely tracked. Requests for services your hotel does not provide also often go uncaptured. The data seized by your voice assistant solution can be provided to you in easy to grasp aggregated reports that help you understand what your guests want and when they want it. This information can inform staffing schedules and improved guest services. 7.  Get more value from your existing technology stack Voice makes your existing hotel technologies more user friendly and valuable for guests and staff alike. Near 50 popular hotel technologies have joined Volara Connect - a secure hub that provide seamless voice interfaces for leading hotel technologies.     A Volara-powered voice assistant solution on Amazon's Alexa at Hyatt Regency San Francisco integrated with Amadeus Service Optimization, Zingle, Honeywell INNCOM, Sonifi Solutions, and iHeartRadio. That means it's likely that your existing property management system, IPTV system, task management system, room-control solution, guest-engagement platform, and staff alert technology already has a plug and play integration ready to go on your choice of voice assistant. Recent usage data from over 150 hotel voice assistant deployments implemented by Volara shows that guest adoption rates for voice assistants in guestrooms is threatening the prominence of the guest room television, with 60 percent of weekday guests and 83 percent of weekend guests engaging by voice command. More than 30 percent of all service requests at voice enabled hotels are being made through the in-room voice assistant, which in turn communicates with housekeeping, engineering and operations systems to deliver more efficient service and improve guest satisfaction. When properly implemented with safeguards that provide an enterprise grade layer of protection for guests' personally identifiable information and that keep proprietary hotel data from falling into the wrong hands, voice technology will drive more efficient guest service and influence guests' behavior, while measurably improving net promoter scores up to 20 percent and helping hoteliers understand their guests better. Every hotelier aims to improve the experience for guests while simultaneously building a profitable business. Voice technologies have proven to support this mission. Whether guests are asking for directions to local spots, recommendations for where to go to dinner, or simply requesting for a toothbrush or extra towels, voice technology is the most frictionless way to boost engagement and make the stay more memorable and fun. Hotel staff are finding voice technology to enable more effective and impactful guest service. To invest or not invest in voice technology? The answer is clear, and the future is now.