ALEXANDRIA, VA – July 14, 2015 – Business travelers are generally open to new technological advancements that will improve their hotel booking and staying experience, however there are some concerns around adoption rates among older travelers, according to a new whitepaper from the GBTA Foundation, the education and research arm of the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA). As the hotel industry moves down this road of newer and more advanced technology, it is also critical that hotels do not lose sight of the importance of customer service.
The whitepaper, Harnessing Technology to Improve Business Traveler Hotel Experiences, sponsored by AccorHotels, presents results from a qualitative study intended to understand the technology currently being used by business travelers when they book, arrive and stay at hotels; to determine what gaps exist in a business traveler’s hotel experience; and to identify potential technology solutions to close said gaps.
“With the cries for Wi-Fi heard and answered, hotels can and should turn their attention and resources to addressing a number of areas where technology can play an innovative role in providing business travelers with the tools and amenities they crave,” said Joseph Bates, GBTA Foundation vice president of research.
Areas of Excitement for Tech to Improve the Business Traveler Experience at Hotels
• Seamless online check-in and room entry
• Developing a text or app-based concierge service
• Integrating e-folios into expense reporting software
Areas of Improvement for Tech and the Business Traveler Experience at Hotels
• Improving technology around the use of airport shuttle services
• Pre-trip communications – tailoring both email or text based communications to the business traveler as opposed to the leisure traveler
• Improve the information exchange between hotels and the GDS
“Innovation is at the heart of the AccorHotels digital strategy, and we aim to satisfy consumer demand by embracing technology and providing guests with value-added services throughout the entire customer journey - before, during and after their stay,” said Romain Roulleau, Senior Vice President of E-Commerce & Digital Services for AccorHotels. “It is important to pay close attention to consumers’ needs, habits and requests and integrate new technologies that address these demands at every touchpoint to better serve them.”
No matter what type of new technology is implemented, tending to the needs and wants of guests is vital and that includes carefully explaining new technology. A foundation of education and experience has the potential to convert even the most traditional traveler to new practices if presented appropriately. The execution and support of any new technology must also be flawless because if a new tool fails to deliver once, it will be difficult to convince those new to the technology to give it another chance.
This study is based on nine one-on-one in-depth telephone interviews with Travel Managers residing and working in North America. This research is wholly qualitative and no results or conclusions are projectable to the entire population of Travel Managers in North America.
GBTA Research Manager Kate Vasiloff will moderate a session called Hotel Digital Technology Innovations sharing results of this study on the impact of the digital environment on the customer's hotel experience at GBTA Convention 2015 in Orlando on Tuesday, July 28 at 10am.
The whitepaper, Harnessing Technology to Improve Business Traveler Hotel Experiences, is available exclusively to GBTA members by clicking here and non-members may purchase the report through the GBTA Foundation by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
AccorHotels is a Group united by a shared passion for hospitality and driven by a shared promise to make everyone Feel Welcome. Over 180,000 women and men in 3,700 AccorHotels establishments look after thousands of guests every day in 92 countries.
AccorHotels is the world’s leading hotel operator and offers its customers, partners and employees:
- its dual expertise as a hotel operator and franchisor (HotelServices) and a hotel owner and investor (HotelInvest);
- a large portfolio of internationally renowned brands covering the full spectrum, with luxury (Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Grand Mercure, The Sebel), midscale (Novotel, Suite Novotel, Mercure, Mama Shelter, Adagio) economy (ibis, ibis Styles, ibis budget, adagio access and hotelF1) establishments;
- a powerful marketplace and loyalty program Le Club AccorHotels
- almost half a century of commitment to corporate citizenship and solidarity with the PLANET 21 program.
Accor SA shares are listed on the Euronext Paris exchange (ISIN code: FR0000120404) and traded in the USA on the OTC marketplace (Code: ACRFY)
CONTACT: Colleen Gallagher, +1 703-236-1133, email@example.com
About the GBTA Foundation:
The GBTA Foundation is the education and research foundation of the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), the world's premier business travel and meetings trade organization headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area with operations on six continents. Collectively, GBTA's 7,000-plus members manage more than $345 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually. GBTA provides its growing network of more than 28,000 travel professionals and 125,000 active contacts with world-class education, events, research, advocacy and media. The Foundation was established in 1997 to support GBTA's members and the industry as a whole. As the leading education and research foundation in the business travel industry, the GBTA Foundation seeks to fund initiatives to advance the business travel profession. The GBTA Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. For more information, see gbta.org and gbta.org/foundation.