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Five IT-Driven Steps to Help Meet the Needs of Demanding Travelers

From road warriors to long-term guests to high-profile visitors, hotel properties no doubt have some demanding travelers with unique needs. Satisfying their needs and creating memorable guest experiences are paramount to driving loyalty. Evaluating a property’s current technology situation and making targeted improvements is a major step hoteliers can take to satisfying these guests. Motorola Solutions offers five steps for hotels to take customer service to the next level.

1. Improve guest Wi-Fi
In a recently commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Motorola Solutions, 90 percent of business and recreational travelers surveyed wished hotels offered Wi-Fi as an amenity, making it the top priority of both business and recreational travelers. In addition, more than 90 percent of hotel guests surveyed indicated they wanted Wi-Fi in their hotel rooms, not just in common areas and 40 percent of business travelers said they would not stay at a hotel without Internet. There is a clear desire and need from guests to have Wi-Fi that works.

Depending on a property’s current wiring, there are several options to upgrade a wireless environment. Operators should check out each area of the hotel to see where the Wi-Fi signal is weak or nonexistent. Make sure to make the most out of access points and wall ports through smart placement and network management. These improvements can ensure a seamless, optimized experience for demanding guests.

2. Secure guest Wi-Fi
Of course, having reliable high-speed Internet access for guests means nothing if they don’t feel safe using the network. Hackers, rogue devices and other malicious intruders can seriously compromise a hotel’s data and that of guests on the devices they use on the network. Securing a hotel’s network can put guests at ease and make a property feel like a safe place to get work done.
Operators should look at the network’s security management and perform rigorous testing to make sure there are no vulnerabilities hackers can exploit. A sophisticated management platform can run software to help protect your network on an ongoing basis and perform other maintenance. Remember: this isn’t a one-and-done situation. Network safety should be frequently evaluated as new threats quickly evolve.

3. Improve staff communications
The most prestigious hotels pride themselves on quickly attending to guest needs with discretion. Make sure team members are equipped with the right tools to get their jobs done right. Professional two-way radios that support push-to-talk and mobile computers with VoWLAN capabilities allow for seamless communication and provide a powerful tool in a hotel’s management and customer service initiative. Today, expanded two-way radio portfolios and mobile computers offer ideal solutions for a number of people with a diverse amount of needs, from the front desk, to event planners, to staff engineers.

A missed call, user error, a garbled message or dead battery can mean lowered productivity, wasted time and money, unsatisfied customers and lost business. Take inventory of staff communications solutions. Radios and VoWLAN are options to address communication solutions needs as they are crucial to satisfying the needs of all guests, and especially the most demanding guests.

4. Better delegate worker tasks
A high-profile guest calls the front desk, informing staff that the sink appears to be clogged. He is stepping out to dinner now and wants the sink fixed by the time he returns. With improved staff communications, the correct information can be quickly relayed to the maintenance team manager. Using mobile workforce management software, that manager can quickly and discreetly reach the closest, most qualified individual to make that repair on his mobile device and send him the task. The worker knows it is a priority task and takes care of it quickly, marking it as complete on his device so the manager knows the work is done, and the issue is resolved hours before the guest returns.

With the right software and device mix, it’s completely possible. Mobile workforce management software is a great way to make sure team members know what is on their task list and for managers to track their completion in real-time. Devices such as tablets, handheld computers and two-way radios make it easier to create and delegate these tasks on the go, and make sure even the most demanding guests get five-star service.   

5. Give guests what they want, when they want it
Proximity marketing is opening a new realm of possibilities for hoteliers. The concept, in a nutshell, is providing guests with notifications and offers when they are on property. For example, a long-term guest walks into a hotel after checking in on her mobile device. A personalized screen appears, welcoming the guest back and offering her a coupon for a cocktail at the bar that night as a welcome drink. These little touches can go a long way in securing guest loyalty, especially for all types of demanding travelers.    
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