News Briefs

  • 7/25/2023

    Shiny Releases 2023 Tipping and Beyond: Data Driven Tactics to Address Hospitality Staffing Challenges Report

    shiny.co logo

    Shiny, a provider of associate engagement and retention services, released its inaugural report on tipping for the hospitality industry. Entitled “Tipping and Beyond: Data-Driven Tactics to Address Hospitality Staffing Challenges,” the report draws on 2023 sources to both provide insights and solutions to vexing labor shortage issues.

    “Even before the pandemic, the three top issues most affecting hotels were labor acquisition, labor productivity and labor retention,” said Rebecca Robinson, co-founder, Shiny. “That problem was only exacerbated by COVID, and now more than ever, employers are looking for ways to attract and retain the best talent out there. This report illuminates current tipping trends and provides insights to hire and keep staff more effectively, ultimately aiding in resolving the prevailing labor shortages.”

    The study utilized tipping records gathered from 28 hotels across the U.S., including select- and full-service branded and independent hotels using Shiny’s tipping software, each providing at least six months’ worth of tipping data. The dataset, comprising 594 tipped employees, including housekeepers, valets, lounge staff, breakfast servers and others, provided intriguing patterns such as the most popular day to leave a tip, a finding that can help hoteliers create improved operational strategies and work schedules.

    Highlights of the report include:

    1. Guests are most likely to leave gratuities for hotel associates on a Sunday. Tuesday is the least likely day (by a factor of two).
    2. $10.60 is the average tip amount received across departments (housekeeping, valet, dining, lounge, front desk, etc.)
    3. 80% of tips are left at check-out.
    4. Loyalty program members are twice as likely to leave a tip.

    “It seems rather obvious on the surface that more money will make for happier employees, but we found that isn’t the one-size-fits-all silver bullet solution that some owners and operators think it is,” Robinson added. “By speaking directly with general managers and hotel level associates, we were able to devise multiple strategies to help reduce turnover, ranging from implementing more streamlined tipping solutions to providing employees with transparent scheduling to give them more control over their time and simplify the process for managers to create schedules and communicate changes. Identifying and recognizing trends is important, but we wanted to go the extra step with this report to provide useful solutions to the issues uncovered.”

    To download a copy of the report, please visit https://www.stayshiny.co/tipping-report.

  • 6/21/2023

    Shiji and IPORT Partner to Transform Hotel Restaurant Operations with All-in-One Tablet and Payment Device Solution

    Shiji teaser logo

    Shiji, a global hospitality technology innovator, has partnered with IPORT, an award-winning manufacturer known for enhancing the usability of iPads and iPhones, to introduce an all-in-one software solution for hotel restaurants. This collaboration will provide hoteliers with a seamless combination of a tablet and payment device to maximize their F&B operations.

    The integrated iOS and payment device solution simplifies guest service for hotel restaurant servers, providing them with an effortless tool to cater to their guests' needs. As a certified Apple partner, Shiji and IPORT guarantee exceptional performance and reliability. Hoteliers can choose from multiple device options, including iPad Pro, iPad Mini, and iPhone, ensuring flexibility and compatibility with their operations.

    “IPORT products are built around modularity and flexibility that empower our hospitality customers to do more with the iOS platform. We are thrilled to partner with a leading iPad and iPhone cloud PMS and POS platform provider like Shiji,” said Chris Lawson, Head of Partnerships, IPORT. “We look forward to innovating with Shiji in disrupting legacy, monolithic providers who have limited the industry from harnessing the power of iOS and mobility. The future is bright, and the possibilities are endless with IPORT, iOS, and Shiji.”

    "The partnership with IPORT is a significant milestone for Shiji in our commitment to provide innovative technology solutions for the hospitality industry," said Ryan King, Senior Vice President of Shiji in the Americas. "By combining our expertise with IPORT’s hardware solutions, we empower hoteliers to streamline restaurant operations and deliver exceptional guest experiences. This collaboration represents another step forward in our dedication to driving success in the Americas, and globally."

    The tablet and payment device solution seamlessly integrates with multiple payment gateways, allowing hoteliers to choose the system that best suits their needs. By simplifying the payment process, it reduces operational complexities, minimizes errors, and saves valuable time and resources for hoteliers.

  • 6/24/2023

    Steak n Shake Adds New Way to Pay

    Steak n Shake exterior in Indy

    Steak n Shake will offer PopID Check In and PopPay on its self-ordering kiosks in select locations in the Orlando market, with plans to expand to more than 300 corporate locations. PopID Check In is an opt-in service that enables consumers to scan their face to automatically sign into their loyalty reward account and see their past orders, making the ordering process as convenient as possible. When a guest checks in with PopID, they also have the option to use PopPay to automatically complete their payment.

    “Our partnership with PopID is a key part of our effort to provide guests with a fast and seamless ordering experience," said Keith Correia, Chief Information Officer. "When using PopID Check In, a guest does not need to use their phone or take out their wallet as part of the ordering process. They will automatically be checked in for loyalty rewards, and they can choose to make an automated payment with PopPay. A guest can even see their past orders and quickly reorder their favorite menu items. Ordering at Steak n Shake has never been easier or more convenient.”

    In addition to enhancing the guest experience and improving order throughput, PopPay helps to reduce fraud and offers lower payment processing fees.

  • 7/25/2023

    Pace Revenue Rebrands to FLYR for Hospitality

    FLYR Hospitality Logo

    Last year, Pace was acquired by FLYR. Ever since, both teams have been hard at work integrating and growing these platforms. Pace's transition to the FLYR umbrella is a testament to this joint effort. 

    "We are taking another important step in our journey as we become FLYR Hospitality,” said Jens Munch, CEO. “Since our founding, we have been on a mission to transform the hospitality industry with AI and machine learning. We are excited to take this to the next level under the broader FLYR brand."

    Moving forward as FLYR Hospitality, the company will remain laser focused on delivering the best results for its customers and the best experience for its team. It will continue to accelerate its AI-first approach, as it delivers hospitality revenue optimization solution.

  • 7/25/2023

    LivAway Suites Doubles Down on Tech-Forward Commitment with Virdee Partnership

    Virdee Logo

    LivAway Suites™, the developer-centric, economy-extended stay hotel brand, has announced a partnership with software-as-a-service company, Virdee, to strengthen their technology-forward brand standards for guests.    

    The collaboration with Virdee will implement a variety of user-friendly technologies in order to enhance and streamline the overall guest experience. These technologies include self-serve check-in, around-the-clock virtual reception, and pre-check-in options, as well as other web, mobile, and kiosk services. Through the digital guest engagement platform, customers will enjoy 24/7 touchless check-ins and digital room keys all from the palm of their hand. 

    For developers, this partnership will provide a competitive advantage, operational efficiencies, and the ability to drive more revenue through cross-sale opportunities within the check-in process and add-ons available through the app.

    "Contactless technology is a boon for our industry, and our partnership with Virdee provides a seamless digital guest service solution through mobile, kiosk and online - at the same time offering additional revenue streams and reducing operational costs at each LivAway Suites hotel," remarked Kevin Dailey, Chief Operating Officer of LivAway Suites. "Our partnership with Virdee doubles down on our commitment of being the most tech-forward brand in our segment 'because our guest deserves better™.'" 

    "LivAway Suites' technology-centered, developer-focused approach makes them an ideal hospitality partner for Virdee", said Branigan Mulcahy, Co-Founder of Virdee.  "Leveraging the operational efficiencies that Virdee offers, gives LivAway Suites an innovative leg up on their competition in the extended stay segment."  

    LivAway Suites, created "for developers, by developers™," currently has over 25 locations in various phases of development across the United States. Over the past few months, LivAway Suites has broken ground on locations in metro areas of TennesseeWashington, and Utah, with many more markets to follow in the coming months.   

    To learn more about LivAway Suites, visit www.livawaysuites.com  

  • 7/25/2023

    Hotel Hiring Spree Pays Dividends in Customer Satisfaction, J.D. Power Finds

    JD Power Logo

    With average U.S. hotel occupancy on track to reach 63.8% in 2023,1 just shy of the pre-pandemic level of 65.9%, business and leisure travelers are packing into hotels throughout North America for a second consecutive year. Hotels have risen to the challenge by ratcheting up staffing and doubling down on customer service. According to the J.D. Power 2023 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index (NAGSI) Study,SM released today, staff service garners the highest level of satisfaction among all guest experience factors measured. Driven in large part by a hiring surge in the leisure and hospitality sector during the past 12 months, new and returning hospitality workers are providing a generally positive hotel stay experience.

    “Hotel hiring continues to increase, and leisure and hospitality is the ‘rock star’ among industries reported in monthly U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics employment figures,” said Andrea Stokes, hospitality practice lead at J.D. Power. “This boost in hotel staffing is showing up in the form of high customer satisfaction scores. Staff service is now the highest-scoring factor in this study across all hotel segments from economy to luxury, underscoring the critical role that frontline staff play in defining the guest experience.”

    Following are additional key findings of the 2023 study:

    • High scores for hotel staff linked to low problem incidence: Overall satisfaction with hotel staff is 701 (on a 1,000-point scale), making it the single highest-scoring factor in this year’s study. Hotel staff play a key role in avoiding and resolving problems, with 86% of hotel guests saying they experienced no problems during their stay.
    • Creating a perfect lobby: Guests’ experience with hotel lobbies/common areas can positively affect overall satisfaction, but it plays out differently in various hotel segments. Among luxury hotel guests, for example, it is important to have a lobby that is modern and unique. In upscale hotels, particularly upscale extended stay hotels, guests are looking for a lobby that is welcoming and inviting.
    • Value remains crucial to satisfaction: Value for price paid given quality and service received is still top of mind for hotel guests. Overall satisfaction among guests who rate the value for price paid of their guest room as excellent or perfect (on a scale of poor to perfect) is 302 points higher than among guests who do not.

    Study Rankings

    The following hotel brands rank highest in guest satisfaction in their respective segments:
    Luxury: Waldorf Astoria (788) 
    Upper Upscale: Hard Rock Hotels (723) for a third consecutive year and 
    Margaritaville Hotels & Resorts (723), in a tie
    Upscale: Cambria Hotels & Suites (738)

    Upscale Extended Stay: Hyatt House (729) (for a second consecutive year)
    Upper Midscale: Trademark Collection by Wyndham 
    (762)

    Upper Midscale/Midscale Extended Stay: Home2 Suites by Hilton (681)
    Midscale: Tru by Hilton (708)
    Economy: Americas Best Value Inn (637) and 
    Microtel by Wyndham (637) in a tie

    Economy Extended Stay: WoodSpring Suites (609)

    The North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index (NAGSI) Study was redesigned for 2023. Now in its 27th year, the study measures overall customer satisfaction based on performance in six factors (in alphabetical order): communications and connectivity; food and beverage; guest room; hotel facility; staff service; and value for price. The study benchmarks the performance of 102 brands across nine market segments and is based on responses from 33,754 hotel guests for stays between May 2022 and May 2023.

    For more information about the North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index (NAGSI) Study, visit https://www.jdpower.com/resource/jd-power-north-america-hotel-guest-satisfaction-index-study.

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