You can run, but you can’t hide from Artificial Intelligence (AI) making strides in the Hospitality Industry. 

6 months into 2024, we’re at a crossroads. As Harvard Business School Professor Karim Lakhani outlined its significance, “AI is not going to replace humans, but humans with AI are going to replace humans without AI.” From faster check ins and bookings to drive-thrus, AI is changing the game for all of us. So, get on board or get left behind. 

Have you been keeping up with the technological changes that could make or break your business? If you feel like you’ve been left in the dark with all this talk of AI, don’t worry we’ve got your back. Here is our guide to AI in 2024: a quick recap, a 6 month reflection on current trends, and predictions for the back half of the year.

A Quick Recap: Here’s What You Missed on AI

Imagine you just arrived at the room you booked at a hotel. You walk in and it’s already at the perfect temperature, the lighting is exactly how you want it, and there’s a personalized playlist playing in the background. You’re so tired after traveling that you flop onto the comfy bed and reach for the remote. You flip on the tv and find that it’s already set up with all your personalized recommendations. Your favorite shows and movies are suddenly right at your fingertips without having to move a muscle.

Yeah, that’s where we’re at. But, that’s just a small glimpse into the full capability of AI. 

Guest experience has always been at the heart of hospitality and that’s not changing anytime soon.  In the hotel setting, the real draw factor is customization. With AI’s predictive capabilities, it can analyze past data to tailor the experience to the guest’s liking. From recommending local restaurants to suggesting a particular room to stay in, AI can offer a completely personalized experience that keeps guests wanting more.

In the restaurant industry, smoothing over operational difficulties and optimizing efficiency are where AI shines. When you sit down at a restaurant, you don’t want to be waiting forever to get a table or for your order to be taken. AI can predict when a table will need refills, when they’re ready to order or cash out so that the entire dining experience is more enjoyable. Other helpful capabilities include regulating inventory, providing personalized menus for repeat customers, and more. 

Okay, this is great and all but does it really do that much for your business? Let’s take a look at the biggest AI trends so far this year and some real companies who have benefitted from the use of AI. 

How Do You Start Using AI in Your Business?

If you have any type of electronic device, you’re probably a Google user, right? Type any question into the search bar and watch the screen change into a colorful banner with answers organized nicely by topic. This is the power of the newest generative AI technology, Gemini, rolled out by Google at the end of 2023. 

Generative AI is the trend of 2024. From ChatGPT to Google’s Gemini program, using this subsector of the technology has proven to increase productivity and creativity. In the hospitality industry this might look like analyzing mass sets of data to quickly inform a new marketing campaign, or switching to an AI powered resume screening device that makes the recruiting process easier. The goal of any hotel, restaurant, or retail establishment is to “sell the right product to the right customer at the right time for the right price.” It’s supply and demand that AI can help predict and personalize sales for your company. 

To understand how AI can elevate a business, let’s take an example. Canary Technologies is known for its AI-powered guest management system that is taking the hotel industry to the next level. The way that they like to think about their work is best explained by Satjot Sawhney, co-founder and president: 

“It is not a human replacement. It is a human superpower. It is not a hospitality replacement. It is a hospitality superpower. It is not a relationship replacement. It’s a relationship superpower. We’re not a company that’s here to say AI and no more humans, we’re here to say, humans with AI.”

When you think of how to use AI for your business in 2024, think enhancement, not replacement. Start small by transferring repetitive tasks such as screening resumes, scheduling, obtaining payments and analyzing data into the hands of AI so that your staff can focus on the personal connection that humans specialize in. 

Another example comes from a restaurant superpower, McDonald’s. The company recently acquired an AI platform that integrates the technology into their drive thrus for quicker, more personalized ordering. Imagine returning to the drive thru and your “regular” order already being in the queue. That’s the power of AI in food service. 

AI isn’t perfect, there have been some growing pains with the levels of independence that certain AI technology have. As we move into the back half of the year, there are improvements and new developments that could take shape. 

What’s Next? The Future of Hospitality AI in 2024

AI isn’t going away. Like the turn of the social media era, we’re already in the middle of the AI generation. 

Whether it be by the end of 2024 or into 2025, AI is moving mainstream. It’s likely that in the next few years there won’t be an application or website you click onto that doesn’t use AI in some way, shape, or form. Will you be ahead or behind the curve?

In the industry, you can expect to continue to see AI bring things closer to home for guests. The power of personalization will see a type of brand loyalty we’ve never seen before. Where company reviews have been service and amenity centered, now we can expect a shift towards a more emotion-centered approach. As the customer becomes an agent in their own experience, it’s likely their standards and expectations will change as well. 

AI has already found its way into our organizations, so where is it going next? Creatives and Marketing departments, we’re looking at you. The text-to-image revolution began in 2022 but hold onto your hats because the text-to-video revolution is coming. 

With the development of AI design programs such as Adobe Firefly and DALL-E, you can expect to see improvements in text-to-image programming as well as enhancements in text-to-video production. This is a game changer for marketing departments across the hospitality industry. Making product videos could now take just the click of some keys. 

The way we conduct business and carry out tasks is going through a monumental reconstruction. Just like the Internet changed the way that every company communicates with their audience, AI is changing the state of business yet again. Are you ready for it?


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About LGC

Since 2003 LGC has been building connections between businesses with staffing needs and job seekers looking for new opportunities. Our range of solutions includes temporary and permanent placements (and everything in between) for a variety of industries. With offices located nationwide, we can tap into a dynamic pool of talented professionals. We have a passion for creating partnerships that last and work hard every day to ensure both clients and candidates reach their employment goals.