In the second part of the Bridging the Gap series, we’re looking at hospitality technology and the importance of making sure it improves the guest experience, not detracts from it.  

Before we get into this topic, make sure you check out part one of this series, Bridging the Gap: Staffing Technology in Hospitality, where we discuss implementing platforms that aim to simplify staffing in the hospitality industry.  

Bridging the Gap: Hospitality Technology

Like we did in part one, it’s important to make the distinction between creating efficiency and creating roadblocks for guests. Of course, the purpose of hospitality technology is to offer a better experience for customers; but that’s not always the case, especially with how rapidly automation is spreading through the hospitality industry.  

Again, like part one, we see that a majority of the reported issues related to hospitality technology involve apps. Apps themselves aren’t the problem. The problem is whether the app is prepared to manage what’s being asked of it. When it doesn’t have the bandwidth to handle necessary requests, that’s where negative guest experiences can begin.  

One example of this is from October 2023. A global chain was offering a promotion through their mobile app where customers could get a $6 burrito on Halloween if they were in costume. Because of the promotion’s popularity, there were a variety of glitches that prevented guests from accessing the easy experience they were looking for. And then came the tweets about said experiences, which only compounded (and virtually spread) the issue.  

Another common challenge we hear regarding hospitality technology is about reservation apps. They make sense and should theoretically streamline the process of making reservations. But when the platforms don’t work correctly, it can turn would-be guests away from not only the app, but the restaurant as well.  

When considering the guest experience, it’s crucial to recognize and remember that people will talk. Whether it’s good or bad, they’ll share it with their network which could be in person or on the internet – like we saw with the aforementioned Halloween promotion. Maintaining a great brand reputation is hugely impacted by what your guests say about you.  

This isn’t to say that hospitality technology isn’t good or right for the hospitality industry. Quite the opposite. Just like every industry, there are tons of benefits to implementing automation and technology to everyday operations. But customer service must be a priority because that’s where the focus on guest experience comes into play.  

What have we learned by examining the impact of technology on the hospitality industry? Here are the key takeaways from part one and part two of the Bridging the Gap series:  

  • Just because you have an app/have access to an app, doesn’t mean you should throw customer service out the window. The hospitality industry is called that for a reason. 
  • Hiring apps and online tools can be helpful in finding workers, but they aren’t the complete answer to staffing. 
  • If you’re involving an app during a promotion and or event, you need to truly consider whether the app will add ease or difficulty to the lives of your customer base.  
  • To protect employees and guests, there must be a “real live” person that handles questions, concerns, and complaints surrounding issues caused by hospitality technology. Not only will this help maintain a positive brand reputation, but it will also show that you’re invested in creating a great experience.  

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 include temporary and permanent placements (and everything in between) in 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.