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Avinash K Gautam, Vice President - Security and Automation Business

Bangalore October 31, 2013: The hospitality industry is ever striving to evolve itself to better serve their guests and enhance customer experience. In this era of technology, one can’t miss adopting it in some form or the other to improve one’s level of performance and the hospitality sector is no exception. With service being the foundation of the hospitality sector, hotels are now embracing automation to ensure their guests can experience the best possible service from their end.

Hotel Room Automation has already been adopted in India, and in this age of technology, it has finally begun to gain momentum. The system allows hotels to improve their services by making it more prompt and easily available for their guests. By improving their level of service, they can ensure maximum satisfaction on behalf of their guests and maximize customer satisfaction.

The two biggest advantages that hotels can achieve its costs savings and improved operational efficiency.

As far as operational efficiency is concerned, the hotel management is virtually connected with the guests at all times. This helps them to deliver services promptly like never before. For example, besides controlling activities in the room, guests can also access hotel information without having to call the reception and thereby avail services such as room service, house-keeping etc which makes their stay easier and more comfortable. Automation thus makes the most regular services like room service and house keeping more efficient. Hotels can now send instant updates to the rooms for any special offerings or events within the hotel. Through automation, hotels can ensure personalized services such as welcome note and setting the room to guest’s prior preferences which go a long way in making the guests wanted and pampered.

However, one of the biggest advantages that the hospitality sector can experience through adopting automation is costs saving. The hospitality industry spends an enormous amount of resources on unnecessary energy consumption. Hotel automation allows savings by better usage of resources and energy, thereby reducing huge unnecessary expenditure. Sensors installed in the room ensure that electrical appliances stay on only when they are used. For example, if a guest falls asleep while watching TV, the room gently switches off the TV and lights on its own, so that energy is not wasted by guests who tend to be more careless while on vacation.

The hotel industry spends an enormous sum of money on printing material for their guests. Also, they need to be constantly updated with newer information and offerings thereby adding to the expenditure. Automation makes sharing of information tremendously easier and more convenient. Also, by making information available to guests through tablets hotels can cut huge costs by doing away with the need to print expensive compendiums regularly. Sharing updated information does not involve further costs. Latest offers, menu of the day or special occasions can be easily shared with the guests through a few clicks on the system. This creates a perfect synch between the hotel and the guests resulting in an enhanced and more memorable experience. Thus, automation gives hotels the opportunity to explore better marketing schemes and enjoyable experience for their guests.

Hotels which have deployed such systems show that room services increased by 11-15% once such systems adopted. Enhanced guest experience also results in better occupancy. The technology allows hotels to tie up with neighbouring businesses, there by providing additional service to the guests and at the same time increasing their revenues. The presence of the touchscreen also allows hotels to stream advertisements to them. 

Guests have a number of augmented services to avail. The door can be locked and opened directly from the tablet. Guests can also experience door-camera viewing. So when someone knocks the door, the visitor can be viewed on the TV before they enter. TV, AC, Curtain control: Air conditioning can easily be turned down or switched off when a guest room is unoccupied. With a single control panel, guests can easily select TV stations using graphical icons for stations. Curtains too can be controlled directly by a single touch of a tab.

All lights and electrical appliances can be controlled within the room from the touch pad. Guests can set light scenarios and moods to make their stay more comfortable and exciting. Room status can easily be controlled without having to physically change the signs on their doors. All one needs to do is press a button on the touch pad to activate status such as Do Not Disturb, Guest-in, Guest-out outside the room.

One does not need to call, check and place orders for their rooms. Guests can easily view and choose from descriptive and visually attractive menu on the touch pad. To place an order, all that is needed is a simple touch on the pad and the favourite dish appears at the doorstep. They can also call for house-keeping directly through their tablet. The Check Out button on the tablet informs the front desk that guests are ready for check out so that everything needed for check-out can be made ready before they walk out of the room.

City guide is available on the tablet to plan trips without trying hard to gather information from different sources. Information such as city maps, restaurants, places to visit can be seen on the touch screen. Besides that, all billing details are available for the guests so they are always updated about their bills need not request for them specifically. Travel options are made available in the room on the touch pad through which they can directly book a cab.

Hotel Room Automation is bound to revolutionize the hospitality service industry with the kind of services it allows hotels to offer to their guests. They can now take their services and marketing schemes to a different level altogether and offer experiences which can make one’s stay memorable. Guests can experience a more comfortable and relaxed stay at the hotel which may lure them to return the next time they travel. The hospitality industry only has to gain by deploying automation for their guests. With a nominal one-time investment they can achieve higher efficiency in executing their operations and a tremendous amount of costs saving. With communication being simplified like never before, the management-guests relationship may be enhanced like never before thus creating a more lasting bond between the two. CCI Newswire

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