Self-service is the future

2 min read

Imagine checking into a spotless hotel room, catered to your needs, but handled entirely by technology. While this might seem impersonal, the hospitality industry is facing a future fueled by self-service and driven by guest demand. Are hotels ready to embrace this digital revolution?

Hospitality as an industry is stuck in the past. As per McKinsey’s digitalization index, hospitality is at the bottom of all industries ranked, right next to construction, agriculture and hunting (sic!). Big hotel chains and large hotel properties are seldom at the forefront of disruption. One area that is ripe for change is the whole concept of what a hotel is. It all starts with the definition of our industry.

Service is the technical delivery of a product. Hospitality is how the delivery of that product makes the recipient feel. Service is a monologue—we decide how we want to do things and set our own standards for service. Hospitality, on the other hand, is a dialogue.

Danny Meyer, Setting the Table (2006)

If indeed hospitality requires humans at both sides of the translation - both on the guest side and the service provider side - then recent moves toward more self-service seem to challenge the industry to its core. What if the overnight experience is spotless, but a bot took care of most of the processes that delivered that experience, would that not be considered hospitality?

Be that as it may. It is clear that hotel guests already live in the future. A recent survey of 5,266 consumers and 633 hotel executives across the world presents some stark statistics:

Nearly three-quarters (73%) of travelers want to use their mobile device to manage their hotel experience, including checking in and out, paying, ordering food and more.

Hotel Business, June 6, 2022

We already live in a world where our interactions with the real world are mediated by technology. If done well, this has the potential to lower the costs and bring in both more guests and entrepreneurs, as the whole industry is redefined.

About Nelson

Born out of the desire to ease the burden on small hoteliers, Nelson is more than just software. It's a comprehensive property management system designed to empower you to run your business efficiently and effectively. We understand the unique challenges faced by small hotels, and our all-in-one platform streamlines daily tasks, maximizes bookings, and simplifies guest communication, allowing you to focus on what matters most - delivering exceptional hospitality.

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