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TOP 100 IDEAS Do's And Don'ts of Hotel Technology 3.0 – Part 1

Category: Hotels, Posted:15 Jul 2011 | 09:42 am

One of our favorite hospitality technology experts Terence Ronson of Pertlink has released his definitive list of best and worst practices for wired hotels.
Here's goes…
Since we are firmly into the season of Hotel Technology Conferences and Exhibitions, I believe it's the perfect opportunity to update and re-issue our ever popular Do's and Don'ts of Hotel Technology.
Due to various advances in technology, and general adoption of certain platforms and practices, the list now includes over 100 reference items – almost double since V1.
Not all may apply to your particular business, but they should prove a good reminder as to how important this area is, and just how much it can negatively impact the customer experience and of course your bottom line, if implemented incorrectly
1. Use digital signage instead of printed posters
2. Put some free bottles of water in the mini bar so that they are nice and cool
3. Check all the peep holes on guest room doors to make sure they are secure and the right way round
4. Mount irons on wall brackets in closets instead of placing them on the floor or shelves
5. Clearly display broadband charges, if your hotel has any
6. Make it easy to switch off all lights in the guestroom from the bed – especially the bathroom lights
7. Make it easy to plug in a hairdryer, shaver, or electric toothbrush in the bathroom
8. Make the lighting in the bathroom bright enough for doing makeup
9. Have an illuminated make-up mirror in the bathroom
10. Have power sockets easily available for guest-use in public areas, especially Lounges, Dining areas and Poolside – also have adaptors handy
11. Have an emergency torch/flashlight in the guest room
12. Offer free boarding pass printing in Business centers
13. Provide Apple computers in the business center, and not just Window's PC's
14. Have an Apple Notebook power adaptor available for a guest to borrow in case they accidentally forget theirs at home. same applies to iPhone/iPod and Blackberries
15. Use wireless mice at the Front Desk
16. Have a smartphone compliant version of your hotel datafile available for download on your website
17. Work with your system providers so that they produce eForms and not printed reports – especially Registration cards and Folios
18. Make sure excess power and data cables are neatly tied, or cut to the right length. If that is not possible – cover them somehow
19. Have a simple but easy to read digital clock in the bathroom
20. Encourage staff to bring laptops or Tablets to meetings and use them for note taking and not use paper pads
21. Have easily accessible power sockets in Meeting rooms as more and more people bring tech with them and need power
22. Have plenty of power sockets by the guestroom desk, or if not possible, place a small power bar in the desk drawer complete with adaptor
23. Have a CD/DVD/Blu-Ray lending library if you have such a player in the guestroom
24. Have your Concierge know where is the Apple Service Center and also other popular brands like IBM, DELL, Lenovo, Asus, Samsung and Blackberry
25. Have a person or system to monitor social networking sites for mentions about your hotel
26. Have competent front line staff on-property who can deal with Guest TECH queries – make sure they have the requisite social and interpersonal skills as well
27. Monitor what is written about your Hotel on Social networking sites like Trip Advisor
28. Have easily accessible empty power sockets at the LEFT and RIGHT side of the bed – for Guest use only – a USB power socket is a good addition
29. Realize that when you buy technology – you need a support agreement as well – and this often doubles the Tech cost over 5 years
30. Put a notice on your HSIA sign-up screen that your government may block access to certain websites and internet services if they apply to you. Have your IT People know how to workaround this if the Guest asks
31. Check your TV channel reception from time to time and make sure it's nice and clear
32. Make sure the electronic door lock on the guest room door closes quickly when the door shuts
33. Check the speed, noise and effectiveness of the aircon fan coil in the guest room
34. Print your IM address on your Business card like a Skype ID
35. Put an internet browsing station in the Staff Canteen for Staff to check email during breaks
36. Encourage your Guests to also perform a virtual Check-in to such sites as Facebook and Foursquare when they physically Check-in to your establishment
37. Get your technology vendors to update you twice a year on their roadmap
38. Add CCTV cameras inside your Data Center – one that is directed to the server racks and the other, to the entrance door
39. Remember that guest's trust their mobile phones to wake them up – more than they do your wake-up call service
40. Perform regular complete system backups and store them off-site
41. Consider placing a 'dock extender' cable into the cable pack that you may be placing in your rooms so that a Guest can connect an iPad to the iPod/iPhone dock you are providing
42. Have staff who do in-room check-in, offer to help guests connect their computer to the HSIA/Wi-Fi as well as make them an Espresso if you have such a machine in the room
43. Allow guest's to tailor make their fruit basket if you plan to give them one – not everyone likes green apples and pears – same goes for turndown amenity – not everyone wants or can eat chocolates
44. Offer ePostcards from your website
45. Have a shelf in the toilet cubicle where guest's can place their mobile phone/PDA and maybe a book
46. Work in your own guestroom from time to time and see how comfortable and practical it is – especially the height of the chair in relation to the desk
47. Use a bio-metric reader or PIN pad for staff entrance/egress that is linked to the Time and Attendance/Payroll System
48. Make sure the light inside the wardrobe does switch off when the door is closed
49. Consider [carefully] about moving some of your IT Services to the Cloud – make sure you fully understand the small print on the SLA (Service level Agreement) about 'uptime', 'data ownership' and 'migration' from property based systems
50. Make sure your room safe is bolted down to a floor or wall and cannot be easily removed
51. Monitor the TV volume in the guest room so that it can go down very low and not too high. Some guests like to leave the TV on all night but at a very low background volume
52. Have a very low nightlight in the bathroom/toilet
53. Deploy the very best cabling backbone you can
54. Allow Guests of Residential Conferences to use the same LOGIN ID and Password that they use in the Guestroom for access to the WI-FI in the Meeting Room – don't make them pay twice
55. Encourage Guests to communicate with your Hotel through popular Social Networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter
56. Have air-conditioning auto cut-off in the Guest room if balcony doors are left open
57. Consider using Motion/Presence detectors rather than key cards to control energy in-room
58. Check from time to time in-the-floor power sockets – the metal type which are supposed to lift up when the clip if flicked – most often they stick after a while having been covered with floor polish and dust
59. Talk to your HSIA/Wi-Fi provider about 'roaming agreements' and having pass-thru services to such membership services as Boingo and iPass
60. Consider having a secure place where Guests can deposit their valuables and gadgets at the poolside or beach if they want to take a dip
61. Have Wi-Fi at the poolside and Beach
62. Test your magnetic key cards to see if they de-magnetize when placed next to a mobile phone
63. Encourage Guest contact staff to attach VCF files in emails
64. Consider using QR codes on your printed materials
65. Put your Hotel onto Skype and encourage that as a method of communication with Guests
66. Recycle used laser toner cartridges
67. Think about installing a 3G mobile hotspot in the Airport Limo so the Guest can use the service to/from the airport
68. Have your IT team join such organizations as HFTP and HTNG so that they keep up to date with Hotel Technology – you should also sponsr them as well as have them attend various Conferences and Exhibitions
Check out Part 2 of the list, which has all of the Don'ts
For more on Pertlink <link>*CLICK</link>

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