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How the latest mobile check-in technology is making hotels more efficient

How the latest mobile check-in technology is making hotels more efficient
Many guests are now looking for the mobile conveniences they are accustomed to in their daily lives, as well as more advanced mobile functions, to be at hotels.
Mobile check-in is being adopted by more and more hoteliers across the globe and hotel guests are loving it.
A study by Oracle Hospitality and Phocuswright found that guests want more control over their stay, with the majority of guests interested in being able to use their smartphones to do things like request in-room items, reserve restaurants, get information about nearby activities, etc.
“Mobility should be at the top of every hotelier’s mind — whether they’re searching for a property management system (PMS), point-of-sales (POS) or payment system. Put simply, travelers want guest-facing mobile options,” said Nicole Dehler, VP of Product Management at StayNTouch, a Shiji Group Brand.
Dehler explained how a mobile PMS can empower staff to better serve their guests and make their arrival feel more natural and welcoming, and less forced and transactional. “When your PMS is run on a tablet, your staff can break free from the granite front desk and meet guests wherever they are in the hotel,” she said.
“Mobility lets staff view instant room status updates and communicate with staff members directly from their tablet, front desk agents can provide VIP service from anywhere in the hotel. And because mobile PMSs benefit from an intuitive and easy-to-use UI, they can foster more natural face-to-face conversations between guests and staff,” she added.
Steve Hu, Product Manager,

Robert Stevenson, CEO of Intelity noted that one of the main features required for staff-less hotel management is mobile functionality through mobile key and mobile check-in. “Both of these solutions streamline guests’ experience at a property and give them the ability to either expedite their check-in experience or bypass the front desk entirely, which alleviates staff workload and allows them to focus on better guest experience.”
Even traditional security companies are creating mobile ways to deliver keys to guests. Steve Hu, Product Manager at Merit LILIN explained how his company is developing its cloud smart QR pass, which acts as a mobile key and is sent via email to guests from the hotel. Upon arrival, the guests can present the QR pass on their smartphone to a LILIN door station equipped with a camera that decodes the QR pass and authenticates it for entrance.


Business travelers want more mobility

Whereas in the past mobile check-in options were adopted by more modern boutique hotels looking for new and innovative ways to enhance guests’ experience, now mobile check-in has been adopted by properties in all market segments, from luxury brands, to business hotels, to large-scale resorts and hotel casinos.
“Luxury properties pride themselves on providing a high degree of hospitality/human interaction, but most business travelers would rather not stand in a check-in line even if the front desk agent is pleasant and accommodating,” said Brian Shedd, VP of Global Sales and Marketing at OpenKey.
He explained that airlines have trained business travelers to expect that smartphones can be used to circumvent queues, and as a result this segment now expects the same benefit at upscale and luxury hotels. “Brands such as Hilton and Marriott have recognized this and are rolling out digital key at all properties worldwide regardless of what segment the hotel is in,” he added.
Oracle’s study showed that the vast majority of business travelers believe virtual check-in and check-out, as well as keyless room entry are very/extremely important. It also found that 47 percent of business travelers believe being able to make a request/message the concierge or room service via smartphone is very/extremely important, compared to 28 percent of leisure travelers. Additionally, 44 percent of business travelers believe smartphone apps that control room climate/lights is very/extremely important versus only 21 percent of leisure travelers.

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