apaleo GmbH · 12 Mar
Well, here we are with a widespread global emergency on our hands (no hand washing pun intended). While an economic downturn was predicted for this year, an abrupt shut down was not. Everyone is cancelling plans (government-imposed or otherwise), staying home from work, and well... giving up. Giving up the things we're accustomed to enjoying, and, for some, giving up far more. Those in the hospitality industry have to think long and hard about what they'll give up in order to stay afloat during and after this global disruption because it won't be the last. Now is the time to look for less-is-more solutions that will weather the unexpected storms.
apaleo GmbH · 4 Feb
When Volkswagen introduced the Beetle to the United States in the 1950s, it did it with a revolutionary and wildly successful ad campaign: "Think Small."
apaleo GmbH · 27 Jan
Two point five million! Well, nearly 2.5 million. That's how many apps the Google Play store has. Apple's store came in second at 1.8 million apps. For perspective, 1.69 million people live on the island of Manhattan. That's more than one app for every person on the island. Apps have become the go-to for managing our lives, both the operations (budgets, exercise, bill paying) and outer lives (work, social, news apps).
apaleo GmbH · 24 Dec
Hotel tech lists—Hotel Tech Must-Haves for 2020 and What All Hotels Need in Order to Succeed Next Year—are like the sloganned-out t-shirts everyone's wearing to the gym these days. Less Whine, More Wine. Already Planning What I'm Going to Eat After This. I Work Out... Just Kidding, I Take Naps. We kind of love to hate them. Maybe it's because we've been working toward a tech revolution for years now, one that leaves hotels ahead as an industry rather than continually pulling up the rear.
apaleo GmbH · 4 Dec
These days, we tend talk about cybersecurity far less than we talk about melting icebergs or political problems or plastic straws. And, of course. Those are things we can do a little something about; we can make our own tiny dent in the environmental crisis or get out the vote, but cybersecurity is one of those problems that feel far out of most our hands. Yet, we all have important, essential, identifying information flying around the web, apps, stores, airlines, and—hotels. Consumers are relying on businesses to be transparent and secure, and hotels are one of the most targeted industries (just behind retailers) by cyber attackers.
apaleo GmbH · 24 Sep
The hotel PMS has been around for about 50 years. That's HALF A CENTURY. That's as old as the Beatle's last album Let It Be, Walt Disney World, Watergate, and Amtrak.
apaleo GmbH · 12 Sep
Until recently, hotels - and most enterprise businesses, for that matter - had been stuck with one singular approach to their tech: a closed, out-of-the-box solution to manage nearly all their business needs. For hotels, this system was built by the PMS provider. Legacy systems tried to do it all, attempting to cover everything from reservations and inventory to loyalty programs to business intelligence tools and more. These systems use a monolith architecture, a framework in which all pieces of the platform are tied together in a centralized, on-premise, feature-rich system. While rich in functionality, these systems pose a variety of problems - they aren't nimble, they don't connect well to other systems, they are expensive, and many hoteliers don't need (or like) all the features offered.
apaleo GmbH · 4 Sep
The last time you vetted a tech company, you surely received evidence of the company's commitment to customer service. Likely in the form of stats like downtime and call-resolution. The tech company probably said that these stats demonstrated its truly customer-centric philosophy and that its responses to issues would be impeccable. Perhaps they even pulled out a certificate or the name of some customer service award you've never heard of. This kind of proof is not meaningless (though be warned, some of these certificates are paid programs) nor is it enough evidence of a company's commitment to its customers. Anyone can come up with bullet points and certificates at the end of the day, which raises an important question. How do you know if your tech company cares? How do you know if they really have killer customer service?Admittedly, a lot of the companies that have cultivated a cult customer service following (like Zappos and Trader Joe's) have done so as a result of go-big-or-go-home moments, like sending a customer a pizza when the resolution call has gone long or delivering groceries to an elderly customer in a snowstorm. We love these stories as much as anyone, but when it comes to B2B tech companies, the criteria are different. It requires the ideal combo of product, responsiveness, and company culture. Here are a few ways to tell if a tech company truly cares about its service and the success of its customers based on examples from B2B tech companies that are doing it right:
apaleo GmbH · 29 Jul
When it launched in 2007, the iPhone was a derivative of the iPod, designed to "mimic the features of the iPod while allowing for increased functionality" like phone calls and web browsing (HistoryCooperative). The next version, the 3G released in 2009, allowed third parties to create and promote their own apps, effectively turning it into more than a music and phone device. In all the versions after, the sizes have changed, the material has gone stainless, the camera has been remodeled and improved...but these are relatively small shifts.
apaleo GmbH · 20 May
Imagine if every time you wanted to install a new app on your smartphone, you had to call the maker of your phone to ask about it, then schedule a date far in the future for one of their representatives to come to your house, get it working on your phone, and charge you heaps of money in the process. You wouldn't stand for it, right? Then why go through a similar process when working with your property management system (PMS)?
apaleo GmbH · 13 Mar
Someone recently told me that humans spend approximately six months of their lives waiting in line for things. Six full months. Those stats might double for hoteliers, if you consider the long wait times for getting a PMS live and the ridiculous queue for interface installations.
apaleo GmbH · 15 Feb
Let's face it hotel technology isn't a supporting player in the guest experience anymore. It is an essential part of every guest journey, an integral aspect of each step of the guest's experience of a property—before, during, and after the stay. As such, it can make or break those guest reviews and has long-term effects on loyalty. It seems most hotels know this because over half (54%) plan to increase their technology spending this year, according to the 2019 Lodging Technology Study. There's a lot getting in the way of bringing technology to the forefront of the experience, though. In the same report, hotels said their tech strategies are held back by outdated architecture (35%), the effort required for systems integrations (35%), and guests that want more technology than properties can deliver (18%), among other things.
apaleo GmbH · 28 Jan
Every hotelier knows that there's not enough love to go around, what with all different kinds of guests wanting all different kinds of things. You've got your high maintenance guests with a thousand questions, your sloppy mess makers that drip pool water all over the floors and leave cracker crumbs all over the room, guests who squeak into the breakfast buffet at one-minute until you're trying to pack it up, and the ones that change rooms three times.
apaleo GmbH · 14 Jan
Here's a terrifying fun fact: some insects have superpowers. Take scorpions, for example. They can flatten their bodies to the size of a small coin, which allows them to get through small crevices, cracks, doorjambs...anything really. This crazy power means that scorpions can invade virtually any area that they want to invade. Yikes. Glad you live in the city now, right?
apaleo GmbH · 13 Sep
Don't lie; you know you've done it. I sure have. The hotel breakfast buffet. You're so hungry and there's so much food. You want your money's worth. Each station looks better than the one before it, and those decorated plates piled with pancakes the size of your head make it all too delicious to pass up (I usually have these as my "dessert course"). How can you say no? Decision fatigue kicks in, your better sense of judgement goes out the window, and you go after that buffet like a boss instead of thinking about how you'll be in bed for the following three hours wishing you hadn't eaten all of the things.
apaleo GmbH · 28 Aug
If you had a pulse in the '90s, you most definitely saw Jurassic Park. And if you are a person who totally loves dinosaurs, like myself, you probably saw Jurassic Park at least a dozen more times in the theater.
apaleo GmbH · 11 Jul
Patrick Fisher of Thomson Reuters notes that, "As technologies become more and more pervasive across industries and functions, companies as varied as Goldman Sachs, Exxon, GE, Citi, and Walmart are all becoming technology companies as well." Hotels may not be peddling technology, but they are profiting off of their ability to offer guests innovative technology solutions as well as their ability to use technology to do better business. Even if hotels aren't ready to be labelled technology companies, hotel operations have evolved from an industry that once utilized technology to a technology-dependent industry.
apaleo GmbH · 21 Jun
With technology, there is "what it does"—the functionality—and then there's "how it does it," as in how fast, how accurate, what the interface looks like, and so forth. Functionality is that by which we decide we need a technology—a new POS, PMS, CRM—and so the "how it does it" becomes a secondary consideration. The way a technology does what it does gains weight as you move through the evaluation process. When you are presented with competing technologies—those that seem to do the same thing on the surface—the differences start to become clear and the "how" takes on a new magnitude of importance. For instance, legacy property management systems can take months to set up, a typical cloud-based PMS can take weeks, and one with self-service set-up (hint hint: apaleo) alows a property to be set up in minutes. That's right, minutes!
apaleo GmbH · 13 Jun
In-room, distribution, messaging, reservations, revenue management, chat, operational… the list of technologies that occupy hoteliers these days could go on and on. Evaluating each technology is just as complicated. Does work with other systems that I am already using? This has been a key question, one that many hotels are still grappling with. Can my staff easily start using this technology? This question is especially relevant when evaluating property management systems, which often require months of complicated training. Will this technology set me up properly for the future? The list of considerations goes on, but one could argue that it all boils down to the technology's ease of use, both in terms of technical integrations and staff usability.