Robotic Process Automation in the Hospitality Industry
In the hospitality industry it is common to interact with 100’s of people a day, and it is common that most of the people an employee will encounter are new faces, that have several questions and concerns about the facility and it’s processes. Hotels guests, for example, stay at an exact hotel location once in their life, they are usually travelers and it’s unlikely that they will be back again to that exact place. This means dozens of times a day hotel employees are asked questions like: “Do you have availability?”, “What time is breakfast?”, “Can I bring my pet?”, “Is there a refrigerator in my room?”, these inquiries, and more, become frustrating to workers and bog them down, keeping them from completing other tasks. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Chatbots that use natural language processing (NLP) can solve this issue. Chatbots have the capability of understanding structured and unstructured text and language and can be installed to answer these repetitive guest questions freeing up employees to get their operational jobs done on time; RPA can do this, and much more!
RPA is changing the game for the hospitality industry. RPA Bots can reduce the time it takes to complete tasks, create shorter wait times and lines at the front desk thus increasing the overall happiness of the guests. Even more so, time saved from the implementation of RPA Bots is turned to dollars as tasks like pulling up reservation and loyalty reward program information takes less time and less employees are needed to complete the daily duties at an efficient speed. Hotels hire several employees to process hundreds of invoices, claims, and bills each month. This process, however, is extremely mundane and repetitive, it is mostly made up of copy-pasting data, moving files from one location to another, and so on. RPA is a software that uses the computer systems exactly like a human employee would, the differentiator is that the bots are extremely accurate, far faster, never make mistakes, and are cheaper to employ than their human counterparts.
Hotels have already been embracing automation to improve their operations and revolutionize guest experiences. As the benefits become more apparent to those in the hospitality industry that have yet to implement such technology as part of their cost cutting efforts, more and more will begin to deploy RPA programs. From room reservations, to front desk operations, to room service requests and billing, technology plays a key role in ensuring seamless customer service across all aspects of a guest’s stay. Automation technology converts inefficient, independent, and disconnected processes into an integrated and simplified system.
Automated check-in and check-out, online booking management, concierge recommendations, cancellation handling, loyalty processing and much more are all processes RPA can handle. RPA can be imbedded into an existing system or implemented on top of multiple systems to automate a process or sequence of processes. It saves time, money, alleviates employee frustration, and offers seamless customer interactions which increases loyalty and inspires positive reviews from guests. It is considered a disruptive technology, and its implementation in the hospitality industry is making a positive difference for all parties involved.