Editorial Board   Guest Author

Dr. Erdem

Mehmet Erdem

Associate Professor of Hotel Operations & Technology, Hotel College, UNLV

Dr. Mehmet Erdem is an Associate Professor of Hotel Operations and Technology at the Hotel College of University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) as well as the President of International Hospitality Information Technology Association (iHITA). Prior to UNLV, he taught in the College of Business at University of New Orleans and in the School of Learning Design and Technology at Purdue University. He is the recipient of the 2011 International CHRIE Innovation in Teaching Award. Dr. Erdem has over 10 years of domestic and international lodging operations experience. As part of his industry tenure, he was responsible for training and development, rooms division, and information systems. A technology and instructional design consultant, he also serves as an executive program trainer for the International Gaming Institute (IGI) in Las Vegas. Dr. Erdem is actively involved as a board and council member in several industry and academic associations. In 2011, he was recognized with the Organizational Leadership Award by Global Information Technology Management Association (GITMA). As a hospitality scholar, Dr. Erdem has authored over sixty research articles and conference proceedings. In the past five years, he has been awarded over $800K in research grants and projects. He regularly presents his research findings at professional and academic conferences in the US and abroad.

Dr. Erdem can be contacted at 702-895-5811 or mehmet.erdem@unlv.edu

Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.