Dana Kravetz

Hotel and resorts are jumping on the gig economy bandwagon, satisfying their short-term employment needs by (literally) tapping into the ever-growing pool of freelance hospitality workers available via app or online. But as more and more hoteliers avail themselves to the flexibility and considerable costs savings that are part and parcel to the on-demand staffing model, they are wading into potentially perilous waters, with legal and reputational issues lurking just below the surface. Here, a light is shined on would-be problems inherent in the gig economy that management should be mindful of. Read on...

Bonnie Knutson

Eleven years from now the U.S. population will reach a tipping point. The year 2030 will mark the moment when all baby boomers will be at least 65 years of age; in other words, 20 percent of our population will be of retirement age. Jonathan Vespa, a U.S. demographer, puts it this way: "The aging of baby boomers means that within just a couple decades, older people are projected to outnumber children for the first time in U.S. history. By 2035, there will be 78 million people 65 years and older compared to 76.7 million under the age of 18." So, what does this have to do with hotels? A lot. In this article, you read about two unique opportunities for your hotel to take advantage of the longevity trend. Read on...

Zoe Connolly

From things like being up to date on the latest job board or careers site, through finding the time to screen every qualified potential candidate, hiring can be a brutal experience. This is among the chief reasons that the recruiting industry came into being; recruiters can make things easier for hiring managers. But not all roles and situations merit the help of a seasoned hiring professional. In facat, there are a number of circumstances that travel tech and hotel leaders should consider before bringing on a recruiting partner. This article identifies when it is, and when it is not time for hiring help. Read on...

David Allison

The Lodging industry in all price categories is going through a period of disruption, with huge forces at play. New technologies, mergers, acquisitions, online competition, Airbnb, new travel behaviours, new types of travelers: these are not small adjustments to an ecosystem. In the midst of that chaos it's valuable to step back and ask our consumers, directly, what they value, want, need and expect. And that's where the 75,000 surveys in the Valuegraphics Database come in. We've done that work of asking hotel guests those questions for you. Read on...

Library Archives

 
Aaron Housman

Testing Read on...

Eduardo Fernandez

The business of hotels is always in flux, consistently aiming to meet the growing needs of their guests, build loyalty and stand out from the crowd of competitors. With food expectations mounting, made popular via social media frenzy, the growing importance of food-rating apps and the heavy use of "top lists," providing round-ups of the best burger, ice cream cone or brunch in a state, city or neighborhood, travel destinations have had to tout their local food scene as a means to gain visitors. With hotels offering food and beverage options in highly-competitive markets, brands need to shift their restaurants to cater to the growing food culture. Read on...

John R. Hunt

In recent years, employers in the hospitality industry have faced an onslaught of claims and litigation under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the federal law that establishes minimum wage and overtime requirements. Among the kinds of cases that employers have confronted are those alleging violations of the Department of Labor's "80/20" rule for tipped employees. This "rule" provided that an employer could not take a "tip credit" where a tipped employee spent over 20 percent of his or her time on activities that did not directly generate tips. The following discusses the rule and the significant changes made by the DOL. Read on...

Ryan Kunzer

General Manager, Ryan Kunzer of The Duniway, a bold lifestyle hotel located in downtown Portland, OR, comments on the changing city that celebrates the independent and progressive spirit for which Portland is best known. His leadership at this uniquely modern property boldly sets the stage for conversations between urban cyclists, entrepreneurs, locals and travelers alike. Ryan shares his views on the maturing city and why visitors should stay at The Duniway to unwind and recharge when visiting the city for business or pleasure. Read on...

Ryan Day

General Manager, Ryan Kunzer of The Duniway, a bold lifestyle hotel located in downtown Portland, OR, comments on the changing city that celebrates the independent and progressive spirit for which Portland is best known. His leadership at this uniquely modern property boldly sets the stage for conversations between urban cyclists, entrepreneurs, locals and travelers alike. Ryan shares his views on the maturing city and why visitors should stay at The Duniway to unwind and recharge when visiting the city for business or pleasure. Read on...

Rocco Bova

Reputation used to be word of mouth, recommendations and built over years of hard work and professional behavior. Today, thanks (or not) to social media, reputation can be built in very short time (see ''influencers'') and destroyed as quickly. Needless to say that your online behavior is as important as your public one. Ensure you follow these basic rules to not fall in the sea of sameness. I am not an expert, and neither I want to be, but I want to share what helped me become a trusted and respected hotelier. Read on...

Cate Farmer

The way travelers are taking vacations has changed. Expectations are higher. Travelers want a worry-free vacation with personality. It is all about the experiences and maybe more importantly how those experiences translate to an emotional connection. The story, the people, the adventure is as important as, maybe even more important than, the physical deliverable. The team at Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort's mission is to deliver Fun and Escapism to our guests. We provide something unique and somewhat intangible and that ultimately differentiates and makes us successful. We take tremendous pride in knowing that our guests return again and again to the Resort because of this emotional connection. Read on...

Cristine Henderson

Everything from clothing to condos are now produced with some degree of sustainable measures in mind. The extension of this practice to the hospitality industry might come as a surprise to some, especially with the added competition of short-term rental services such as Airbnb. However, sustainability has made its mark on the hotel industry and shows no signs of slowing down. Not only does this innovation help the environment and perpetuate social responsibility, but consumers love it. Read ahead for a more thorough investigation by Cristine Henderson, AIA, NCARB of Hoefer Wysocki of how the hospitality industry is incorporating sustainable measures to rebuild its foundations through design. Read on...

David Dionne

In an ever-increasingly competitive hospitality marketplace, owners and operators look to enhance their competitive advantage by providing uniquely positive, memorable experiences. Hotel and resort owners and operators agree that a hospitality brand holds the potential to create such novel guest experiences through the amenities leaders select for the brand's identity. What is a really unique and novel amenity? A really great playground. What makes a great playground? A great playground stimulates a child's imagination, allows children to build confidence through experience and skill building opportunities and can be designed for kids of all abilities and ages. Read on...

Justin Laxton

Providing your hotel guests with the essential items they want and need is an important ingredient of overall customer satisfaction. In this article, we'll dive into tactics you could use to identify the essentials your customers need, and discuss how the brands you stock can lead to a delightful customer experience. We'll also discuss the role local trends and sustainability can play in creating a strong customer impression. At the end of the article, you will have a good idea of how to build and maintain a continuous process to create memorable experiences for your customers. Read on...

Mark Heymann

A persistent labor shortage means the hospitality industry is facing tough workforce questions: How can a hotel deliver the level of service it promises with a smaller staff? Will tougher competition for workers impact average wage rates in a historically low-paying industry? What solutions, like cross-utilization, can hotels implement now? And what solutions will require larger-scale legal and societal change? Among the more transformational ideas this article will explore are rethinking current minimum shift requirements and looking to nontraditional sources, from retirees to training the formerly incarcerated, for future hospitality work. Read on...

Lisa Ross

The vast millennial population makes them a major target group for all businesses. That's why, hoteliers must find effective ways to attract this young, tech-savvy and demanding generation. Millennials are more well-travelled and adventurous than the previous generation. Their exposure to technology sets them apart as the first to grow up fully connected. They expect something new from the hospitality industry, throughout their entire experience – from making the reservation to checkout and beyond. Read on to learn how to cater to millennial desires for customization over generalization, need to stay super connected, and appreciation for brand engagement on social media. Read on...

Daniel Lafferty

Hoteliers are well-versed in the art of visual branding and the creation of ambient spaces, recognising the significance of brand image in attracting customers. Yet how a leisure brand sounds is becoming as important as how it looks when ensuring business success. But how do you create a unique brand soundtrack that best reflects specific brand values and personality? Daniel Lafferty, Director of Music and Voice at global audio branding specialist PHMG, explains how hoteliers can harness the power of audio to differentiate their venue from competitors by using the right combination of custom composed music, voice and script. Read on...

Felicia Hyde

Travel has no age limit. This is one of the many reasons it's one of the world's fastest-growing industries and enjoyed by many age groups. From baby boomers to millennials to Gen X to the growing Gen Z cohort, each group has needs that drive their purchasing behavior. Pointedly, a hotel that appeals to one group may not resonate with another, so hoteliers must deliver a custom experience that leaves their target audience wanting more. To achieve this, consider these key design strategies that have transformed the multifamily industry when designing your next hotel. Read on...

Christopher Manley

Hotels operating in a seasonal market must be prepared to continually adjust to the drastic variations in business throughout the year. By far, one of the greatest challenges for such properties is to maintain proper staffing throughout the seasonal swings. Hotels that proactively combat staffing challenges – through tailored strategic planning and cultural efforts – will be well positioned to thrive in seasonal environments. Hiring team members during the proper season, incentive programs, referral programs and career pathing efforts all contribute to creating an "Employer of Choice" brand, which is an often overlooked yet critical factor in successful recruitment and retention. Read on...

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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.