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If there are two simple words that sum up the key focus of the modern hotel experience, they are ‘comfort’ and ‘convenience’. And one of the humble heroes working hard to deliver both in hospitality is the mobile tablet.
Deployed at the check-in, inside hotel rooms and in the hands of hospitality staff, tablets are revolutionizing the way the industry offers comfort and convenience to its millions of patrons each day.
Here’s an insight how tablets are used in hospitality and the benefits they can offer a sector where service is paramount.
Simple, affordable and facilitating a personalized guest experience, in-room tablets put convenience in the hands of the customer.
They offer a unique versatility that replaces the paper-based directory of old, allowing a hotel’s services and facilities to be easily found and accessed by the guest.
With the right software, tablets allow the consumer to order room service, contact hotel staff via messaging, access the latest and greatest entertainment, or even control the smart features of their room using a simple app.
These are just some of the reasons tablets are rapidly rolling out in the world’s most renowned hotels, but they’re not the only ones.
Looking for an easy way to integrate digital advertising, upselling and offers into a guest’s experience? Tablets can deliver that too. Meanwhile, they can also take the labor and double handling out of managing hotel facilities.
Say a guest wishes to book the gymnasium, spa or sauna at a set time – the tablet can incorporate bookings into its other offerings, allowing the guest to find, book and then even pay for a service from the comfort of their hotel room, while enjoying the convenience of simplicity.
At present in-room tablets are used for a range of services including:
• Digital directory
• Facility bookings
• Hotel maps and virtual tours
• Room service orders
• Movie ordering
• Smart room control
• Hotel and location information
• Messaging with staff
• Maintenance or housekeeping requests
Tablets aren’t just found inside the guest rooms of many hotels, they are also widely implemented at check-in and reception, offering further convenience to guests and to staff.
Tablets in hotel reception can facilitate smooth check-in or check-out.
In this case, tablets are not designed to replace the personal welcome of staff but to facilitate better service, particularly at peak times like check-out when numerous guests may be looking to return keys, and close and pay for their accounts at the same time.
These tablets can also facilitate real-time customer feedback, allowing a venue to survey and gauge their customer experience using a kiosk.
Just as the airline industry has been improved drastically with tablets in the hands of staff, the same potential is available to hospitality.
Imagine a tablet in the hands of a busy hotel manager or supervisor. They can be anywhere at the venue and still keep abreast of who is on duty, what’s happening where, any customer satisfaction issues, or any items that need addressing.
In the past decade a range of software has been developed to support the use of tablets in hospitality, with many, such as Aavgo, SuitePad, Tapendium, Crave, and Touchway, focussed on both the guest experience as well as streamlining employee workflow.
Common features of hospitality tablet software include:
Despite all the benefits tablets can offer the hospitality industry, one of the major challenges to adoption is the security of the physical devices.
So how do you ensure your digital directory and in-room entertainment device isn’t lost or stolen during a guest’s stay?
The good news is there are a range of options to assist. These include secure wall mounts and desktop or bedside table stands along with tethering that allows your device to be comfortably handled without being subject to theft.