How Remote Working Has Changed Travel Patterns Among People?
Work From Home. You either hate or love these three words which became extremely popular during the pandemic. This love-hate relationship is mostly dependent on whether you are an introvert or an extrovert. But that’s not all. There’re a million other factors that govern whether or not you can at all afford to work from home. But what do these three little words mean for the hotel industry?
The most obvious answer is loss. The complete ban on travel also includes corporate travel, which several hotels are completely dependent on. Several IT companies have completely clamped down on their travel budget. And several others have realized that the remote working model actually suits them better. They don’t have to rent office space or invest in utilities.
But this is obviously not great news for you. National and international conferences brought in huge crowds of guests. Companies used to book rooms in bulk and you could often overbook a certain number of rooms as well. After all, 100% of the corporate crowd never showed up. With the rise of Zoom and Google Meet, this entire source of revenue has been severed.
But has it though? Has remote working completely ruined the hotel industry that depended on corporate guests? No. And not just this. The remote working culture has several other benefits for you as well. All you need to do is modify your hotel practices according to modern demands.
How Remote Working Has Changed Travel Patterns Among People?
Who are the Digital Nomads? They refer to the group of people who don’t just work from home, they work from anywhere. So, your aim should be to transform that “anywhere” into your hotel.
Most extroverts hate the Work From Home routine. And even non-extroverts can become sick and tired of remaining shut up in the same room all day. This is why digital nomads work from spaces that are very much not their homes.
To attract this crowd, you need to have state-of-the-art WiFi and other tech facilities. Don’t charge for the WiFi separately. This is a sure-shot way to turn them away. And make sure your hotel WiFi has enough bandwidth to sustain a significant number of guests. They should also have access to workstations inside their rooms. This might mean changing the current bedroom setup to a partial office setup.
If you can ensure that they can work comfortably in your hotels, the digital nomads will come flooding in.
Remember how I told you that the remote working culture benefits you, as the hotelier, in more ways than one? Previously, people had very strict schedules. They had to take leaves if they wanted to go on a vacation. This obviously created certain limitations.
But you can basically do “Work From Home” from anywhere! So, you can also go on vacations during a workweek. Guests can work during the day and go sightseeing etc. in the evenings.
People usually prefer to spend their workstations in hotels that are inherently aesthetic. The hotel should ideally be in a beautiful location already or it should be pretty close to one. If you have neither of these factors working out for you, you have to provide worthwhile in-house entertainment.
The other trend that hotels are welcoming now is that of the Day Stayers. This refers to guests who might not spend the night at the hotel. You might think this leads to an overall loss of revenue but it doesn’t. Day Stayers always visit the hotel to gain access to the POS facilities like the sight-seeing counter, the restaurant, bar, etc. These are also significant sources of revenue.
Don’t turn these guests away. With the remote working model, they might not be able to book extended stays. But even these stays are profitable for you. If you are trying to encourage extended stays, you can always provide some extra benefits.
Day Stayers should also be provided access to the conference halls with workstations. There might be remote working professionals who just want to visit for a calm and quiet work environment.
Readily Available Amenities
No matter how much you love staying at home, sometimes working from home is just not a feasible option. Not all of us live alone or have extremely quiet neighbors. A home office setup is not something that most people can afford either.
Not just that, many office workers cannot really find the time to cook for themselves either. Doing the laundry and cleaning the room are additional woes. This is why many remote working professionals prefer to work from hotels.
Room service takes care of your busy guest’s appetite and the housekeeping does the rest. If you have a Property Management System like StayFlexi, this process gets even more simplified.
You can simply place your food orders on the hotel app from your cell phone. There is no need to call the front desk and then wait for them to connect you to the kitchen. And with StayFlexi’s Smart Housekeeping, the guest doesn’t need to personally find a housekeeping staff member either. They can just register their complaint on the app itself. The concerned staff member will receive the notification of the complaint and solve it immediately. If they are busy, the complaint will be transferred to another staff member who is currently free. Only after the problem has been resolved, the staff member can mark the task as completed in the mobile app/website.
This not only saves the working guest’s time and energy. But it also helps you know who is to be held accountable if something goes wrong. The prompt and easy service of hotels is one of the main reasons why remote working professionals prefer hotels.
What Can You Do To Attract Remote Working Professionals?
- Change the layout of some of your rooms. Rather than a bedroom setup, go for an office setup. If this is not possible, at least add a quiet corner with a table where the guest can sit and work.
- Try to attract Day Stayers by advertising your POS outlets like your restaurant, bar, etc.
- Your hotel has to be well equipped to support the WFH professionals. This means free WiFi with considerable bandwidth, enough charging portals, good phone connectivity, etc.
- Make sure that the guest has to interact with the staff as little as possible. Extended interactions simply waste time and energy. This is why StayFlexi’s Self-Check-In/Check-Out and Smart Housekeeping feature is so beneficial for remote working professionals. No need to wait at the front desk for hours. No need to search for the staff member responsible for cleaning your room.
If you are worried about the WFH trend getting prolonged, remember that WFH doesn’t just mean loss. The hospitality industry can benefit from the remote working model if it just understands the requirements of the guests.
Your aim should be to substitute Work-From-Home with Work-From-Hotel. How to do this? Allow the guests to retain their own autonomy. Limit staff interactions with guests because this just wastes their precious work hours. Invest in a Property Management System so that your guests can lodge their complaints directly from their mobile phones.
It’s not remotely impossible to benefit from the remote working trend. To understand how StayFlexi provides more autonomy to your guests, leave a comment below.