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Ken Patel is the CEO and Founder of EV Hotel Group, and he tackled a key hospitality trend that will be critical in the immediate and long-term future of the industry — technology adoption. Here’s what he had to say.
“I believe that we need to cross over to the technology itself, and we need to have more streamlined processes. And the only way we can do that is with better technology.
Technology will drive a less task-driven system. And that’s kind of what we need to make sure we put the emphasis on — where the employee workload is currently, and, as we have the technology, we can streamline certain processes that will make the work life better for the employee and lessen the turnover that we see currently in hospitality.
“We have been collecting data for numerous amount of years, and hospitality data has been there. But the problem is we haven’t had clean data.” – Ken Patel
It will also drive guest satisfaction. We’ve been talking about that for a numerous amount of years. And that hasn’t been there. It’s because we haven’t been able to drive the technology that we need to in this industry. And that’s kind of what we feel is the trend. And the trend has to be technology with our service experience and a guest experience. We have to change those things where the guest can actually get an experience.
When they come to the hotel, the guests can get what they get at home at the hotel. They need all of those items. And those are actually the trends that are currently there. And technology plays a big part. It plays a big part.
It’s not that we haven’t been collecting data in the hospitality industry. We have been collecting data for numerous amount of years, and hospitality data has been there. But the problem is we haven’t had clean data. We have had data islands where we collect the data and we leave it. It does not get transferred over anywhere else. It does not get thought about. What do we do with that data?
So we need to actually collect the data, make sure it’s clean, and use it, whether it’s for AI purposes or any other purpose. And we are seeing that trend. It’s already happening with Kayak.
And it has to not only go on a guest side of things, but also on the employee and the hotel. So it’s got to play a big part in a bigger circle.”
In 2021, most people expect to engage with technology. So why are some processes stuck in the past? That’s been true for the hospitality industry, and Say Yes to Travel is breaking down the story. Host Sarah Dandashy welcomed Ken Patel, CEO and Founder of EV Hotel, EV Hotel Group and EV Human, a turnkey software solution for hotel management and guest experience.
Patel spent over 20 years working in hotels and witnessing the archaic system. From his experience, he knew there had to be a better way. “I wanted to create a company that’s innovative and would revolutionize the industry,” he said.
The pain points of hotels are mostly the same, no matter the city. Employees have too heavy a workload, causing disengagement and turnover. Guests have to wait in check-in lines or use outdated communication channels to get what they need.
Patel’s platform seeks to bridge the gap between technology and old hospitality. The reality is that many don’t want to change. However, technology yields efficiency and many other revenue-specific benefits.
Technology adoption is no longer an option to stay competitive. Patel shared, “Airbnb isn’t a hospitality company but a technology one, and it took 30% of revenue from hotels last year.”
Convenience and ease matter to guests, and most consumers are even bigger tech users now because of the pandemic. What’s eye-opening for any hotel group is that more technology correlates to higher guest satisfaction. “With technology, employees can focus on the guest. Phase one is all about guest-facing technology for check-in. Then they can use a QR code to connect to the guest portal and communicate with any employee this way,” Patel explained.
It also supports profitability. Patel said, “The data shows that 89% of hotels in the world have a lower operating cost when they implement tech and AI.”
The hospitality industry was one of the most visibly impacted sectors of the pandemic year in 2020 and digital transformation has played a major role in the hospitality industry’s strategic shift. On this week’s episode of The Playbook, host Mark Collier, business consultant for the UGA Small Business Development Center, is joined by Ken Patel, CEO of EV Hotel, EV Hotel Group and EV Human, two technology disruptors in the hospitality sector. In this segment, Patel peels back the layers on the groundbreaking advancements his company is leading.
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