• Compensation and Benefits... An Important Combination When Attracting and Retaining Talented Staff

    Figuring out the right combination of compensation and benefits is the key to attracting and retaining top talent within your organization. Since 2002, the HFTP Americas Research Center has been tracking trends and publishing the HFTP Compensation and Benefits Survey.

  • GDPR in Hospitality: Vendor Compliance Query Template Available to Industry

    As a professional association, Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP®) created a group of hospitality industry experts to develop hospitality-specific guidelines to assist with preparation for General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance.

  • HFTP Hospitality DPO Task Force Outlines Objectives as Industry Prepares for GDPR May 2018 Deadline

    The European Union (EU) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that was announced in April 2016 put in place a substantial mandate on EU-based organizations, as well as any organization doing business with EU citizens.


Thought leadership - To Cloud or Not to Cloud? Choose What Works Best for You without Feature Compromise: Maestro's Web Browser PMS Delivers Flexibility and Mobility On-Premise or in the Cloud

NORTHWIND-Maestro ·21 February 2018
Markham, Ontario -- Cloud-based property management is a compelling option in hotel operations today. Cloud property software systems require less on-property hardware and cabling, and maintenance and backups are handled by the system provider. Plus, company data is secure behind commercial firewalls, simplifying compliance requirements.Yet, many operators feel an on-premise property software system is better because it does not depend on a high-speed internet connection, and the property's IT team has control over the environment. The best way to evaluate which system is best for your operation is to speak with a company that offers a full featured solution on both platforms so that the technology does not have to influence your decision."It is important to have options when you make a crucial property management system decision. Do your homework and focus on tech companies with experience in both cloud-based and on-premise property software systems," said Warren Dehan, President of Maestro PMS. "Evaluate the feature capabilities and services each company offers to ensure it's the right tool for your operation now, and that it will meet your future guest and staff mobility needs. Check if the company's Cloud system delivers full-featured PMS functionality, or if it is a limited 'lite' front office system that does not offer the features or expansion capabilities you may need in the future. Also, make sure your provider has a proven track record of deploying on either platform, and has the infrastructure to support you with the requisite services. Equally important, verify the system's security and credit card service processes are compliant with your GDPR and PCI obligations."The 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa, and the Basin Park Hotel in Eureka Springs, Arkansas have relied on Maestro's Multi-Property Cloud PMS for more than five years. Jack Moyer, Vice President and General Manager for both properties said, "Our hotels are unique destinations. We run each as a separate brand on one cloud-based Maestro PMS with one database. Maestro hosts our system so we don't have to worry about servers, backups, or system maintenance." Moyer operates his two hotels as one business with one call center, one sales office, and one accounting office. "Managing both properties in the cloud simplifies our entire operation. Maestro Multi-Property Cloud PMS is a powerful system with excellent support."Maestro PMS is available as an on-premise Windows or browser-based solution. It also offers a feature-equivalent browser-based Cloud solution. "Maestro is Maestro, with the full complement of features and capabilities, whether a hotel is using it on-premise or in our hosted Cloud. Maestro has extensive experience with cloud operations," Dehan said. "The key is choosing the right PMS software with the right partner to satisfy your business requirements first - the platform is secondary. If a property does not have access to the Internet but wants an easily managed system, we provide Maestro's features and versatility with a browser user interface that runs on a property's on-premise network. This option simplifies infrastructure needs for an on-premise system and truly gives you the best of both worlds without compromise."Maestro PMS delivers revenue-generating property software tools and services that increase profitability. Maestro property software drives direct bookings, centralizes operations, and provides personalized guest service to keep guests coming back. Click here for more information on how to reserve, engage and socialize with Maestro PMS.About Maestro PMSMaestro is the preferred cloud and on-premises PMS solution for independent hotels, luxury resorts, conference centers, vacation rentals and multi-property groups. This PCI certified and EMV ready enterprise system offers 20+ integrated modules on a single database including web and mobile tools to increase profitability and enable operators to engage guests with a personalized experience. For over 37 years Maestro's Diamond Plus Service has provided unparalleled 24/7 North American based support and education services to keep hospitality groups operational and productive. Click here for more information on Maestro.

The Deadline for GDPR is Approaching Fast. Is Your Hotel Ready?

StayNTouch Inc. ·20 February 2018
There are only a few months to go until the May 25, 2018 compliance deadline for GDPR, which is a game changer for hoteliers as it introduces a new and comprehensive set of strict data protection regulations. By this date, all hoteliers will be required to demonstrate a "reasonable level" of personal data protection. When it comes to data security, there are few sectors as vulnerable to threats as the hotel industry so as hoteliers face a need for new systems, processes and technology, many are in need of some support.If you haven't yet started - or if you have and you are still working on it - now is the time to put your GDPR readiness plan into action. To help, StayNTouch and TrustYou have created this GDPR Readiness Checklist to guide you and your team.The key areas the GDPR checklist covers include:Awareness & PlanningProcesses and SystemsData Privacy, Notifications & ConsentTechnology and ControlsPolicies, Training & ProceduresTo download the Free GDPR Readiness Checklist for Hotels, CLICK HERE or visit http://go.stayntouch.com/GDPR-Checklist.html?utm_source=HSyndicate-HSMAI-HospitalityNet.About StayNTouchStayNTouch is a "Software as a Service" hotel property management systems (PMS) company focused on developing solutions that help hotels raise service levels, drive revenues, reduce costs, and ultimately change the way hotels can captivate their guests. Developed with mobility in mind, the pioneering platform enables hotels to create long lasting relationships with their guests by delivering personalized service levels that today's guests require. StayNTouch operates on tablets and smartphones, empowering hotel employees to go above and beyond in exceeding guest expectations at every touch point.Powering over 85,000 rooms globally, our game-changing solution frees hotels from the constraints of legacy or premise systems, dramatically streamlines operations, increases margins, and revolutionizes how front-line staff connect with guests. StayNTouch is a trusted partner to many of the most forward-thinking hotels, resorts, casinos and chains in the industry, including Yotel, Zoku Amsterdam, Valencia Hotels, The Freehand Hotels, First Hotels, Modus hotels and the Fontainebleau Miami Beach.To learn more watch our video "THE NEW WAY... TO HOTEL!"About TrustYouTrustYou, the world's largest guest feedback platform, empowers hotels with solutions to drive more bookings and improve their hotel product. Through each phase of the guest journey, hotels can utilize guest feedback to enhance marketing, improve guest experiences, and achieve operational excellence. Guest feedback influences 95% of booking decisions. TrustYou Meta-Review, which incorporates hundreds of millions of hotel reviews, surveys, and social posts for over 500,000 hotels worldwide, powers guest reviews on dozens of travel sites, including Google, Kayak, and Hotels.com.*These reviews help hotels to manage and improve their performance along each step of the guest journey, from booking and pre-stay search queries, to real-time guest requests via messaging, to post-stay feedback in the form of reviews and survey responses. Through the TrustYou partner program, PMS, CRM, IBE and other hotel software providers can integrate TrustYou's guest feedback platform into their products to help their hotel clients positively influence bookings and revenue.Find more information on TrustYou and the guest feedback platform on www.trustyou.com.*TrustYou Meta-Reviews only contain verified reviews and do not include reviews from TripAdvisor

The Countdown to GDPR is here. Is the MICE industry doing enough?

Cvent ·12 February 2018
The Countdown to GDPR is here, but is the MICE industry in UK and the rest of Europe doing enough? Recently Cvent held a webinar for more than 2,000 MICE executives - attached please see a copy of the presentation for your information.

The Clock is Ticking Towards GDPR Compliance; If Your Hotel is Struggling, Beekeeper Can Help

Beekeeper · 1 February 2018
In just a few months, the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will require every hotel in the world to have guidelines in place that protect European Union (EU) residents' personally identifiable information against security breaches. Any hotel that does not comply after May 25, 2018, is risking heavy fines. Beekeeper, developer of a digital workplace app where operational systems and communication channels live within one secure and intuitive platform, announces that it is already GDPR compliant and its communication platform will protect company data."Our customers' right to privacy and ensuring that their personal data is secure, is Beekeeper's top priority," said Corey McCarthy, Beekeeper head of global marketing. "In April, we appointed Dr. Amir Ameri to the new position of Data Protection Officer, and he assembled a team to make sure every box got checked. A full year before deadline, we began assessing the impact of GDPR on Beekeeper. Today, we are proud to say that we are fully compliant. This was a labor-intensive undertaking, but our scramble is over. Companies still needing assistance can visit Beekeeper's GDPR Hub and follow our journey to compliance here."What Hoteliers Need to KnowHere are nine important facts that hoteliers need to know about GDPR:The GDPR is applicable to all hotels processing EU citizen's personal data, regardless of where it is located.Fines up to 20 million euros or 4% of annual global turnover (whichever is greater) may be levied in case of repeat and non-compliance to the regulation.EU citizens will have a right to approach the data protection authority of their choice when stating their complaint.Personal Data is defined with a wider scope, including social, mental, genetic, cultural, and economic data.The Right to be Forgotten will have an impact on hotel processes dealing with data collection, such as the purpose for obtaining the data. It will require advanced tools in dealing with search requirements.Privacy Impact Assessments will become mandatory and influence use of Privacy by Design principles to enhance both commercial and in-house developed tools, processes, and products dealing with Personal Data.Concept of Consent is reworked and made more stringent in its utilization.The Data Protection Officer (appointed internally or externally) becomes a mandatory role for any hotel or hotel company, or fines up to 10 million euros or 2% of global turnover may be levied.Incident Management and Notification for a data breach is standardized by the GDPR. A maximum of 72 hours is permissible before reporting becomes obligatory.Voice of Reason"GDPR is a far-reaching regulation and it has no limits to protecting personal data," Ameri said. "As a SaaS offering and recognized data processor, Beekeeper spent the last nine months implementing technical and organizational measures to ensure that our products and services will reduce risk for hoteliers significantly in the digital workplace."Ameri is an accomplished professional with more than 20 years of technical and leadership experience in operational risk management. He specializes in cybersecurity, data protection, and privacy fields in Swiss and international financial and banking sectors. After completing his Ph.D. dissertation in developing a framework for managing technology risks, Ameri completed his Master of Law to better position his understanding of the interaction between technology and legal and regulatory requirements."With the GDPR deadline on the horizon, hoteliers face a sprint of thorough internal evaluations to revamp policies around the collection, storage, or usage of EU resident personal data," Ameri said. "The financial implications of breaching GDPR are astronomical. We recommend mapping all data assets and appointing dedicated Data Protection personnel on a full-time or contract basis to properly oversee the adoption of high-caliber data protection processes and technologies."One of the best ways hoteliers can start their journey to GDPR readiness is by using a secure communications platform that is already compliant. Hoteliers with questions about implementing GDPR best practices should visit Beekeeper's GDPR Hub.

The hotel that talks back is the future

EyeforTravel ·18 January 2018
The hotel of the future might become an interlinked artificial intelligence that can speak back to the guest through speakers and chatbots to suggest activities to the guest, answer their queries and solve their complaints says the report. Using AI-powered voice and chat capabilities to do these tasks provides more convenient channels for guest interactions that can not only improve satisfaction with their stay but also drive revenues.Both chatbots and voice systems working through smart speakers can be integrated into a whole system, recording all requests and integrated into a Property Management System (PMS). Largely these early investigations into interactive AI are as smart concierges for hotels, with both big and independent chains deploying the tech."We created a conversation concierge so that people can get all of their informational experience through channels they are more used to operating. It delivers specific responses very quickly. It positions the hotel as a trusted advisor," says Charles Cadbury, Co-Founder of Dazzle Technology, a start-up that implements and operates smart speakers for the hospitality industry."Hotels are able to listen to what the guests want and get real time data of who is asking for what and when. Then they can make real time adjustments to their product or services to cater to those requests."The other benefit of offering these services out to guests through voice or chat interfaces is that hotels staff are alleviated of a lot of mundane tasks and can really focus on delivering a high quality of service to guests.Jeffrey Parker, Vice President of Hospitality Systems, Red Lion Hotels Corporation, says that, according to experts, between 50-75% of guest questions can be responded to by a Bot. "This can relieve questions to the desk staff and other departments. The appropriate way to do it is to also link to your service app infrastructure and have a warm hand-off to a real person.""Conversation allows you to ask very specific answers in a type of communication you are most comfortable with," says Cadbury. "And because it's not a live conversation, you're not tying up staff on the phone."However, Parker has a warning: "Don't ever let your app pretend to be a real person. Be transparent with your guests." (For more on chatbots click here for our free report).The human element is also still highly relevant in creating the background that can make these interactive AIs possible. Humans are necessary to create a culture of recording and measuring guest interactions and building up the background data. IHG used their customer service call centres to help build up their Alexa offering, for example."The best way to build a picture of the guest is to leverage the hotel's greatest assets, their people, to capture every seemingly relevant detail humans need to build personal relationships," says Armand Rabinowitz, Senior Director of Strategy and Workgroups at Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG).Similar to putting a data strategy in place, hotels need to think about the individual guest when implementing voice and chat functions. Hotels can't just charge in and introduce voice to every room and client, privacy issues are at play too. "We need to take clues from the guest and offer services based on what profile we think they are, but not to the extent we ruin that relationship," says Parker. Hotels need to offer guests the choice and respect their decision if they ask for connected devices to be removed. Chains such as Marriott and IHG are working closely with Amazon to develop solutions that provide the guests with a seamless experience while also protecting their privacy. Data collection and privacy issues will only be highlighted as the EU's GDPR regulation comes into force warns the report.To download The Future of In-Stay Technology report for free, click here.We have also covered voice technology and its implications for travel in a dedicated new report on the topic, which is free to download now here, as well as chatbots, which can be downloaded here.

EyeforTravel have an attendee list for the data travel elite that they think you need to see!

EyeforTravel ·17 January 2018
With more travelers turning to the internet and mobile to get ideas, inspiration, and options for their trips. There's more data on each customer from their searches, saved preferences and previous travels. This event covers data analytics, revenue management, marketing analytics and artificial intelligence and personlizartion. Data is where it's all at - see how you can leverage data to get up close and personal with your customer.EyeforTravel are excited about this shift towards smart data and have positioned their EyeForTravel Smart Travel Data Summit (Feb 27-28, Miami) to focus on just that, and are even offering a sneak peak of their attendee list early.The event will have 130+ travel data decision makers to help brands identify the data, technology, partners and strategies that you need to grow revenues in the mobile-first world!To shed light on who will be at the event, Tim Gunstone the Managing Director for EyeforTravel said " "We're excited to be welcoming back executives from Southwest Airlines, Wyndham, AirBnb, Booking.com, Hilton Hotels, the Travel Corporation, Allegiant, Priceline, Winding Tree and a lot more"He went onto to say, "We don't usually release our delegate list this early but we want to shout about this event, we have over 90 people in, and thought we should share it, to give others the chance to book in early and manage their meetings too!"Need a bit more convincing?Look who you could meet and learn from: Airbnb, Amazon, Air Canada, Hilton, Delta Airlines, Mozio, HQ Revenue, Southwest Airlines, Priceline, McKinsey, Amperity, Lufthansa and moreTest your data strategy with insights from across the travel market to discuss everything from personalization, artificial intelligence, revenue analytics, blockchain, GDPR, data talent acquisition, data integration, marketing analytics to enhance the customer experience and so much more!Get your data and commercial teams talking to see your analytics insights take off. Reach those new levels of personalization and discuss the best attribution models on market today!Learn more about who is attending the Smart Travel Data 2018 event in sunny Miami here: http://events.eyefortravel.com/smart-travel-data-summit-north-america/If you are a hotel - cruise or airline - contact the team for discountsContact the team directly at - shreya@eyefortravel.com

HEDNA Tackles Costly Payment Challenges at January 2018 Global Distribution Conference in Austin

Puzzle Partner Ltd. · 8 January 2018
The upcoming HEDNA (Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association) Global Distribution Conference has become the go-to place for hotel industry payment insights, education and best practices. The nearly sold-out event will deliver the most comprehensive information, resources, and dialogue to help hoteliers gain control of the complexities associated with regulations, virtual payments, data security, GDPR and guest demands when it comes to payment strategies.The conference, which has attracted top delegates from hotel chains, multi-properties, independents, management companies, technology suppliers, payment companies and many others, takes place from January 29th - 31st, 2018 at the Sheraton Austin. This year, the payment tracks take center stage to address important topics including how to implement a 'guest centric' payment strategy, how to right size a hotel's third-party costs from a payment perspective, virtual payment trends, compliance, B2B payments, as well as solutions for upcoming issues such as General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The elite group of speakers and presenters is comprised of payment experts and influencers from Braintree - A PayPal Company, Ingenico, Edgar, Dunn & Company, Worldpay, Elavon, Hilton, JP Morgan, WEX, Onyx CenterSource, and Voxel Group. For a full list of topics and presenters, visit austinhedna.com/agenda.The Hotel Analytics Working Group will also share the wealth of data received from the 1,000+ HEDNA members and non-member participants in a recent survey. The analysis and White Paper provide recommendations and guidelines to educate hotels globally on how best to use their data to optimize both profit potential and long-term asset value.Other highlights of the event include the highly anticipated Innov8 session and a "Hackathon" produced in partnership with TNOOZ focusing on artificial intelligence and emerging technologies in hospitality.For more information and to register or sponsor, please visit AustinHEDNA.com.About Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA)HEDNA (Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association) is a not-for-profit trade association whose worldwide membership includes executives and managers from the most influential companies in the hospitality industry. Founded in 1991, HEDNA's mission is to be the leading global forum for advancing hospitality distribution through collaboration and knowledge sharing. Its vision calls for HEDNA to be known for creating an environment that fosters strategic collaboration toward business development in the global hospitality industry. For more, visit www.HEDNA.org.

Guestline focuses on further growth in 2018 following successful year of investment

Guestline ·20 December 2017
eading global hospitality software business Guestline is planning for further growth in 2018 following strong performance this year. This has included a 20 per cent growth in its client base, significant investment in new technology and key markets worldwide, and development of its senior and country-level management teams over the last 12 months.The company has added to its portfolio of hospitality software technology throughout its 25th year, driven by growing demand from accommodation providers for innovative technology. Guestline's solutions support their distribution and revenue management, operations and digital marketing to deliver greater profitability and the company will continue its investment across all areas of operation in 2018.Andrew McGregor, CEO, Guestline said, "2017 has been a year of significant innovation, development and growth and this is testament to the hard work of the strong team we have in place at Guestline."Customer feedback is overwhelmingly positive and we have seen strong growth over the last 12 months with bookings via our portals up 30 per cent and a 49 per cent increase in total revenue generated for our customers."2018 will see more shifts in the hospitality market and technology landscapes as we prepare for new technology opportunities and the legislation on GDPR. Our continued investment and innovation in technology will help deliver greater efficiencies and greater profitability for current and new clients in the year ahead."International expansion and growth in management teamGuestline's global footprint now covers over 25 countries across five continents. In 2017 Guestline opened new offices in London and Dublin and a larger office in Thailand.Enhancements to the senior leadership team include new CEO Andrew McGregor, appointed in February 2017 and the appointment of Andrew Metcalfe as the company's first chief technology officer. The CTO oversees the development of Guestline's industry-leading technology, a team of 52 product developers and the Guestline Labs initiative, a central hub to deliver innovative product development.Further afield, the company recruited hospitality industry experts Clio O'Gara and Ingrid Fallon to join the team in Ireland in the roles of country manager and regional sales manager respectively. In Bangkok, new country manager Matthew Emptage leads the team across Thailand, Australia and Singapore.New product and service initiatives Guestline continues to enhance its product portfolio with the release of the latest free upgrade to its cloud-hosted PMS, Rezlynx. It now delivers superior revenue generating tools and improved functionality with combination rooms/virtual suites, shift allowances, reports and profile alerts (to name but a few) to enable hoteliers to achieve greater operational efficiencies. There have also been numerous feature enhancements in the Conference and Banqueting module, the Payment Express Chip and PIN module and e-commerce solutions, along with a new interface to the IDeaS G3Revenue Management System.Guestline now have over 350 partner APIs to enhance its end-to-end solution. APIs cover these main categories: EPoS, stock control, PABX, door locking, CRM, BI reporting, Spa, online bookings, TV systems and guest facing apps.In addition, Online Ticket Sales now provides hoteliers with the opportunity to diversify their offer by selling tickets to events online. Integrated to Rezlynx PMS, it allows hoteliers to manage payments and availability for events and to combine with room rates and packages for accommodation if required.Growth in the network: new client wins and strategic partnershipsThe company has recently further grown its profile within Best Western (including recent orders from the Best Western Crown and Best Western Kilima Hotels) and secured Marco Pierre White's company Black and White Hospitality as its newest opening in London, with the New Road Hotel. In addition, Essex-based Roslin Beach and the luxury Langdale Estate in the Lake District have both recently opted for Guestline solutions. As have the Royal Yacht Britannia in Edinburgh, adding to the 1,000 new rooms using Guestline technology across Scotland this year.Expansion of the Guestline partner network via a number of strategic partnerships has included amongst others the online reputation company GuestRevu, Avvio, HotelRez, UpSell Guru, Wihp, Revinate and Digital Alchemy.Industry networking and recognition Guestline is featured in the London Stock Exchange Group's '1000 Companies to Inspire Britain 2017' report in recognition of its continued growth and dynamism.Recent, exhibition and attendance at key industry events included World Travel Market, the ASAP Conference, the Independent Hotel Show, the International Hospitality Exchange in Belfast, the Munster GDPR Hotels Conference and the Irish Hospitality Institute Founders Awards Event.For more information please visit www.guestline.com-ends-

Guestline to offer hoteliers GDPR roadmap

Guestline ·20 November 2017
Hosted by cyber security agency Techfindr, the convention will offer hoteliers insight into the requirements around the forthcoming changes to GDPR legislation. This will include a focus on the financial penalties they will face if they are not compliant and the need to have robust cyber security policies in place. General counsel for Guestline, Jeremy Espley, will present on the definitions and scope of the new GDPR legislation. In particular this will address the new obligations that both hoteliers and technology providers to the industry will face both for securing consent to access data and processing data.Espley will be joined by a notable panel of industry experts including Dina Vyapuri, managing director, Techfindr, Stilian Cvetkov, certified ethical hacker and Sharon O'Reilly, certified GDPR consultant, IT governance and GDPR coalition ambassador.Jeremy Espley, general counsel, Guestline comments:"GDPR is fast approaching. It is imperative that hotel owners and operators ensure they are armed with the right information in advance so that they have time to examine their existing operations, and make the necessary changes to ensure they are fully compliant. There has been much debate in the industry regarding the impact of GDPR and the requirements that will be in place for hoteliers, technology providers, and suppliers. We will be working with our customers in the months ahead to ensure GDPR compliance is managed efficiently."Earlier this year Guestline announced its expansion into the Irish market with the opening of a new office in Dublin and the development of a new team including the appointment of a new country manager, Clio O'Gara and more recently regional sales manager, Ingrid Fallon. As part of Guestline's ongoing investment in Ireland, the team is undertaking a packed schedule of networking and attendance at events including the Munster Convention. This is swiftly followed by the Irish Hospitality Institute Founders Banquet and Awards Event which takes place in Dublin on 23 November 2017.The company's multi award winning software is cloud-based and enables hospitality business owners and managers in sectors such as hotels, serviced apartments, pubs, student accommodation and more, to manage bookings and operations both efficiently and profitably.For more information please visit www.guestline.com

Airbnb, Amazon, Hilton, Southwest, Booking.com Meet in Miami to Discuss Driving Data Excellence

EyeforTravel ·28 September 2017
The event will host over 150 senior travel data, RM, marketing and product professionals to discuss the most business critical trends in data affecting the travel industry today."The truth is, from RM to hardcore data science, and marketing to product development, capital and time is being wasted on a lack of relevance with your customer. The wrong price, the wrong product, the wrong message" says Renu Kannu, the event director. She adds "We have put together an event that leaves no data stone unturned - From embracing cutting edge visualization metrics, knowing the fate of the modern revenue manager, pioneering personalized pricing and knowing where and where not to deploy machine learning, it's an oasis of innovation. The industry is demanding higher profits, more loyalty and an end to brand DNA draining away. These are all real concerns that can be solved by joining a hotbed of analytics talent in Miami next February."The Unrivalled Speaker Line-up for 2018 includes:Theresa Johnson, Data Scientist, AirbnbEduardo Erazo, Data Scientist, Amazon.comPhillipe Garnier, Head of Distribution and Partnerships, Hilton HotelsPJ AbhishekSVP, Revenue Management and Consumer Analytics, Wyndham Destination NetworkLouis Zameryka, Director, Global Accounts, Booking.comMatt Louis, Sr. Director of RM, Southwest AirlinesVijay Dandapani, President, HANYCLucio BustilloManager, Revenue Management Science & Innovation, Air CanadaErnesto Sosa, Head of Digital Marketing & Social Media, Lufthansa TechnikRicardo Rangel, Sr. Director of Data Architecture, HertzPriti Dhanda, Director of Revenue Management Analytics, HyattLou Carrier, President, Distinctive Hospitality GroupDan Christian, Chief Digital Officer, The Travel CorporationScott Breon, Chief Revenue Officer, VacasaBrian Berry, SVP of Sales and Revenue Management, Host Hotels and ResortsEmmanuel Carrier, Data Science Consultant, Delta AirlinesEmre Mangir, COO and Co-Founder, MozioDrew Wells, Director of Revenue, Allegiant AirJeremy Jameson, Chief Commercial Officer, FareCompareJanet Stevens, Director of Revenue Management, Summit Hotel PropertiesBerry van Weelden, Senior Director Sales Strategy & Operations, PricelineRyan Harris, E-Commerce and Ancillary Products Manager, Insel Air2018 Moderators include:Steven Pinchuk, WW Lead Customer Intelligence & Revenue Management, Advanced Analytics Center of Competence - IBMVlatka Barcan, Founder and CEO, Fifth RevenueTom Bacon, Principal, Revenue Optimization, Tom Bacon Consulting, LLCHere are some of the elements Smart Travel Analytics North America 2018 will focus on:Personalization - Beyond the BuzzwordIt's not enough to just know your customer, personalization is money wasted without absolute relevance. Get the tools to personalize like Amazon and convert like Volkswagen.I've Got a GuyHow one hotel management company went from having an inside guy in Vegas to using data-driven intelligence to seize market opportunities, adjust rates, and make revenues boom.Forget Disparate Databases - Get One Golden RecordThe average database resembles a smashed plate across departments, properties and brands. Discover the strategy and technology you need to finally get that customer-centric database.Machine Learning - How will it Shake Up your Data?AI was big 10 years ago...then it disappeared - Now it's back with a vengeance! Now is the time to optimize machine learning, make your data shine, and grasp the skillsets to see a huge return on your robotic investments!Forecast into the UnknownHow do you pair the analyst and strategist to become an unbeatable revenue manager? If you want to know your market over the next 5 years, and master individual segments, this session has the answers.Blockchain - The Next Major DisruptorIt's in its infancy, but major players like TUI have said it will disrupt Expedia and Airbnb forever...The transparency of blockchain could be a data scientist's dream. Be aware as revolutions can happen overnight!Profitable Partnerships in Data - Opportunities and LimitationsFrom shared databases to cloud technologies, you need to partner for a true 360-degree view of your customer. But when do you share it, who with, and how close should you hold your cards to your chest?Be Data-Ready to Match the Metasearch MightOn top of KAYAK and Trivago, Google and TripAdvisor is flipping even the metasearch world upside down. How can your data address this threat to your profits?GDPR - The Regulation that will Overhaul your Data StrategyIt began in Europe, but European citizens travel more than anyone else on the planet. If some of your customers are European, it affects you. The GDPR goes live in May 2018, what is it and how can you avoid the crippling fines?For more information about the event, please visit http://events.eyefortravel.com/smart-travel-data-summit-north-america/If you have any questions, please get in touch directly with Renu (renu@eyefortravel.com)

The EU's New Personal Data Regulation Could Put Your Hotel at Risk - Quickly Assess Your GDPR Liability With These 31 Questions.

Beekeeper ·25 September 2017
Because of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield approved by the EU Commission and U.S. Department of Commerce in 2016, U.S. companies will be held accountable to GDPR compliance standards and can be prosecuted in European courts, leaving U.S. companies exposed. Despite GDPR's quickly approaching enforcement date, it is reported that a surprisingly large portion of executive officers in the U.S. remain in the dark about the level of exposure and dire fiscal impact GDPR could have on their businesses.Amir Ameri, VP of Global Risk & Compliance at digital workplace technology company, Beekeeper, has compiled a list of 31 essential questions every global business leader must ask themselves to assess their company's readiness to meet GPDR compliance before May 2018.https://beekeeper.io/gdpr-compliance"Executives now face a sprint of thorough internal evaluations to revamp policies around the collection, storage, or usage of EU resident personal data. The financial implications of breaching GDPR are astronomical," says Ameri. "We recommend mapping all data assets and appointing dedicated Data Protection personnel on a full-time or contract basis to properly oversee the adoption of high-caliber data protection processes and technologies."On the heels of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield designed to protect the transfer of personal data from Europe to the U.S., GDPR will have serious impacts that will cause a ripple effect worldwide - especially the travel and tourism industry. Hospitality companies not only need to be aware but also take the proper steps to meet GDPR compliance standards. Gabrielle Griffith, Director at compliance consultancy BPE Global, stresses the importance of internal due diligence across your organization ahead of GDPR's enactment."Any company doing business with EU entities is affected," Griffith states. "For example, global companies that maintain a website to solicit sales from potential EU customers will be subject to GDPR requirements."Furthermore, Griffith urges global organizations to see these regulations as an opportunity to elevate and align Corporate Compliance."We challenge global companies to look at the new GDPR regulations as an opportunity to align Corporate Compliance at a high level. There are several sectors of international compliance for global companies: trade, antitrust, anti-corruption...GDPR compliance is the newest learning curve," Griffith says. "Global companies need to scale and train immediately to ensure seamless GDPR compliance come May 2018. Companies must develop an offensive strategy that streamlines all areas of your company's compliance."With GDPR's compliance deadline just around the corner, it is crucial that all global companies demonstrate rigorous investment in the personnel and policy changes required to securely store and manage personal data. A cross-organizational security assessment will not only keep your business GDPR compliant, but also work to reduce the risk of a future breach.

The Definitive Guide to Hotel Blockchain Technology

Duetto ·22 September 2017
Despite the hype, it is clear that blockchain and distributed ledger technologies are not fully matured. As a result, we are not quite at the point of widespread adoption just yet. At a recent conference, speakers likened blockchain to the 1989-1990 Internet, a time when the basics were still being figured out. Yet, according to multiple reports, the craze is spreading quickly, with new blockchains being launched weekly in a variety of industries and applications.The time when blockchain becomes relevant to the hotel industry is not far away, and executives in the industry need to pay attention to it, said Patrick Dunphy, CEO of Hospitality Technology Next Generation."We're beyond the point where blockchain is cutting edge, and it's going to pass us by if we don't pay attention," Dunphy said. "Although we're not there yet from a distribution perspective, we shouldn't ignore the underlying technology."In response to the interest in blockchain, the Hospitality Financial Technology Professionals association has formed a task force to study the technology and its future role in hospitality.WHAT IS BLOCKCHAIN?In general, blockchain can be described as an incorruptible, decentralized ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record anything of value, not just financial transactions. Among other things, that could include hotel and other travel bookings.Blockchain first became part of the technology conversation through its role in the development of so-called cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum.One significant advantage in deploying blockchain technology is cost savings. All parties can access the blockchain, which updates at specific intervals. Using distributed-ledger technology, blockchain technology removes the middlemen in transactions, such as hotel bookings. The results are lower transaction fees and a more efficient route between supplier (hotel) and end user (guest).WHY DOES IT MATTER FOR HOTELS?While some travel technology companies, especially in the airline and loyalty spaces, have produced blockchain prototypes, real-world hotel distribution and revenue strategy applications are so far few and far between.One of the most aggressive proponents of blockchain in the hotel industry has been TUI Group, a multi-faceted travel group that has 300 hotels in its portfolio, including those in a joint venture with Rui Hotels. The company currently manages an in-house private blockchain to handle internal processes and manage distribution of its hotel inventory and other assets.The company is also working with IBM to create a public blockchain for hotel distribution and has another project in the works, BedSwap, to assist in its revenue management functions. Through BedSwap, TUI intends to connect its revenue management infrastructure to its property management system through blockchain.The system would allow the company to capture guest data from the PMS and feed it into the blockchain, creating a marketing engine that would enable one-to-one marketing to guests. The project is still in test phase, with no announced launch date.Another ambitious blockchain proposal in travel comes from an organization based in Switzerland. Winding Tree says it wants to create blockchain to build a decentralized distribution platform that cuts out online travel agencies in consumer/travel supplier transactions.According to the group's announcements, neither traveler nor hotel would pay commissions on transactions. Instead, the blockchain would impose small transaction fees for every smart-contract executed by the network. So far, the effort appears to be more hype than reality, but it shows the kind of direction the technology could take. It aims to launch a kind of crowdsourced fundraising for the project on November 1.In Australia, online travel agency WebJet recently partnered with Microsoft to create a blockchain online booking platform for airlines, car rental and hotels in parts of Asia. The platform uses a version of blockchain application Ethereum to power the site.Is the hotel industry ready for widespread deployment of blockchain technology? Probably not, but it seems likely a breakthrough could occur shortly, and it will probably center on distribution. The ultimate benefits to hotels with blockchain distribution could be lower costs of acquisition and greater control over the distribution process.Thanks to Khalid Ladha of Duetto Research's Customer Success team for his help in preparing this article.

Guestline announces expansion of team in Ireland

Guestline ·14 September 2017
Fallon joins the team with immediate effect and brings with her over nine years of experience in the hospitality industry. She has held a number of sales and business development roles in Ireland, working as regional director of business development for Evolution Distribution and business development manager for Ireland for SoftBrands Hospitality - in addition to a previous sales executive role at Guestline. Reporting to new country manager for Ireland Clio O'Gara, Fallon will be responsible for delivering sales and supporting existing and new clients in the Irish market.As part of Guestline's plans to realise strong market growth, O'Gara and Fallon will be attending a host of industry events in the coming months to meet industry colleagues and showcase Guestline. Events the new Ireland team will be attending include the Munster GDPR Hotels Conference taking place in Killarney on 17 October 2017, the International Hospitality Exchange on 17 and 18 October 2017 in Belfast and the Irish Hospitality Institute Founders Banquet and Awards Event in Dublin on 23 November 2017.Commenting on the new appointment James Cannon, head of international development, Guestline, said:"Since launching our office in Ireland, we have enjoyed an overwhelmingly positive response. As we focus on growing our profile in the market it is important to invest in the development of our team. Ingrid has a wealth of industry insight and knowledge that will benefit both our existing and potential clients, as well as our own team. The following months are packed full of events and networking opportunities and we look forward to sharing our market leading software with the hospitality industry in Ireland."Guestline has also launched a dedicated Irish telephone number to support customers in direct response to customer requests. Customers in Ireland can now call 01 691 4784.For more information on Guestline please visit Guestline.com, and for demonstrations in Ireland please email Clio O'Gara on clio.ogara@guestline.com.

Be careful when accepting terms for free WiFi: 22,275 Unknowingly Agree to Clean Festival Toilets

Purple ·14 July 2017
AUSTIN, Texas -- 22,275 people from the U.S. and 31 other countries unwittingly agreed to carry out 1,000 hours of community service in return for free WiFi - including cleaning dirty festival porta-potties, hugging stray cats and painting snails' shells.Purple, the intelligent spaces company, added the 'joke' term to the T&Cs on its own network of branded hotspots to illustrate the widespread lack of consumer awareness of what they are signing up for when they access free WiFi. According to Purple CEO, Gavin Wheeldon, a shockingly high 99.996% of the users tested failed to detect the fake term.Hidden among Purple's usual terms and conditions for two weeks was the "Community Service Clause": "The user may be required, at Purple's discretion, to carry out 1,000 hours of community service. This may include the following:Cleansing local parks of animal wasteProviding hugs to stray cats and dogsManually relieving sewer blockagesCleaning portable lavatories at local festivals and eventsPainting snail shells to brighten up their existenceScraping chewing gum off the streets"All users were given the chance to flag the term and win a prize. Only one person out of 22,275 spotted the joke term during the two-week test, which took place June 19 - July 2, 2017.Wheeldon says, "This test was not intended to be mean spirited or poke fun at users. We're trying to make the point that today more than ever it is critical that consumers read the terms before signing up to use a free WiFi network. What are they agreeing to, how much of their personal data are they sharing, and what license are they giving to providers to use that data? Our test shows that it's all too easy for ordinary consumers to tick a box and unwittingly give up their privacy in exchange for free WiFi."Purple prioritizes transparency to be 1st GDPR compliant WiFi provider in EU & U.S.:Purple is announcing today that it is the first global WiFi provider to comply with the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) - almost a year ahead of the EU's deadline.This legislation, which goes into effect on May 25th, 2018, has been hailed as the most important change in data privacy regulation in 20 years. Its intent is to harmonize existing data privacy laws across Europe. It is expected to reshape the way organizations approach data privacy not only in the EU but even in the U.S. given the reach of many global organizations today.Purple believes that one of GDPR's headline rulings, the introduction of 'unambiguous consent' before users' personal or behavioural data can be used for marketing purposes, is one that should be standardized across the industry on a global basis -- sooner than later.Gavin Wheeldon says: "We welcome the strengthening of data protection laws across Europe that GDPR will bring, but we also plan to roll the same level of consumer transparency to our U.S. market. This initiative will give ordinary consumers more awareness of the risks involved in using free WiFi. Further, we hope it will ultimately raise the level of trust in a digital economy that is increasingly finding ways to mine and monetize our personal online behaviour. Purple's Profile Portal means that all end users have the comfort of knowing they can control how their data is being used. And if they're happy to hug a few stray dogs at the same time it's a win-win."The visuals for Purple, Profile Portal and more can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/y9pt2wwu

EyeforTravel's Smart Travel Data Summit 2017 Launches Today

EyeforTravel ·22 June 2017
EyeforTravel has officially launched its annual Smart Travel Data Summit Europe 2017. Held in Amsterdam on November 29th-30th at the Hotel Novotel, the event will bring together senior data, revenue management and marketing analytics professionals to discuss emerging trends and formulate the best strategies to tackle current and future disruptions.This year's speaker line-up includes prominent names in the industry including:Fabrice Otano, Chief Data Officer, Accor HotelsFernando Vives, Chief Commercial Officer, NH HotelsMartin Ratolistka, Chief Data & Automation Officer, com Bela Nagy, VP Revenue Management and Pricing, AccorHenrik Imhof, MD Yield Management and Pricing, SixtRajat Dharwan, Chief Technology Officer, ContikiDan Christian, Chief Digital Officer, The Travel CorporationAlessandra di Lorenzo, Chief Commercial Officer, com GroupBrenda van Leeuwen, CEO, comStephen Glenfield, Head of Digital, Heathrow AirportTero Valkiala, Head of Digital, FinnAirAndrei Grintchenko, Head of Business Intelligence, IATA Ayaka Yanagisawa, Head of Digital Analytics & Insights, AirFrance KLMIliana Cruz, Director of Revenue Management, Pricing and Ancillaries, Vueling AirlinesAndrew Watson, Vice President of Marketing - Europe, MarriottCamilla Moe Bogen, Global Head of Social Media, MomondoGian Caprini, Head of Digital Marketing, EAN ExpediaDamien Bellon, Chief Operating Officer, CeetizRiko van Santen, VP Digital Strategy and Distribution, Kempinski HotelsMichael Mrini, Director of Information Technology, Edwardian HotelsIgnazio Pisano, Head of Management Information, Europcar "The analytics landscape is changing at an ever-increasing rate and it's so easy to get left behind" says Leo Langford, the Conference Director of the event. "It is crucial for the industry to gather in one place, listen to what data disruptors and leaders in travel have to say, and forge the data-partnerships that will reshape our industry." He adds: "summits create an environment where momentous decisions get decided in a way that is not possible online and the Smart Travel Data Summit in Amsterdam stands as a platform to adapt and thrive in the face of disruption."The 2017 agenda will cover the latest trends, best practice and case studies in data partnerships, data in mobile, visualisation tools and data cleaning, total revenue management, personalised product and RM talent development. A snapshot of the topics to be discussed at the 2017 summit include: Keynote Sessions: Data Rich, Information Poor - End the Human Bottleneck to Drive Commercial Success!Get the Optimal Structure to be an Analytics-First CompanyThe Quest for Clean DataAwaken your Brand DNA with Data and Digital InnovationSmart Travel Analytics Sessions:GDPR - The Regulation that will Shake-up your DataAd Hoc or Algorithm?Visualisation that makes your Revenues BoomEmbrace New Data Metrics to Own the Entire Customer JourneyMarketing Analytics Sessions:Channel Attribution - Fight Last Click and see the Whole PictureProgrammatic Marketing - Automated Real-Time Bidding that Wins You the CustomerHarness Social Media to Drive Unparalleled Customer ServiceDrive Direct in a Mobile First WorldRevenue Management Sessions: Become the Modern Revenue Manager to Drive Lifetime LoyaltyTotal Revenue Management - Master the Bigger PictureRM Academy - Develop a Robust Talent PipelineDon't Let Rate Parity Undermine Loyalty!Data-Driven Partnerships and Product Sessions:Partner to Build the Next Big PlatformPersonalised Product - Data is the KeyData-Driven Mobile Product and PaymentsMergers and Acquisitions - Where does this Leave your Data?For more information about the conference, please visit www.eyefortravel.com/smartdataThe 2017 event will be co-located with EyeforTravel's Digital Strategies for Travel 2016. Attendees to the Smart Travel Data conference will get full access to the Digital Strategies event as well as all the common networking events.For more information, please contact Leo Langford (leo@eyefortravel.com)


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