The articles “Front Desks on the front lines of sales effort” and “Are Kiosks Useful?” delve into different sales techniques for front desk receptionists and their potential replacement with electronic check-in kiosks. This use of technology in the lodging industry is covered in the first article regarding the boosting of revenue included the utilization of up-selling to push the most expensive rooms first and selling down throughout the day, maintaining personal communications with clientele in an attempt to remember important information such as room preferences and special accommodations, and suggestions to visit the various other aspects of the hotels in question, be they restaurants, casinos such as the one in Wynn Resorts, or other centers for profit. The arguments laid out in the second article regarding the implementation of electronic kiosks were many; however, those in favor of utilizing kiosks were slim.
According to Michael Muller, President and CEO of NYLO Hotels, “It’s an added cost that doesn’t replace workers at the front desk, so for us, it was a capital cost with no savings.” The implementation of sales techniques such as up-selling larger and more expensive rooms and personal connections with the clientele are tried and true methods of service that usually result in higher revenues provided a practiced salesperson is placed at the front desk. Electronic kiosks generally act as automated receptionists which are implemented for the convenience of the customer- something the customer is only going to require if the front desk remains indisposed over long periods of time.
If a hotel is regularly overflowing with guests and management couldn’t possibly hire enough front desk attendants with regards to hiring capital, then electronic kiosks remain an attractive and convenient choice to continue to serve your customers as best as possible. However, if the front desk regularly entertains minor to moderate queues that don’t seem to pose any threat to the overall convenience and well-being of the customer, then the acquisition and installation of electronic kiosks, replete with their own maintenance and repair costs, just isn’t a worthy expense for such an enterprise.