Hotels will become aggregators of micro-businesses

Yateendra Sinh, Principal, YS and Associates Sàrl, Switzerland, talks about the trends shaping future of hospitality business model

To usher in strategical change in fresh hiring can be a tricky situation. We have seen different companies handling layoffs in their own style. Some tried to cut costs while others tried to balance the human side of their dealings with the employees. The companies which made the “emotional investment” in their employees during these difficult times will see a stronger rebound on their quality of service with lesser training and onboarding costs.

A lot of manpower which was laid off is never coming back to the hotel trade. They will continue to work in allied service fields, but avoid hotels or restaurants due to the negative experiences. Most good hotel companies were hiring first for attitude and second for skill. This foundational approach should continue. In addition, we should now evaluate a few more attributes:

* Speed of thought and decision-making: People who can think on their feet; think fast, take decisions, take small risks and learn from their failures.

* Entrepreneurship: The ability to think and act like the owner of the business space which they are assigned so that the growth within the company gets delegated downwards to the grassroot.

* Ambition: At least half the employee base should be working to climb the organisational ladder. This will keep all the working teams hungry and positive.


In the next six months (short-term), they should take advantage of the “revenge” travel demand that has pent up. Remember, this “revenge” travel are customers who wish to just do what they have been denied in the last 18 months. So they wish to catch up with the old times. Once this slows down, we will see that the customer has fundamentally changed. Safety and hygiene are the new differentiation criteria. Hotels which change their customer contact processes to provide less touch but more thought and flexibility will reap premiums. Travel will migrate to smaller groups and FIT movements. Large meetings and group events, as far as possible, will go virtual. Accordingly, the hotel winners will be ones who can provide faster internet connectivity, reliable power and multiple plug interfaces, all-day round in-room support and room design which lets you change the ambience from work to play with ease.

With these changed customer perceptions, hotels have an opportunity to change processes and service methods to further optimise their costs. In addition, smart hoteliers will use the changed perception to increase prices of select services. All efforts help to grow the bottom line!  



Touchless or contactless technologies

Distributed activity zones within the hotels

Advanced anti-microbial and anti-viral surfaces and treatments

Buffets are at the end of their lifecycle so technologies and equipment which can help service large events to the unit of each customer


Glocalisation: Global in attitude and local in culture. Guests are tired of cookie-cutter hotels, especially leisure clientele. They search for global standards of safety and hygiene and local flavours and exhibitions of local tradition.

Robotisation: Mass mechanised manufacturing of base products or services. For example, we will see more central kitchen style factories producing soups, stocks, flavours and coatings. The jobs of the chefs in the hotels will be to focus on making the dish look exciting. I often say the cooks prepare the tomatoes and chefs make them look exciting! This robotisation will now be seen across all trades within a hotel.

Aggregation of an ecosystem: The future of employment is going to be micro-businesses. Hotels will become aggregators of micro-businesses and they will control the ecosystem and small service providers will act within this space. We used to see this as extras or temporary employees which hotels employed during peak load days. In future, we will witness this as normal practice for all days of the week. This will also help hoteliers move more towards a variable cost structure which increases their economic agility and prepares them better for future market downswings.

The hotel classification system in most parts of the world is now defunct. The old order of 1 to 5 stars doesn’t hold anymore since this was mostly hardware-based. New hotel classifications will give us three levels:

1. Good value

2. Luxury

3. Ultra-luxury

Accordingly, all marketing, communications and services will adjust to the new three-tiered criteria which will be more experience and service-based.


We all have lost income for the last 18 months but the smarter hoteliers would have used this to clean up their act – rethink their business models and bounce back with even more relevance and customer plus employee attractivity. If some of us have been victims to stagnation, there is still time to catch up and re-invent in the next six months, till the revenge travel demand peters out.

This article was published in BW hotelier issue dated '' with cover story titled 'INVESTMENT SPECIAL ISSUE VOL 7, ISSUE 6'

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Yatendra Sinh YS and Associates Sàrl


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