Hotel Online Special Report Six Hotel Management Companies Sign Agreements with HSA International to Improve Property Reservations Performance JUNE 17, 2002 — FORT LAUDERDALE, FL. —Six hotel management companies; Noble Investment Group, CHIP Hospitality, Flagstone Hospitality Management, Richfield Hospitality Services, Sage Hospitality Resources and Woodfin Franchise Systems all recently introduced customized reservations eLearning and online reporting through an agreement with HSA International and Statability™ (HSA’s Strategic Alliance Partner). HSA and Statability develop and deliver innovative online training programs, mystery call services and web based reporting systems — specific to the hospitality industry — to improve hotel reservations performance when guests contact call centers and hotel properties directly.
“Taking advantage of Internet-based training technology and timely electronic information delivery to improve productivity and customer service fits in very well with these companies’ other reservations sales initiatives,” said Doug Kennedy, President of HSA International. According to Kennedy, these new relationships with HSA and Statability are designed to increase each company’s ability to capture the customers who call their hotels directly for reservations, and it allows both the property-level staff and corporate executives to stay on top of this critical distribution channel.
By offering innovative online training resources designed to increase the front line team member’s ability to capture significantly more reservation sales, Noble, CHIP, Flagstone, Richfield, Sage and Woodfin, in conjunction with HSA, have all launched customized eLearning Centers that contain a variety of interactive components to help orient, develop, enhance and reinforce hotel employee skill and knowledge levels. Each of the eLearning Centers feature:
- eFocusing Orientation: A 25-minute webcast overview of the reservations sales process created to provide employees unfamiliar with reservations an introduction to the importance of their role and the key tools needed for success.
- eTraining Courses: Employees work through self-paced, web based learning modules on the standards that have been created to enhance property reservation performance. Hotel management can access information on individual progress through the material and the employee’s assessment scores. These management reports assist in insuring that key reservations personnel have a strong understanding of the standards.
- eCoaching Modules: Concise learner-driven vignettes of the most essential actions that employees must take to meet standard performance levels. These learning experiences correspond to the criteria established for mystery call evaluations, allowing team members to focus their attention on the specific areas where immediate improvement is needed.
- eCasting Presentations: Webcast segments of six to ten minute duration, providing employees with supplemental information that extends their knowledge and understanding of reservations related issues and tangential topics that are instrumental in preparing for interacting with various guest types.
- eConferencing Events: Live and interactive netconference sessions conducted on an “as needed” or ad hoc basis to allow team members to share insights and to discuss challenges and opportunities that are directly attributed to identified performance gap areas. These events integrate web based image and content delivery, polling and assessment components, chat capabilities and conference call technologies.
- eForum Exchanges: Proprietary bulletin board and threaded discussion venues that allow employees within the company to post questions, provide commentary, share information and to engage in dialogue related to the reservations sales process. HSA trainers and corporate staff who provide training tips, suggestions and supplemental guidance on performance issues raised in these exchanges regularly monitor the forums.
- eSource Library: A repository of information and material that can be referenced by employees who need access to forms, charts, diagrams, exercises, case studies, checklists, job aids, workplace displays, reinforcement tools to assist their skill and knowledge development.
- Mystery Calling: Mystery calls are placed to hotels and call centers in order to determine the reservations agent’s individual performance against the established standards and criteria developed for each company.
- Instant Web Access: Immediately after a mystery call is placed to a reservations agent, the information about the individual’s score is posted to a secure web site and an e-mail feature notifies management when an employee is performing exceptionally well, or advises when a score is significantly below what is determined to be an acceptable level. Overall hotel reports, generated by Statability, are made available through a web site to allow management to measure their results against other properties within their group, region or brand.
“Our mission is to provide superior quality resources for enhancing the top and bottom lines of hospitality related businesses,” said Mike Hampton, Ed.D, CEO of HSA International. “Improving hotel reservation performance is typically a central part of any effort to increase revenue. By learning how to be more responsive to their customers, and attentive to tactics to confirm a reservation, properties can positively impact their room revenue growth. Our programs are reinforced by a team of professionals who have extensive backgrounds and experience in education for the hospitality industry.”
General managers and regional sales and operations executives are impressed that the eLearning system allows instant access to training experiences. This means that employees and supervisors have resources available to address performance gap issues whenever they need it, without having to wait for traditional training activities. David Gilfillan, Corporate Director of Revenue Management for Sage agrees, adding “HSA’s eLearning provides us with so many options for helping our staff improve right away after the mystery shopping results come thru.”
Jeff Iavarone, Regional Director of Sales & Marketing for Flagstone said “With today’s inconsistent demand levels, we want to ensure our hotels are equipped to convert every reservation call. These new tools allow us to identify needs areas, track our progress, and train via the web anytime.” Adrienne Pumphrey, Corporate Director of Sales for Richfield added, “We’re especially excited about the live eConferences, which give us a low-cost alternative to traditional training events.”
HSA International provides traditional and online learning programs, as well as mystery call services to monitor and provide feedback on the performance of reservations agents, front desk personnel, PBX, group sales and marketing, catering and others responsible for handling inquiries and sales-related calls. HSA International can be reached at 954-432-7301 or at www.hsa.com.
Statability provides custom reporting packages that are delivered via the Web. These reporting tools enable all levels of management to quickly and easily tap into the company’s business results. Statability can be reached at 952-322-5865 or at www.statability.com.
Contact Brad Smith HSA International (954) 432-7301 www.hsa.com
Mike Wohl Statability (952) 322-5865 www.statability.com
Also See New HSA/Statability System Ties On-line Reporting of Mystery Call Results to On-line Learning for Immediate Impact on Employee Behavior / July 2001 Preferred Hotels & Resorts Anticipates Service Improvements Within Reservation Functions with Web-based Reporting of Test Call Data from Statability / Nov 2000