By Linchi Kwok
Speaking of the permanent changes in the hospitality industry, many people will probably agree that demands for “bleisure”/“work-from-anywhere” travel and contactless self-service will continue to grow in the near future. Not everyone, however, realizes that data-driven decisions will become a key driver for growth in the industry, which has already affected how we do business now.
Automatic service enables businesses to capture more operational and consumer data for business decisions
One advantage of using automatic service comes from its ability to spontaneously capture and store real-time operational and consumer data for additional analysis. In the old-time when businesses still relied on workers to serve customers, operational data were collected usually through careful book-keeping, documentations, and observations; consumer data through market research were often limited to their perceptions, behavioral intentions, or past experience.
Now that automatic service is provided through app-based or computer-based programs, machines can automatically record all real-time transactions data for operational analysis as well as consumers’ actual behaviors in the cyber marketplace. Furthermore, technology has made it easier to collect longitudinal data for trend analysis.
The ability to turn data into business intelligence becomes the driver for growth
Furthermore, such operational, consumer, and even HR data can be intertwined for more in-depth analysis. For example, integrated analysis with both operational and consumer data can likely reveal the bottleneck issues during the service process and see how such issues may further affect consumers’ purchasing behaviors. Then, businesses can adjust their targeted promotional efforts to address the bottleneck issues (e.g., not to promote or to remove the menu items that take a long time to make).
I expect that the competition among foodservice operators will come very soon from their ability to capture and harvest the operational and consumer data in the cyber marketplace. Those who can quickly turn the mass data into meaningful business intelligence for daily decision-making will win the competition.
Note: This article was first published in Hospitality News (magazine) in November 2021; The picture was downloaded from MarketingEpic.com.