Is Hospitality at the Cusp of a Technology Revolution Right Now?
By Apurva Chamaria Chief Revenue Officer, RateGain | May 26, 2019
It is no secret that innovation over the last two decades have been dominated in the business-to-consumer (B2C) sector. However, this was not always the case, where businesses or government led innovation in technology, because it was simply too expensive or impractical for even a pool of consumers to voice their wants and needs to fund the innovation. All of this changed with the advent of digital communication on the internet as it allowed consumer-facing companies to prove demand or need for a product and then fund it.
Recent examples of this are the meteoric rise of Google and Amazon to become two of the largest companies in the world. As consumer companies took the lead, B2B companies took a back seat waiting for B2C companies to ideate, innovate, fail fast and prove their concepts before applying the innovation in the B2B world. This worked well for some time, as businesses tended to be more cautious in investing in new technology due to time, effort and disruption associated with such undertakings.
Today, faster innovation in B2B is driven by the needs of the B2C sector to understand the consumer faster and better as well along with a technically savvy workforce that simply expect consumer-grade technology at their workplace. B2C companies now need accountability for every dollar invested in acquiring a customer and therefore rely on better B2B innovation to ensure speed and accuracy.
This need favors start-ups and boutique companies, who are fast to scale and have a workforce ready to churn new solutions within weeks, or simply apply a proven off-the-shelf product to solve a new need.
A History Lesson
One industry that seems to lag in adopting new technology is hospitality. I should know, as a leader hospitality technology. The most evident in this case is the technology used facilitate the distribution and selling of hotel inventory. What can we attribute this lack of innovation to? Is it the resistance to consumer technology advancement that can influence business driven hospitality technology advancements or are we oversimplifying the reason based on the lack of understanding of the history of hospitality technology.