Covid recovery and improving the customer experience

Many hotels, venues and commercial precincts are struggling to reconcile the need to improve customer experience with the commercial realities of the COVID-19 downturn and the subsequent revenue damage. This is perfectly reasonable; even as we make our way back to normal and work toward financial recovery, capital expenditures are not top of mind. Technology has, however, long been an effective way to both improve efficiency AND reduce costs.

Now is an opportune time to examine just how technology is being used for operations management, customer experience and revenue generation. It’s a chance to review existing systems and plan a long-term strategy to improve the business. Technology is an efficiency driver and Customer Experience can be significantly improved while also removing many of the operational expenses and friction points within the precinct. COVID-19 has highlighted the possibilities in play and has created the strategic planning time to make it happen.

“Continued growth requires the kind of operational efficiency, customer service, agility and productivity that only modern technology can provide. It’s the only way to drive the digital transformation businesses need to thrive.” Charlotte Sturman, Cisco

Building a new precinct or implementing smart technologies into an existing precinct provides the opportunity to create some efficiencies within the software stack being used to manage the precinct. Modern SaaS platforms allow for an easy integration between platforms, or the elimination of excessive software elements through better design and more expansive capabilities. It’s possible to implement new, better technology AND also reduce the annualized cost of a precinct’s technology portfolio. This is especially true in the case of Cloud solutions and the potential reduction of server costs and IT staff overhead.

The Customer Experience context

Smart navigation technology gives the visitor a more personalized experience – better information, more closely aligned with their needs – all delivered in the way that best suits their personal preference for getting around. Satisfaction ratings go up while overhead comes down – and happy, connected customers mean more revenue.

Operationally, smart navigation technology reduces the number of staff required to help large crowds find their way around the precinct. Additionally, digital technologies are easy to update – no one needs to be running around, putting up temporary signs or directing traffic every time something changes in the precinct. From an operational management perspective, increased control over pedestrian and vehicular traffic creates faster entries and exits. It reduces accidents and drama – efficiency that saves time and money.

Technologically, PAM provides a precinct-wide navigation solution. Where often three or more vendors are required to deliver a patched together customer navigation and communication solution, PAM provides a single point of management and a single source of truth. This isn’t just a more effective solution, it’s more efficient and requires much less day-to-day management by IT, Marketing and Ops. Teams can work together through one system, which reduces double handling and lessens the kind of miscommunication that leads to time-consuming errors and fixes.

COVID-19 and beyond

As we deal with the protocols required for COVID-19, PAM’s technology also helps facility managers ensure that visitors don’t get caught in safety-compromised situations such as uncontrolled crowd bottlenecks. Staff can avoid excessive direct contact with visitors, which reduces the risk of their exposure. As things return to normal, these same technologies continue to do what they do best – provide a superior customer experience and drive revenues. That it can also reduce operational overhead is a great reason to examine your current solution and make sure it’s the best option for now and the future.

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