The hospitality industry has changed. Technology and the speed in which we live has created changes in the way we run our hospitality businesses. The rise of the millennial population has created new demands on how we provide service to our guests. Additionally, new startup companies like Airbnb have forever changed our business. Here are some of the top trends shaping our industry and how your organization needs to prepare for the future.
Trend #1: Millennials Demand We Go Green
Millennials are now a force to be reckoned with, surpassing Baby Boomers as the number one population in size in the United States. Paying attention to what this population wants is imperative to attracting these consumers to your business. What do millennials want? They want hotels to go green.
Creating sustainability in operations for hospitality companies requires strong environmental and social policies. 87 percent of millennials say that the success of a business should be measured by its positive impact on the planet and world we live in. This cohort is fickle, and they have an instinctive reluctance to trust corporate brands. To regain their trust, hospitality organizations must work to improve their impact on the world we live in. Creating a greener business will prove to millennials that your organization cares about something more than a bottom-line profit. Monitoring water consumption, sourcing foods locally and removing single-use plastics from dining centers are all ways to show millennials that your organization cares about the environment.
Trend #2: Think Globally
The latest studies show that the hospitality industry will see an increase in the need for new tourism destinations that weren’t popular with prior generations. There’s a much higher demand now for international travel. There are more direct flights to overseas locations and post-recession spending in the U.S. has finally stabilized. Globalization is now the new norm and companies in the hospitality field must recognize that expanding internationally is the new norm. Meetings and events no longer must be local; international venues are actively seeking group sales and companies are willing to send travelers beyond our borders. New markets are opening in locations like Hong Kong and Berlin, while old markets in New York and Los Angeles are expanding operations.
Trend #3: Innovators will Inspire the Industry
Companies like Airbnb that formerly challenged the industry as innovative upstarts will inspire and potentially force innovation in even the most traditional business models. Airbnb’s newest venture is a collaboration with Century 21 to build and sell homes. Airbnb’s unique lodging experiences have already forced the hospitality industry to reinvent itself. What will this new expansion bring and how will hotels look for more opportunities to use these models to their advantage?
In the meantime, demand for improved consumer experiences is leading the hospitality industry toward new methods of serving customers. Continuing to move forward while demand increases and responding to consumer suggestions for improved experiences has always been the name of the game in the hospitality industry. What’s changed today is the demand for skilled workers in a tight labor market. Gecko can help your hospitality company continue to improve by offering top industry talent. Contact our leading hospitality recruiters today!