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In the ever-accelerating race for competitive advantage many hotel operators are focusing on guest service as a way to differentiate their properties from the competition Hiltons Customer Information System Sol Melias service customization and Marriotts Wired Rooms are all examples of this trend A further indication of the industrys renewed focus on service comes from Barry Sternlicht CEO of Starwood Hotels The world is changing rapidly While we own superb physical assets around the world it is our 30 million customers who represent the critical and unrecognized asset of our company in this internet age We are determined to build a customer-centric organization a company that will take advantage of unprecedented advances in technology to improve nearly every facet of its core operations A statement like this from a major hotel company shows that the service revolution of the 21st century has already begun But technology is only a tool to create differentiated service not the goal The most revolutionary companies have already embraced the tools of technology and are moving on to a concept called the guest experience The guest experience is the overall impression guests have of a particular property or company based on all interactions they have with its people products and processes This focus on the guest experience has caused the most progressive companies to rethink reevaluate and restructure their operations in the quest to be truly customer-centric Another aspect of 21st Century service is delighting guests by individually customizing services to meet their specific needs and desires something some progressive properties already do Hotel companies vying for the business traveler will provide a variety of additional electronic services such as flight room and car rental confirmation via email pager or cell phone Many hotels will use a new technology called collaborative filtering In short collaborative filtering assesses an individual guests preferences and based on those preferences suggests new services that particular guest might like But along with all the new
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