The self-check-in kiosk is not a new concept, yet becoming a popular trend before 2021. Now it started to be embraced by hotel industries worldwide after the hit of the Covid-19 pandemic. Besides that, hotel guests are now becoming more aware of contactless service. This is proven based on the research run by students in UTEM, Malaysia, 93.7% of customers preferred a contactless check-in after the Covid-19 pandemic for their safety and convenience.
On top of that, after the reopening of the international border on 1st April 2021, Malaysian city hotels started to adopt a hotel self-check-in kiosk to provide a safe journey experience for their guests. It doesn't stop there, due to staff retention during the Covid-19 pandemic, it is hard for hotel owners to repeat the hiring cycle all over again and it is also not easy to hire new talent. Thus, it makes more hotel owners realize the benefits of placing a hotel self-check-in kiosk.
Below is the graph showing the increasing trend of bookings made via hotel kiosks. Softinn has been seeing an increasing trend in the number of bookings and sales collections through hotel kiosks. We are expecting more demand for hotel kiosks in a couple of months.
The hotel kiosk solution not only benefits the guests but it gives advantages to the hotel that adopts this technology. Having the hotel kiosk solution will help you in streamlining the hotel business operations while maintaining customer satisfaction. In this blog, I will highlight 4 key points why hotels should consider using the hotel kiosk starting now.
1. Reduce Operational Cost
Providing a 24/7 check-in and check-out service would be costly for the hotel. This is because the hotels should hire at least 3-4 front desk staff to ensure the hotel can entertain the guest for check-in and check-out purpose. For the night shift, hotels also have to consider giving night shift allowance to the staff. Due to this reason, there are hotels putting a limit on the check-in and check-out time which as result, get lesser bookings.
In Malaysia, the minimum basic salary is now been increased from MYR1,200 to MYR 1,500 per month starting from May 2022. This is not included in any other additional allowance should the hotel offer to its staff. Kiosk, one unit of Hotel Slim Kiosk alone will cost you around MYR1,500 - MYR1,900 per month where it can operate 24/7.
So imagine you placed the kiosk in your hotel lobby, and you no longer have to worry about operational or headcount costs. You may consider not hiring the midnight shift staff first, but at the same time, the hotel can still serve the guests with the kiosk. Once your hotel is convenient with the kiosk concept, you may consider switching to Unmanned Hotel Solutions, where only the kiosk does its job 24/7.
2. Solutions to shortage of labor
The rise in demand for hotel kiosks nowadays is mostly coming from hotels that are suffering from a shortage of labor. This inevitably leads to my 1st point above, while you are facing a lack of staff, then you have to invest in hiring new staff. I once heard from the hotel owner of Beryll Inn Cyberjaya, Mr. Jamaluddin said that it is not easy to hire hotel staff nowadays that can promise excellent attendance and provide good customer service relationships, especially in small or boutique hotels.
Imagine if you have last-minute “no-show” front desk staff, this might create chaos on your hotel operations side which leads to customer dissatisfaction and an inefficient way to manage operations. By putting a self-service kiosk, a machine that works 24/7 to assist your guest check-ins and outs as well as serving the walk-in guests, you no longer have to think about the front desk staff shortage issues.
Read also: How to Handle Shortage of Staff
3. Improve Customer Satisfaction
Through the traditional check-in process, the check-in process is longer where there are manual forms is needed to be filled up, the IC or passport needs to be printed out, the room needs to be assigned manually in the system and the key card needs to hand over. This leads to a boring check-in process, long waiting times, and less satisfaction which in turn, received negative reviews.
Compare with a traditional check-in process, check-in via Hotel Kiosk takes your guests about 2 minutes or can be lesser than that if you have made and paid your reservation online. This should be sufficient enough for anyone who is in a rush and hates to wait. Therefore, giving your guests unforgettable first impressions with a self-check-in kiosk will increase your chances of getting more good reviews.
For your information, on average, out of 100 room bookings, there will be about 11 guests who tend to leave a review after their stay. Meaning to say, 11% of room bookings are contributing to the review on any of your selling channels including OTAs and the Google site. Remember, your guests are your brand ambassadors, hence good reviews are valuable to your hotel business and ultimately help to boost the confidence of your future guests.
4. Automation made hotel life easier
The integration between Hotel Kiosk with the Property Management System (PMS) & Channel Manager helps to synchronize the booking reservations as well as capture the guest check-ins and outs. It serves all the guests including the guests that have reserved their room online or “walk-in” guests.
The room availability will be updated and synced to your other selling channels, the payment will be recorded in the guest folio, the room status will be updated in PMS and the room number will be automatically assigned by the system. A lot of manual work can be done through automation, hence saving a lot of time and cost for unnecessary errors.
Let’s watch the below video to see how Softinn Hotel Kiosk does its job that makes your life easier.
Softinn developed a hotel kiosk solution while everyone in their team working from home during the Covid-19 lockdown. They could foresee that this hotel kiosk solution will be helpful for hotel businesses to continue their operations post-pandemic. Imagine you are deploying the hotel kiosk at your hotel lobby, this could be an added advantage to your hotel business while some of the other hotels are still facing the same challenges.
If you think my reasons above make sense to you, feel free to book an online demo for the Softinn Hotel Kiosk here. On top of that, while you are searching or browsing through the internet to find the best kiosk solution for your hotel, here is the Ultimate Buying Guide to Self-Service Hotel Kiosk e-book which might help you in deciding before making any purchase. Of course, it is free for you to download. Hope it helps!
Check out Two Types of Hotel kiosks offered by Softinn below.