Does IT provide a strategic advantage?
— 13 C-Suite executives shared their view
Almost every touchpoint with our guests now involves technology in some way. As the CEO, it is ultimately your responsibility to ensure that technology is given the priority, resources, and budget required. Very often though, the CIO reports to other C-level executives and does not have the same level of influence in the company.
Do you consider the IT department to be as important as operations, finance, and marketing? And how involved are you personally in the company's overall technology architecture and strategy?
Viewpoint authored by Lyle Worthington, HFTP Past President
Chief Executive Officer at NH Hotel Group
Nowadays IT is highly strategic for all industries, including hospitality – where the role of technology has grown significantly in the past decade. During the past few years, NH Hotel Group has made a relevant investment in technology, avoiding the archetypal IT approach that combines multiple systems and integrations that imply high maintenance costs, lack of flexibility, low quality of information, and inverse economies of scale.
Through a global transformation plan, involving a multidisciplinary team from all the areas of the company, we have implemented a “digital core platform”, a unique integrated system across all our properties and functions, which has increased our operational excellence while adding efficiency and supporting growth. Among its benefits, the Company has been able to boost revenues and reduce IT and operational costs, digitalizing processes and providing real-time information to improve decision making and time to market, for example, in the revenue management arena among others. And of course, improving customer experience throughout all their journey with us is at the heart of our IT strategy, with projects like FASTPASS that combines new customer expectations, efficiency, and innovation. I am closely involved in the sponsorship, definition and weekly follow up of our Digital Evolution Roadmap to transform NH Hotel Group in the best in class.