Is 'data scientist' the next hot position in hotels/hospitality?
— 12 experts shared their view
There is so much data that a hotel has or can have access to... but in most cases, there's no one who understands how to translate these data into actionable insights on a hotel's current and future business. A vast array of external and publically available data can influence a hotel's performance, its offering and allows the hotel to be better at what it delivers to its guests and its shareholder. Years of underutilized data are sitting in PMS, POS, CRM, and other systems. More than ever hotels need to justify investments and budgets. So will a data scientist be able to give these answers?
In short, yes, but the problem hotels will have is the quality of the data and getting it into a repository in a meaningful, normalized, standardized way. Many legacy hotel systems are hell-bent on not allowing hotel staff to get at their own data, at least not at a reasonable cost. APIs are far and few between and those who start using them may find they are the first to do so and the APIs are partial and buggy. FTP file drops may be the only way to surface data. The traditional BI process is extract-transform-load-visualize, but the effort in the extract-transform piece can be 80% of the effort. Dashboards and data analysis are the easy part! Start early, invest properly, focus on customer data.