Video Surveillance & Physical Security Industry Viewpoints
October 21st, 2021
Author: Lizzi Goldmeier

How Hotels Can Glean Cross-Chain Insights to Optimize the Guest Experience

When it comes to video analytics, hotel chains have unique needs. Whether it be two locations or 200, hotels with multiple sites require the ability to record video locally on-site but could also benefit from valuable insights provided by advanced video analytics aggregated across all of their sites.

Although many organizations think of video surveillance as a physical security resource, leveraging an existing surveillance system can help hotel chains understand trends across multiple sites, compare those insights and then take action by making intelligent, informed decisions that could benefit departments like marketing, customer experience and service, hospitality, and operations. With video analytics deployed across multiple sites, research metadata generated at one site is pushed to a central hub for real-time monitoring and cross-site KPI tracking through centralized research dashboards.

Insights at a site level, applied broadly 

As the saying goes, “act locally, think globally.” The same concept can be applied to organizations with multiple sites, like hotel chains.

Video analytics can tell management a host of information at a site-level such as, bottlenecks at check-in, crowd levels in lobbies, pools and recreational areas, and even the routes that visitors take around the property. This information is certainly helpful for a single location to understand front desk staffing needs, increase the number of lifeguards on duty or increase directional signage.

However, when aggregated from multiple sites, video analytics can tell a complete story. Visual heatmaps, charts and graphs illustrate trends about demographic and pedestrian traffic volumes and navigation patterns. Are guests at multiple hotels having difficulty finding their rooms, or is it just an isolated issue? In this instance, comparing insights from multiple sites will help an organization determine if changes need to be made to future design plans in order to optimize site layout so that foot traffic flows easily, or whether it is simply a need for increased directional signage at specific locations.

At a local level, video analytic tools like configured real-time alerts or face recognition technology can help on-site management mitigate a security incident or help locate a missing child. Following security incidents, hotel chains can learn valuable insights that could help them make decisions about their security programs and staffing across the organization.

Understand trends across different locations

Artificial Intelligence-powered video content analytics software allows users to gather business intelligence based on aggregated video data from across all sites. This helps the organization understand trends, drive intelligent decision-making, and develop strategies and contingency plans.

Through video analytics, people-counting alerts can be configured for occupancy management and crowd control. By examining those insights across sites, a hotel chain may glean that during the beginning of March in Florida, there is a spike in families visiting for spring break who are using pools and recreational areas, while they may find that September in New York City sees an influx of business travelers who spend very little time at the hotel. This information could lead to operational decisions such as adequate recreation staffing at spring break locations and increased hours for on-site restaurants where business travelers may be dining.

Video intelligence and tracking capabilities can be leveraged to understand the number of people who have entered an area, such as the pool, gym, or café so that maintenance and hospitality managers can be alerted whenever the number of people who enter that area exceeds a customized threshold. This information helps on-site managers schedule facility cleaning and staffing based on actual usage of the facility, which is more effective than relying on traditional time-based schedules. Across multiple sites, this information could reveal that cafés are consistently exceeding that threshold and therefore need to be expanded, or that gyms in warm weather locations are used less frequently and therefore required less space and equipment than originally planned.

Drive intelligent decision making

Cross-site intelligence about visitor demographics and footfall help hotel chains make informed decisions in multiple departments. From an operations perspective, if video analytic insights tells an organization that March is the busiest month for Florida locations, the hotel chain can plan renovations and maintenance at those hotels earlier in the year so that guests have a positive experience during their stay. Information like this could also help the marketing department make intelligent decisions that align with their KPIs, like when to launch a campaign highlighting their other spring break destination locations.