In this brief interview, we talk to Matthew Debattista, Hospitality Project Manager at Smart Technologies Limited, about trends in hospitality and technology, and how Smart Technologies assists hospitality managers face future challenges through the application of top-class IT solutions.

Matthew, how do you see the impact of technology on hospitality management?

Over the past years, technology has increasingly helped the hospitality sector reduce costs, enhance operational efficiency, and improve services and customer experience. As a result, both hotel properties and their guests can now benefit from improved communication, as well as more efficient and enhanced reservations and guest service systems.

Generally speaking, what are the main benefits of hospitality solutions?

As I mentioned, first of all there is the potential for the reduction of costs through the general automating of tasks, coupled by an increase in revenue from automating marketing and revenue management. Technology solutions also lead to enhanced staff efficiency, and an improvement in productivity. From an operational perspective, hospitality solutions also contribute to streamlining accounts, and replacing paper-based processes. Finally, they provide the tools to communicate effectively with customers and guarantee an optimal guest experience at the property. Naturally, there are specific and specialised solutions which specifically target all that I have mentioned above.

What kind of hospitality solutions does Smart Technologies offer to its clients?

We work with our hospitality clients to accelerate innovation, resiliency, and growth in their operations. We do this primarily by offering Oracle hospitality products, which our in-house experts customise in order to address the current and future challenges being faced by hotel properties. These solutions include Oracle’s MICRO Simphony POS Systems, its OPERA Property Management System, and Oracle’s Materials Control solution for hospitality. From a communications perspective, we also offer our clients Otrum Digital Signage products which address their guest/customer communications needs. Moreover, we utilise Otrum’s IPTV software, which works across multiple platforms, to deliver a seamless user experience across TVs, tablets and smart phones for our clients’ guests.

Are there any particular future trends in the hospitality sector where you can see technology making a difference?

I think that the first which comes to mind is the hospitality sector’s quest for non-room revenue. In an effort to recover lost business, hoteliers are placing a greater focus on non-room revenue, exploring ways to better monetise existing products and services, and to capitalise on upsell opportunities. Another challenge is the competition with short-term rentals. With growing competition from this sector, hoteliers are countering with new initiatives – from marketing their own attributes better, to offering amenities and services that help guests “live like a local.”

One can also identify a general need towards rethinking hotel operations. Hoteliers are realising that they cannot assume that pre-pandemic ways of running their businesses can continue unchanged. Industry leaders are rethinking their operations – including distribution, marketing, and staff training – to improve profitability and win guest loyalty. From a more ‘technical’ perspective, the issue of the importance of technological upgrades is also high on the sector’s agenda. The challenges of the past two years have highlighted the need for hospitality IT that can provide 24/7 access to data, facilitate collaboration, and adapt quickly to changing business needs. This explains hoteliers’ rising interest in cloud solutions that achieve more with less.

For more information about Smart Technologies’ hospitality related services contact Matthew Debattista at or check out the following links: