The Importance of Digital Technology at Accor
I met with Julie Grégoire when she was the General Manager of Sofitel, Pullman and M Gallery France, to discuss the ways in which the Accor Group was approaching digital technology
What are your views on the role of digital technology in the hotel client experience? Where are you taking the digital experience and what are you hoping to establish?
Digital technology in hotels has vastly transformed the way in which clients search for hotels, find them, and share their experience.
In the industry at large, the fundamental element of the digital experience is the WiFi, the high-speed connection that we do our best to offer to all of our clients. Pullman, being the go-to brand for travelers who like to be connected, has established more elaborate digital experiences. In their rooms, guests will find tablets that allow them to order coffee, surf TV channels, and even display photos on the television screen if they wish. Furthermore, in Pullmans, we have installed highly advanced technology in meeting rooms that allow, for instance, the possibility for each person to show their content on the screen without any additional wires necessary.
Indeed, there have been numerous evolutions thanks to the advancement of digital technology and our relation to it. It is said that 80% of the population on average will be connected by 2025, so obviously the clients’ relationship to digital technology in hotels has been deeply transformed.
Moreover, in Pullman Hotels, guests can also order room service directly from their tablets. These guests are still looking for service and the human touch in their hotel experiences. Our profession is about serving clients; they are looking to exchange with us and they appreciate our attention and availability to advise them. Of course, digital technology has evolved these functions, but our clients continue to actively seek out advice from people who know the city, the region, and its environment in order to hear expert opinions. This makes it easier for clients, whether they are traveling for leisure or for professional reasons.
EDIT: Julie Grégoire has left Accor Group to take on new responsibilities in a different company.
Laurent Delporte, an editor and conference speaker, is a strategic expert in the sector of hotels. A visionary, he brings his unique look on hotels in service to the decision-makers in the industry, whether to enhance the development of new projects or strategic visions.
Laurent has visited and audited over 350 hotels across the world and also participates in mystery visits to provide quality control for the world’s finest hotels.