Customer relationship management in the hospitality industry : identifying approaches to add stakeholder value

Newham, Nicole (2008-12)

Thesis (MBA (Business Management))--Stellenbosch University, 2008.


ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to determine approaches to CRM within the luxury hotel sector in Cape Town in order to add value not only to guests, but to all stakeholders of the hotel. This was done by conducting a literature review, supported by a sound base of primary research. The findings proved that CRM theory holds true for most luxury hotels and the notion that luxury hotels in modern times cannot afford to be without a CRM initiative, was underpinned. Furthermore, the concept of an aligned strategy and vision in terms of a hotel's CRM approach was found to be integral. Staff buy-in and co-operation are of utmost importance for any hotel property implementing a CRM initiative. Additionally, training and education on the importance of CRM was highlighted as an important factor to get all staff on board. Management needs to become customer relationship management experts themselves in order to inspire and motivate staff to excel at building relationships with guests. Moreover, the common mistake of hotels to place greater impetus on CRM technology than training and lack of leveraging CRM investments was examined as some of the main reasons for the failure of CRM initiatives. Although CRM technologies are extremely powerful tools and may facilitate a hotel's CRM strategy, they cannot be viewed in isolation and made responsible for the success of such a programme. Training is vital to enable staff to use these systems optimally and to turn guest data into gold. The importance of people was also emphasised in the light of personalisation of service; having the correct staff with an aptitude for guest service and hospitality is imperative. Lastly, the concept of customer-centric processes and systems was stressed. Everything a hotel does in terms of CRM efforts should be derived from the notion of guest satisfaction. Guest satisfaction is the one essential element that will enable a hotel to flourish and enjoy a firm base of repeat business. Repeat business is the most rewarding type of business for a hotel as it means that guests are satisfied with their service and will promote the hotel to others at no additional cost to the hotel.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die doel van hierdie navorsingstuk was om die houding van luukse hotelle in Kaapstad teenoor kliënte verhoudingsbestuur (KVB) te bepaal en vas te stel hoe alle aandeelhouers van die hotel voordeel kan trek uit KVB. Die doelwit was bereik met behulp van primêre en sekondêre navorsing. Die bevindinge het bewys dat KVB teoreties waarde toevoeg tot meeste luukse hotelle. Die feit is geboekstaaf dat luukse hotelle nie sonder KVB kan oorleef nie. Dit was ook gevind dat 'n geintegreerde strategie en visie van uiterste belang is in KVB in hotelle. Personeel samewerking en entoesiasme is ook uitgelig as belangrike elemente wat die sukses van KVB bepaal. In hierdie opsig, was opleiding 'n integrale faktor tot die bevordering van personeel deelname. Die bestuur van hotelle moet self kundiges raak op die gebied van KVB om sodoende personeel te inspireer en motiveer om ook waardevolle kliënteverhoudinge te bou. Algemene foute wat hotelle begaan in terme van KVB is die feit dat meer klem gelê word op KVB tegnologie as op opleiding en dat die opbrengs op die inisiële belegging in KVB nie in ag geneem word nie. Alhoewel KVB tegnologie van onskatbare waarde is om 'n hotel se KVB strategie suksesvol te maak, kan die sukses van so 'n strategie nie alleenlik daaraan toegeskryf word nie. Ten einde die personeel te bemagtig om hierdie sisteme optimaal te benut, moet opleiding weereens as 'n area van belang beklemtoon word. Nog 'n prioriteit is die kwaliteit van personeel wat aangestel word; personeel moet 'n natuurlike aanvoeling hê vir kliënte diens en persoonlike interaksie.

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