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Up to now, CRM programs in the hotel industry have mainly focused on trying to stimulate
loyalty by means of offering different levels of service, information, rewards and attention
(mostly in the formof electronic communication) to specific categories of guests. Most A -
level or 1st tier hotels do haveloyalty card programs and exchange guest information
between departments and units. In fact, anumber of them have installed sophisticated
account management planning an d databasemarketing systems. However, this means that
the bulk of CRM efforts focus on trying to developrelations with the guests within the
context of loyalty programs and focus on increased guestsatisfaction through
Dzpersonalisation and customisationdz of services and experiences. Overall, the
hotel industry, so far, has focused its attention on optimal segmentation, testing of policies
(influencing the drivers of loyalty) and forecasting. Within such a context, CRM does not
address thekey concepts from relationship marketing mentioned above : trust, mutuality,
promise keeping anddialogue. In fact, one could argue that many hotels are not avoiding
the four perils of CRM :
(1) Implementing CRM without a clear customer strategy,
(2) rolling our CRM before changing the organisation to match the program,
(3) assuming that more CRM technology is better, and
(4) stalking, not wooing, customers.
For an industry such as the hotel industry, maybe even more so than for other industries,
successfulCRM programs are those that enable Dzrich communication and facilitating
appropriate responsesthat emerge from that communicationdz Offering the right services
and experiences without thattype of communication is virtually impossible. Even though
the hotel industry might not be t he mostadvanced CRM industry at this point in time, it is
definitely an industry in which the process of CRMand day -to-day activities are very much
intertwined. The hotel industry is all about offeringhospitality and the most important
means to do so are the people that offer it. It is, probably morethan any other business, a
people business. It all boils down to managing the relationships betweenyour staff and your
guests, the end consumers.

DzRich communicationdz within this context means that these relati onships need to be
build/based ona meaningful dialogue between the staff and guests. This is to ensure that
the hospitality solutionsthat are offered are solutions Dzprecisely tailored to the customersǯ
and vendorsǯ needsdz Therefore, afocus shift is needed. A focus shift is required away from
only offering personalised and customisedservices and experiences, the traditional
reference points for CRM within the hotel industry, andtowards establishing meaningful
dialogues with guests, and the resulting relation ships, as one of theleading objectives of
CRM programs/efforts.

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The CRM-7-18 team members need to fulfil the 7 roles that are associated with these
(1) Relationship management
(2) Content management
(3) Information and communication technology management
(4) Change management
(5) Performance management
(6) Privacy management
(7) Strategic Management

The 18 management steps:

Once the CRM-7-18 team has been formed, the following 18 steps can be used to assist the
participants towards building and maintaining the relationship with the guest and
addressing CRM as
a philosophy.

 are referred to as the investment or content oriented phase, with a focus
oncreating relationships with guests on a (business) unit level and based on pro -activity
from theorganisation.
(1) The nature of relationships; Creating a common language and understanding with
respect toservice level/quality, staging experiences and building relationships
(2) The organisationǯs CRM profile; Creating an overview and understanding of perceptions
of staffand management on current and desirable relationships practices.
(3) CRM program management; Designing a CRM (program) organisation and planning.
(4) The guest transition matrix; Allocating relationship resources to guest VIP classes in the
customerbase and setting up a rules repository that regulates when guests change VIP
(5) Guest profile management; Collecting and updating policies regarding guest profile
informationin the various VIP classes in order to allow for planning of individualised
dispatching of availablecontent.
(6) Content management; Defining content categories and designing an ongoing content
retrievaland customisation system (internal and external sources), combined with content
pricing and a VIPclassification system.

 are referred to as the growth or market oriented phase, with a focus on
definingthe business contribution of relationship development on a regional group lev el.
(7) Customer equity management; Executing a critical attributes analysis among existing
and newcustomer segments with the objective to determine the right mix of service,
branding/experienceand relationship efforts.
(8) Revenue management; Investigatin g revenue issues in guest relationship development.
Thisanalysis focuses, per VIP group, season and product, on: contract rates, lowest rates,
maximumrates, guaranteed availability, volume discounts, commissions for bookers and
(9) Integrated performance management; Designing relationship enabling business
processes,including quality management and creating functional linkages between success
factors in the fourtraditional strategic results areas (analogous to the balanced score card):
a. relationship operations, b. relationship perceptions, c. financial performance, and
d. relationship management innovation.
(10) Win-win management; Approving/adopting the balanced score card by the whole
organisation, not just the CRM-7-18 team, materialising all possible short-term relationship
wins and acquiring theconsent of the main VIP guests to engage in a long -term
(11) Integrated system and data management; Extending and centralising guest profile
informationrequired to develop and maintain re lationships, upgrading PMS technology
with interactivecommunication technology, and establishing policies on data quality within
this new context.
(12) Loyalty program management; Designing possible formal benefit and reward systems
fordifferent levels of guests, travel professionals and intermediaries.

are referred to as the maturity or corporate strategy phase, with a
focus onoptimising return on relationship expertise beyond the boundaries of functional
management. Assuch, this phase is typically most relevant/ applicable for globally
operating chains.
(13) Helpdesk and knowledge management; Managing an increasing number of complex
demandsand requests from loyal guests, sharing best practices across the chain/whole
organisation, andsharing best practices across the guest segments.
(14) Tri-angle relationship management; Managing alliances (third party databases),
bookers,owners of referred guests, referrals by guests (word -of-mouth), and cross-
recommendationsbetween organisations tha t belong
to the same group/chain.
(15) Non-core service management; Expanding the set of services offered in order to
supportbuilding and maintaining relationships and/or to stage seamless travel/tourism
(16) Marketing management; researching ways to have guest relationship development
make acontribution to other marketing/sales efforts/areas.
(17) Business development; Expanding the group/chainǯs product portfolio based on
requests,preferences and pre-commitment of the existing customer base.
(18) Intangible asset management; Valuating, transferring and trading of goodwill of the
guestrelation base, guest facing staff and relationship competencies/capabilities of the


ü est preference sheet

At the time of the reservation a preference sheet is sent across to the guest along with the
reservation conformation mail. This is primarily to capture the various preferences of the
customer such as food habits (Diabetic/ Low fat etc.), Special needs etc. It also asks if the
customer is coming on a special occasion or not and arrangements are made accordingly
made on the visit. E.g. If the guest is coming on a honeymoon or anniversary the room is
decorated accordingly, cake is placed in the room etc

Fidelio is the property management system used by Ramada International.
Although it is used for various functions but it also plays an important role in the CRM
processes of the hotel. It is used for saving the profile, preferences and special information
(Anniversary, Birthday, allergies etc.)related to the guest on a central server. This
information is accessible to all the Ramada properties; therefore, whenever there is a
repeatcustomer the hotel staff already has all the necessary information enabling them to
delightthe customer by personalized service.

Wow card
This is a special instrument used by personal butlers for recording guest preferences &
otherimportant information related to the guest. This is a small booklet which is carried by
thestaff at all times and whenever they get any information which can be useful in the
future toplease the customer, they simple record it here. This information is further
uploaded on thePMS making it accessible to all.

ü Co rtesy call

Once the guest is in the hotel and sta yed for sometime( a day or two) a courtesy call is
made by the guest relationship executive during the evening hours. This is just to know
about the guestǯs experience and how can it be improved in case there is some difficulty
being faced by him/her. In c ase there is a complaint it is uploaded on the CRM software and
further processes are followed as mentioned above.
oom Feedback form
During the evening service/ Turn - down service a feedback form is placed on the bed to
know about the customer experiences.

üT (ü est atisfaction Tracking system)

Post departure an automated mail from the central server is sent to the guest requesting to
fill up a feedback form. There are various heads covering the various stations of experi ences
which are scored on a Likert Scale. This information is quantified to highlight the areas of
concern. This score is also used as a measure of performance of a hotel unit.
There are few loopholes in the system such as:
y? Email ids not updated which auto matically stops the guest from giving the
y? Guest profile not saved intentionally.


1.? Reservations: During the reservation a preference sheet is mailed to capture the
details andto enhance the stay experience.
2.? Airport pick-up: An airport representative is sent along with a chauffeur holding a
placardwith just the hotelǯs name to maintain guest privacy. A personalised
message is sent to theguest mobile just before the landing assuring him that the
hotel has taken care of his travelarrangements. Amenities such as cold towel,
Mineral water are offered upon arrival.


Ȉ Escorting
It is an opportunity for the escort to create the excitement within the guest about how
splendid his experience is going to be. A touch of history along with the necessary
information about the various facilities is given.

Ȉ Welcome Letter: A personalized welcome letter signed by the General manager himself is
presented to the guest during the time of the check-in

Ȉ Room Orientation: This is another important aspect of the check -in process. The guest is
educated about the various facilities available to him in the room.

perience d ring tay

1.? Special Occasions celebration: Special occasions such as honeymoon and

anniversaries arevery important occasions for a guest. The hotel staff takes it as an
opportunity to leave along lasting imprint on the heart of the guests by making it an
experience of a lifetime forthe customer.
2.? City Tour by Vintage cars: Staying in a palace in itself is a special experience and
thisexperience is further complimented by travelling in a vintage. A tour in a vintage
issomething many people dream of

3.? Unique Dining experience: This is a special dining arrangement made for small
groups in fewsurprisingly beautiful parts of the hotel.