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Mobile Technology Innovation: Apple iPad in Hyatt Hotels and Resorts

Ardy Tristianto Diploma in International Hotel and Tourism ManagementTable

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Ardy Tristianto

Mobile Technology Innovation: Apple iPad in Hyatt Hotels and Resorts

Cover Page Table of Content...............................................................................1 Introduction......................................................................................2 Implementation Strategy..................................................................2 Benefits and Drawbacks...................................................................4 Conclusions.......................................................................................5 Reference List.............................................................6Introduction Innovation is fundamental in ensuring the sustainability of a hotel business. It is an approach in gaining an advantage over the competitors. Associated with the global innovation, Apple iPad is undoubtedly the latest breakthrough in mobile technology. Therefore, Hyatt Corporation, a worldrenowned hotel brand, has implemented iPad into their operation, purposely to enhance their business. This paper will analyse the implementation of Apple iPad technology in Hyatt Hotels and Resorts, also the influences it brings to the business. Implementation Strategies Hyatt Corporation is the core of several Hyatt-branded hotels and resorts worldwide. Hyatt is known as a hotel company that utilizes mobile technology. However, in applying the technology of the iPad, an in-depth market research, planning and organizing and a considerable amount of investments are required. Figure 1 – The McKinsey 7-S Framework (Thompson and Martin 2005) In implementing an innovation, such as the mobile technology, several factors have to be considered. A hotel company has to create a strong framework in their company management, in order to precipitate the creativity and turn the technology into a selling point (Martin and Austen 2002). From the McKinsey 7-S Framework above, there are seven correlated aspects, which are being emphasised. The heart of this framework is the shared value. Hyatt, one of the leading hotel chains in the world, does have a common goal as their shared value. It is to deliver
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Mobile Technology Innovation: Apple iPad in Hyatt Hotels and Resorts

a unique hospitality to their guests, and simultaneously differentiating themselves from other competitors (Hyatt Corporation 2010). This goal develops the company’s philosophy, in relation to the system of the organization on how they achieve that goal. Considering that, Apple, the manufacturer of iPad, is recognized for their continuous mobile technology innovation. Integrating Apple’s brand into their account is undeniably reinforced the Hyatt brand’s value, which will be beneficial for their publicity in the market. In short, the public will visualize the characteristic and overall feature of Hyatt plainly by being aware of the use of iPad in their operation, as shown in the Apple’s website (Thompson and Martin 2005; Apple Inc. 2010). Secondly, a highly competitive strategy is essential in ensuring the success of an innovation and its sustainability. Robert M. Grant (2008, p. 297) stated, “... an innovation critically determines the choice of strategy options.” Initially, with the vast development of mobile technology, there are number of choices to select asides from the Apple iPad, for instance, the Android-based tablet-PC, Samsung Galaxy Tab. Hyatt’s decision to collaborate with iPad is primarily to enhance their business. However, Hyatt also aims aim to become the leader of innovation in hotel industry, as well as creating a new benchmark in the business. The status of iPad itself as the pioneer of multi-touch-screen multimedia tablet-PC is one major factor affecting Hyatt’s decision. Furthermore, the timing of the implementation must also be considered carefully. iPad in One business example sector would and be the comparison in between the field, InterContinental Hotels’ strategy and Hyatt’s. Following the trend of the several experiments InterContinental Hotels became the pioneer in implementing the iPad on the daily hotel operation (Breaking Travel News 2010). Moreover, realizing the growth of Android-based-devices’ market, they became the first hotel chain to release an official Android application (InterContinental Hotel Groups 2010). This example is implying the importance of the timing in
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Ardy Tristianto

Mobile Technology Innovation: Apple iPad in Hyatt Hotels and Resorts

implementing the innovation. It refers to a term of “to lead or to follow”. InterContinental Hotels, as the first hotel to implement, has the advantage of the public acknowledgement. Hence, this gives an impression of “the trendsetter” from the public towards InterContinental Hotels. Contrariwise, following the innovation also has advantages. This will give a standard to refer to. This provides the possibility of modifying the innovation and creates a better concept than the original. In this case, Hyatt is able to maximize it through direct partnership with Apple Inc. as they benefit each other through their promotion strategy (Gilbert and Birnbaum-More 1996; Apple Inc. 2010) Benefits and Drawbacks Implementation of iPad in the operation of Hyatt Hotels and Resorts brings both positive and negative impacts to their business. The maximization of the iPad’s features undeniably raises the overall performance of the staffs, from corporate to the operational level. Looking at the managerial prospective, iPad enhances the communication between the staffs and even among Hyatt Hotels worldwide. One of the applications is the IBM Lotus Notes. This application, which is widely used by the management and marketing of Hyatt, integrates a secured mail, calendar and organizer, supported with various adds-on. These enable the user to easily organize any important document and retrieve the previously opened information from several different hotel databases even without any Internet connection. This greatly assists the staff in presenting a material in the corporate meeting or the research and marketing of the hotel (IBM undated). Moreover, iPad also enhances the service that they provide to the guests, refer to the time and quality. This considerably assists the work of concierge in fulfilling guest’s demand. For example, a concierge will be able to visually show the facilities of the hotels as well as the access of the map around the hotel, simply by having one gadget in their hand. In addition, iPad accelerates the process time of check-in and checkout of the guest by mile (Apple Inc 2010).

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Mobile Technology Innovation: Apple iPad in Hyatt Hotels and Resorts

Nevertheless, the implementation of iPad required a substantial amount of resources and investments. Referring to the McKinsey 7-S Framework, the skill of the staff is highly important. It is widely known that iPad is categorized as a user-friendly device. However, as this is a service industry where the satisfaction of the guest is its vital aspect, a comprehensive knowledge is required. Every staff is expected to master the function of the device as flawlessly as possible because a single mistake may harm the hotel’s reputation. Moreover, the sustainability of an innovation is always becoming a major problem. It is necessary to have a conventional backup. Besides, Hyatt needs to continuously invest on the product development and its application (Badawy 2009). Conclusions In conclusion, innovation is an essential factor in ensuring the competitive edge of a hotel in the business. The implementation of iPad by Hyatt Hotels and Resorts is noticeably brings various benefits to the business, from the managerial aspects to the quality of the service itself. However, in ensuring the sustainability of it, a serious consideration towards the requirement for the resources and a perpetual investment must be taken, as the world of technology is continually changing.

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Mobile Technology Innovation: Apple iPad in Hyatt Hotels and Resorts

Reference List
Apple Inc. 2010. iPad in Business: Hyatt Hotels & Resorts. [online] Available from: http://www.apple.com [Accessed November 28 2010]. Badawy, A.M. 2009. Technology management simply defined: A tweet plus two characters. Journal of Engineering and Technology Management [online] 26 (4) December, pp. 219-244. Available from: http://www.sciencedirect.com [Accessed November 27 2010]. Breaking Travel News. 2010. InterConti becomes first hotel to trial iPad. [online] Available from: http://www.breakingtravelnews.com [Accessed November 29 2010]. Gilbert, J.T. and Birnbaum-More, P.H. 1996. Innovation timing advantages: From economic theory to strategic application. Journal of Engineering and Technology Management [online] 12 (4) January, pp. 245-266. Available from: http://www.sciencedirect.com [Accessed November 26 2010]. Grant, R.M. 2008. Contemporary Strategy Analysis. 6th ed. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing. Hyatt Corporation. 2010. About Hyatt. [online] Available from:

http://www.hyatt.com [Accessed November 27 2010].
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Ardy Tristianto

Mobile Technology Innovation: Apple iPad in Hyatt Hotels and Resorts

IBM. undated. Lotus Notes Traveler: Lotus Notes mobile email. [online] Available from: http://www-01.ibm.com/software [Accessed November 29 2010]. InterContinental Hotels Group. 2010. IHG Launches Priority Club Rewards App for Android. [online] Available from: http://www.ihgplc.com [Accessed November 28 2010]. Martin, R. and Austen, H. 2002. Innovation vs. Implementation: Mastering the Tensions. [online] Canada: University of Toronto. Available from: http://www.rotman.utoronto.ca [Accessed November 30 2010]. Thompson, J. and Martin, F. 2005. Strategic Management: Awareness and Change. 5th ed. London: Thomson Learning.

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