1 March 2017 -Article...Uncertainty is the new certainty....

 

Uncertainty is the new certainty

 

Most commentary today makes reference to the current ‘disruptors’ which abound… how do these affect the global hospitality sector?

 

We are an industry that creates jobs, promotes travel, improves cultural ties and encourages people to cross restrictive barriers and borders. Nevertheless it is not immune to the effects of change...

 

Availability of labour is a key aspect of a service industry.

Future migration policies are important to an industry kept alive by willing and enthusiastic foreign workers…who will take their place? …a new workforce...or will jobs simply be replaced by the technological solution of more screens and software?

 

Market Conditions- forecasting demand in key locations is at the heart of the travel, hospitality and accommodation business.

Patterns of business and leisure travel are sensitive to both international and localised market conditions.

Events do matter:

o   Day to day pronouncements of  powerful politicians influence opinion on the safety or otherwise of locations

o   Terrorism has unfortunately proven its case in lowering occupancies in established destinations

 

As a result, what were safe and popular destinations only months or years ago may not now be perceived as such. For the opposite reason, ‘passé destinations’ have come back into fashion …

This is the ‘new normal’ of market conditions, characterised by the need to react to events on a day to day basis.

 

Technology- The impact of technology is felt everywhere. Will the rise of powerful on line travel agents (OTA’s) and the creation of new accommodation segments (e.g. AirBnB) through the sharing economy widen the potential client base for hotels or simply erode hotelier profitability? Will the smiling porter or receptionist be further replaced by on line check in terminals in the lobby? Does every small entrepreneur need to be locked into global systems or affiliations to reach their client base?

 

What are the lessons we can take from this changing scene?

 

At Arc Consulting Partners we believe that some downsides do exist

 

 

….but as in any market there is always some upside

 

 

 

These factors affect all types of businesses. As a hotel or real estate owner, work with experienced professional teams with sector specific knowledge, carefully monitor external events and internal operational changes and keep your ears to the ground. At the end of the day there will still be winners and losers in every disruptive scenario and you want to ensure that you are on the side that anticipates wisely, reacts swiftly and reacts proportionately to ensure that longer term you ride the right trend and maximise value.