These days, guests expect to find the latest and greatest full-featured television in their hotel room. For many operators, this may mean purchasing new flat panel televisions in an attempt to boost customer satisfaction and revenue. To help explore the important features to consider when purchasing new televisions, here is an interview with Senior Director of Avendra Replenishment Group Mike Grossman, whose team has collectively sold more than 100,000 televisions to hospitality operators over the last five years.
Q: What is the most important thing hotel operators should consider when buying new televisions?
A: Beyond all of the various features - picture quality, energy efficiency, connectivity, etc. - the most important consideration when selecting a new flat panel television should be reliability. Performance issues surrounding televisions can easily hurt a hotel’s revenue since the television is an integral part of the guest experience. Therefore, the first thing you should look for is a supplier with a proven track record, good customer service and an exceptional service policy. All subsequent features are only effective if the television works.
Q: What other features should be taken into consideration when buying televisions for a hotel?
A: Here are some additional features to consider:
High-Definition and energy efficiency
Equipping each room with a new energy efficient high-definition (HD) television, one that features a sleek display and incredible picture quality, diminishes this worthy investment if the flat panel displays are not linked to an HD signal. Failing to supply guests with the highest-quality program content and premium HD channels will potentially disappoint. In addition, when looking for sleek design and improved energy efficiency, consider LED televisions which consume the least power among all HD televisions.
Operators can realize tremendous efficiencies by managing the programming of their television sets from a central location as opposed to constantly updating the programming of individual televisions room by room. b-LAN technology gives hotel operators the ability to reduce labor costs, as well as limit guestroom interruptions while making updates to all televisions through a single server. Updates such as adding channels, uploading new welcome screens and setting volume controls are just a few examples of what can easily and efficiently be managed through the head-end server.
Along with managing programming from a central server, operators can utilize internet protocol to efficiently upgrade the interactive controls guests use while watching television. Enhance customer service by allowing guests to make dinner reservations, order room service, request concierge services and checkout via their television. In addition, many television signal providers offer applications that allow guests to use their smartphone or tablet computer as their remote. This creates a convenient two-way experience for guests and gives them the power to plan activities or browse the on-screen guide using their favorite technology.
Safety and security
While providing high-quality televisions with the latest technology is an advantageous goal, it is important to make sure the products you invest in are protected against damage and theft. Many suppliers now provide televisions with swivel stands that securely lock onto furniture. Buying sets with the stand/locking feature already built-in will save you from buying additional hardware separately and reduce installation costs.
Q: Are retail stores a good source for in-room televisions?
A: It is not recommended that hotel operators purchase televisions from big box stores, simply because those outlets do not provide televisions designed specifically for the hospitality industry. Many of the features mentioned here, including centralized programming, interactive controls, and security features, are unique to the hospitality industry and should not be confused with residential televisions available at retail stores.
Hotel operators looking to provide their customers with the latest trends in technology have many suppliers and options to choose from. Avendra Replenishment Group offers experienced consultants who can help you determine the most important features for your individual property and brand. With established supplier relationships and attractive pre-negotiated pricing, Avendra Replenishment Group can be your single-source solution to upgrading your property, for televisions and beyond, in the most cost-effective manner.
Find out more about what Avendra can do for you. Contact Avendra Replenishment Group today.