Webinar Recording


Building a Connected Tech Stack That Transforms Your Property

18 MIN

Over the last year, tech has become more essential than ever to the success of the hospitality industry. Besides a PMS, POS, and ticketing solution, many properties are adopting guest tech and staff solutions. With so many options available, the opportunities are endless—but so are the pitfalls.

Discover how to avoid common integration mistakes and find tech partners that can truly meet your property’s needs.

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What You'll Learn

In a new webinar hosted by HFTP, INTELITY VP of Product Matthew Lynch and Infor Hospitality VP of Product Strategy Mukund Mohan discussed:

Webinar Recording

Building a Connected Tech Stack
That Transforms Your Property

Building a Connected Tech Stack That Transforms Your Property or Brand (with HFTP) Victoria Schaefer OK, let’s go ahead and get started. Everybody ready? OK. Hello everyone, and welcome to today’s webinar, Building a Connected Hotel Tech Stack That Transforms Your Property or Brand sponsored by INTELITY. I’m Victoria Schaefer, HFT Senior Membership Manager, along with Melissa Trevino, HP Office Manager, and today we are hosting today’s webinar. The webinar format is conversational, with Matthew Lynch, INTELITY Vice President of Product Management. And Mukund Mohan, infor’s Vice President of Product Strategy. Discussing how your hotel can navigate the hospitality technology landscape with confidence and build a connected, secure tech stack that transforms operations and service. In his role as VP of Product Management at INTELITY, Matthew brings more than a decade of experience in hospitality where he led mobile strategy for brands such as Four Seasons, Fairmont and Delta Hotels. Most recently, he spent four years with Marriott, where he oversaw the merger of Marriott. And Starwood Loyalty products on digital platforms. During his decade long tenure at Accenture, he consulted internationally across industries to execute enterprise strategy. He has helped the largest hospitality brands engaged directly with their customers via innovative mobile products and guest experiences. Born to parents in the airline industry, mass hospitality routes run. When departing his Toronto base, that can be found on the ski slopes with his life or with his life traveling abroad, discovering local hospitality. Mukund Mohan has over 27 years of hospitality industry technology experience standing across the globe, specializing in reservation, distribution, property management systems and integrations. Mukund has experience in multiple dimensions of hospitality technology. Including product management, deployment, development support and global sales account management. As part of his role at infor Mukund is very active with customers from independent locations to large global chains and gaming enterprises and such as and such maintains a sharp and current understanding of the integrations needed within hotels and gaming industry. We are pleased that INTELITY brings us this conversation. So let’s begin. Establishing why connectivity is important and why hotel years should care about it? Help us set a baseline. There tends to be two attitudes in the tech world towards system connectivity. Those that integrate and those that don’t. Clearly both INTELITY and infor are on the side of those that integrate. Why is this and why do you feel it’s important? Matthew Lynch Yeah, I can. I can kick that off. You know, I think from an intelligent point of view and I’m not sure how familiar with INTELITY everyone is on the call, but from our point of view like integration is kind of our business, right, without the ability to integrate into various systems like Infor and other PMS’s and point of sales systems, you know, our product really isn’t as meaningful in the product marketplace. So it is the business, it’s a core piece of the business. It’s something that we invest and take very seriously. But I think that there’s actually. There’s probably more than just businesses that do integrate and don’t. Integrate right and I think. You know those that don’t are obviously just kind of not as relevant for the conversation, but I think there’s companies that look at integrations as part of their core platform and where they invest heavily and what they want to focus on and then there’s company that see it as a bit of an afterthought. I always use the example of like, well, you know. Uber, you know, doesn’t really have a lot of integrations because what they’re trying to do is build a platform that is theirs, that is their own and the value of that company, you know the value of Uber is on their platform itself and so they can create a company. And that has its own platform that’s relatively inward looking, and that doesn’t bother the marketplace because that’s kind of how they’re going to market with it. We don’t really have that opportunity in hospitality, I’m sure if we couldn’t, has his way and that the bosses that import could do it. They could deliver everything to every single customer and be a monopoly and they’d be happy with that. But that’s kind. Of not the way the hospitality businesses. So until we have, you know, an ecosystem where you could just go off and build your own end to end hospitality platform, that’s not really an option for most vendors in the hospitality space, right. So from an INTELITY point of view, we have to be working with our partners. We have to be integrating. We have to be investing really heavily on what that means and so. For us, that means things like, you know, our deep relationships with people like Infor with other vendors, to not just. You know, put it. Like a check box and say Oh well, we integrated, it’s about having discussions like this where we represent the kind of hospitality industry together and bring a little bit more than just a technical integration where we’re kind of working back and forth. To say hey, you know import, we’re seeing customers really want this. You guys don’t support it right now in your API. Is that something you guys can work with us to bring to market because we want to bring that to market as a company. Our mutual customers are looking for that. How do we do that? So for us, this is the business, right, in a huge part of it, it probably represents, you know, 80% of what we’re able to deliver to our customers is thanks to integration. What are your thoughts? Mukund Mohan No, thank you, Matthew. That was great insight. And really I think before I get started, a big shout out to INTELITY and HFTP for having me as part of this exciting webinar on building connected technology stack that transforms hotel enterprise or hotel property. So I mean, just going further to what Matthew said as a technology and innovation driven organization, infor is heavily invested to help our customers and nurse that the hospitality solutions in the cloud and further enabling digital transformation and we’ll talk a little bit more about that in the session today. And I think a wise person told me in the past, right, there’s a role for all of us. I mean, this ecosystem, there are companies. We really specialize like INTELITY on the whole guest experience and mobile offering, where hotels can really leverage those platforms and engage with their guests. They really do a great job. So from our perspective, being a property management system, providing all the data. That’s really important. Right. And just let’s take a few examples here, like a few scenarios. You know, their integrations really come into play and you know we can’t in this day and age we can’t take it for granted. It’s interesting when the integration is working behind the scenes. Seamlessly, no one thinks about it, but when it actually stops working, everyone comes to know about it. So let’s take a few scenarios. One scenario is, let’s say a guest eats at a restaurant and signs charge to the room in. In the past, typically a restaurant clerk would walk the restaurant, check to the front desk to get it posted in the property management system. Imagine doing this every day for hundreds and hundreds of guests. What are the chances of all the mistakes? And not collecting revenue for guests who have. Consumed those services. Take another scenario. You know hotel has to update 50 room rates for 10 different room types over 12 months. And later on doing this in the PMS you have to do this for 50 different online travel agencies and you know literally that’s 300,000 updates across multiple systems. It’s unfathomable for someone to do this manually, right, and keep rate parity across all the channels. Take another scenario. Because the same example that Matthew and I were talking about in terms of mentality nowadays. Guests prefer to use their own mobile devices for checking in and checking out and they almost expect this. As a service from hotels. So hotels cannot really expect guests to wait in lines to do a check in and checkout operation, because guests are always expecting this as a service. So optimizing and reducing operational workload. That guest self-service solutions is of utmost importance for a hotel operator. Statistics today show that a virtual check-in decreases front desk traffic by almost 20%. So in summary, it is practically impossible for a human to keep up with all of these. You know doing this manually. So in short, system connectivity is essential and I almost say it’s like blood supply to organs without seamless and resilient system connectivity in this day and age. Business operations can come to a grinding halt and result in guest service issues impacting brand loyalty and caused major revenue loss. Over to you. Matthew Lynch Yeah, totally agree. I think one of the things that we’re seeing, right? Is technology started to kind of bring traction in, in hospitality, it’s taking a long time, right compared to other industries hospitality. Is a little bit of a laggard. Mukund Mohan Right. Matthew Lynch Seemingly specialized kind of businesses ourselves include it. And so you look at the like a standard hotel in. Historically, they had a PMS, they might have some sort of rapid response kind of management system, maybe a maintenance system you could kind of manage that number of screens. There was a little bit of integration between PMS and those other systems, but now you start talking about guest chat. You stopped talking about check-ins coming from mobile apps. You start talking about all these additional. Services that we’re now kind of bringing online with. All those vendors, as you said. The ability for. Someone to swivel chair across all of those screens. Things and move data around in some clunky kind of copy and paste manner and have duplicate records you know between the PMS view of the customer and this other system view of the customer. What you start when you start losing is operational kind of madness, right is you just can’t keep track of. That and then. Again, when you fall through the cracks as a result right where. While I was down at the pool and I told the guy at the pool that you know I’m allergic to peanuts or whatever because I ordered something from there and now I’m at the restaurant and you’re bringing me peanuts. Like what are you doing? You’re gonna kill me sort of thing. Right, there’s not an opportunity to have that excuse anymore to say, you know, and the answer is well, why? Aren’t your systems talking to each other? And I think the average person now is working. You know, a lot of people are working in some sort of connected space. And so they’re saying, you know, customers are saying I don’t understand. Don’t your systems talk to each other? You know that that’s some like data architect role that existed 30 years ago. That’s the guy on the street saying. I don’t get it. Why doesn’t your system know who I am? I’ve said it by. And so. You can’t, you know, from the customer side but also from the staff side their need for that connectivity. And I think you know, because you highlighted the key aspects, right, the resiliency and the transparency of those connections is kind of where the hard effort is, right. You can plug things together. But getting it right is difficult. The need for that is becoming more and more apparent and you know, unfortunately, you know. We all know we’re all in this. COVID hit us hard. Lots of operators are are are struggling, but it’s also created this huge kind of tech transformation. And so the acceleration of all of this is going to be quicker than it. Ever was before, right? Mukund Mohan Totally. You’re totally. I mean, I mean, I mean, I read somewhere that in a large hotel enterprise, they’re literally running up to about 100 different Subsys. I mean we we know that the typical hotel operator has, you know, a telephone system app as in a PBX system call accounting system, video system, point of sale system in kiosk in mobile devices, all of this, right, that ecosystem is very complex and I think that, as you said, the data sharing and making sure that it’s available near real time across all the different systems and in a seamless manner. I think that’s where the world is right now. They almost expect it to work seamlessly and I think. Yeah, as we said, right, it’s imperative that the connectivity amongst all these subsystems it’s almost a requirement. Yeah, absolutely. Matthew Lynch Oh, sorry, go ahead. Sorry. Victoria Schaefer Oh, OK. So you both gave us some really great examples, but you know, integrations are certainly not the flashiest topic in hospitality. Can you drill down somewhat into why integrations are so critical on a property level? You know, what does life look like when you don’t have connected tech or? What are some of the common problems? Mukund Mohan Yeah, I mean. Matthew Lynch I think some of the kind of items that we talked about that swivel chair behavior, that loss of data, I know one of the things that we want to talk about coming up is payments and everyone’s very interested in payments right now. So it has to do with contact us. And so in that space, you’re not just talking about loss of data, you’re talking about security of data, whether that’s PII. Or PCI compliance? And so you’re just exposing yourself to these? Paper process problems. I didn’t mean for that to be a purposeful alliteration, but there it is. You know, you’re exposing yourself to those areas and I think good integration. Good integration is seamless, right? When the iPhone first came out. I think there was a lot of aha moments that people had when they were using it right like, Oh my God, this device just kind of. This device was able to predict what I wanted it to do. And there it was. Good integrations allow you to deliver those types of experiences to your customers, right? Bad integrations mean that you’re asking you’re integrated, but you’re almost as clumsy as the paper process or the single process, right? So you’re integrated, but you’re asking. For the same data again. Don’t tell me your confirmation number. Well, I just told you what my e-mail address is, and that’s where you know that’s where you got my. That’s where you got my information to begin with. Don’t you know my confirmation number? So good integrations make all of that happen behind the scenes, and I think it takes vendors and their partner. To establish all of that, we have industry groups like HTNG that are trying to simplify this behavior, trying to standardize so that we can be more nimble but also make sure that we’re able to deliver consistent results between our integrations and that plays a huge part. Mukund Mohan And I think Matt took to all the key points. I mean the the idea is to really reduce any. Should be it at the time of service or interaction with the guests, and then really these subsystems if it works seamlessly behind the scenes without any failure, making sure that all the data points are available at all these touch points. That’s really the key. So I think, Matt, you really covered all the keys. On that over to you, Vic. Victoria Schaefer OK, so I went and attendee that we want to be able to answer questions, so make sure that you submit any questions in the chat that we will get to closer to the end of the presentation. But I’m also going to launch a poll right now. It’s just a check in for our CTE credits, just so that. Yes, you’re here. You’re attending and participating. So we’ve got people logging in. Mukund Mohan No telling me. Matthew Lynch I can’t vote. I’m sure I’ll get the credit without this though. Mukund Mohan I also tried, it didn’t work for me. Victoria Schaefer All right. So like we’re going to finish that out. And so just one more point and Matt, can you go into a little more detail of why it’s critical for guest tech? And Mukund, could you maybe speak to it from the PMS side? Matthew Lynch Yeah. So on. On the guest tech side, if you look at what INTELITY does right in terms of really enabling guests to kind of be free of the front desk, be free of the hotel in some respects and just interact with that hotel straight from the smartphone. Or from a tablet. What we’re trying to do is replicate an entire ecosystem of the, you know, the people in the process and the paper that’s at the front desk. In the dining room or when you pick up the phone, you know we couldn’t talk about all of these interconnected systems as a company, in order to bring that guest experience end to end right pre arrival check in mobile key guest services while on property checkout. That’s, you know, for the average hotel, that’s six different systems that we’re. Talking to right? So for us, as I kind of teed off at the beginning, that’s our business and when we go to customers. Mukund Mohan We say. Matthew Lynch You know, customer says, oh, we’ve got a brand. It’s 200 properties across the world. We’re in the middle of an IT transformation though. So some of our stuff is in for some of our stuff is another brand that starts with an O, some of our stuff is, you know, one of these other like PMS’s we’ve got lock vendors, 3 different lock vendors. The consumer, the guest doesn’t want to see and and shouldn’t know the difference between your tech stack that you have right so. Us our ability to build integrations but then create the consistent user experience across all of that kind of chaos happening in the back end is where we kind of like focus and Excel, right? That takes a lot of work. It takes a huge amount of effort to understand what we’re trying to deliver to the guests and what the common denominator. Across all of our partners is so that we can bring that all forward, you know, some of them are gonna lag behind in terms of what they can offer. Maybe you can’t do multiple shared keys. You can only issue one key. Maybe some of them don’t allow, you know, shared reservations or something like that. Pulling all that together is a huge undertaking and I think we can only do it because we have interaction or integration directly with the partners. There’s no intermediary we’re able to call up Mukund and say. Why doesn’t this work and he gets back? Quickly and says. It’s working. Now try it again or something like that, but that’s what we look at is the number of integrations. That we have to do. In order to enable guest tech. End to end is huge, right? I think there’s slices of vendors that are interested in slightly more focused areas. If you look at point of sale, that’s all the rage right now is point of sale. Because of pandemic and dining. They’re very focused on point of sale, they’ve got lots of point of sale vendors to integrate with, but the scope of that is relatively narrow cuz it’s really just about the dining experience. For guest tech end to end wrapping all of those pieces together smartly is a bit of a daunting challenge, I would say. Mukund Mohan Yeah, I think just on that, you know TMS property management system, I call it the heartbeat of the hotel because that’s where all reservation data literally, that’s the system of record for anything guest related. So that becomes the system of reference or any guest service related items where. It is from the point that the reservation is made all the way to fulfilling the experience of the stay. So connecting to. All these other. As we said earlier, you know PDX product counting point of sale, mobile devices, kiosk systems, video systems and guest in room entertainment, you name it, we have all of those systems connected to the heartbeat and. I think that to orchestrate all. That the PMS has to have an open way of working with all of these partners who are really specializing in these service settlements. So I mean for, you know, we really have that. As part of our blueprint. With HMS, the hospitality management solution. Which is the property management system to have that architecture to allow for that ecosystem? Or various subsystems to connect easily. And I know that Matt mentioned that you know, we have done all the heavy lifting working behind the scenes with partners like INTELITY to exchange all the data elements to make sure that from hotel operator perspective, they don’t really I shouldn’t say they don’t care, it’s just that. They are so focused on guest service, they need these systems to work seamlessly. That’s really the key. So we make that happen, you know, working with partners so, all I can say is, you know the PMS is the engine behind the scenes working with all of these partners, making sure that all of the data points are available so that guest service can be rendered seamlessly. Matthew Lynch Yeah, yeah, I, you know, one of the things I applaud infor, for and I think those of you that know me would know I wouldn’t say if I didn’t mean it, right. Infor is one of the smart companies, right? They came around was probably about two years ago and obviously the planning was before that I’m not privy to that, they came around and said. We need to be an open hub so that all of these partners can pull in and do what they want to do. We need to kind of step out of the way and recognize that the PMP’s values, as Mukund said, is being that heart and do that really well and service all of these kind of other endpoints to let them kind of enable these features and kind of create experiences. You’re still building lots of experiences yourself for your internal product. But being that trusted partner that we don’t have to worry about well is import going to go cut us out of some area that we’re kind of involved. In right now. That was behavior that we kind of saw in this space, especially across all of hospitality, maybe five or seven years. Seven years ago. It was very insular. Everyone’s really protecting their space a lot and I think we’re seeing the shift now to. Being much more open. Infor certainly right there with a modern approach to that. There’s a couple of other vendors. We’re really spearheading that modern approach and that’s what we love to see. It makes our job so much easier because we have partners that we know we can trust. We’ve got great access to the data that we need to kind of make these experiences happen so the more and more partners that are able to do that, I think we’re excited for that. We don’t see it with everyone. We’re sad that there’s some partners that are still kind of looking. To kind of protect their space. But we’re happy that it seems that the industry and especially the big players that represent a lot of the change in the industry are moving that. Mukund Mohan Yeah, well, well said, Matt. I think that that’s been kind of our philosophy again for from the get go to make sure that you know ultimately you know we are doing this for our mutual customers. The customers are the ones who want these services. They know the right partners, the vendors with whom they want to work with. And you know, we need to just work in the sandbox, make it happen. With all of our partners. So, so and and plus I think HTNG, I think Matt mentioned it earlier too, the hotel technology next generation, they’re really kind of helping this space to make sure that these standards are met in, in integrations to make it easier between partners. So I think it’s getting easier and easier as we move forward, helping our hospitality industry. Matthew Lynch Yeah, absolutely, absolutely. I mean. Like, yeah, HTNG gives us a nice blueprint to work from. I know you guys leverage it as well. As some kind of specific enhancements you guys do, cuz you have a big development team, but. The beauty of HTNG for people like us is it makes it standardized, right? That makes it. To deploy those integrations quicker and bit more certainty. About what we’re going to get out of that integration, I owned a PMS company. Initially I’d be worried and say, oh gosh, my secret. You know, we’re giving it away in, in an industry standard now. And you’re gonna have a bunch of guys in San Francisco sit around at a computer and come up with a new PMS tomorrow and be able to offer a compelling integration to lots of providers like ourselves. But I think Mukund opened up. And saying. The players that are doing this right aren’t scared of competition. We’re embracing the openness, we’re embracing the ability to partner, we’re embracing everyone kind of floating in and out of everyone’s space right now, you’re seeing a huge amount of people or vendors. Cross pollinate into other areas, right. You’ve got, you know, PM’s that have a little bit of housekeeping. You’ve got housekeeping software that’s got a little bit of guest service sort of stuff. Everyone is taking a little bit of area, but at the same time keeping a very open environment and so the future looks, the future looks good. We’re OK to play in everyone’s backyards a little bit, but at the same time. Of our little piece of the corner that we enjoy. Mukund Mohan I mean, my one of my, as I said earlier, one of my former boss has always said there’s room for all of us to play. So I think. We can all work together to make this happen. For our mutual customers. Victoria Schaefer OK, before, before we move on to our next part, our next topic, let’s go ahead and launch one more of those participation polls. Matthew Lynch I was just going to add I think. We’re also seeing. Customers start asking for it, right? So when we run into customers, we’re putting together all these different partners. And we’ll say, oh, well, you know, this vendor doesn’t have an open API that we can connect with. And we get customers now that say great we’ll change. Right. We want, we want the guest tech or you know, we want, you know, this is in our product but we want some sort of order at the table dining kind of product you know QR codes and stuff like that and say Oh well that that vendor doesn’t doesn’t offer that integration and they say great. Think right? The consumer demand is driving behavior now, so if you’re not able to offer that connectedness, you’ll get you’re going to get left behind and you should be looking for vendors that are, you know, like in or actively kind of pushing the narrative to be open. Mukund Mohan Right. Victoria Schaefer So don’t forget to ask some questions. I know we had it looked like maybe one come in on the tablet. If you can also ask in the Q&A that would be great. But moving on to. Our next sort of area of this is the role of integration to have to play in the two hot topics, security and payments. So there are a few topics we’d like to dig into for more detail, namely security and payments. Let’s tackle security. Are there risks associated with having systems passing information back and forth, and how can you connect systems without setting yourself up for problems down the line? Mukund Mohan You want to go for a snack. No, I was gonna. Give it to. You OK? Let me let I’ll go 1st and. Then you can chime. In I’ve got it. Well, OK, so security, I mean, this is tough on everyone’s mind, right? So data security is imperative, it’s necessary, it’s required and it needs to be addressed by all systems connected together in the hospitality ecosystem. And many of you know that we keep hearing stories of data breaches in. There are studies that show that 29% of the businesses that face a data breach end up losing huge amounts of revenue. OK. And I was looking at the report from IBM recently, IBM generates this report annually for 2020. They indicated that the average cost of a data breach in the hospitality industry was about 1,000,000 + 1.72 million dollars. So no one wants this, right? So it’s a big cost factor and really the biggest long term consequence of a database is the loss of customer trust. So no one wants that either. So having said all that, it’s we all know that it’s a huge item that we all consider. Be considerate and it’s a big point for us with every release we go through our own security audit at infor and making sure that all subsystems pass those tests. We have at infor. We also have our own. And Import Security office that validates and approves any release before it actually goes into production. So coming back to integrations. All or most of these integrations today in this day and age, they use what we. Call as TLS. Transport layer security and of course HTTPS, which is our secure hypertext protocol, so this is basically a secure socket layer which uses the encryption protocol to keep. Data encrypted then when it’s being transmitted. And this also applies for, I think we’ll talk a little bit more about payments even for credit cards, payments and authorizations. Really, the industry has already kind of adopted this a few years back, but we just have seen more and more adoption. Is there the tokenization? Ensure that plain plain text credit card is not transmitted anywhere where it’s actually transmitted using an encrypted token. And I think Matt mentioned about PII earlier, like the personally identified information, identifiable information, let’s say guest name, e-mail address, whatever it is that identifies a person. Ideally, they need to be encrypted and then be transmitted from system to system so that the idea is to avoid the data breaches. And over to you, Matt, for your quote. Matthew Lynch Excellent points and I think a really great tee up in terms of contextualizing for us right security is part of your brain, right? Marriott and Starwood learn that during their integration. You know you see it in the news every day and although there’s this aspect of like. It’s so frequent now that you almost skip over the headline. Right? You’re like, oh, another security breach from, you know, insert brand XYZ, you know, here or there, but there’s serious consequences. And as Mukund has said, right, those are you can you can price that out now the cost, the cost of brand reputation, the cost to remediate. And repudiate any of the charges or the downstream kind of impacts is tangible. And so I think for a long time there. Was this like, well, you know. What does it cost me? I’ll just keep going and I won’t worry about. But I think the costs are pretty easily the the modeling is pretty easy to do now. And so from a developer perspective you can’t, you can’t just sweep it under the rug and say it’s not gonna happen, right? You can you can put the cost to it and then you can put the investment against it to. Start working to start preventing it from happening, right? On the integration side. You know, one of the things I think the hospitality industry struggled from because we were such slow adopters of technology is we still have a lot of on premise systems and you know going. Back ages and ages and. Ages into the security kind of realm, there was this fundamental thought that well, if it’s, if it’s secured, there’s a layer of security that’s called physical security, right? And if it’s physically secure? Then that’s. That’s a good start to it. And if you have these on premise systems that aren’t necessarily Internet connected or they’re connected. And very minor kind of windows of connectivity. Then you’re really minimizing that. That, that, that layer of of vulnerability. We’re now shifting to the cloud. Thank God. Right. There’s lots of benefits to. That and the cloud. Is is is going to be much more secure. We’re able to secure it once we’re and secure it for everyone, and that means that our connections when we’re connecting to a cloud based provider. As Macon mentioned, it’s over these common security protocols. They are established from the start and it’s the same security for every single customer. You no longer get these cases of like, Oh well, this customer is running this particular type of Cisco hardware and it’s a firewall that hasn’t been updated for 10 years. And there’s a security breach there, so. Moving things to the. Cloud I think is a huge improvement for us and for the industry. It standardizes that, it brings us more consistent security and it makes it easier us for to implement security on policies. It also means that as security advances as it does and it needs to, the changes are easier to consume. So in five years from now, when we say oh. You know HTTPS isn’t secure enough. It’s going to be HTTPS plus some other method of encryption or some other security layer. That means the small change for us that we make that change once and every single customer that’s on that cloud gets to have it. So the investment becomes more manageable. So that cloud aspect is hugely important. The flip side, I’ll you know, I’ll speak to the opposite side. We have lots of customers that don’t have cloud connectivity. They’re in remote, remote resorts, ski hills and beautiful destinations. So it’s all on premise and they’ve got old computers, some of these, some of these hotels are still running. Cables between different computers. To connect things you know like it’s it’s. Mukund Mohan It’s kind of, yeah. What’s the cable? What’s the cable? Matthew Lynch What’s the cable? I mean, I don’t understand. And and what that means is, you know, we. As a company need. To still support that. But the effort, the risk and the cost to deploy to that goes up. We have solutions for that we have on premise hardware that runs secure. Connections so that we can still fulfill those requirements, but those are definitely areas of business that we don’t want to be. Because, yeah, like I said, it’s expensive and ultimately we don’t feel it’s providing the best security. Mukund Mohan Although if you don’t mind, Matt, I do want to add something to that. I think I think you kind of alluded to that you know this is the decade of the 20s and I was listening to a seminar CES, as many of you know, the Consumer Electronics Show that happened in Vegas every year. And of course because of the pandemic, they did it online and. Verizon’s president was talking about. 5G, like 5G, is already out there, but with every decade you know these new technologies that are coming up, the true adoption happens as the technologies has come out a couple of years back now they’re putting in all the towers. And so by 2024-2025, we would have seen true adoption of. 5G. So what does that mean? All these remote locations, right? They have got real high speed Internet connectivity is easier. So so the the point being you know these on Prem customers or people who have these, they don’t have any more excuse to move to the cloud. So I think since technology is already kind of shifting in that direction. And we’ll see a lot more cloud adoption. We see that at M4, you know we. Our cloud offering, like back in 2015, but we’ve seen like 70 to 80% of our customers just say let’s go to the cloud because the true cloud offering has so much, so many it makes their life a lot easier. They don’t have to do maintenance, they don’t have to deploy new patches. All of that is the heavy lifting is being handled by vendors, partners like Integrity and us all of that. You know, we update the software and make it available, we monitor it and it’s available for them. Look at the pandemic. A lot of people. Had to keep the lights. On and work remote for the safety of their employees. So that’s where the true benefit of a cloud solution comes in. People can work from home in a secure environment. They can access the system, still access guest information, give all the services to the guests in a secure environment. Right. So I just wanted to add that, Matt. So I think hotel operators will not have that excuse anymore because 5G is coming and that that bandwidth was a challenge for them is no longer a challenge. Matthew Lynch Yeah, that’s a good call. And don’t don’t forget, Mr. Musk satellites are in the sky as well. So Starlink that’s coming on putting, you know, good, reliable Internet into destinations that just never had it before. Mukund Mohan Is that it? Matthew Lynch Right. So I think you’re right. The remaining holdouts which had a reasonable reason, I think the reasons are going to. Here and and there’s no. There’s no reason now not to just put everything into the cloud. Yeah, absolutely. The security story is like you know. Security is a design principle, right? It’s not an afterthought. Do it well. Planned for it at the beginning, it becomes a pillar of what they’re doing and it’s implemented kind of right from the start. The ones that kind. Of float back and do it afterwards and say OK, well we built this thing. Now let’s go take a look and see if there’s any security vulnerabilities. That’s never. That’s never gonna be the right way to do it. You know, we couldn’t spoke of kind of penetration testing and and. Security audits. We get security audits from various customers from time to time. We’re happy to do them. Listen, they always turn up something here and there that we say, OK, well, we’ll go take a look and kind of patch that area or that’s interesting. That’s something that’s a new vulnerability that didn’t exist before, for whatever reason. Until we do it, no one should be. No one should be declining a security audit. There’s a reason someones declining a security audit. We all don’t love them as developers, right? They’re they’re they’re a little painful sometimes, but they’re there for a reason and to straight out the client is. Is kind of a red flag. Good developers, people. They’re building solid integration. We’ll happily take that security audit. And I know when we when we work with in force, for example, to do our certification most recently the conversation of security comes up. How are we securing this? What are we doing with the data? How are you using our customers data and we’re mutually talking about? The security of that customer data because you know one of our mutual customers has a breach. It doesn’t matter who pointing the finger at that point, the finger at both of us down the road, the lawyers will figure out who’s financially responsible, maybe, but both our reputations are gonna get kind of dragged through the mud and we don’t want. Right. Victoria Schaefer Well, security is a nice segue to our next topic on payments. Mukund Mohan That’s the idea. Victoria Schaefer It’s one of the hottest topics in the hospitality right now as contactless payments have become increasingly important to guests over the last 12 months, it’s clear guests are ready to embrace digital payments wholeheartedly, but the property side figuring out payments can be extremely complicated. How can integrations and tech partnerships step in to help solve these problems for hoteliers? Mukund Mohan Yeah, I think so, I think. Matthew Lynch Payment is kind of like the most the highest level of integration to achieve. If you look on some sort of integration, Maslow’s hierarchy of complexity and need. Everyone wants it. It’s also the hardest to attain and you need to go through the previous steps before you probably get there. It’s probably risky. To jump right to right to payment. You know, I give the example of if you know, in guest tech, if you’re requesting A robe for someone you know to be brought up to the room. So we’re talking through one of the rapid response systems. If something goes wrong there, you bring the wrong color robe, you bring it to the wrong room. You know it’s. Oh, I’m so sorry to disturb you. No big deal if you don’t get payments, right? Right, you’ve overcharged, you’re undercharged. You charge someone else, you refuse to charge when it should. Go through. You know you’re going to, you’re going to run into trouble. And so that is the the most. That is the hardest piece to do that needs the most analysis, the most kind of visibility from a security standpoint. But some of the technologies that couldn’t talked about are making it easier. Certainly the tokenization the credit card reduces the security footprint also makes it a lot easier. For example at INTELITY. We don’t actually process the credit card, so we’re not in PCI scope and that removes a huge level of compliance for us as an organization. But we managed to still conduct the and facilitate the transaction working with Infor for example by sending them the token we’re allowed to hold this kind of encrypted token that represents your credit card. And we give it to in four and we say, hey, hey, you guys are in PCI compliance. So you’re in a safe space to run that charge and do that sort. Of stuff. So we look at. Who are the right partners that we’re working with to do these right things? Not everyone needs to do everything. We don’t need to do credit card payment ourselves right now, and so we work with our credit card partners as well as our PM partners to facilitate those transactions. And that’s kind of a smart way. For us, right? Now to dip our toes into the water smartly and continue to grow our experience. One day we’ll get there when we need to, but in the meantime, we’re taking a cautious approach to every. Mukund Mohan Now I just wanted to add something right. So we we had import to like our. Marching orders. So basically we basically wanted to make sure we are. Out of PCI compliance, 100%. We offer that as a service. In some cases, there’s some partner systems are still not able to send us a token, but we do have a lot of deployments today where it’s an end to end encryption with a token that’s been. Provided to HMS, the property management system and HMS itself is storing the encrypted token. We never store any of the credit card data. We don’t store or process credit. That data, but I just wanted to reiterate that right, I mean, just like INTELITY, our goal is to just take action as completely out of PCI scope. We go through PCI, IP address is audit but there are a lot of providers today that’s. Where the industry? Is moving where a lot of these payment systems are already connected to. Other systems like central reservation systems, channel managers, then whenever the reservations being made in those systems, they already tokenized the card and then they transmit the reservation to the PMS as in the in for HMS we received the token. The encrypted token, so we never even see. The credit card data. So just wanted to add some more thoughts to this in terms of payment, right? Let’s let’s see what happened in the last year. If there’s one thing the pandemic did was accelerate the adoption of technology, I’m sure Matt will attest to that. What was supposed to happen in the next seven years organically, it just got compressed into one. And consumers, they basically adopted a safety first. No contact, no contact. Lifestyle consumers became more and more comfortable using their personal phones or mobile devices to interact with businesses and consume services, right, like banking, shopping. We already had those tools. But we just in the way we adopted as consumers in a survey that MasterCard conducted. I kind of read this review that 7072% of the people they surveyed believe that COVID-19 will will change the shopping experience forever. Basically, you know, moving everything online to mobile solutions, right? So a lot of these tools for touchless. Existed, as I said. And now we’ve seen more and more adoption and the and the biggest loser was cash. 48% indicated that they did not wish to touch cash. Neither use pins to sign their credit card receipts. So like they really wanted to be touchless and more than 50% of the audience that they surveyed were they basically said they prefer to handle payments using digital means. And we already talked about the. The age of 5G right 2020 is the decade that 5G is going to really take over, which means more bandwidth, faster Internet, faster ways to consume information and transact, faster ways to do business, all using mobile phones by consumers. So that’s where the industry is already. Moved and it’s already happened. The shift has happened. You know. Again, the pandemic just accelerated. And specifically on payments as an e-commerce online space, China has already taken the lead on this, you know, 80% of their population uses mobile payment technology using various solutions. Many of you might have heard of them. Like WeChat pay, Alipay. They just use their phones to make payments. And and in the US, you know, we’re still lagging behind in adopting these technologies. They’ve been there. There’s there are a. Lot of wallet based payment solutions. It’s just that we’ve not. Adopted that right. But I was reading from an analyst firm, IDC, which is an analyst firm. They were saying that. By the end of this year, 85% of the hospitality brands will implement self-service technologies solutions such as what INTELITY brings to the table and a lot of property management systems have these solutions like guest self-service technologies. To drive revenue again, 33rd day, see a 30% uplift in revenue across all their channels, including mobile, online, kiosk and again increased guest satisfaction by 50% or more. And by 2024 they’re predicting. That 80% of the hospitality banks will enable contactless service and payments through digital infrastructure. So this again will help with customer retention by 25 to 30%. So as you can see the trend is there. The payments, I think it’s just going to happen organically. Everything just got accelerated. I don’t know, Matt, if you want to. Add some more to that, but. Victoria Schaefer So I’m I’m going to. I’m going to want to our last poll while I introduced the last kind of part and we do have some questions. So I want to I want to leave time so that you can answer the questions. Mukund Mohan Yeah, go ahead. Victoria Schaefer So how can a buyer select partners who care about connectivity? What’s the ideal? So as a vendor you’ve been betting and purchasing? Conversations hundreds of times while the average buyer is probably a bit less familiar with the process. Can you share some of the best questions operators have asked you during the buying process? Matthew Lynch Do you want to kick that one off? Mukund Mohan So really, I think if from an operating perspective there’s just a few points that I’m going to. Fully cloud ready secure solution that supports mobility and guest service self-service capabilities. The system should have support for industry standard integration such as HDG or OTA HDTV. Being hotel technology, next generation OTA being open Travel alliance. Message specifications support payments. I know we kind of talked about that at length. Payment Gateway Systems, which has. Authorization and settlement capabilities specifically for logic. I think there is a lot of pitfalls when people select the payment gateway that doesn’t really work in the hospitality space. So that’s something very important. And also systems as in property management systems or any other system subsystem that use. Event based triggers. To alert and subscribe data models to other systems. Let’s say when a check. In happens or. Create reservation or cancel reservation happens or a checkout event happens the the data elements in the PMS. All the reservation data elements or whatever is required by these subsystems. They all get to subscribe and send to the different systems. And then the last point being a full real time two way synchronization of messages between systems, that’s a requirement. I would say. Matthew Lynch No, that’s that is a fantastic list and we should get that out in minutes afterwards. I think that’s like a perfect thing to have in your back pocket. Right. So what I’ll add to that maybe is the. The the profile side of it, rather than maybe some of the technical side of it, right, you know we as kind of vendors that integrate with lots of different companies, the approach I’m. And partial to our approach, it’s a serious investment. As I said in integrations, you know we have a fully dedicated team of product management, developers and QA that run and all they do is integrations all day long. They don’t do front end development. They don’t build experiences, they don’t do stuff. All they do is build, build integration. Those some of our developers sit on the boards and the meeting groups for HTML G, right? So they’re they’re people that are advancing the specification that the industry relies on that shows a commit. And you know of time and money that those types of companies are serious about, about how they handle integration. So I think looking for partners that are really part of the industry moving the industry forward is important. I think building the integration direct is important and I think there is space for these kind of middle integrators. Omni board as an example of. That, and the point of sales space. But I. Think you want to be as close you know in in the development as they say, you want to be as close to the metal as possible because when I build right to inform I can tell inform what problem I’m trying to solve. I can say Infor this isn’t going to work. We need to kind of see if we can make an adjustment here or this is what I’m hearing from customers. How do we how do we accomplish that goal? I have an open line of communication. Mccune on the product side, but with some of his development team and some of his partners going through an intermediary means. You no longer have the ability to have that conversation, so you can’t influence, but you also can’t get the help that you might need because you’re working through this intermediary. So I think having direct as I said, again kind of to the metal integrations is a really important thing to evaluate. And then I just take a look at the length and the breadth right. Integration takes experience to understand and I think you kind of need to have a couple under your belt in order to really get a sense. Of you know the the level. Of sophistication that the company or the vendor might have. Victoria Schaefer So one minute, one minute for this one. If you were a buyer, what would you be asking during the vetting process to determine their partnership capabilities and their attitudes towards connectivity? Matthew Lynch Looking, you’re on your mute. Mukund Mohan They say that’s kind of the phrase being used quite often. You’re muted. Sorry about that. OK. If I were a buyer, right, it really, I think just a few points. Again, I think that’s obviously the due diligence happens, but ensure that the integration is certified and deployed by the vendor and partners. For references where possible, and validate that these references are have those systems working and during system demos review kind of standard operating procedures. Typically a day in the life of a hotel operator and validate. That the vendors and partners support all of these operating procedures via these integrations. And also get a view of the product road map and get visibility into the direction of these solutions. So I think those would be some key points to look at while evaluating systems. OK. Matthew Lynch No, that’s great. Let’s jump to. Questions. I think that’s great. Victoria Schaefer OK, so let’s jump to some questions and to have a question. What are the most popular integrations customers are asking for these days? Mukund Mohan I would say, at least from our side, on the import side there’s a lot. Of these are. Kiosk systems and mobility systems. Mobile systems. We’ve seen a huge uplift in that. Matthew Lynch Yeah, you know. As a kind of end to end kind of guest mobility provider we we kind of get everything right as you can imagine. But I think the number one right now with mobile key, right, if you look at what our platform offers, one of the key pieces is kind of straight to room. And so mobile key integration is probably the top one. And I’d say right behind that. Is ticketing and rapid response the PMS is always there, but I think for the most part we’ve got a lot of kind of PMS vendors covered at this point in time. And so that’s kind of starting to fall off but mobile. Mukund Mohan OK. Victoria Schaefer So Exavier is asking, don’t you think? Most of the hotels are not exploring the amount of data they can collect and rely on OTA’s and to increase their bookings. Hence this dependency is even growing with the crisis. Mukund Mohan Yes, of course. In your own point, you know big data. You know in data science, using the data to kind of drive predictions into just machine learning. There’s a lot of investments going on with a lot of technology companies to make that happen, to learn from the data and predict what may happen in the future. So I would say yes. Matthew Lynch Yeah, I think, you know, OTA’s are the friends we love to hate. They’re they’re they’re big companies that are going to take advantage of the situation right now and they’re only going to entrench themselves even more. They really kind of came up. And they really blew. Up around the kind of 2000s or session, if any of you guys remember back then, and so they’re going to use this opportunity to kind of double down their efforts. I think this space is missing a little bit and OTAs are able to take that data because there isn’t a centralized area that represents the entire view of the guests. I think different people have different views of it, but no one’s. Kind of solved. That explicitly yet that crosses all of the kind of guest interaction pieces. And I think until that happens. There’s still going to. Be a bit of a void for for. For the OTA to kind of own that customer. Mukund Mohan OK. Yeah. Yeah, not. I think, Matt, your own point, I think that the data comes. From different systems. Typically you know for any analytics I would say you know bring all the data into one place. Typically that’s what hotel operators are doing and then they use the data science to do like, I mean typically revenue management systems are already doing that to do the forecasting. So that’s typically what happens. You build a data lake and that Data Lake. Is used to do the forecasting. Matthew Lynch And I think I think for some of. The bigger operators. Like they’re working through that. Right. Like I think about, you know, Marriott and health and some of the other. But when I think about some of our customers that are on the independent maybe two or three chains like two or three operations in the chain, that level of sophistication in terms of building some of those disposed kind of data systems and warehousing systems, I don’t think is like extremely well represented yet on the side. I think we do, but on the. The kind of guest knowledge side I think we saw a little bit of the. Gap there agree. Victoria Schaefer So we are. About out of time here. Thank you, Matt and Mukund for your excellent conversation and discussion today. We had a couple of questions we couldn’t get to, so we will try to follow up by e-mail for those. Any last comments before we close Matt and Mukund. Mukund Mohan You want to go first, Matt. Matthew Lynch No, I. You know, I think I think it’s exciting, right, the pandemic is a terrible situation that none of us wanted to be in. And if we’re going to make something out of this, the acceleration of the technology, the acceleration of the openness is just the opportunity of a lifetime. Lots of great companies are coming up on building out and taking advantage of that. So I’m really excited about the future. I think, but couldn’t comment to five to seven years. Of acceleration is about accurate and so it’s nice to catch up and we’re looking forward to the. Mukund Mohan And from my side, it’s like the great challenges come with great opportunities and the travel industry is in for a big boom after, you know, the vaccination and everything is out. And we’ve already seen that trend with some of the hotel operators already seeing that consumers are looking to do more and more with the mobile phones. Consumer services through the mobile phone that we discussed and. The one thing I wanted to say is in closing, you know, being in hospitality, should always remember that service and like the real experience comes from the heart, you know, for any of the guests. So while technology can help enable and streamline services and fulfillment of these experiences, the service from an operator always comes. From the heart. That’s what the traveler is always looking for. So and. And we just need to continue to remind ourselves about that. And that’s what makes us, you know, be part of the hospitality industry. Victoria Schaefer Well, thank you so much and thank you to INTELITY for sponsoring this really great session today. The conversation was wonderful and this concludes today’s broadcast. Once again, INTELITY, thank you. And Mukund, thank you from Infor and we look forward to seeing you. At our next session. Mukund Mohan Thank you for having. Thanks, Victoria. Bye everyone. Bye.

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