In January 2020, we partnered with 3GEM to survey over 300 middle-market consumer business leaders in the retail, travel and tourism, leisure and hospitality, and hotels and accommodation sectors. Of those responses, 23 percent came from the hotels and accommodation sector.
Hotels and accommodation headlines
|Hotels and accommodation is the most positive of the sectors surveyed, with 87 per cent feeling positive about the prospects for their business in 2020.|
|47 per cent of respondents said that investing in their workforce was the top priority for their business, whereas for other sectors the priority was reducing costs.|
|84 per cent of leaders think freedom of movement will impact future recruitment in the sector.|
|Investment in technology is the second biggest priority at 44 per cent, with investment in artificial intelligence and virtual reality a priority for businesses.|
High positivity in the hotel industry
Of the four sectors we surveyed, the hotels and accommodation industry had the most positive outlook for 2020. This positivity is well placed with hotels proving to be resilient during the recent political and economic turmoil, making the UK a continued safe bet for foreign investors.
But with a glut of new properties coming online in 2020, supply is expected to outstrip demand. Hoteliers should be braced for pressure on occupancy and room rates, which could dampen the positivity seen in our survey.
The future workforce in the hotel industry
Investing in the workforce was the top priority for a significant proportion of hotel and accommodation businesses for 2020. However, with 77 per cent of hotels struggling to recruit effectively in the last 12 months, this will continue to be a challenge as 79 per cent look to increase their headcount in 2020.
The big issue keeping operators up at night seems to be freedom of movement following Brexit, which is yet to be fully understood. Each of these factors will put pressure on payroll costs as hotels compete to maintain service levels and attract the best people.
Technology in the hotel industry
Investment in technology is the second biggest business priority for hotels as the industry focuses on delivering an experiential service to customers. The traditional model is now being replaced by the innovative, as tools like virtual reality provide guests with a personalised tour of the hotel and a far more engaging pre check-in experience. Artificial intelligence introduces the potential for significant cost savings to keep labour hours down in an industry that struggles to attract and retain talent.
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