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Beekeeper Team App Wins 2018 HTNG TechOvation Award

Beekeeper Team App Wins 2018 HTNG TechOvation Award

Each year at the HT-NEXT Awards Program, one company is presented with the prestigious TechOvation award for innovative products that have a big impact on the hospitality industry. We are thrilled to announce that the Beekeeper team app is this year’s TechOvation award recipient!

After being chosen as a semi-finalist from the initial pool of nominees, and then as a top-three finalist in the second phase of the competition, Beekeeper was a resounding audience favorite. After a live presentation at HT-NEXT by Corey McCarthy, VP of Global Marketing at Beekeeper, on how the Beekeeper team app is transforming hotel internal communications, a panel of 34 judges including CIOs from Marriott, Hyatt, Hard Rock, and Four Seasons Hotels, advanced Beekeeper into the final round. Hundreds of attending hospitality and technology professionals voted Beekeeper as the 2018 TechOvation Award winner.

HTNG Recognizes Beekeeper as Best New Hospitality Technology

The HT-NEXT Awards Program joins Hospitality Technology’s Hotel Technology Forum and the HTNG (Hospitality Technology Next Generation) North American Conference. HTNG is a global not-for-profit trade association that fosters the development of next-generation solutions through collaboration and partnership between hospitality professionals and technology providers.

Michael Blake, CEO of HTNG, congratulated Beekeeper on the award: “The Beekeeper app uses both factors of convenience and mobility that we see rapidly growing in the hospitality industry. We recognize Beekeeper for their innovation and are very happy to announce them as HTNG’s 2018 TechOvation Award Winner!”

Beekeeper Team App Transforms Hospitality Internal Communications

Beekeeper’s journey to earning the TechOvation Award began in December 2017, joining fellow award candidates in producing and submitting compelling 90-second videos to demonstrate Beekeeper’s innovative approach to employee engagement, real-time mobile collaboration, enhanced internal communication––and the impact of our intuitively-designed team app on the hospitality industry.

Check out our submission video!

Corey McCarthy, VP of Global Marketing at Beekeeper, accepted the TechOvation award. “Beekeeper is thrilled to be named the HTNG 2018 TechOvation Award Winner,” she said. “Our digital workplace platform reaches every single employee with relevant messaging. This is critical to the 1.9 million front- and back-of-house hotel employees who don’t sit at a desk or have a company email address. When you create a great employee experience, it translates to a great guest experience. Winning the 2018 TechOvation Award signifies that hoteliers see a dire need for digital transformation in workplace communications. Beekeeper not only empowers staff, but our open API supports integration with existing operational systems. That means hotels can use Beekeeper for payroll, scheduling, file sharing, task management, and other systems.”

We are honored to be recognized by HTNG as the 2018 TechOvation Award winner, and extend warm congratulations to all of the contestants!

Try a free demo of our award-winning team app.



How the Sharing Economy Impacts the Hotel Industry

How the Sharing Economy Impacts the Hotel Industry

These days it’s common to see consumers ordering meals or car rides via their smartphones, booking hotel or flight reservations with a few taps, and order products with two-day delivery. But with the emergence of crowdsourcing companies and platforms that let everyone open up shop, the impact on every industry can’t be ignored.

Competitive prices, authentic experiences, and perks unique to every host give hotels a run for their money. With the rise in mobile apps and ordering services remotely, is there still a place for hotels in the hospitality market?

What is the Sharing Economy?

The sharing economy is a collaborative approach to acquiring goods and services, and in today’s world, it’s a huge part of the overall economy. The premise is simple: technology companies provide the interface between providers and consumers, connecting those in need with those who have extra.

An Independent Workers’ Market

According to Forbes, the sharing or “collaborative” economy means that people can turn to one another for goods and services, rather than large companies. Non-desktop workers, for example, for-hire drivers, rental property hosts, and freelancers across a variety of industries make an income based on a side-gig mentality.

While the majority of consumers have purchased an item or service through the sharing economy, only a small percentage of the population offers those services and goods. That means the potential threat to larger corporations comes from a relatively small segment of the population.

Sharing Economy by the Numbers

Businesses like ride-sharing companies and online retail platforms continue to see growth as people become more tech-oriented and look to peers rather than large corporations to fill their needs. As a result, Uber doubles its revenue every six months, while Airbnb exceeded one million rooms years ago.

The sharing economy segment of the market surpassed $250 billion in 2017, with leaders like Amazon and eBay leading the way. But will the success of companies in the sharing economy cause problems for the hospitality industry, where big names depend on dominating the market to achieve and maintain growth?

Hospitality on a Smaller Scale

Organizations like Airbnb, Expedia, and others are seeping into the hospitality arena and seeing enormous success. Because many companies have lower overhead costs than global and chain hotels, you might expect the sharing economy to overrun the name-brand vacation stay market. But that isn’t the case, said the President and CEO of Hilton Worldwide.

In an interview with PwC, Christopher Nassetta said that the sharing economy is impacting his business, but that it’s also “democratizing” travel. He sees that as a benefit because the model makes travel more accessible to a variety of demographics.

At the same time, reputable hoteliers offer a consistent customer service and vacation experience that local Airbnb hosts can’t compete against. Credibility is significant in the hospitality industry, according to PwC’s survey, and the human element is crucial in customizing consumers’ experiences.

Customer Care Priorities

Because the hotel industry is so consumer-focused, ensuring optimal client experiences holds the key to the industry’s future. Adapting to consumer expectations and investing in each interaction means hiring exceptional staff and providing them with the tools to succeed.

Non-desk workers in the hospitality industry rely on effective peer to peer communication and quick thinking to guarantee the consistency of customer interactions, making the difference between a tolerable visit and an enchanting stay. At the same time, collaboration among team members drives consistent results across all segments of hospitality.

A Tech Approach to Hospitality

Just as technology drives consumer behavior, it also supports workers’ needs. While the sharing economy and its dependence on technology continues to earn its piece of the pie, the hotel industry can remain competitive by adopting that technology.

Offering additional perks such as concierge services, local area guides, and online and app functions alongside regular amenities are just a few ways to add to the hotel experience. Connecting consumers with needed resources is a simple way to promote brand credibility.

Allowing employees to communicate and contribute to collaborative projects via an employee portal encourages productivity and reduces miscommunication that stems from managing multiple communication channels.

Adapting to Change

While it’s not advisable for bigger companies in the hotel industry to sit back and watch crowdsource platforms take over the realm of hospitality, at least for now, there seems to be enough demand to keep business going. However, times are changing, and adapting to those changes means more opportunity for business expansion.

Because of their penchant for earning top marks for reputation, amenities, and quality service, Les Roches suggests that brand-name hotels could lend their accreditation to privately listed rentals on new sites. Hotels can recommend local services, apps, and websites to stimulate the local economy or expand their reputable brand names into offshoots like BMW’s JustPark or Avis’ acquisition of ZipCar.

For startups in business enterprises that depend on crowdsourcing, success seems to have come easy. While hotel industry insiders might see those ventures as competition, technology continues to inspire advances in how consumers source, access, and pay for goods and services, so hotel companies must look forward, too.

To see how hospitality management company’s, RHW, tech approach to hospitality significantly improved operations and communications, download the case study.



The Secret to Providing the Best Guest Experience

The Secret to Providing the Best Guest Experience

When customers are happy, the internet knows it. Similarly, when a guest is unhappy, hotels bear the brunt of that dissatisfaction in their online reviews. Luckily, there are ways to help improve guest experiences that don’t involve renovations, profit losses, or hiring more employees.

Excellent customer reviews are the pinnacle of success for any hotel, but there’s one industry secret that guarantees optimal guest experiences every time. That secret is maintaining the flow of communication between team members.

Smoother Communication, Smoother Operations

Seamless internal communication supports better business, regardless of industry, but it’s critical in hospitality. Knowing what customers want and getting it to them quickly means you spend less time resolving client concerns and more time taking care of business.

From front desk personnel to non-desktop workers who move all around the property, your employees must work as a team to provide an exceptional guest experience. Between check-in and check-out, each guest will interact with front desk staff, maintenance personnel, housekeepers, bellhops, and more.

When you improve internal communications, good things happen, and not just for your staff.

Better Guest Experiences, Every Time

Entrepreneur suggests six steps toward creating memorable customer experiences, and our communication strategy fulfills each one. From attentiveness to recognition, personalization to consideration, appreciation to delight, behind-the-scenes communication sets the stage for it all.

Fewer Misunderstandings

A disconnect between staff members on your team could spell disaster for customers with specific preferences, billing concerns, or exclusive offers. However, with an internal communication platform that allows for private messaging among team members, noting guest preferences and stay details is one less headache staff must manage.

Creating group messages or channels allows team members to contribute and share relevant and real-time information throughout each shift, while incoming staff can quickly get up-to-date. Keeping all staff on the same page with policies, procedures, and specific guest concerns reduces the chances of misunderstandings during client service.

Quicker Reaction Time

When all employees maintain communication channels on a single platform, your property becomes a digital workplace. Sharing information happens faster than picking up the phone, and sending media and attachments means all your vital information is in one place.

The digital workplace has made phone calls and high-priority emails obsolete. Rapid communication via messaging platforms, accessibility that extends to non-desk workers, and organizational news distribution all contribute to employees’ ability to knowledgeably engage with guests.

Custom-tailored Services

Confidential messages between staff can make the difference between an ordinary customer experience an exceptional one. Centralized information and automated campaigns keep staff up-to-date on critical calendar events, both guest-related and internal.

Imagine having access to an internal phonebook function that allows front desk staff to connect with the resident chef. Staff can confirm a menu for an event and even receive a document or photos via a confidential message, rather than waiting for a return phone call or a time-consuming fax.

Consistent Confidentiality

While non-desktop workers often rely on radio communication across hotel facilities, those devices allow customers and staff alike to overhear conversations. Even if your staff utilize communication methods responsibly, guests probably don’t need to know about the clogged toilet on the third floor or a request for housekeeping services.

Switching to a comprehensive internal communication platform gives employees options for outreach, and ensures that confidentiality is a constant. At the same time, information is handy and easy access whether an employee is near a computer or not. Both app and web capabilities mean your team can move beyond the constraints of the company intranet.

Less Investment

If you stick with outdated methods of internal communication, chances are your employees are less productive than if you embrace a digital workplace. The guest experience depends on your ability to equip staff with the tools to do their jobs effectively and appropriately, not simply the ability to hire more people when business picks up.

In general, a small group of knowledgeable and dependable employees is more valuable than a larger group of employees who are ill-equipped to handle customer concerns because of roadblocks in internal communication. Hiring more people isn’t always the right solution to low customer service marks, but preparing your people to manage guest expectations better will always benefit your organization’s bottom line.

Cohesive Branding

The connectivity of your employees dictates the extent to which they espouse your brand’s personality. By encouraging collaboration and connection among employees, a company can contribute to its brand’s reach. Further, sending feedback via internal systems personalizes that input and opens up communication between peers as well as supervisors and their teams.

Tailoring internal solutions to your brand’s objectives allows you to create a sense of community within teams, particularly those who manage customer-facing functions. At the same time, the division that hotels often see between departments ceases when all employees collaborate toward fulfillment of brand goals and customer service targets.

To see an example of how InterContinental Miami uses Beekeeper to deliver the ultimate guest experience, download the case study.



Rebranding

The workplace is a hive – Beekeeper’s symbolic makeover

Here at Beekeeper, we strive for innovation and want to deliver the best experience for our customers. We’ve evolved significantly since our inception to adapt to our clients’ needs, and as our story has changed, our brand has changed along with it. You may have noticed our revamped logo and our website’s new makeover. This rebrand goes beyond just aesthetics. It’s a reflection of our commitment to connecting people through technology, especially the two billion members of the non-desk workforce that aren’t normally kept in the loop. Beekeeper is where technology meets people, and this is our journey to unite them!
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Why communication and operational system integration is a game-changer

Email is still the most common form of communication in the corporate environment, which doesn’t bode well for the 80% of the workforce that comprises non-desk employees. As many as 83% of non-desk employees don’t have corporate email addresses, leaving them out of important conversations and making critical information unattainable.
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5 Ways to Recognize Your Frontline Employees This Labor Day

Labor Day is more than just a day off work for office employees, it’s a dedication to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It’s an annual tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength and prosperity of our country. Frontline employees are the backbone of the labor force, but with high consumer demands, many don’t get the opportunity to take Labor Day off.
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Beekeeper is the team communication and unified communications app for workforce management

5 Ways and Tools to Improve Internal Communications in Your Hotel


In the hotel industry, success is driven by happy, loyal guests. To drive loyalty through guest satisfaction, staff must go above and beyond customer expectations. Without exemplary internal communication, providing guests with consistently excellent experiences is next to impossible.

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Motivate factory workers and run your production line like a well-oiled machine

As team leaders, production managers have the essential responsibility of motivating factory workers. There are many ways to do this in an office setting, but motivating factory workers is a different story. It’s much more difficult to maintain a relationship when they’re on the production line and not sitting next to you at a desk.

The management style you use can make or break the success of your company. Your style should depend on your business goals, employees, and personality type. Different worker segments need different leadership styles—a Navy Seal team requires a much different style than a yoga studio.

Get a free demo of Beekeeper here to see how you can improve your internal team communications for desk and mobile staff throughout your organization.

If you manage factory workers, it’s key to understand they don’t come into work simply because they want to work for you. They have their own goals, ambitions, and reasons for coming to work that won’t always align with yours. Your job is to learn what motivates them to suit up for work every day. Gaining new perspectives will unlock key insights to improve engagement and ultimately the bottom line. Non-desk employees need extra support and when they’re provided with the necessary training and resources, they become much more motivated to put in a productive shift.

Here are four ways to motivate your factory workers and get your production line running like a well-oiled machine:

1. Add meaning to their work.

Every factory worker has different needs. We can use Maslow’s hierarchy of needs as a guide to see what employees need to reach their full potential. Most employers simply cover the two tiers of basic needs, never trying to reach the higher levels people need both at work and at home.

During a company retreat, Chip Conley, Head of Hospitality at Airbnb, asked groups of housekeepers what would happen if someone from Mars landed on Earth and asked them, “What should we call you?” They came up with some pretty interesting names like, “The Serenity Sisters”, and “The Clutter Busters.” In a study done surrounding hourly workers, three core values arose: meaning, dignity, and self-determination.

Meaning: Every job has a meaning and is important no matter the function. Ditch-digger, fry makers, stable cleaners, you name it. Just because they don’t require higher education doesn’t mean their contribution isn’t valuable. If nobody did these jobs, no one could do their jobs.
Dignity: Dignity comes with how an employee is treated at work. Belittling, neglect, or other unprofessional behavior can drastically reduce productivity, health, and collaboration in any environment.
Self-determination: Self-determination is defined as an employee’s freedom within some boundaries to choose what, when, and how a task is accomplished. Giving employees a sense of control and ownership provides an elevated level of satisfaction, which leads to our next point…

2. Give factory workers more control over what they produce.

Giving factory workers the ability to make their own decisions and see direct result will give them more skin in the game to do their job well. Talk about adding meaning to their work!

In a study done on San Francisco garbage collectors, workers rated themselves very high on job happiness. This was due in large part to being able to choose their own routes and the amount of time spent on each route. Showing you trust your workers by giving them freedom to manage their workflow shows you respect their ideas and, in turn, they’ll want to keep bringing you value.

3. Incorporate bottom-up communication.

Most companies only have a top-down internal communication strategy, meaning management can send information to employees, but not the other way around. By using an internal communication system that allows bottom-up communication, you not only improve internal communication in your factory, you also give workers the floor to express their ideas and instill a sense of belonging. The more you make employees feel like they’re part of the bigger picture, the more they’ll give back.

Allowing bottom-up communication is especially important with distributed workforces. See how Seaboard Foods, a manufacturing with more than 5,000 employees across six states, has improved their internal communications and operations with Beekeeper which facilitates two-way communication.

4. Treat factory workers with dignity, regardless of role.

In the book Life on the Line, the author Solange de Santis recounts the year and a half she spent working in a General Motors plant. She chronicled her experience, through the tough working conditions and disputes between workers and management.

Her biggest takeaway from the experience was how hard-working, skilled, and innovative the factory workers really were. The stereotypical view of factory workers as wage slaves was put aside. De Santis showed these workers make a real difference for the company’s bottom line when they are treated with respect, given room to be creative, and have open dialogues across different levels of the business.

For factory managers looking for some key points to remember when brainstorming motivational ideas, these four factors should be met:

· Goal must be clearly understood
· Progress must be measurable
· Have control over achieving the goal
· A reward system when goals are met

Simply paying workers more won’t give employees more job satisfaction. Creating meaning and motivation must go hand in hand to engage correctly. Working with non-desk employees to develop clear intrinsic goals and acting as a model for them through open dialogue will create a more motivating and fulfilling factory floor.

To learn more about improving internal communications, get a free Beekeeper demo now.

Request a free demo with one of our communications experts


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How MediaMarkt Uses Beekeeper to Support Innovation and Communication

MediaMarkt is Europe’s largest retailer for consumer electronics and puts a large emphasis on innovation. Every MediaMarkt store allows customers to try out and compare products, making it the perfect place to learn about the latest technologies and evaluate them before purchasing. With such a large percentage of frontline employees who don’t have corporate email addresses, internal communication can be challenging.
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10 Must-Have Collaboration Features for Non-Desk Employees

Workstream collaboration tools are becoming the latest trend—and for good reason. Clear collaboration is crucial across all teams and locations, especially for companies with a large percentage of non-desk employees. Office workers have been collaborating digitally for years, and there has been a recent surge in non-desk workers joining the collaborative process to bring entire organizations together in a more cohesive manner. Many companies are closing the communication loop with workstream collaboration platforms. We explore what you should prioritize when finding a solution to digitize your non-desk workforce.
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