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Facial recognition in hotels is an excellent way of personalizing the guest experience. In an age where personalization is everything, using technology to streamline services is fundamental. Post-pandemic, the use of this technology can reduce touch points throughout the hotel experience, helping to establish trust and confidence in your hotel brand.
Another benefit of this technology is that it can provide frictionless access to rooms with smart locks, reducing the cost and hassle of lost room keys. Furthermore, it makes it easier for guests to update their tabs, enhancing the guest experience by making a smooth payment journey. We will look at the technology in more detail in this article as well as how it can be used to improve hotel operations.
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What is facial recognition technology?
Facial recognition uses biometric technology to identify or confirm an individual’s identity by measuring key features. It analyzes and compares patterns in a person’s facial details to verify their identity. Nowadays it is used in many smartphones to authenticate users and for the overall security of the device.
The technology uses computer-generated filters to change images into numerical expressions that can be compared in order to determine their similarity, which in turn helps to identify individuals, including their sex and their age range. It is used by security services, technology companies (think Apple or Facebook), law enforcement, and the hospitality industry to make interactive hotel experiences.
How facial recognition technology can improve hotels operations
This technology is a great tool to improve a hotel’s operations. It can be used to speed up check-ins, to improve customer service, security, payments, and market research to help you better personalize the whole guest experience.
Check-in and check-out
Self-service check-ins are the wave of the future, and that future has already arrived, so your hotel must be ready to embrace this trend. By implementing a self-service kiosk or mobile check-ins using face recognition, not only do you speed up the check-in process, but once their facial details have been registered, you can easily verify their identity without needing to take the time to present physical documentation.
In addition, guests can register their faces and documents easily from the comfort of their own homes, allowing them to get to their room faster after a long journey. Plus, this technology also speeds up the check-in process because multiple guests can be checked in at the same time, since this technology allows for a quick and contactless registration process.
Another way this tool can improve operations is by allowing employees to more easily and quickly recognize guests, thus allowing your front desk staff to deliver top-notch service by making each person feel special when it comes time to welcome guests. Loyalty members can also register their faces, allowing your staff to easily recognize members so that they can easily cash in on rewards.
Payments are another area where facial recognition can help streamline operations, and a smooth payment journey is a crucial step in ensuring guest satisfaction. When it comes time to make a payment a guest can simply register their face to confirm a payment without having to interact with employees. They can settle their bills, and charge their room from anywhere in the hotel, whether that be at the bar, front desk, room service or pool.
This technology can also be used as a powerful research tool to better understand your target audience. It can be used to read facial expressions, understand your target audience’s age or gender, and ascertain how many people are in any area of your hotel at any given time.
By doing so you can generate conclusions about where your guests are within your facilities at different times of the day to better understand which services you should be pushing depending on where your guests are. This can be a great tool to boost ancillary revenue. Imagine that at 5pm guests tend to be at the pool; you can use this information to create a Happy Hour or activities that will help boost your hotel’s bottom line.
Security purposes are one of the best uses of facial recognition in hotels. It’s an easy way to identify guests and allow them to access the premises or even get into their rooms with smart keys by scanning their faces. This makes it so your operational staff can focus on providing great service rather than having to verify guest’s identity to grant access.
In the worst case that something were to go wrong at your facilities, all your guests’ faces would be easily recognized so that you can more easily figure out who was causing the trouble if it were caused by someone staying with you. This will also help you help the law enforcement in this worst-case scenario.
We’ve looked at what facial recognition is in hotels, its benefits and how it can be used to improve operations. From logging in to your PMS, to check-ins and check-outs, improved customer service, authorizing payments, and helping to conduct research and improve security, this technology is without a doubt here to stay. Finding a way to weave this technology into your guest experience will do wonders for their perception of your brand.
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