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1. Business Goals and Objectives.

The business goals and objectives being selected for the hospitality industry is that, with the help of the IT strategy, they want to make an improvement in their digital presence and ensure that they use social media effectively and create ripples regarding the excellent service that they provide (Sigala, Christou & Gretzel, 2012).

Another major objective that the new IT strategy is expected to play is linked with reducing the pressure on the work force in this extremely dynamic industry however also ensuring state-of the art hospitality facilities. If chat bots and other information technology oriented facilities can make the bookings, reservations and communication with customers' worldwide process more automation oriented, then there can be huge cost cutting that can be enjoyed by the firm. The Marriot international is focused on ensuring that its presence is experienced worldwide.

Business goal associated with providing enhanced customer service experience is also a major need in the hospitality industry. As the ecosystem associated with the internet of Things ( IoT) grows , the future of the hospitality industry is dependent on the various IT enabled facilities like the sensor technologies and the effortless system and processes that make bookings, enquiry, payments all easier to handle and ensures time efficiency oriented services. Introduction of the excellent Beacon technology can also ensure that the organisation has a cutting edge in the field of digitally provided excellent level experience to the guests (Buhalis & Leung, 2018). There is another business goal associated with ensuring that the hotel has sensors to ensure that natural resources are not wasted and the buildings being constructed should be green buildings.

2. List, at least two or three specific business goals for the next year or two with an explanation of the business' rationale for the goal.

The major business goals of this big hospitality house are as follows:

  • Expansion is on the radar and Marriott wishes to adhere to its Vision 2020 plans of accelerated growth all over Europe in the next 3 years to come (news.marriott.com 2019).
  • There is huge potential in the emerging economies and this is the reason why the company is looking at expanding massively in India and come up with 50 hotels (economictimes.indiatimes.com 2019).
  • The organisation is also focused on expanding in African continent as the countries are also growing at a very high rate of growth.
  • Increase in the operation but need to ensure there is minimisation of cost, through better operations management through IT enabled facilities.
  • Improvement in the responsiveness of the business is a major business goals that Marriot International wants to achieve
  • Another major business goals is that the organisation wants to introduce , data related analytics to understand the preference of eminent clients and also to understand the patterns of consumption in the peak and the normal season and make strategies to ensure that profitability can be enhanced through reduction of cost in various hotels.
  • Providing personalised services o eminent clients, by ensuring that proper guest profiling strategies are deployed after excellent analysis of the data gathered through the data management services that is possible due to removal of manual operation and including of the digital platforms that are linked to superior data management services (Kansakar, Munir & Shabani,2017)
  • Another major goal and objective to be attained in this regard is that through IT enabled strategies there is an endeavour being taken to ensure that corporate social responsibility is attained by reducing wastage of natural resources like water and electricity in multi occupancy buildings like the hotels.
  • Importance is also being placed in the case of the hotel buildings being made into green buildings and this needs to be attained through IT enabled facilities that shall be at the helm of the control.

The rationale behind these goals is to ensure to open business in virgin markets and ensure to gain hefty profit from all of these ventures and become the most famous name in the hospitality industry. The international tourism business is going through a boom and this major reason the goal of international firm is linked to expansion. In this era of internet and IT enabled services there are major areas that need to be improved.

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3. List an objective for each business goal to explain what the company needs to do to achieve the goal.

The expansion goals are associated with one objective and that is associated with enhancement of the revenue of the entire organisation. The excellent international level hospitality standards that Marriot stands for are immense and the expansion will ensure that these high standard services will be available at other markets. The objective associated with this is that there shall be enhanced growth of the revenue of the international organisation.

The increased operational activities will lead to higher costs and in order to reduce, a major objective is to ensure more IT enabled automation and better timely services for all, through use of automation in the booking and reservation area.

The objective of introducing beacon facilities and sensor technology is associated with ensuring that the stay of the guest is associated with a sense of seamless enjoyment. Here is also the need to ensure that business analytics are used to understand the pattern of the business of the international organisation, so there is a need to introduce data management facilities

4. IT Strategies aligned with business goals and objectives.

The IT strategies that have been focused on are associated with being active in social media. Social media is a major driver of business opportunities in these times and through direct interaction between hospitality sector and consumers through easy interface, it has been possible to ensure that growth is happening through viewers' positive opinions on social media sites (Kim, Lim & Brymer, 2015). The IT strategy is to ensure that there should be IT enabled services that can help in the process of enhancing business.

The cost minimisation and profit maximisation goal is linked to ensuring that there is effective use of information technology to address issues and frequently asked questions ( FAQs) associated with the service so that the final booking when done , then manpower may be deployed to give further service. This will definitely help to reduce the cost of the work force from the point of query generation to booking.

The sensor technology strategies are aligned with the business objective of better operational management and ensuring that there is cost minimisation. Through sensor technology, it is possible to ensure that resources like water and electricity are not wasted in multi occupancy hotels like a hotel (Ekwevugbe, Brown & Fan, 2012).

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5. List one or two IT strategies for each business goal (These, should be, recommended strategies that would enable the business goals and objectives to be achieved.)

The recommended IT strategies can be as follows:

  • Objective of better operation management and providing better hospitality services is associated with providing state of the art hospitality facilities like in room automated sensors associated with humidity control , temperature control, automatic ambient light facilities , this helps in the providing of great service and there is a scope of being energy efficient as well (Hong et al., 2016).
  • There is need to ensure up to date guest facing facilities are available in the case of this digitalised hospitality platform. It is important that the systems are installed with easy guest interface, so that their travel experience is seamless.
  • The strategy is to ensure there is a completely IT enabled digital service is made available to the guests , with pre sale ( booking and reservations), point of sale ( terminals and held held devices like mobile applications of the hotel) and post sale ( payment kiosks) available for effortless, time saving experience
  • While the guest is staying at the hotel there can also be some technologies associated with sensor technology. Understanding when guests are leaving and room maintenance being conducted then and there can be sensors built that will ensure that automatic light control, water usage systems are all in place, so that it is possible to ensure that the hotel can save costs and improve the quality of the stay (Neuhofer & Buhalis, 2012).
  • Beacon facility can be used to provide guided tour throughout the entire premises to enhance connectivity and communication (Buhalis & Leung, 2018).

6. If your company already has IT strategies, you may provide an analysis and justification or new recommendation for each of the strategies.

The new strategies are aligned with the new business objectives that have been decided upon by the top-level management. The critical enhancements are required in order to ensure that hospitality services in all the hotels units of Marriot group are providing standardised services, there is a vision of the organisation to ensure better security and confidentiality to its customers and this is only possible if there is effort taken by the organisation to upgrade itself. In this competitive scenario, it is essential that service quality is of utmost importance and that is the reason why this international hospitality sector is concentrating on providing the best services to its niche segment of clients. The IT enabled facilities are being incorporated in all new era hotels, hence it is essential that the value of the time of the client is considered and all endeavour should be taken by using the facility-oriented edge that the information technology is providing to earn the competitive edge over the other competitors.

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7. Organizational Structure, design and culture and layout.

The basic organisational structure of each unit of a Marriot hotel is usually associated with the basic structure as provided below:

IT Strategy Assignment.png

The organisational structure and design both are associated with ensuring that efforts of the employees in the organisation is properly channelized there are no failures at the co-ordination level and there is effective hierarchy established along with differentiation and departmentalisation. The operations are usually so huge there is need to ensure that there is task oriented professional approach taken by each department in order to provide seamless service. In the opinion of Eason, (2014), there is a need to ensure that there is organisational change implemented in the design aspect , so that IT enabled services can be inculcated into the system is a much larger way , than only the security aspect as is exhibited, in the diagram.

In order to incorporate information technology enabled services in the organisation it is important that implementation should be made with this being kept in mind that all the added facilities are user- centric. A framework for design to enable the best of services is essential. The technical team of experts have to be considered regarding enhancement of the facilities associated with the IT enabled services. The layout associated with the entire project can be built on the lines associated with the below figure

IT Strategy Assignment1.png

There is a need to ensure that the organisational culture of service-oriented approach is needed in the case of the various aspects of hospitality. The various scope of future services bring forward the focus that many areas will be automated and there will be focus on providing better services and more customer centric services. Hospitality and quality of services need to be upgraded. The IT enabled mechanisation will lead to inculcating excellent upgrading of staff through training as they will no longer be associated with mundane activities, rather they shall be part of the personalised touch associated with customer relationship management. There is one negative impact that there will be a sense of job insecurity that will engulf the organisation after IT enabled services will make many jobs redundant in the wake of the new IT strategy implemented in the organisation (Bonekamp & Sure,2015).

The Leadership that is required in the case of implementation of services is the transformational leadership. There is a tendency among the staff to dislike change and not allow change to affect the comfort zone that they attain. There is a need to have transformational leadership policies in the organisation when the entire transformational IT strategy shall be implemented. There will be lesser independence and that is why there has to be more motivational aspect associated with the application of the chain of command in order to ensure proper implementation of activities associated with IT implementation and technological training aspects. According to Salem, (2015), through transformational leadership it shall be possible to ensure that the services being rendered are free from the effects of burn out and stress that the employees might be experiencing through their adaptation to the new processes and the new changes in the operations. Business process outsourcing is another area that may affect the organisational culture and in this case it is important that, business processes should be designed in such a manner that there will be very little effort on the part of the top level manager. The transformational leader is able to ensure that the staff are made aware of the changes in the processing and then they be allotted newer roles that will ensure that they are not suffering from any insecurities associated with this aspect.

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8. Describe the current IT infrastructure.

The current IT infrastructure of the hotel units is also up to date, but there is lack of use of sensor technology in all aspects. There is proper data management services , however there is a lack of trained staff who can use the infrastructure to the best of its potential. There are use of many hardware oriented IT technologies such as the digital displays that are available and the various technologies such as talking alarms that are the major software that is taking the hospitality industry by storm. There are pin enabled safes that ensure security and the locking cards that provide security to the rooms and the cards are enabled with chips that ensure excellent service can be provided. The hotels are facilitated with CPUs, printers and scanners that ensure safety from any miscreant activities .There are also hardware facilities that are used in housekeeping like bar code reader and there is speakers that are automated and which ensure that all kinds of communication is possible. There is tremendous need to ensure that the facility associated with the hotel is at par with the international standards. There are dryers and washing machines in the hotel that are timer enabled this ensures that there are hardly any issues with room service and maintenance. The entire organisation is associated with ensuring that there are digital displays in the lifts and card reading kiosks that ensure that all the facilities can be availed by the staff and the guests. There are facilities of automated car wash and there are facilities like timer operated Wifi facilities, so that the guest can be connected wherever they wish to be in the premises of the hotel.

9. Describe risks IT might face when implementing change.

There are multiple risks that are faced by any organisation when they have to ensure enabling of It infrastructure, the risks are associated with hacking and phishing activities and there is also risk associated with use of the internet provided by the hotel for any fraudulent activities. There is also the chance of spillage of information that is confidential that may happen if any firewall is breached and this leads to tremendous pain for the authorities. Lack of trained staff also, lead to damages of the infrastructure that is sensitive. There are training required that will ensured that standards associated with ISO are implemented in the case of the IT enabled services. There is a major problem associated with the aspect is that there is tremendous pressure associated with factors like cost associated with continuous upgrading of the facilities that are integral to an IT infrastructure system. This continuous new innovations in the field of IT enabled services lead to the problem of making the cost of continuous investment a major concern in the organisation. The cost is essential because it becomes very difficult for the company to ensure perfection without this aspect. The operations are usually so huge there is need to ensure that there is task oriented professional approach taken by each department in order to provide seamless service. . As the ecosystem associated with the internet of Things ( IoT) grows , the future of the hospitality industry is dependent on the various IT enabled facilities like the sensor technologies and the effortless system and processes that make bookings, enquiry, payments all easier to handle and ensures time efficiency oriented services. However this poses the problem of ensuring that there is a continuous training cost of updating the staff and at times the guest regarding the use . . Business process outsourcing is another area that may affect the organisational culture, and in this case it is important that, business processes should be designed in such a manner that there will be very little effort on the part of the top level manager. However, it is being observed that there is the problem of losing confidential information when business process services of third party are being used by the organisation. There is lack of involvement and effort on the part of the staff as they also become over dependent on technology-oriented services and that is having effect on the customer delight angle as well. The governance has to be as per the IT laws of the host country and this will ensure that there will be hardly any conflict between the data privacy associated with the country. The various scopes of future services bring forward the focus that many areas will be automated and there will be focus on providing better services and more customer centric services. Hospitality and quality of services need to be upgraded but it is also leading to a mechanisation that is losing its old world charm, which is also cherished by a certain segment of customers.

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