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  • New Global Directors Join the 2018-2019 HFTP Board

    The HFTP 2018-2019 Global Board of Directors was installed during the association's 2018 Annual Convention and introduces new directors Toni Bau, Carson Booth, CHTP and Mark Fancourt. These extensive director profiles give insight into the distinguished professions and personal goals of HFTP's newest association leaders.

  • Letter from the HFTP Global President: At the End of the Year, We Reflect on the Best of the Year

    As we prepare to transition to the new HFTP Global board at the 2018 Annual Convention in October, I would like to take the time to reflect on my year serving as HFTP Global president.

  • Members Only: 2018 HFTP Compensation and Benefits Report

    By Tanya Venegas, MBA, MHM, CHIA. Results to the biannual survey conducted by Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP). Information includes data on compensation and benefits trends for finance and technology professionals in the club and lodging industries.

  • IT Spending in the Lodging Industry Three-year Analysis: 2015–2017

    By Agnes DeFranco, Ed.D., CHAE; Arlene Ramirez, CHE, CHAE; and Tanya Venegas, MBA, MHM, CHIA. PART II: An analysis of IT spending data in the lodging industry based on reporting in the new USALI Schedule 6 — Information and Telecommunications Systems.

HTNG Launches the Travel Information Sharing and Analysis Center

HTNG ·29 November 2018
Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG) forms the Travel Information Sharing and Analysis Center (Travel ISAC), the global travel industry's new platform for security messaging, collaboration and partnerships.Building on HTNG's long history of security communication, awareness and standards building, the Travel ISAC signifies an evolution of HTNG's Chief Information Security Officers' (CISO) Forum.The Travel ISAC will further bring together the $8 trillion travel industry to collectively defend customers, staff and assets against the constantly evolving threat landscape. This expansion includes participants from many travel industry segments, including leisure and business travel, non-airline transit such as car rentals and rail, venues, time shares and vacation rentals, cruise lines, casinos, destination management organizations and much more."HTNG recognizes the need to 'secure the journey,' across all travel related segments, by protecting guests, staff and corporate assets," said Patrick Dunphy, CIO of HTNG. "The Travel ISAC will now make that objective achievable."Michael Blake, CEO of HTNG adds, "We've seen our CISO Forum pave the way for secure communication between hotels, and it's very exciting to now advance as the Travel ISAC to grow and strengthen our relationship with other travel verticals."By engaging senior security leaders and analyst resources, the the Travel ISAC will fulfill its mission by:Sharing relevant and critical information security issues as quickly as they happen in a trusted, confidential mannerCoordinating response to achieve best-in-class capabilitiesDeveloping industry specific security best practices, architectures and other materials that mature industry security postureEngaging law enforcement and other governmental agenciesFor more information, please visit the Travel ISAC Webpage or contact Patrick Dunphy at patrick@htng.org.

New HTNG White Paper: CBRS for Hospitality

HTNG · 2 November 2018
HTNG's Citizen's Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) Workgroup developed a white paper to help educate hospitality IT personnel on the underlying technology, application of the technology and major use cases of CBRS.Hospitality properties need a comprehensive wireless network solution that supports the demands of guests, staff, work flow, applications, the Internet of Things (IoT) and Mobile Network Operators (MNOs). The CBRS band has the potential to provide a secure private network with mobility interfaces to the MNOs, while remaining under control of the property owner or manager.CBRS is a new set of frequency bands that can be shared or lightly licensed for private communications or public cellular coverage. CBRS provides 150 MHz of new spectrum that is desperately needed for industries that lack adequate cellular coverage or have the desire for more control of their networks.HTNG's CBRS for Hospitality Workgroup was formed to help corporate hoteliers adequately advise ownership, management, and other stakeholders on the value of CBRS deployments in their properties. The group was led by Chairs Juan Santiago of Ruckus Networks and Russell Vest of ExteNet Systems.Download the white paper here!

OpenTravel Alliance Makes Strategic Changes

HTNG ·24 October 2018
The OpenTravel Alliance, the travel industry non-profit trade association responsible for developing and maintaining interoperability for all travel verticals, announces strategic organizational changes that will enable the association to continue to serve its members and the travel industry as a whole.OpenTravel will transition its association management relationship to Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG) at the beginning of the 2019 calendar year.For 19 years, OpenTravel has maintained and continues to provide new avenues for travel industry connectivity. OpenTravel messaging is the standard that has enabled omni-channel booking. The association constantly seeks to improve both travel experience and supplier information flow. Support from HTNG positions the association to respond to growing industry trends and improves OpenTravel's ability to evaluate and collaborate with other messaging initiatives and the trend toward the use of APIs.Joint management of the organizations with one staff will improve efficiency and effectiveness for both OpenTravel Alliance and HTNG, as both organizations utilize some of the same resources and share a similar mission to foster the development of next-generation solutions through collaboration.The members of OpenTravel Alliance will benefit due to the common activities of both organizations, and the robust workgroup management infrastructure and history that HTNG offers. HTNG's COO, David Sjolander, will serve as Executive Director of OpenTravel along with maintaining his current role at HTNG."The OpenTravel Alliance has been, and continues to be, a key enabler in the travel distribution ecosystem," said David Sjolander. "I am thrilled to become the Executive Director and partner with the board and staff to continue the important work the organization has been doing for almost twenty years."As the foundation for consumer direct bookings, OpenTravel supports all travel-related verticals, including hotel, rail, car rental, air, golf and leisure. This transition benefits HTNG as it serves as an extension of the work HTNG currently does and supports its recent strategy to expand beyond its traditional core activity in hotels. This expansion will support HTNG members who already operate in these businesses or wish to do so."HTNG and OpenTravel have worked hand-in-hand since HTNG was formed in 2002," said Michael Blake, CEO of HTNG. "Managing the two organizations with common staff while allowing each to retain its identity and governance is a perfect next step.""HTNG's involvement will help accelerate OpenTravel's industry contributions to the next level," noted Susanne Auinger, OpenTravel Board Chairperson. "OpenTravel is responsible for tens of millions of messages between travel partners on a daily basis today, and that number continues to increase with the adoption of OpenTravel's 2.0 Object Model, our next generation of open-source messaging for travel technology."The OpenTravel Alliance and HTNG signed an agreement and made the announcement onsite at the 2018 HTNG European Conference in Lisbon, Portugal. HFTP has managed OpenTravel since June 2017, and since has helped it establish a monthly newsletter and produce a European conference and Hackathon. HFTP will continue to actively work throughout year-end to ensure a successful management transition to HTNG."HFTP is very pleased to have helped OpenTravel through its transition phase," said Frank Wolfe, CEO of HFTP. "We support the sharing of resources to manage HTNG and OpenTravel, and believe this is a great outcome for these organizations and our industry as a whole."About OpenTravel AllianceOpenTravel Alliance is passionate about solving the problems inherent with connecting multiple systems within the complex travel distribution arena. Our mission is to enable the future of travel by driving the evolving digital experience for consumers. OpenTravel Alliance creates, expands and drives adoption of open specifications, including but not limited to the use of XML and JSON, for the electronic exchange of business information among all sectors of the travel industry.OpenTravel Alliance is comprised of companies representing airlines, car rental firms, hotels, cruise lines, railways, leisure suppliers, service providers, tour operators, travel agencies, solutions providers, technology companies and distributors. Tens of thousands of OpenTravel Alliance message structures are in use, carrying tens of millions of messages between trading partners every day.OpenTravel Alliance is a not-for-profit trade association, founded in 1999 by travel companies, with a primary focus on the creation of electronic message structures to facilitate communication between the disparate systems in the global travel industry. For more information on OpenTravel Alliance membership, new products, or projects, please visit http://www.opentravel.org or email info@opentravel.org.About HFTPHospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP) established in 1952, is an international, nonprofit association, headquartered in Austin, Texas, USA, with offices in Hong Kong, United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Dubai. HFTP is recognized as the spokes group for the finance and technology segments of the hospitality industry with members and stakeholders spanning across the globe. HFTP uniquely understands the industry's pressing issues and assists its stakeholders in finding solutions to their challenges more efficiently than any organization. It does this via its expert networks, research, certification programs, information resources and conferences/events such as HITEC. HFTP also owns the world's only hospitality-specific search engine, PinappleSearch.com. For more information about HFTP, email membership@hftp.org or download the HFTP/HITEC media kit via the HFTP website. Read industry updates on the suite of HFTP hospitality news sites: HITEC Bytes, Club Bytes, Finance Bytes and HFTP News.

New HTNG White Paper: Blockchain for Hospitality

HTNG ·19 October 2018
Over the past 12 months, HTNG's Blockchain for Hospitality Workgroup has created a white paper to establish a practical knowledge framework for hospitality business leaders and the technology vendor community, as well as to assess where blockchain can be applicable in hospitality.Sections of this white paper discuss:What is blockchain and why does it matterThe difference between private and public blockchainsHow blockchain worksTechnical limitations and challenges to overcome before blockchain can be widely adoptedPotential general use cases and use cases specific to the hospitality industryNext Steps: HTNG's Blockchain for Hospitality Workgroup will host a webinar series from November 2018 - January 2019 to provide additional relevant educational materials to help the industry stay current on blockchain developments.

Winding Tree Partners with Sciant to Expand HTNG's Hospitality Distribution Standards

HTNG ·18 October 2018
Winding Tree, an open-source blockchain-based travel distribution platform, announces a partnership with Sciant in order to make Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG) standards compatible with the Winding Tree platform. Winding Tree is working together with Sciant, an information technology and software outsourcing provider with a focus on travel technology, who will make an open source adaptor code to seamlessly convert HTNG standard message formats to the Winding Tree format.Many hotel property management systems (PMS), central reservation systems (CRS), and channel managers (supply systems) currently use the data exchange standard created by HTNG to send hotel rates and availability to online travel agencies, in order to distribute their hotel rooms and inventory. However, in order to work with a blockchain distribution platform, such as Winding Tree, these providers need to modify their existing product by implementing a new interface, a task many do not have the technology or resources to do.Sciant is creating an open-source adaptor for the providers whose hotel customers are distributing their rooms using the HTNG data exchange standard, so they will now be able to quickly connect to the Winding Tree platform without significant change to their product. Inventory and rates will flow up from the supply systems, which Winding Tree will then be able to share via its platform. Winding Tree will also be able to send reservations directly back to the providers.PMS companies and channel managers will be able to download the open-source adaptor code and easily integrate it into their products, without cost. Winding Tree will host the adaptor code in the GitHub code repository for general public download and will be accessible through HTNG's API Registry.The benefits of the adaptor code between Winding Tree and HTNG include:PMS, CRS and Channel management companies will be able to use their existing legacy code to communicate with Winding Tree with very minimal investmentPMS, CRS and Channel management companies will deploy the adaptor between the existing HTNG property distribution interface endpoint and the Winding Tree endpoint, leaving the adaptor to handle all of the communicationEach system would speak in its own messaging and the adaptor will handle the translations"The collaboration with HTNG and the deployment of Sciant's open source adaptor code is a huge step forward for hospitality providers looking for new ways to list and share their inventory," said Pedro Anderson, COO and Co-Founder of Winding Tree. "Being able to communicate directly with various PMS, CRS, and channel managers is huge, and it means that more inventory will flow into the Winding Tree platform, with even more reservations flowing out."Being strong proponents of blockchain, open-source technologies, HTNG and hotel distribution in general, Sciant is extremely excited to participate in this project," said Stephen Burke, SVP of Travel and Hospitality for Sciant. "By enabling the many existing hotel technology providers that currently use HTNG messaging to rapidly convert their existing investment to be compatible with the Winding Tree API, Sciant believes that a major barrier is removed that will accelerate blockchain adoption across the hospitality industry."View the entire media kit at: https://pr.blonde20.com/winding-tree-htng-sciant/About Winding TreeFounded in 2017, Winding Tree is a blockchain-based, decentralized, open-source travel distribution platform striving to make travel cheaper for the end user, while making it more profitable for suppliers. An open market with open competition means no exorbitant transaction fees and no barriers for entry. Moreover, Winding Tree allows small companies to compete with big players, finally bringing innovation back into the travel industry.About SciantSciant provides information technology and software development outsourcing services, headquartered in Sofia, Bulgaria. Focusing on specific verticals - automotive, fintech, transportation & logistics and travel & hospitality, Sciant combines deep domain product knowledge with domain-trained technical resources to deliver superior service to our customers. Founded in 2016, Sciant has experienced triple digit growth every year since its founding.

New HTNG Workgroup: Improving the Guest Wi-Fi Experience

HTNG ·26 September 2018
HTNG charters a new workgroup to help hospitality companies deliver an optimized Wi-Fi experience for guests. Hospitality companies currently do not have an accurate, consistent or objective measure of the Wi-Fi or the high-speed Internet access (HSIA) quality from a guest's point of view, making it difficult or impossible to utilize real time data or historical analysis for evaluation. Due to this, hotel companies are not able to effectively identify a positive or negative guest experience.This results in reduced guest scores, owner frustration with brand standards, negative experiences with technology ecosystem providers and the inability to effectively manage this component of the guest experience.HTNG's Improving the Guest Wi-Fi Experience Workgroup will develop industry recommendations to standardize and measure the key performance metrics that utilize real time or historical data to give insight into, and ultimately predict, an excellent quality of the guest experience (for Wi-Fi).The group will focus on allowing hospitality companies to increase guest satisfaction, adequately prepare investment strategies and improve the consistency of service delivery across their respective footprint. These recommendations will also create new opportunities for software and hardware vendors to provide to the industry.The kickoff teleconference for HTNG's Improving the Guest Wi-Fi Experience Workgroup will be held on Thursday, October 4 at 09:00 - 10:00 AM CST. To sign up, HTNG members can visit the Improving the Guest Wi-Fi Experience Workgroup page and log in to join.

HTNG Produces Fiber vs. Copper Cost Comparison Calculator

HTNG ·14 September 2018
HTNG's Fiber to the Room Workgroup develops a comparison matrix to evaluate the key architectural differences between a legacy copper and fiber optic deployment.The hospitality industry may not understand the component and architectural differences between a legacy copper deployment and fiber optic deployment. As a result, hotel owners and consultants cannot appropriately compare the cost of ownership between each technology architecture. Without proper cost comparisons, often times hotel construction or renovations may suffer lost technology capabilities, and potentially salable guestroom space.Created by the HTNG Fiber to the Room Workgroup, this calculator can now compare a legacy copper deployment against a modern fiber infrastructure such as Gigabit Passive Optical Network (GPON). The comparison matrix additionally allows hotel owners to view the total cost of ownership and other less tangible benefits against competing technology categories. To use this calculator, an intermediate understanding of network infrastructure is required.The instructions in the calculator will guide users through evaluations of hotel details, equipment details, fiber networks, and copper networks, along with providing other considerations.HTNG's Fiber to the Room Workgroup was composed of over 50 leading hospitality technology companies. The group was led by Chairs Christopher Rivas, marketing manager, in-building networks of Corning Optical Communications and Greg Dawes, global technical director of Willard Solutions International."Working with industry experts and professionals from HTNG was a pleasure as we were able to piece together a calculator for hotel technologists," said Co-chair Christopher Rivas. "It's really great to be able to share these cost comparisons that really show the value of fiber for today's hotel network.""The main question I have been asked over the past few years is how a fiber to the room network compares to an all copper network in a hotel," said Co-chair Greg Dawes. "What a privilege it has been to work with so many hospitality network experts to develop a tool that can be used to answer this question."The Fiber vs. Copper Cost Comparison Calculator can be downloaded here.For questions or for more information, please contact workgroups@htng.org.

HTNG Insight Summit Agenda Announced

HTNG · 5 September 2018
There are many great sessions and workgroup meetings to look forward to at the upcoming HTNG Insight Summit! Make sure you're joining your peers on 25-26 September at the Plug 'N Play Headquarters in Sunnyvale, CA for this not-to-miss event.HTNG Insight Summits focus on accelerating discussions and solutions in current HTNG workgroups by providing an opportunity for participants to meet face-to-face. HTNG members come together to discuss current issues, acquire knowledge on recent trends and benefit from networking opportunities.General Sessions:California Privacy ActCBRS, New Waves for a Modernized InfrastructureDriving Business Analytics with a Great BATE UpdateEngaging the Frontline Through Communication PlatformsFuture Infrastructure Requirements for HotelsInternational QR Payment TrendsIs WPA3 the Charm for Protecting Wi-Fi Access?Planning Your Next Fiber Optic DeploymentPlug 'N Play with the Latest Batch of StartupsSD-WAN, a Solution to Enhance Hospitality Innovation and Guest ExperienceSecurity is Not ObscurityStart Planning for 5G NowThe Future of Hospitality Wi-FiVoice Stories from Those Driving a Quality Guest ExperienceOn-site workgroup meetings will include: AI for Hospitality, Business Analytics Transactional Extract, Blockchain, CBRS for Hospitality, Fiber to the Room, Frictionless Check-In, Improving the Guest Wi-Fi Experience, IoT, NFC Contactless Payments, Staff Alert Technology and Voice Interaction Framework.

HTNG Publishes Framework and Guidance for Hotels Implementing Voice Technologies

HTNG ·17 August 2018
CHICAGO - HTNG's Voice Interaction Framework Workgroup announces the publication of a first of its kind white paper that offers guidance and best practices for the implementation of voice technologies in hotels.The rapid growth of interest in voice-based hotel guest engagement makes this release particularly timely and valuable to HTNG members and the broader community of hoteliers.Key industry players from hotelier and technology vendor communities met bi-weekly over the course of 12 months to identify and vet suggested guidelines for the implementation and operations of voice-based technologies, along with use cases and management features to be employed by hoteliers. The workgroup aims to give hoteliers a jumpstart in how they are thinking about the implications of voice technologies on their properties, saving them the time and effort associated with developing a unique voice interaction framework for their portfolio.This framework ultimately gives hoteliers and technology vendors a common language to discuss the implementation and management of voice-based technologies in hotels and ensure that hotel guests and staff have a positive experience with the rapidly evolving voice medium.HTNG's Voice Interaction Framework was led by Chairs David Berger, CEO of Volara and John Swain, director of product management at Evolve Controls."Adoption of voice based technologies in hotels has been rapid and varied," said David Berger. "These frameworks and guidelines - which result from months of collaboration between both hoteliers and hotel technology professionals in the HTNG Voice Standards Working Group - aim to ensure the adoption of minimum viable practices for the management of guest-facing experiences using voice-based technologies, while allowing for ample opportunity for creative differentiation."John Swain added, "This white paper serves as a great primer for any hotelier looking to implement voice-activated controls to enhance the experience of their guests."The Frameworks and Guidelines for Implementing Voice-based Solutions in Hotels document is available for download here.For questions or for more information, please contact workgroups@htng.org.

Distinguished Keynotes to Speak at Upcoming HTNG European Conference

HTNG · 8 August 2018
World-famous rock climber, Catherine Destivelle, and Portuguese National Radio Host, Carla Rocha, will be keynote speakers at the 2018 HTNG European Conference held on 22-24 October at the Penha Longa Resort just outside of Lisbon.Catherine Destivelle is recognized and admired as the most adventurous and exciting female climber in the world today. Her daring accomplishments as a solo climber in scaling the most difficult and dangerous peaks without the use of safety ropes, support or back-up is legendary. Her passion and desire to conquer the most challenging mountain faces in the world satisfies her emotions and her thirst for adrenaline, keeping her at the forefront of climbing and ahead of her time.Destivelle's inspirational presentations challenge and inspire the audience to re-focus their goals to achieve success by sharing her own visions and startling achievements. Destivelle's mountain exploits require meticulous planning, perfect physical and psychological preparation, and complete determination when it really counts. Destivelle shares this extensive experience with all of the audiences she encounters.Carla Rocha is the host of the morning show of the well-known Portuguese National Radio Station, Renascenca. In addition to radio, Rocha is also a communication trainer helping executives to transform the way they communicate with their teams and partners. She coordinates the "Athlete Speakers" program, developed by the Portuguese Olympic Committee. In this program, she trains and guides Olympic athletes, helping them to impact audiences with their presentations.Rocha has interviewed hundreds of individuals and has an extensive background speaking on topics including: change management, innovation, journalism/media, leadership and motivation and women. Rocha is the author of the book "Speak less, communicate more - 10 strategies to become a great communicator." In addition to her book, Rocha has several papers published in books and magazines that specialize in different areas.In addition to inspirational keynotes Destivelle and Rocha, a number of industry experts will join the speaker line-up to discuss trending hospitality technology topics at the 2018 HTNG European Conference.Conference registration is open to any full-time employee of a company who owns, manages or franchises a hotel. For all other industry participants, HTNG membership is required. Technology providers, consultants and others who are not HTNG members should check with HTNG's Membership Department to ensure eligibility.Registration and more information on the 2018 HTNG European Conference can be found here.

New HTNG White Paper: CRM Centric Architecture

HTNG ·20 July 2018
HTNG's Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Workgroup developed a CRM (i.e. Global Customer Profile) Centric Architecture for Hospitality White Paper to develop a framework and associated data sets that allow companies to build and integrate a next generation CRM solution.This CRM solution allows hotel staff to have a single common view of the guest through all operational systems, thereby delivering a consistent interaction with the guest whether they are a resident, using the bar, restaurant, spa or other facility on the property.Vendors can use this white paper to develop a decoupled CRM solution where all applications become consumers and potentially contributors; or to extend the CRM capability within existing applications. Hospitality companies may use this framework to operationalize a customer profile through staff and customer interactions.Click here to download the white Paper: CRM Centric Architecture

Companies Attending the 2018 HTNG Asia-Pacific Conference

HTNG · 9 July 2018
Companies in attendance include:5thGenWirelessACI HR Solutions LtdAlcatel-Lucent Enterprise*Amadeus*Angie HospitalityANTlabs*Belden*China Hospitality Technology Alliance (CHTA)CNN*Comanche InternationalComo Hotels & ResortsComtrendsCotell Intelligent Technology (Shenzhen) Co. Ltd.*dailypointE. Horner & Associates Pty LtdElectrosonic, Inc.Entertainment SolutionsExterity*FP ConsultingGelato.AI Limited*GuestTekGX2 TechnologyHall Booth Smith, P.C.Hilton WorldwideHospitality & Retail Systems (HRS)Hospitality Technology Network, LLCHospitality WiFi LLC*HSyndicate.orgHyatt Hotels CorporationIntelityInterContinental Hotels GroupJungMandarin Oriental Hotel GroupMarriott InternationalMelco Resorts & EntertainmentMGM Resorts International, ChinaMovenpick Hotels & ResortsMyCoolTV*NEC*NomadixPertlink LimitedPwCRed Planet HotelsRobogo*Ruckus Networks*SabreSalto Systems*Samsotech International*Samsung Electronics Co.ShijiSun-CreaTableSolution*The Conceptual GroupThe Emirates AcademyUbicompVDA Group SpA*Willard Solutions InternationalWinding TreeXn Protel Systems**Supporting sponsorConference registration is open to any full-time employee of a company who owns, manages or franchises a hotel. For all other industry participants, HTNG membership is required. Technology providers, consultants and others who are not HTNG members should check with HTNG's Membership Department to ensure eligibility.Registration and more information for the 2018 HTNG Asia-Pacific Conference can be found here.***

Annual Elections Bring New Representatives to HTNG's Vendor Advisory Council

HTNG ·28 June 2018
Six individuals have been chosen by HTNG's Vendor member community to represent their companies on the organization's Vendor Advisory Council (VAC).HTNG's Vendor Advisory Council facilitates communication and alignment between HTNG's most engaged vendors and the hospitality IT executives serving on the organization's Board of Governors. The Council is made up of fifteen representatives, each serving a three-year term. Starting this year, the VAC decided to add an additional seat dedicated to the growing HTNG Startup community.There were 18 candidates nominated for this year's five available positions in the general election and six candidates nominated for the single additional Startup seat. The new and re-elected members joining HTNG's Vendor Advisory Council are:Larry Birnbaum, VP Global Hospitality, Ruckus Networks, an ARRIS CompanyCarson Booth, CEO, Snapshot GmbHFlorian Gallini, Group CEO, INTERELVanessa Ogle, CEO, EnseoLuis Segredo, CEO, Data TravelDavid Berger, Founder and CEO, Volara *Startup SeatNow consisting of sixteen members, the HTNG Vendor Advisory Council will continue to ensure that HTNG can address the needs and concerns of members who are technology providers in the hospitality technology industry.For more information about HTNG's Vendor Advisory Council, please visit: https://www.htng.org/VendorAdvisoryCouncil

Rechartered: HTNG's GDPR for Hospitality Workgroup

HTNG · 1 June 2018
HTNG has rechartered its GDPR for Hospitality Workgroup to build upon the group's White Paper and Self-Assessment outputs produced in Q1 of 2018. The group's previous work included key considerations, use cases and impacts of the European Union (EU) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in hospitality.The workgroup will now focus on developing:Standard operating procedures for front line staff to address guest requests related to GDPRChecklists or guidance covering:Model clausesContractual guidance for data controller/processor agreementsLegitimate interest/contractual necessityData retentionAudit proceduresBusiness process data flowsThe kickoff teleconference for HTNG's GDPR for Hospitality Workgroup will be held on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 at 8:00 a.m. CST.Learn more about the previous work completed by HTNG's GDPR for Hospitality Workgroup here.

Hospitality Communications Platform Released!

HTNG · 7 May 2018
HTNG members have identified the need to shift from a compartmentalized, inefficient and redundant guest and staff communications paradigm to a platform-based approach that operationalizes service levels and delivers the following benefits:Guest expectations are exceeded, using their preferred communication mediumBetter staff utilization and effectivenessElimination of redundant systemsMeasure, manage and enforce SLAsDownload the Hospitality Communications Platform here or continue reading for more information.HTNG's Cloud Communications Workgroup produced a framework for hotels to leverage cloud communication to improve service delivery. This framework presents a new kind of communication architecture called the Hospitality Communications Platform (HCP).Teamed with a business flow framework optimized for a hotel and each of its departments, this HCP provides a holistic approach to reduce the number of communication devices while expanding communication methods. In doing so, this will further provide transparency and operational efficiency to reduce the friction that exists in serving guests and the operations staff.In addition, this document:Analyzes inherent problems with the current state of hotel communication technologyDiscusses solutions that address those problemsPresents a framework for selecting the appropriate solution given the resources and needs of a given property or property groupProvides a guide on how to engage with vendors to solve communication problems according to the option selected to achieve a version of the HCP.

New Board President Appointed to Lead the HTNG Organization

HTNG ·12 April 2018
CHICAGO -- Floor Bleeker, Chief Information Officer, Movenpick Group, succeeds Monika Nerger, Global Chief Information Officer, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, as President of HTNG.Now that President Nerger has completed her term, Floor Bleeker has been elected by the Board to steer the direction of HTNG with his recent appointment to President.Bleeker has served on HTNG's Board of Governors for over nine years and held the Treasurer position since 2015. Bleeker has nearly two decades of international hospitality technology experience and holds a number of board and advisory positions with other organizations.Commenting on his selection, Bleeker said, "It is an honour and privilege to be appointed President of HTNG. I have worked closely with Monika on the Executive Committee over the last few years and I look forward to continuing her good work, building on her many successes during her time as President."Nerger will remain an active member on the Board. She also serves as the Strategic Advisor for HTNG's Security initiatives. As her term limit was approaching, she said, "It has been nothing short of an immense honor to serve as the President of HTNG. Our association continues to see global growth and a strong commitment by our members to learn from each other, collaborate and create solutions for our industry in a world of increasing technological complexity. I look forward to Floor's leadership and welcome him as the new President of HTNG.""I'm humbled to have had the opportunity to work diligently with both Monika and Floor over the years," said Michael Blake, CEO of HTNG. "Monika's service as Board President really accelerated our organization to new levels and I am confident Floor will only further the direction of HTNG and the industry."Brian Garavuso, Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer, Diamond Resorts International, was elected as Treasurer to fill the vacancy created by Bleeker's appointment.HTNG's Board of Governors consists of 23 CIO-level IT executives from leading hospitality companies around the world. These established experts provide oversight, strategic direction and governance to the association as a whole.About Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG)The premier technology solutions association in the hospitality industry, HTNG is a self-funded, nonprofit organization with members from hospitality companies, technology vendors to hospitality, consultants, media and academic experts. HTNG's members participate in focused workgroups to bring to market open solution sets addressing specific business problems. HTNG fosters the selection and adoption of existing open standards and also develops new open standards to meet the needs of the global hospitality industry.Currently more than 400 corporate and individual members from across this spectrum, including world leading hospitality companies and technology vendors, are active HTNG participants. HTNG's Board of Governors, consisting of 23 top IT leaders from hospitality companies around the world, itself has technology responsibility for over 2.5 million guest rooms and world-leading venues. HTNG publishes workgroup proceedings, drafts and specifications for all HTNG members as soon as they are created, encouraging rapid and broad adoption. HTNG releases specifications into the public domain as soon as they are ratified by the workgroups. For more information, visit www.htng.org.

Three New Members Join HTNG's Board of Governors

HTNG · 4 April 2018
Marwan Al Ali is the group chief information officer of Jumeirah Group, a global luxury hospitality company and a member of Dubai Holding. Marwan's responsibilities range from being a business enabler, deploying IT cross-functional solutions with a special focus on innovative strategies and driving business profitability with customer centricity.Brian Kirkland is the chief technology officer for Choice Hotels International, Inc., one of the world's largest hotel companies. In this role, he oversees the company's information technology organization, and is responsible for leading overall IT strategy, infrastructure and development, all aligning with Choice's business objectives.Yvette Vincent serves as Delaware North's first-ever chief technology officer, a position based at the company's global headquarters in Buffalo, N.Y. As CTO, Yvette is responsible for creating the vision, strategy and roadmap for the company's technology platforms including POS, cloud architecture, SOA and DevOps.HTNG's Board of Governors now consists of 23 top IT leaders from hospitality companies around the world. These individuals are responsible for technology in over 2.5 million hotel guest rooms and world-leading hospitality venues.

HTNG Delivers GDPR for Hospitality White Paper

HTNG ·13 March 2018
The GDPR goes into effect on May 25, 2018; at that time, it will replace the EU's earlier Data Protection Directive (1995). This law governing PII will affect global hospitality chains, trading partners and vendors who conduct business within the European region, whether or not they are located in the European region.The executive-level white paper describes key considerations, use cases and impacts of these regulations for the hospitality industry. HTNG's GDPR for Hospitality Workgroup also produced a GDPR assessment tool to help professionals in the industry evaluate their company's ability to comply with the new regulation.Over 50 companies participated in HTNG's GDPR for Hospitality Workgroup. The group was led by Co-chairs John Bell of Ajontech, Chris Farrar of DOCOMO interTouch, Daniel Johnson of VENZA and Richard Sheinis of Hall Booth Smith, P.C.The GDPR for Hospitality White Paper and Self-Assessment can be downloaded under the "Applicable to most software systems" section on HTNG's Technical Specifications page.

HTNG Announces Companies Attending the Upcoming Middle East Conference

HTNG · 9 January 2018
Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG) announces companies registered to attend this year's Middle East Conference on 23-24 January at the Jumeirah Mina A'Salam, Dubai.Companies in attendance include*:AccorHotelsAlcatel-Lucent EnterpriseAmadeusAruba NetworksAssa Abloy HospitalityBeldenCalixdailypointDanmagiDeloitteDubai Parks & ResortsE. Horner & Associates Pty LtdElfiq NetworksELKO EPEmirates Academy of Hospitality Management (EAHM)EnseoExterityGlion Institute of Higher EducationGuestTekHFTPHospitality & Retail Systems (HRS)Hospitality Technology ConsultingHospitality Technology Network, LLCHotel News Middle EastHyatt Hotels CorporationIBM CorporationIkusiiLumioIntelityJumeirah GroupJungKathrein Solutions GmbHKempinski HotelsKerzner International Resorts Inc.KNX AssociationLUX* Resortsm3connect GmbHMandarin Oriental Hotel GroupMarriott InternationalMCOMSMesserschmitt Systems AGMitel Connected GuestsMovenpick Hotels & ResortsNeorchaOtrumPassmanPrologic FirstPwCRadisson Blue Edwardian HotelsRotana Hotels Management CorporationRuckus Wireless, Inc.SabreSalto SystemsSamsotechTelevesThe Conceptual GroupTravTalk Middle EastUbiq Global SolutionsWillard Solutions InternationalXn Protel Systems*list as-of 3 January, 2018Conference registration is open to any full-time employee of a company who owns, manages or franchises a hotel. For all other industry participants, HTNG membership is required. Technology providers, consultants and others who are not HTNG members should check with HTNG's Membership Department to ensure eligibility.Registration and more information for the 2018 HTNG Middle East Conference can be found here.

2018 Middle East Hospitality Tech Trends to be Showcased at Upcoming HTNG Event

HTNG ·14 December 2017
Along with informative and engaging sessions, HTNG conferences provide a plethora of networking opportunities with local, regional and global industry experts. HTNG's seventh Middle East Conference in Dubai will take place at the Jumeirah Mina A'Salam from 23-24 January 2018.The event will include the following sessions:Blockchain and Hospitality - With the concept of blockchain arising across many industries, it is critical for hospitality professionals to have a basic knowledge framework for understanding blockchain, separating fact from hype and assessing where blockchain can be applicable in hospitality. Learn from Blockchain Consultant, Jessica Houlgrave, about the basics of blockchain technology at a strategic level, with guidance on key variations and the applications where they may make sense.VAT Implementation in the Middle East - The VAT implementation will affect all companies in the region and is an important shift for everyone. Kate Bacon, Deloitte, will help the audience discover helpful tips on how to ensure your company complies with these new obligations both inside and outside of the hospitality sector.The AI Age: How Will Machine Learning and Intelligence Impact Travel and Hospitality? - We see AI and machine learning rapidly developing in the hospitality industry with the use of voice commands, chatbots, robotics and more. Kanishka Agiwal, IBM Corporation, will provide a glimpse into the near future and explore how it will affect our industry.Are You Ready for GDPR? - Global hospitality chains, trading partners and vendors who conduct business within the European region need to navigate to the pitfalls associated with compliance to these updated laws. Richard Chudzynski and Matthew White of PwC will help your company make sure you're ready to properly abide by this regulation.Other sessions topics include:Aligning HTNG with Industry PrioritiesCase Study: Using AI and Machine Learning to Improve Guest and Employee ExperienceGDPR Drill Down and Q&AIT Leadership PanelReinvigorate Your Executive CommitteeOther conference speakers include:Marwan Al Ali, Group CIO, Jumeirah GroupWillem Both, Executive Vice President IT, Kerzner Inernational Resorts inc.John Burns, President, Hospitality Technology ConsultingCraig Cochrane, SVP Human Resources, Movenpick Hotels & ResortsAlexander Lee, SVP - Marketing, Revenue Management, Distribution, Jumeirah GroupMichael Mrini, Director of Information Technology, Edwardian Hotels LondonJoe Tesfai, Corporate Director of IT, Dubai Parks & ResortsAleksandra Wozniak, Digital Content Assistant Manager, Movenpick Hotels & ResortsConference registration is open to any full-tim employee of a company who owns, manages or franchises a hotel or hospitality venue. For all other industry participants, HTNG membership is required.For registration or for more information on the conference, please visit: http://www.htng.org/MiddleEastFor HTNG membership information or sponsorship opportunities, please contact membership@htng.org

The open truth about APIs

HTNG ·By Armand Rabinowitz
The API is the unit that allows platforms to exist, and the single most important ingredient to allow a technical ecosystem to thrive. Yet they are not transparent. HTNG's Armand Rabinowitz describes an initiative to change this. As he puts it: It's all about the power of a community working together to get something done.

HTNG announces Blockchain for Hospitality Workgroup to start 11/30

HTNG ·22 November 2017
HTNG has launched a new workgroup to identify a basic knowledge framework for understanding blockchain and assessing where blockchain can be applicable in hospitality.Blockchain involves growing lists or records which are connected and secured to one another through cryptography. The transparency and inability to corrupt the chain is what makes the model so appealing to the public today. The hospitality industry has limited knowledge of blockchain technologies, including the technical capabilities, the variations in form, the governance models, the use cases and where it may or may not provide value to hospitality enterprises.The Blockchain for Hospitality Workgroup will construct a basic framework for understanding blockchain, separating fact from hype and evaluating where in hospitality blockchain is applicable. The workgroup will work in two phases to first develop an educational white paper and then create a webinar series and an online registry.The kickoff teleconference for Blockchain for Hospitality will be held on November 30, 2017 at 10:00 CST. To sign up, HTNG members can click the button below and log-in to join.

Compelling Topics at Upcoming HTNG European Conference

HTNG ·12 October 2017
HTNG announces session information and speakers for next month's 2017 European Conference on 7-9 November in Prague.The first two days of the conference will be filled with general sessions and concurrent breakout sessions. On the third day, the agenda will conclude with hoteliers-only sessions. HTNG conferences deliver programs that keep attendees up-to-date on emerging technology issues and trends in hospitality. This conference will provide knowledge, collaboration, networking and business development opportunities to a wide range of industry professionals.Keynote Speaker: Ben Ryan, Coach, Fiji Rugby SevensAttaining Optimal Performance Through People and Technology: Ben Ryan has been hailed as a national hero after leading the Fiji Rugby 7s team to the country's first Olympic championship. He pioneered use of GPS technology in team sports, but was challenged when he went to the Fiji programme and had no technology to work with. This session will explain how using the proper tools in coaching teams can be the difference between success and failure. Ben will share with the audience his stories and experiences to illustrate how to use innovation successfully rather than simply innovating for the sake of it.Session Topics:The AI Age: How Will Machine Learning and Intelligence Impact Travel and Hospitality? In this age of AI, computing power has caught up with our vision and is now becoming reality. Kanishka Agiwal, IBM Corporation, will give the audience a glimpse into the new future and how it will affect our industry.All Systems Go: Hotel Systems Dashboards: Graeme Powell, Veridicum, will teach valuable insights of dashboards that could be integrated into a product roadmap today.Are You Ready for GDPR? Charles-Albert Helleputte, Mayer-Brown Europe, will provide a high-level overview of the new regulation and the later session GDPR: Discussion and Drill Down will answer questions and dig deeper into the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).Blockchain and Hospitality: This session will cover the basics of blockchain technology at a strategic level, with guidance on key variations and the applications where they make sense.Blockchain Use Cases Deep Dive: In this session, speakers will explore blockchain use cases being addressed by Winding Tree (distribution) and Currency Alliance (loyalty).Enhancing the Guest Experience with Central Authentication: Chris Headings, Sunray, will explain how to deploy centralized authentication to hotels, while maintaining security best practices and leveraging the infrastructure already owned.How to Get Started with Blockchain: This session is targeted at front-line leaders of development organizations to provide tips and tricks for key decisions to make, what resources are available and common pitfalls.How Virtual and Augmented Reality Will Change Loyalty & Engagement for Hospitality: Chris Ruff, Glympse, will discuss how hotel brands can use AR and VR technologies to increase brand loyalty and why it's important to implement them to differentiate themselves.Innovation Through Accelerators: This session will discuss the trend of innovation, how it is considered a key factor of future success and how companies struggle with agility, risk taking and the frequent failures that are inevitable.IT Leadership Panel: Top-level hotel IT executives will share how they see technology evolving in hotels in the coming years.Know Thy Enemy: Utilizing Machine Learning for Adaptive Security: Dobias van Ingen, Aruba Networks, will teach the audience how continuous evaluation of threats against your hotel, brand and company through machine learning can keep your guests, staff and data safe.Additional Conference Speakers:Denis Baranov, DataArtFloor Bleeker, Movenpick Hotels & ResortsMarco Correia, Belmond HotelsCharles Ehredt, Currency AllianceTed Horner, E. Horner & Associates Pty LtdYves Lacheret, AccorHotelsJens Lapinski, TechstarsBrian Lewis, OpenJaw Technologies LtdDouglas Rice, Hospitality Technology Network, LLCAndrew Sanders, DataArtFinn Schulz, Schulz ConsultingJakub Vysoky, Winding TreeFor a full agenda and up-to-date list of speakers, please visit the HTNG European Conference page.Conference registration is open to any full-time employee of a company who owns, manages or franchises a hotel or hospitality company. For all other industry participants, HTNG membership is required.

GDPR for hospitality workgroup to start at HTNG

HTNG ·25 September 2017
HTNG's GDPR for Hospitality Workgroup will produce an executive-level white paper to describe key considerations, use cases and impacts of these regulations. This paper will focus on top areas the hospitality industry must address in order to prepare for GDPR compliance (and vendor support of those use cases). Additionally, the workgroup will produce a GDPR assessment tool that will help professionals in the hospitality industry evaluate their company's ability to comply with the new regulation.For questions or for more information, please contact workgroups@htng.org.

Introducing Business Analytics Transactional Extract and Voice Integration Workgroups at HTNG

HTNG · 9 August 2017
The lack of consistency in exporting valuable data from property management systems, will be addressed by HTNG's Business Analytics Transactional Extract Workgroup. This group will develop a standard Extract, Transform and Load (ETL) target to enable analytics to be performed on transactional detail data versus aggregate summary data.Members will do this by defining and establishing a specification for extraction of raw transactional data based on common information needed for business analytics as well as defining the name spaces and format required for sharing the information with analytics platforms.The Voice Interaction Framework Workgroup identifies an inconsistency in how to deploy emerging voice control devices in the guest room. The Voice Interaction Framework Workgroup will reduce the guest's learning curve when they utilize voice commands within their room.Members of this group will develop a framework of use-cases and related voice commands and outline a process for educating guests. They will also identify gaps in the natural language processing platform that consumer device manufacturers have providing this service as part of a hotel stay experience.The kickoff teleconference for Business Analytics Transactional Extract will be held on August 10, 2017 at 9:30 a.m. CDT. The kickoff teleconference for Voice Interaction Framework will be held on August 8, 2017 at 9:00 a.m. CDT.To sign up, HTNG members can visit the Business Analytics Transactional Extract Workgroup or the Voice Interaction Framework Workgroup and log-in to join.For questions or for more information, please contact workgroups@htng.org.

New Board Member Expands Direction of HTNG

HTNG · 1 August 2017
Bill Martin, CIO of AEG, has been elected to HTNG's Board of Governors, strengthening the direction of the organization's hospitality expansion.HTNG recently announced their name change from Hotel Technology Next Generation to Hospitality Technology Next Generation to signal expansion into other hospitality verticals. Bill's addition to the Board will provide vast insight and jump-start HTNG's growth into large sport and entertainment venues.As the CIO of AEG, the world's leading sports and live entertainment company, Bill oversees technology strategy and execution for the company's business units: AEG Facilities, which is affiliated with or owns, manages or consults with more than 120 preeminent venues in the world including The O2 Arena, the Sprint Center and the Mercedes-Benz Arenas; AEG Presents, which is dedicated to all aspects of live contemporary music performances; AEG Real Estate, which develops world-class venues, as well as major sports and entertainment districts like STAPLES Center and L.A. LIVE; AEG Sports, which is the world's largest operator of sports franchises and high-profile sporting events; and AEG Global Partnerships, which oversees worldwide sales and servicing of sponsorships including naming rights, premium seating and other strategic partnerships. Prior to AEG, Bill was the long-running CIO at Royal Caribbean Cruises, where the IT team was regularly recognized for innovation excellence. Bill has been recognized as a "Top Ten Breakaway Leader" at the Global CIO Executive Summit, was a founding member of the Florida CIO Summit, is a governing body member of the Southern California CIO Summit and is on the editorial advisory board for InformationWeek.HTNG's Board of Governors is the key direction-setting body for the organization. With Bill's addition, the Board now consists of 23 CIO-level IT executives from many world-leading hospitality groups.

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