The Hospitality Show: Q&A with IDeaS’ Mike Chuma

The first of its kind, The Hospitality Show is a new event for the entire hospitality ecosystem with one shared goal: operating hotels efficiently and profitably. Brought to you by The American Hotel & Lodging Association and Hotel Management, the event brought together top industry leaders, senior executives of hotel brands, owners, operators, management companies and procurement specialists—and their teams—to discover, network and drive profitability.

Business accelerates when the right people are in the room, and this series of speaker interviews goes 1:1 with the industry’s best and brightest. In this installment, we catch up with The Hospitality Show Speaker IDeaS’ Mike Chuma.

What new trends do you see affecting the hospitality industry the most in 2023?  

Chuma: Shifting travel demographics. For example, bleisure segment is sizeable. Travelers who intend to work while traveling plan on taking 2x times the number of trips than they would if not planning to work away from home. Eighty-two percent of bleisure travelers choose to stay in their current accommodation rather than change between leisure and business. This means longer-travel trips and mean hoteliers must reassess where their market mix is coming from. Many of the big brands are betting on this segment, Marriott, Hilton and Hyatt have all announced new brands in the extended stay segment in recent months.

Artificial intelligence and how it will drive changes across the hospitality sector. Generative AI has become buzzy recently across all sectors, especially in hospitality.  Organizations have been using AI models for a long-while, such as in analytics and revenue management, but generative changes the model of how people – guests, on-property worker or corporate workers- interact.  This will be a quite transformational time and will accelerate the rate of change in hospitality.  

What do you see as the biggest opportunities for the industry as we make our way through 2023? 

Chuma: Digitization. The greatest opportunity for hotels today is to leverage the digital data being collected from guests around the world. The hotels that lead the ways are going to be the ones that know how to leverage the millions and millions of datapoints that are being collected, incorporate that into their decision-making and automate the decisions as they market, distribute, price, and sell.

Profit Optimization. The amount of tech spending in our industry over the last few years is at record levels. For instance, here at IDeaS, we have all had to unlearn what we thought revenue management should look like. Profit has become the target. Profit optimization is a significant opportunity for hospitality leaders. Understanding and better managing your revenue streams, cost factors, channel costs and profit margins will lead to increased asset values, and strong returns for franchisees and shareholders. And its all possible now with the right data and technology. 

What solutions or tools did you share at The Hospitality Show?

Chuma: We showcased IDeaS G3 RMS, the industry’s prevalent revenue management system. Powered by superior SAS analytics, it automatically determines your optimal pricing for all products by room type by uniquely considering demand profiles, competitors’ influence, and their impact on other products. Together with pricing, G3 RMS sets rate restrictions and overbooking controls to maximize your profitability and increase business impact.

Before The Show, we were excited to announce an industry first enhancement to our flagship revenue management system, IDeaS G3 RMS. With Independent Products, hoteliers can now capitalize on the unique demand patterns of all key base products and capture the most valuable bookings. 

Extended stay properties, for example, previously had to use a complex web of rules and manual rate management to manage long stay business. Both often costing hotels money. Now with Independent Products, those extended stay properties can now choose to dynamically price their daily rates as well as rates for weekly, monthly and other defined lengths of stay. Allowing them to maximize revenue from key long stay business. 

What is your company doing to improve hotel profitability for owners and operators?

Chuma: Maximize returns from each guest: Use price and inventory management backed by advanced analytics to ensure the offers or price presented to every type of guest is profit optimized. 

Realize profit potential of meeting space: Help hotels achieve their profit potential from their meeting space by automatically forecasting and pricing groups and event business based on the total profitability of each group for each date and property in their portfolio. In fact, Loews Hotels using IDeaS Function Space Revenue Management module realized their highest catering revenues in company history, coming in at 26.5 percent over 2019.

Planning operations more cost-effectively: Hotels can now quickly and confidently gain insights into future performance and improve resource planning by forecasting all revenue streams as effectively as they do rooms. 

What were a few highlights of The Hospitality Show? 

Chuma: Connecting and sharing insights with the leading minds in the hotel industry. I was excited to join some of my peers with Jordan Hollander in a panel discussion on “How Hotel Operators Can Leverage AI Across Hotel Departments.“