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Updates from Avondata and the hospitality technology sector

Meet our new implementations manager, Rochelle D’souza

We’re thrilled to have recently welcomed our new implementations manager Rochelle D’souza to the Avondata team. Now firmly ensconced in her role, we caught up with her to find out how she’s been getting on.

Can you give us an insight into some of your responsibilities as implementations manager?

 From the point that the sale of our software to a new hotel goes through, during the implementation and until about three months into the relationship, I am the main point of contact for our customers.

I liaise with the new customers to make sure that everything is progressing smoothly, to answer any questions and provide additional support where required, and to ensure that we deliver a system that works as per the hotel’s specific requirements and expectations.

What does your average day look like?

 In this role I am finding that every day is very different! Fundamentally, the day is organised around support calls with our customers.

These calls might involve liaising with customers ahead of their installation and pre-empting their needs before the installers visit their hotel, or it might be to provide customers with specific support relating to tariff matrixes, Staah products or SiteMinder, for example.

How has your background in hospitality helped you in this role?

 I previously worked in hotels in various front-facing roles, including reception manager and as revenue manager, using Avondata’s Hotel Executive system daily for about four and a half years, so I understand our customers’ needs very well!

My roles meant I had a great deal of insight into the operational side of managing the system and I learned so much about it. This has evidently put me in a strong position as implementations manager at Avondata given I am already familiar with how it works. I think it means I can provide our customers with a high level of support from the outset of our relationship with them.

How are you finding being part of the Avondata team?

 Amazing! I’m really enjoying being part of such a strong team. It’s a busy environment but we always work closely and I love a challenge – the day gets better when it’s more challenging!

Where do you think the hospitality industry is headed in terms of technology?

 There is no doubt that technology has become hugely important to the industry; without it, front of house management and tasks have to be done manually which is time-consuming and painful, and often leaves room for error.

We now have such a range of powerful tools at our fingertips to streamline hotel management processes and to allow hoteliers and their staff to focus on driving bookings and bringing in revenue.

However, it’s imperative that these technological developments keep up with the ever-changing requirements of the industry as well as the evolving expectations of guests. The industry needs to be supported by high-tech systems that can provide support with every business function from accounting and marketing, to guest engagement and channel management.

But hotels also need to be able to meet the expectations of the guests in this digitised world, whether this be with voice-activated room controls, chatbots for answering queries or using AI to provide personalised booking experiences. It’ll certainly be interesting to see the technological developments made in this sector over the next few years!

Welcome to the team Rochelle!