CHARLESTON, South Carolina—Hospitality management company Charlestowne Hotels is investing in technology solutions that support streamlined operations and enhance the guest experience across its growing portfolio of hotels.
Charlestowne’s latest tech investments provide the infrastructure necessary to manage over 50 hotels from one central hub while strengthening the framework for a number of the company’s disciplines, including marketing services, revenue management, strategic operations, and food and beverage management. Supporting the company’s approach to full-service management, these cross-functional tech solutions enable Charlestowne to use real-time data integration and analytics to forecast and guide strategy for each individual property and market.
Each investment was also evaluated by Charlestowne’s in-house technology team to determine if they would further support the company’s commitment to guest services. Charestowne’s technology objective is to streamline back-end operations for staff to ensure their time is spent on building guest relationships and developing personal touch points rather than managing protocols and processes.
“This past year, technical creative problem solving has been at the heart of our efforts and plays an essential role in our model for success,” says Maxwell Spangler, corporate technology and systems manager at Charlestowne Hotels. “While these efforts were in play well before the recent developments with the labor market, they’ve never been more valuable. It was our priority to identify efficiencies and new technologies that arm our hotel teams with a spectrum of platforms to help them work more efficiently.”
To support corporate and on-site operations teams, Charlestowne has introduced a budgeting and forecasting tool. The platform provides a performance module and features real-time labor insights from its payroll system and an analytics dashboard to provide visibility into hotel performance, resulting in insights and control over the business.
The management company also recently integrated a property inspection platform to perform a variety of operations-based audits, facilitating quality assurance inspections from property inspections to food presentation and brand standards. The platform allows the on-site teams to provide instant feedback to the Charlestowne corporate office, delivering a view of the facility and operations beyond its initial customer feedback.
The in-house corporate marketing team has developed a project management platform to streamline internal communication and provide campaign management. The platform has been further refined to provide teams with visibility on campaign analytics, the status of all marketing projects, overall complexity, and estimated turnaround time for completion. The use of this platform over the past two years has allowed the marketing team to increase collaboration and output while elevating creative and brand standards.
Food and Beverage
Charlestowne’s food and beverage division is growing. As a result, the management company has implemented a new food and beverage CRM to integrate data into hotel PMS and CRM systems, allowing individual properties to pivot and change menu items as needed while still maintaining design and brand consistency.
To further support the development of a stronger, more collaborative food and beverage culture, the new food and beverage knowledge base platform grants Charlestowne access to key resources and information.
“It’s important to recognize that hotel technology has an incredible effect on the overall guest experience,” says Spangler. “By continuing to integrate new technological solutions at our properties, we’re keeping our customers at the center of everything we do. This includes implementation of our zero-trust security policy, in-house SMS notification platform to dispatch internal communications, as well as hotel-specific technologies that are standard in the world of COVID-19—such as QR codes, cashless tipping applications, mobile-key, or self-service kiosks.”
Looking ahead, Charlestowne Hotels has announced the planned development of a revenue management solution that will deliver information needed to make inventory-related pricing decisions. The learnings gained from the platform will generate additional insights, which support company growth and owner profitability.