Could hotel service robots help the hospitality industry after COVID-19?

A new research study, investigating how service robots in hotels could help redefine leadership and boost the hospitality industry, has taken on new significance in the light of the seismic impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on tourism and hospitality.
6-May-2020 3:55 PM EDT, by University of Surrey

Newswise — Lead author Dr Tracy Xu, Lecturer in Hospitality at The University of Surrey's world-renowned School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, has had her paper published in the International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management. The research behind the paper involved speaking to 19 hotel HR experts to identify the key trends and major challenges that will emerge in the next ten years and how leaders should deal with the challenges brought about by service robot technologies.

Results showed that while service robots are anticipated to increase efficiency and productivity of hotel activities, they may also pose challenges such as high costs, skill deficits and significant changes to the organizational structure and culture of hotels. Therefore, the anticipated applications and integration of robotic technology will require leaders of the future to carefully consider the balance between the roles of service robots and human employees in the guest experience and to nurture a work environment that embraces open-mindedness and change.

The project finished in March 2020 just as COVID-19 broke out and as the virus rendered non-essential travel impossible, most hotels around the globe are feeling a catastrophic economic impact. There is now even more interest in developing innovative ways of deploying service robots across all economic sectors to limit human interaction. Considering the current pandemic, many industries are having to reinvent processes and systems to cope with a new isolated way of life. Robotic interaction in hotels could facilitate more socially distanced models of operation to enable a safer and faster reopening and recovery of some hotels.

Dr Xu said: "Application of service robots in the hotel industry is on the rise. With the added factor of a need to reassure potential guests that their stays will be compatible with minimised social contact and human interaction, this process could be accelarated. During the lockdown period it is likely that hotel managers will be planning for a 'fresh start' in the recovery and rebuilding period after the social isolation restrictions have been lifted and this is predicted to have a positive stimulus on the adoption of service robots.

"The anticipated applications and integration of robotic technology will require leaders of the future to carefully consider the balance between the roles of service robots and human employees in the guest experience and to nurture a work environment that embraces open-mindedness and change."

Dr Xu was joined in her research by fellow Surrey colleague Mark Ashton, Teaching Fellow, and Jason Stienmetz, Assistant Professor at MODUL University Vienna.

Mr Ashton said: "This is the first type of study to examine hospitality leadership and human resource management in the context of robotized hotels and at a time where hotels seem to need it most. Forward-thinking businesses who are proactively prepared for the introduction of these exciting new technologies will benefit in the long term."

###

SEE ORIGINAL STUDY




Filters close

Showing results

110 of 5419
Released: 15-Apr-2021 4:10 PM EDT
Penn Study Suggests Those Who Had COVID-19 May Only Need One Vaccine Dose
Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

New findings from Penn suggest that people who have recovered from COVID-19 may only need a single mRNA vaccine dose. However, those who did not have COVID-19 did not have a full immune response until after a second vaccine dose, reinforcing the importance of completing the two recommended doses.

Released: 15-Apr-2021 4:00 PM EDT
June 2021 Issue of AJPH Comprises the Effects of COVID-19 on Drug Overdoses, E-cigarette Use, and Public Health Measures and Strategies
American Public Health Association (APHA)

June 2021 AJPH Issue highlights COVID-19 concerns in relation to fatal drug overdoses, drops in youth e-cigarette use, importance of public health measures, and strategies to protect correctional staff.

Newswise: 262150_web.jpg
Released: 15-Apr-2021 3:20 PM EDT
COVID-19 reduces access to opioid dependency treatment for new patients
Princeton University

COVID-19 has been associated with increases in opioid overdose deaths, which may be in part because the pandemic limited access to buprenorphine, a treatment used for opioid dependency, according to a new study led by Princeton University researchers.

Newswise: UGA to Establish National NIH-funded Center to Fight Flu
Released: 15-Apr-2021 2:45 PM EDT
UGA to Establish National NIH-funded Center to Fight Flu
University of Georgia

The National Institutes of Health has awarded the University of Georgia a contract to establish the Center for Influenza Disease and Emergence Research (CIDER). The contract will provide $1 million in first-year funding and is expected to be supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of NIH, for seven years and up to approximately $92 million.

Released: 15-Apr-2021 2:15 PM EDT
Meatpacking plants increased COVID-19 cases in US counties
University of California, Davis

An estimated 334,000 COVID-19 cases are attributable to meatpacking plants, resulting in $11.2 billion in economic damage, according to a new study led by a researcher at the University of California, Davis.

Newswise: 262052_web.jpg
Released: 15-Apr-2021 1:55 PM EDT
How to build a city that prioritizes public health
Colorado State University

Most people by now have memorized the public health guidelines meant to help minimize transmission of COVID-19: wash your hands, wear a mask, keep six feet apart from others. That part is easy.

Released: 15-Apr-2021 1:45 PM EDT
Wake Forest School of Medicine Begins Study to Test New Mask for Healthcare Workers
Wake Forest Baptist Health

Open Standard Industries, Inc. (OSI), manufacturer of the OSR-M1 non-valved reusable elastomeric face mask, is pleased to formally announce the launch of its first Institutional Review Board (IRB)-approved user feasibility study. The trial is being led by the departments of Biomedical Engineering and Infectious Diseases at Wake Forest School of Medicine, part of Wake Forest Baptist Health. Recruitment in the study is underway, and enrollment is expected to be completed by May 28, 2021.

Newswise: Major clinical trial to test Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine opens for enrollment at UTHealth in Houston
Released: 15-Apr-2021 1:45 PM EDT
Major clinical trial to test Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine opens for enrollment at UTHealth in Houston
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

A large national clinical trial to evaluate the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for safety and efficacy in pregnant women is now open for enrollment at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

Released: 15-Apr-2021 1:15 PM EDT
For veterans, a hidden side effect of COVID: Feelings of personal growth
Yale University

The U.S. military veteran population is known to have abnormally high rates of suicide, so health officials have been concerned that the COVID-19 pandemic might elevate risk of psychiatric disorders, particularly among those suffering from post-traumatic stress and related disorders.

Newswise: 262026_web.jpg
Released: 15-Apr-2021 12:55 PM EDT
Significant spread of all coronavirus variants tracked in Houston area
Elsevier

In late 2020, several concerning SARS-CoV-2 variants emerged globally. They are believed to be more easily transmissible, and there is concern that some may reduce the effectiveness of antibody treatments and vaccines.


Showing results

110 of 5419

close
1.2628