The digital transformation process will have a dramatic impact on the employee and customer experience.

Several reports and studies indicate that somewhere between 90 – 97 percentages of leaders told that COVID-19 has sped up their digital transformation.

What is digital transformation?

Transformation by itself is defined as a dramatic change in character or conditions.

Digital transformation is the cultural, organizational, and operational change of hotels through smart integration of digital technologies, processes, and competencies across all levels and functions in a strategic way.

And one critical component in context with digital transformation is how markets have evolved today as a result of the COVID-1 pandemic.

Consumers today are looking for brands to lead the way and they want brands to create change with them, not just for them.

Whether your hotel is looking to identify new laborers or market segments it is critical to understand the principles of digital transformation today.

Digital transformation is a shift towards value innovation and a growth mindset

For a period digital transformation has been seen as a disruption for many hotels, and there has been some hesitation to adapt to new technology.

Fast forward-looking to the reality today COVID-19 has disrupted all the traditional hotel processes.

Hotels are today forced to look at alternative solutions if they want to survive.

Hotels need to understand that digital transformation is not just about disruption or technology. It’s about value innovation, a growth mindset, people, optimization, and the capability to rapidly adapt when such is needed through smarter use of technologies and information.

Value innovation is a process in where a hotel introduces new technologies or upgrades that are designed to achieve both product differentiation and low costs. The goal of value innovation is to create a leap in value for employees, consumers, and the hotel brand.

With a focus on a growth transformation mindset, hotels will discover the real benefits of value innovation.

A growth transformation mindset;

  • This leads to a desire to learn and develop themselves
  • Embrace challenges
  • See effort as an important part of the process
  • Learn from feedback
  • Find lessons and inspirations in the success of others

Co-creating your hotel digital transformation process with employees

A digital transformation process today represents a cultural change.

Today hotels need to adapt to a new reality that is better prepared for new unknown challenges and that builds around a positive and high-value employee experience.

The digital transformation process is a unique opportunity for hotels to co-create a new and bright future with employees.

We know that higher wages are necessary for many hotels that are stuck in a vicious cycle of labor challenges, high turnovers, bad operations, bad customer service, low productivity, and high costs.

But higher wages alone are not enough to break this vicious cycle. Unless accompanied by a smarter digital transformation process, higher wages will likely reduce a hotel’s revenue and will not resolve any of the current challenges.

Co-creating your hotel’s digital transformation process with employees is an essential success factor. Studies and research have shown that brands that did not include employees in the process either failed or had a low success rate.

Some brands have co-created the digital transformation process both with employees and customers.

Using co-creation as a tool to facilitate digital transformation results in:

  • Alternative and personalized employee experiences and the ability to activate your hotel employees in new ways
  • Great ideas and key insights to stay competitive and tap into new market segments in a volatile environment
  • Employee buy-in during a period of accelerated change

Co-creation and the customer

An important principle of co-creation is to build relationships and make friends first. This part of the process starts with your hotel’s employees. That way your hotel is ready to meet and greet your customers in new ways.

It is key that hotels start to use the high-value resource as an employee to understand the importance of building a tribe that will grow a high-value community with a large network. The community will drive a positive reputation for the hotel which they will share with their network.

A shared discussion between employees and customers at scale produces valuable insights. This is a unique way to work with your customers.

Focus on an inclusive and diversified co-creation process.

Through the co-creation process, your hotel will meet customers at scale. It is important to structure the process together with employees to address a topic and co-create a solution.

  • Participation – target and identify the audience most relevant to the topic.
  • Involvement – select participants based on inclusiveness, diversity, and different experiences. This will help ensure a comprehensive and unbiased perspective.
  • Transparency – be transparent with your hotel’s intentions. Communicate how outcomes will be used to shape new solutions.

Learn and help learn

Today we are in a situation where every day presents itself with an opportunity to make a difference.

The digital transformation process is a new unique way for hotels to identify these opportunities.

Hotels today have to seek out new alternative solutions that focus on employees, customers, the local community in context with the hotel.

Throughout the process, hotels have to focus on learning and help employees and customers to learn.

  • Identify key values that inspire employees
  • Identify key values that inspire customers
  • How do you use digital tools for communication with employees?
  • How do you use digital tools for communication with customers?
  • What type of opportunities will digital transformation provide for employees?
  • What type of opportunities will digital transformation provide for customers?
  • How can your hotel help employees feel more empowered?
  • How can your hotel help customers feel more empowered?

This is a process where your hotel creates more “can-do” employees that will turn into active hotel advocates.

Through positive “can-do” employee experiences your hotel will have created a new unique tribe that holds the key to activating and reaching potential new employees.

In addition, you will have a team that will provide new insight to help your hotel stay competitive and tap into the new uncontested markets in challenging times.

A transformation process in itself represents a dramatic change in condition and character. COVID-19 represents a dramatic change in condition and character.

A digital transformation process is a new way to adapt and provide alternative solutions that represent a new culture that better adjusts to a new reality and is better prepared for new unknown challenges.

Ready to take your digital transformation plan to a new level?

Hire a digital hotel advocate for a new bright future!

Contact Are Morch – Digital Transformation Coach today!

Related article: The Ultimate Digital Transformation Plan That Will Rescue Any Hotel

We are in this together!

I need to let you all know that we are in on this together.  If you need to vent, talk, cry, or just have some to talk with, I am here listening. Since I am working part-time at the local Kroger, I will best work it out around my schedule to the best of my ability.

But you can reach me here:


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We will get through this unprecedented event together! #hotelstrong #hospitalitystrong

For any specific information on COVID-19, I recommend going to CDCWHOAHLAAAHOA, and HSMAI. Also, follow information from your local authorities.


We are starting to reopen some hotels again (Yay!!!). Make sure you follow their guidelines and say THANK YOU to those that now show a unique spirit to serve, and help us all get through this!! #hotelstrong #hospitalitystrong

About Are Morch

Hi, I am Are Morch. Your Digital Transformation Coach helps hotels create unique and unexpected experiences by freeing up resources to focus on new ideas through value innovation and a growth mindset.

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