Working With Robots in the Hospitality Industry

Technology has steadily advanced over the years, and there is no sign of it slowing down. Having knowledge of modern technology is a must have for your everyday life, and for most jobs in any industry. With all of the technological advances, all I ever hear is the fear that someday robots will take over most jobs and leave workers jobless because they can not compete. In my opinion, this is not entirely true or false. I do believe that there’s no stopping robots from entering every field, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they are here to take over.
I will be mainly focusing on the hospitality industry because that is my field of study. Recently there have been reports of hotels introducing human working with robots. Of course at first I was a little worried, I mean why would I continue my education if in the future I will no longer be needed? After all, I am not programed to never make a mistake. But, after giving it much thought I realized that robots can actually enhance customer service! Instead of being fearful that I am going to lose my career, I began to actually love the idea!

Having robots in the hospitality industry will not necessarily take away all human interaction. I mean let’s face it, there are some days that you wake up and you haven’t had your morning coffee yet and you refuse to speak to anyone, and then there are some days that you are in dire need of human interaction, even if its striking up a conversation in the fast food drive through. Let me give you another example. Have you ever had a problem with your cable service and had to make that dreaded phone call? If you are anything like me, the worst thing about these phone calls are the automated services. I have to repeat myself multiple times so I usually end up pressing “0” until I can finally speak to someone who can help me with my problems. This is very similar to how I see robots entering the hospitality industry. I believe their sole purpose will be to take care of mindless task such as delivering more towels to room 215, or making sure that room 350 has the crib that the guest requested before their stay, while we focus on customer service. If you think about it, this will give the front desk agents more time to interact with their guest and make sure their stay is nothing less than perfect. I compare this to the automated service that is prompted as soon as I make a phone call to my cable company because if robots take care of task compared to the ones the automated services do, like making a payment with a saved credit card, or checking the hours of operation, it will give more time to the customers that actually need to speak with someone.

Now let’s look at an example of robots entering the restaurant industry. Can you imagine how much more efficient the service will be if you had a robot run the extra ranch that the guest requested to table 7, or refilled the sweet tea on table 23? Just think of how much extra time that will give the server to actually connect with the guests at their tables. Also, servers can make Paul’s 10th birthday even more spectacular by taking the time to not only wish him a happy birthday, but also sing to him and not feel rushed, or that they are taking time away from other tables!

My point is, we need to look at the positive side of having robots working beside us. Human interaction is still very much valued, and I do not see it going anywhere. Instead of being fearful that robots are going to take over, we need to welcome them to our team and work together to provide the best experience possible for our guest.