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Hilton Gets Personal

The hotelier's new OnQ platform will help it personalize service throughout its nine brands.
Hilton Hotels Corp. is getting closer to its customers. The company said Thursday it has installed a new proprietary technology platform that will let it store and retrieve customer data from across the company in real time, creating an environment of personalized service across its nine hotel brands, which include Hilton, DoubleTree, Embassy Suites, and Hampton Inn.

The program, dubbed OnQ, cost the hotel chain $50 million. OnQ creates a Guest Profile Manager for frequent guests based on information a guest provides to the company via hotel or central reservations, Hilton Family of Hotels Web sites, or through Hilton HHonors membership. The profile data will be combined with information about previous guest stays--such as consistent requests for a king-sized bed and a nonsmoking room--so that front-desk employees can recognize guests at check-in and provide more personalized service.

The information is presented on a computer screen to the check-in or customer-service agent via a Microsoft Windows screen. The employee is prompted to proactively offer services that the customer usually asks for, which should help increase customer loyalty, Hilton CIO Tim Harvey said in a statement.

The technology platform also integrates all of the primary functions of a hotel, including front office, housekeeping, accounting, finance, human resources, night audit, groups and packages, revenue management, and forecast management. That lets hotel management forecast business trends and make market-driven business decisions based on revenue-maximization tools built into the system.