Softbank-backed hotel chain OYO has been digitising records of guests staying at its hotels. The digital record system will have the real-time update, including arrival and departure, of the visitor. The system also helps direct sharing of its customers’ data with state governments.
The new process will be more efficient and transparent against manual version, said Aditya Ghosh chief executive officer of India and South Asia at OYO.
The company equips hotel manager or the receptionist with an app, which captures guest details and photos and shares them with the authorities.
OYO has already put in place this digital register in Jaipur. Budget hotel firm has claimed to get acceptance from three states Rajasthan, Haryana, and Telangana. It has been running pilots in Haryana and Telangana.
The company objective is to reduce any scope for manipulation or missing information and is, therefore, an improvement over the existing manual version, it said in an e-mail response to Entrackr.
“Personal data and privacy is core to our guest experience at OYO. Current methods of collecting guest data for the purpose of maintaining the arrival-departure register in any hotel in India is a mandatory requirement under the law and is cumbersome and generally perceived with a risk of tampering. We once again would like to clarify that no department has access to guest information until required by law and is kept safe and secure,” said Aditya Ghosh, CEO, India & South Asia.
Besides, it is planning a centre of excellence for training and capacity building in Kolkata by the end of 2019.
Of late, OYO has been on an aggressive mode in terms of expansion. After launching in six countries including China, Dubai, UK, Indonesia amongst others, the SoftBank-backed company has launched its services in Spain and Portugal in December.
OYO wants to topple Marriott (with 1.4 million rooms a day) to become the world’s largest chain globally in the next two years. India still remains its top consolidated revenue earner with 450k room inventory. The firm claims to add 64,000 rooms every month globally.
In last few weeks, OYO has been facing protests from hoteliers for offering exorbitant commission, deep discounting as well as frequent changes in contracts. It charges 40 per cent franchise fee, alleged hotels.
However, OYO denied allegations made by hotels. It said the company determines price through the dynamic pricing mechanism. It has warned strict legal action for breach of contract against any hotel on its platform that boycotts bookings.
Update: The post has been updated with OYO response.