Today’s business world is digital. This is true of virtually any aspect of modern organizations, whether that’s serving digital savvy consumers, the importance of digital tools and systems in helping companies run more efficiently and effectively, or in the increasingly data-driven philosophies being used to help companies uncover insights and develop new strategies.
And there is no industry better positioned to capitalize on the benefits of digital-first processes than the travel and hospitality industry. Travel and hospitality in 2020 has capitalized on any number of digital innovations to make its products more appealing to consumers and business partners alike. But due to the outbreak of Covid-19, the need for smart digital transformation strategies is no longer just a nice to have feature. Instead it is becoming essential.
The integration of digital tools and systems into a company’s business culture and processes, often referred to as “digital transformation,” is a process that has any number of benefits. At a time when many consumers are not traveling, companies face difficult decisions about staffing and remote work, and new competitive challenges loom, digital transformation offers an increasingly attractive proposition. It can make these organizations more resilient in the face of unexpected business challenges, help them be more nimble in responding to shifts in demand, provide new insights into company operations and consumers, and even allow them to run more efficiently and save money in the process.
But achieving these digital transformation benefits also requires plenty of work. How can travel businesses ensure they attract and train talent that is fluent in using digital tools and analytical strategies? Which teams or leaders should be tasked with making sure the company is making progress using digital strategies and tools? And what technology and systems, like cloud computing or machine learning, should they adopt in order to make their company more digital ready?
It was with these questions in mind that Skift partnered with Amazon Web Services on a survey investigating the opinions of travel industry executives worldwide on the topic of digital transformation. Close to 1,000 respondents participated in the research, answering a range of questions about the state of their digital transformation plans, budgets invested, digital capabilities, and talent, staffing, and training. The responses were then supplemented with executive interviews and case studies gathered from some of the leading companies in the industry today.