Benefits of an Internet Booking Engine RFP
Depending on the hotel chain’s or independent property’s strategy, the selection of an internet booking engine (IBE) provider with the capability to turn the needle can be pretty complex. In general, this is the case when a multitude of decision makers are involved in the (1) IBE specification, which results in the formal Request for Proposal (RFP), (2) the RFP evaluation, and (3) the final purchasing decision. Due to the mass of information that needs to be researched and evaluated, the assigned project teams often do not reach a consensus for making informed decisions throughout the whole purchasing process. Further obstacles impeding a smooth RFP process include the different parties’ interests e.g., those that favor the current IBE solution (low risk) versus those that require more innovation (seeking better performance at higher risk).
The below Case Study shows how h2c‘ IBE RFP support ensures greater process efficiency as well as an outcome that meets both the customer’s and the hotel’s/chain’s requirements.
Danubius, a leading Hungary-based hotel chain with 43 hotels under operation, approached h2c to support their RFP process. The aim was to replace its existing customized IBE solution, which continuously ties up many resources and requires time for updating the GUI. Also related technologies and interfaces require maintenance in order to keep essential IBE functionalities up-to-date.
Via RFP, the new IBE was specified to provide the following top line features:
- Assure deep integration capabilities for Danubius’ existing marketing and distribution landscape
- Have the expertise to independently (without extensive Danubius support) develop new functionalities to keep up with changing customer needs, while remaining open for Danubius’ suggestions
- Increase electronic bookings via the IBE (including metasearch channels) and improve conversion rates
- Reduce maintenance and development efforts (as opposed to customized IBE solution) and increase uptime of IBE
- Offer more and enhanced functionalities, especially for loyal customers, groups and corporates
The RFP objective was to identify the most suitable (state-of-the-art) standard IBE solution that meets Danubius’ very specific hotel chain requirements for both business and leisure properties. With h2c’s help, Danubius specified various key functionalities and interfaces connecting to its existing technology and distribution landscape. Besides IBE technology, the provider’s services and contractual terms & conditions were also a key aspect of h2c’s evaluation. The comprehensive vendor information received via the RFP enabled a smooth and straight-forward decision making process. The new IBE is expected to go live in March 2017.
When h2c conducts an RFP e.g., for an IBE, PMS, CRS, or other hospitality IT system, the driving force is always the overall company strategy and its structure. Therefore, the ultimate goal of every RFP is to ensure that the strategic goals are met. Operational processes and technology need to be designed, implemented and aligned to these objectives – only then a sustainable competitive advantage can be achieved.
H2c has identified some base requirements assuring a successful RFP process:
Need help with your RFP process? Schedule a meeting with us at ITB in Berlin.