Customers’ behaviour is one of the biggest uncertainties of the Hospitality sector in Spain during the post-Covid period. Facing one of the most unprecedented crisis, it is essential to analyze where the market is headed and how companies can adapt to the new reality. New consumption and purchasing models are some of the new scenarios according to experts. 

“We have to actively listen to the customers to generate trust in the sector again”, pointed out Enric Almiñana, Corporate Purchasing Director at Abba Hotels, next to other experts of the sector during the last session of the baVel Digital Summit. On this matter, Abba Hotels is taking the opportunity to digitize some old procedures, such as the check-in and adapting to the new security measures, such as increasing cleaning and room services. 

Innovation and adaptability

On this line, Andreu Martínez, Supplies Director at Viena, highlighted the importance of innovation applied to procedures and products. “We have to be agile and fast to be able to react in front of clients expectations”. This way, Viena restaurants are working in their innovation portfolio and developing new solutions to break physical barriers, such as contactless payment to suppliers.  

Payment management will be one of the biggest challenges of the industry. “We will have to be flexible and previously agree on payment rates so that the industry can recover”, assured Alberto Ferreira, Hospitality Director in Spain at Campofrio. One of the objectives of the Spanish food company is to help recover as many businesses as possible. According to Ferreira, it is expected that between 15 and 20% of hospitality businesses will close. “We want to help small businesses to recover sales so that sector’s volume can increase again”.

Marketplace: online distribution

Experts agreed on the digitization of processes as one of the solutions to help recover the industry, as well as following sanitary measures. This way, online distribution will play a key role, until now a measure that the industry has been reluctant to apply. “We are focusing on diversification and the online channel. A channel that has come to stay”, pointed out Jesús María Sanchez, Director of Selecta Area at Zamora Company

On the other hand, Campofrío is also opening a new online products line specialised in sanitary items, called Healthcare. “We have created a marketplace and we are receiving a positive response”, outlined Ferreira. At the same time, Agustín Bosch, Purchasing Director at SATOCAN Group, agreed on the importance of digitizing the purchasing process. 

Digitization of processes 

The digitization of processes will allow companies to be more efficient, freeing employees of repetitive and manual tasks and redirecting efforts to more valuable jobs. Furthermore, companies will have a major response capacity to face the current lockdown and strict security measures: “the greatest advantage of digitization is eliminating geographical barriers”, pointed out Almiñana. 

An example is the transaction platform baVel, which helps digitize the supply chain and invoicing. “We have to eliminate the paper of the supply chain to optimize the client experience”, added Martínez. 

In front of one of the biggest trust crisis, companies will have to diversify their offer, and adapt to the new customers’ demands. An opportunity that brings innovation and accelerates the digital transformation of the Hospitality industry.