Using WhatsApp for Fast-Paced Communication Like in The Hospitality Industry
WhatsApp for Fast and Instant Communication Like in Hotels
With more than 1 billion downloads worldwide and around 50 billion messages being exchanged daily, WhatsApp is probably the most widely-used social messaging app in the world.
People love using WhatsApp, first and foremost perhaps because all their friends and family are using the app too. Another thing is likely due to WhatsApp’s simple interface and straightforward features. It is not difficult to get familiar with it from previously zero exposure to the app.
Specific industries, like hotels, have accommodated the app as one of the communication tools to connect better with co-workers and even customers (guests). Some of them claimed that the implementation had improved the guests’ experience, thus impacted the online reviews the hotels receive positively.
Some people are considering of using WhatsApp as the main communication tool in their business, if they haven’t already done so. But, while WhatsApp may be suitable for professional use in other industries, it may not be the best option for use in hotel environments.
To understand it better, we need to understand the nature of communication in a hotel environment. Unlike any other industries, hotels have more demanding needs for internal communication since a constantly fast communication between the staffs is required to get the jobs done. Text messaging is definitely not fast enough, and group communication must be flexible enough to cover the dynamic communication nature of the industry.
Here are some points to think and consider about using WhatsApp in a hotel environment:
WhatsApp requires phone numbers
WhatsApp requires a phone number to use. So, to be able to communicate with other people, you need to add their numbers first on your device, or otherwise, you wouldn’t be able to contact them via the app. In a business setting, it can be inefficient since it means you need to know everyone in the company’s numbers to be able to communicate with them on WhatsApp.
WhatsApp doesn’t have admin backend access
Access to the backend of the app is essential in using an app for business purposes. It makes life easier as you can manage users, groups, and even send company-wide announcement within a couple of minutes. Since WhatsApp doesn’t have an admin dashboard, everything must be done manually on the app by each user, which is very impractical.
WhatsApp’s features potentially increase distractions
Since it’s mainly developed for social messaging, the team behind WhatsApp develops the app to achieve this goal. They’ve built some features that make communication with family and friends more fun, such as the Status feature. This feature works like SnapChat; so, any users can update their status by uploading videos or images and their contacts can see the status for 24 hours. Are you sure this feature helps the employees in doing their jobs?
WhatsApp’s voice message is not real-time
Aside from the main text messaging feature, WhatsApp has the voice messaging feature as well. It is indeed useful to those who are too lazy to type, but not suitable for urgent communication since the receiver can only hear after the sender is finished talking.
WhatsApp privacy settings enable stealth mode
One of the things that make people love using WhatsApp is the flexibility it offers regarding the privacy. Users can choose whether or not they want other people to know when they were last online, or they have read the messages. While this can be a favorite feature in social communication, it is definitely not something desirable in a working communication context. Imagine you contact one of your workers to give them an assignment, but you never know whether they have read your messages.
WhatsApp doesn’t provide live support
When an issue arises with the app, users can always contact the support team. But, don’t expect for a live chat with the team, since WhatsApp currently doesn’t provide that kind of support. In a social communication situation, you can always use another communication app or method to connect with your contacts. However, in a business context, it can be tough to switch to another app when you have multiple active workgroup chats on WhatsApp.
The use of WhatsApp potentially mixes between work and personal
Using a popular social messaging app for work has its own advantages and disadvantages, especially if the hotel doesn’t use company-owned devices. One of the disadvantages is you will get the messages on the same platform where you get your personal messages. It means when you’re at home not working, suddenly your message notification beeps, and when you open it, turns out it’s from one of the work groups that you join on WhatsApp. It’s inconvenient and potentially makes people become overwhelmed with work. For similar reasons, there are personal, and business email addresses, so that people can have a well-balanced life between work and personal.
However, just because it’s not suitable for use in a hotel environment, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use WhatsApp at all. You can explore other communication tools with functions that WhatsApp don’t provide to cover your specific communication needs.
For instance, in a hotel environment, fast and real-time communication is the required way to communicate between the staffs. As one of the few prominent walkie-talkie app names, VoicePing’s voice messaging feature can cover this need very well. So, your contacts will be able to hear you as you talk without necessarily need to wait for you to finish talking, as to how it does with WhatsApp. You can even communicate without having to hold your phone and look at the device screen with the use of VoicePing’s SW3 headset. It’s fast, easy and convenient, which perfectly suits the working pace in hotels.
Another useful feature is the paging feature that allows you to page someone for very urgent matters. The person you page will get a constant notification every 30 seconds until they clear the notification by opening your message. This feature is potentially considered as annoying in a social environment, yet very handy in a working environment. It can complement the stealth feature on WhatsApp, with which your contacts can “hide” their online visibilities, thus making it difficult to know whether they have read your messages.
Adding contacts in VoicePing is also very simple and easy. You just need to type their names and if they’re existing users, they will show up. It is a more practical alternative compared to asking each of your co-workers for their phone numbers.
VoicePing has other features that are suitable for use in a hotel environment. But not only that, compared to the other walkie talkie apps in the market, VoicePing is proven to be the most reliable in speed. It has the lowest latency, meaning the fastest time to send and receive a message, in all networks (Wi-Fi, 3G, and 4G).
Read how a five-star hotel resort in Singapore uses a walkie talkie app for its emergency team and manages to improve the guests’ experience.
Have you found the right communication tool that suits your business needs well?
Share your experience with any communication apps by commenting below. Or contact us if you’re interested in finding out how VoicePing can help your hotels communication.