Staffing Shortages? Leverage technology to  reduce the impact
Aug 10th, 2021

Staff shortages mean tough, revenue-impacting decisions

The staffing shortages that mountain resorts are currently experiencing have been widely reported. Unfortunately, this shortage is expected to continue through the 2021-22 winter season and possibly beyond. While there are many factors contributing to the shortage, long-term solutions are multi-faceted and complex.

In the meantime, however, resorts are facing challenging and financially impactful decisions. Do events need to be canceled? Do operations or amenities need to be limited or closed? Do hours of operation need to be reduced?  Resorts may lose revenue because of an inability to fully staff operations. Short-term solutions are needed to ease the burden that resorts are facing. One proven, important, and cost-effective solution is to leverage technology as a short-term, yet lasting solution.  

Technology eases the burden 

It’s no secret that a greater reliance on technology will reduce the staffing demands in critical, difficult to staff areas. A highly achievable and effective technology strategy that leverages a robust ecommerce platform impacts fulfillment in positive ways by allowing fewer employees to provide more targeted service to customers.

A robust ecommerce platform specifically enables a resort to: 

  • Offer timed tickets, rental shop appointments, lesson prebooking, and rebooking which enables resorts to anticipate customer demand and manage volume; 
  • Provide fulfillment through PUBs and kiosks to reduce the number of staff needed to staff ticket windows during peak demand;  
  • Execute staffing strategies for rental shop, ski school desk, or ticket window by controlling volume through arrival times. You’ll know exactly the number of customers you can manage at a given time and schedule guest arrivals accordingly; 
  • Employ online tools for waiver execution and capture thereby eliminating the need for paper waivers and releases of liability and reducing the number of hours staff spends chasing paper; 
  • Provide Online Order History. Providing guests the ability to log in and see what they have booked on an easy-to-use online platform will reduce call volume to your call centers;  
  • Use scheduling software for ski school instructors, saving thousands of hours over a single season and reducing errors and inconsistencies; and  
  • Complete rental returns with a barcode scanner, so returns are more accurate, more efficient, and require fewer employees while still maintaining excellent customer service.

Technology is a short-term solution with long-term benefits

While reliance on technology cannot fully mitigate the staffing shortage, a well-constructed technology strategy that includes a robust ecommerce platform can certainly ease the burden in the near term and provide long-term benefits. Managers will effectively operate, despite staffing shortages, and leverage existing staff on key resort operations. Consequently, resorts will achieve the dual benefit of maximizing revenue opportunities and ensuring their guests will continue to receive the same exceptional guest experience they’ve come to know and love. 

Ready to see how your resort could benefit from a robust ecommerce platform? Contact Yolanda Foose at y.foose@aspenware.com today to set up your Aspenware demo.  

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