How Your Guests’ BYOD is Affecting Your Bandwidth

BYOD and Hotel WiFiThese days, almost everyone carries around a device that uses the Internet, whether it’s a smartphone, tablet, laptop, or a similar communications device. This is how people are able to stay connected to their friends, family, and even business associates while away on vacations or business trips. Knowing this, it is imperative that hoteliers offer BYOD — bring your own device — to their customers. WIth competition arguably more difficult than it’s ever been thanks to a damaged economy and plenty of choices, the more you can offer your guests, the better your chances at ongoing success in the hospitality industry.

The Flexibility and Convenience of BYOD

Allowing users on your network to bring their own device is a concept that many business owners and managers think of when it comes to the operation of a business. This concept can improve communications by adding flexibility to the company since the use of their own devices can equip workers with a faster way to conduct communications and business needs. But this business policy stretches much further in flexibility and convenience when you’re dealing with hotel communications. That’s because the very nature of the hotel business revolves around providing guests, both personal and business, with a way to maintain their daily lives while away from home. The more flexibility that your hotel can offer its guests, the more inclined someone will be to return. Which is obviously good for business. 

The Effect on Your Hotel’s Bandwidth

The term “bandwidth” is often bandied about (no pun intended) when discussing communications. In the world of computers and networks, it refers to the amount of data that your system is able to handle at any given time. The problem of the unavoidable BYOD policy as it relates to hotels is that the numerous devices brought into your facility will all be eating up your bandwidth. This could, in theory, equal dozens or possibly even hundreds of devices all drawing on your network at the same time. If you’re not prepared for such a thing, then not only will your guests be negatively affected by not being able to connect at a reasonable rate of speed, your employees’ ability to do their jobs using their own devices may be compromised. Add all this up and it means leaving a bad taste in your guests’ mouths.

How to Prepare Your Network 

Allowing your guests to bring their own devices onto your hotel’s network is a no-brainer nowadays. In fact, if you don’t allow it, you’re sure to fail quite quickly. What you need to do is prepare your network for the worst-case scenario by upgrading your systems’  bandwidth. While this sounds simple enough, you obviously don’t want to overdo it, because then you’re just wasting money. The best strategy is to start with your hotel’s maximum occupancy as a jumping-off point and then use that number to determine a reasonable calculation of devices that may access your network at the same time, coupled with those used by your own staff. While this may take some trial and error to get exactly right, it’s essential for your continued success. The good news is that you don’t need to shoulder all of the costs. Many hotels offer connectivity as a separate charge to a guest for the period of his or her stay, along with special packages that include it with the price of a room. This gives you even more flexibility in what you can offer to your guests.

Although you need to add bandwidth to your list of things you must worry about as being part of the hotel industry, you should look at it as a positive — by upgrading your network to an operational level that allows you to offer your guests exemplary connectivity, you are giving them just one more reason to choose your business over one of your competitors.