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One key to superior guest service.

Robert Wilson's business philosophy is simple: Put your guests first.

As general manager of the Dallas Holiday Inn Brook Hollow, Wilson learned early this philosophy not only applies to the way hotel associates treat guests, but extends to back-room operations as well, including the telephone system.

In 1989, the hotel began evaluating its options for improving the service and reducing the costs associated with its telecommunications system.

"We hoped we would not have to scrap our existing system, because it was certainly not outdated and it represented a major investment for the hotel," says Wilson. "One option that appealed to us was an add-on to our existing PBX to offer more control and greater revenue potential, while also providing better services to our guests at prices they're accustomed to paying."

That same year, the hotel agreed to become a test property for the InelliMax system, developed and manufactured by Dallas-based Intellicall, Inc. The system incorporates the compant's patented automated operator technology to process calls and provide enhanced services to guests, such as voice mail.

The system was installed in only four days, and Wilson says it helped improve the services provided by the telecomm system, while at the same time provided a good revenue stream for the hotel.

According to Wilson, the recently introduced voice mail feature, in particular, has achieved added benefits for both guests and the hotel.

"Voice mail invites callers to leave messages for guests in their own voices, which reduces the chance of errors in delivering those messages later," says Wilson. "In addition, voice mail reduces the time our PBX operators spend taking messages, enabling them to process calls more quickly and efficiently."

With voice mail, all incoming calls are intercepted by the PBX operator after the caller reaches a busy signal or a "no answer." The PBX operator asks if the caller would like to leave a message in the guest's voice mail box, and then connects the caller with the voice mail system.

An automated operator prompts the caller through the process for leaving a message. Meanwhile, the PBX operator activates the message light on the in-room telephone to alert the guest to the message.

When a guest calls for messages, the PBX operator connects him/her to the voice mail system. The guest listens to the message, which is later deleted from the system.

"We've heard only positive comments from our guests about the voice mail system," says Wilson. "It's accurate and easy to use, and most guests prefer to hear the familiar voices on the other end of the line when they're traveling away from home."

Another key advantage of the Intelli-Max is cost. Independent owners/operators install the systems at hotel locations across the country, so there is no capital expenditure on the part of the hotel owner.

"The support and training the Intellicall team--including its distributor, Murdock, Remmers & Associates--provided with the system installation was first-rate," adds Wilson. "And, considering the complexity of a telephone system for a 356-room hotel like ours, we've had virtually no maintenance problems."

Advanced features also eliminate other problems typically associated with hotel telecomm systems. For example, the answer detection technology ensures hotels capture all direct-dial, room-billed calls, which can be one of the greatest sources of revenues from a location's telephone system.

Previously, calls that fell under the hotel system's "grace period" did not appear on a guest's folio upon checkout, while other uncompleted calls were billed because they rang beyond this pre-established period.

In addition, the system enables the hotel owner and the operator to set the rates and choose the carrier for longdistance calls, to ensure maximum revenues and guest satisfaction.

"When it comes to making decisions about your hotel telecommunications system, put your guests first," says Wilson.
COPYRIGHT 1991 Nelson Publishing
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Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:PBX/Key/ACD Systems; Dallas Holiday Inn Brook Hollow's voice mail services
Publication:Communications News
Date:Jul 1, 1991
Previous Article:University of Kentucky PBX/key system saves $27,000 per month.
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