John Jones, former managing director of one of the UK’s leading hospitality software companies, has launched ‘Xenowledge’ – a new consultancy designed to improve hospitality businesses’ efficiency and profitability by addressing some of the unprecedented challenges facing the sector in 2020.
Xenowledge’s hand-picked consultancy team offer more than a hundred years’ worth of combined expertise in areas including business improvement and strategy, interim management, software infrastructure and business tools, executive recruitment, and marketing and PR delivery.
“I live between the UK and Crete, where ‘Xenos’ is the Greek word for both ‘stranger’ and ‘guest’. This concept of making someone unknown to you welcome is at the heart of our new company.
“Hospitality businesses work incredibly hard to provide their customers with a great experience. However, it’s not an easy sector to be in at the moment. Brexit, rapidly changing technological demands, skills shortages and volatile economic conditions have all put a squeeze on margins.
“Some of these areas are out of a business owner’s control and so, rather than fight unwinnable battles, we will develop tailored strategies that play to an organisation’s strengths, and maximise opportunities for profit and growth.”
Examples of some of the most pressing industry challenges in Xenowledge’s sights include:
- The ‘grey’ economy – where unregulated accommodation means a hospitality business’ offer has to be ever more compelling – something which is achievable by identifying and communicating distinctive messages using strategic marketing and PR
- Skills shortages, coupled with Brexit and a widespread view that the sector only provides casual, rather than professional career opportunities. Countering this requires staff buy-in and development through sales and support training and high quality recruitment services
- Emerging technology – a confusing landscape of new tech and outdated software infrastructure calls for an initial audit of a business’ capabilities, which can then be aligned with appropriate software products.
“Having worked in this sector for more than 10 years one thing that has become clear to me is that off-the-shelf consultancy does not work,” continues John. “Every hospitality business is different and faces its own unique set of challenges.
“Our plan is to initially work with independent hospitality businesses, essentially the backbone of the sector, and provide them with an agile consultancy that understands the challenges they face and can quickly adapt to their needs.”