The family entertainment, amusement, and attractions industries are social industries deeply affected by the coronavirus pandemic. And, although the industry's overall foundation remains the same, many aspects of your business must be reevaluated, starting with recognizing the consumer who awaits post-pandemic. The post-pandemic consumer will challenge us to balance the line between self-service and guest experience. We’re living in the post-queue/post-line world, where instant gratification and speed of service matter. And thanks to COVID-19, fears of virus transmission have led to a spike in low-touch, contact-free mobile payments. And that’s not going away. So, what does the future of self-service hold for family entertainment centers?
The modern business has become a data-driven environment. Data has changed drastically in the last few years due to advances in technology, in this case family entertainment center technology, that has increased the amount of data there is to collect whilst also enhancing the ability to collect it. Smartphones are a great example of this, giving business all different types of information such as search history, locations, and personal data among other stuff too.
The coronavirus pandemic has exposed weak spots in some businesses’ strategies and forced them to innovate far faster than they might have otherwise. The experts at McKinsey say that prioritizing innovation today is the key to unlocking post-crisis growth, which couldn’t be more accurate in the family entertainment industry.
The term contactless payment should not be new to many. You probably would have used it when you checked-in at Starbucks, Burger King or even supermarket shopping at Publix.
As we settle into our new normal, there is a new set of rules to follow. You can no longer open the door and expect things to be “business as usual.” Research has shown that a new type of guest is emerging from the pandemic; they are more conscious about virus transmission and will not go to any businesses perceived as unsafe. While the family entertainment industry's overall foundation remains the same, many aspects of your business operations and service offerings can be reevaluated and streamlined.
The pandemic has affected people, businesses, and industries in ways that no one could foresee. During these unprecedented times, it becomes much more critical for businesses to streamline business processes to mitigate the risk of the COVID-19 economic crisis.
The coronavirus pandemic is fast-tracking the trend toward a cashless economy as the fear of handling paper money contaminated with COVID-19 has led to a decline in the use of physical cash. Studies have shown that coronavirus can remain infectious for weeks on coins and paper money, making it clear that cashless payments are necessary rather than a nice to have - doing nothing is no longer an option.
Introduction Research shows that customers emerging from the pandemic are only going to places they perceive as clean and safe, forcing business owners to implement stricter cleaning protocols to offer enhanced hygiene protection. But the accelerated cleaning pace equals higher chemical exposure with higher health stakes and the risk of businesses going up in flames (literally).
History will define 2020 as the year of the pandemic, chronicling events as living in the time of COVID-19. There are so many buzz words that gripped us this year: pivot, hibernate, put on ice, and the “new normal,” which is one that really grates on me. But, the more I heard these words, the more I started thinking about what it actually means. It means different things to different people, businesses, families, societies, and countries. It’s telling us, “we are entering a major change in the way we live.” As a Director of HR, the months since March have been gruelling, both professionally and personally. Being the optimist that I am, I want to start thinking about what I can learn from this experience and what changes I can implement in our business to help us survive and thrive in this new normal. In a matter of weeks, we have had to adjust to working from home, social distancing, lockdowns, and home isolation. Some of us were lucky enough to have the experience of working from home on a regular basis, but to a lot of people, it was a new concept. It was almost unheard of to have the entire workforce working remotely. I know for certain that before the pandemic hit, there was no way we would have had a work-from-home policy drafted, approved, and distributed in one day, let alone fully implemented within a week. It goes to show how agile and adaptive we can be when required. This got me thinking about the recent investments we made into renovating our offices with new modern office designs, including collaboration spaces, breakout areas, pantry facilities, team zoning, etc. All are (or maybe were) considered part of an innovative technology workplace -the home away from home- that helps attract the best talent in the market. These workspaces epitomize our culture and corporate branding. But do we really need our office environment? Have these last few months indicated that we can be just as effective working remotely as we can with these modern workplace tools? In our business, I feel it’s too short of a time to effectively measure this, but I know that we are definitely asking the right questions. As an HR Director, the goal has always been to attract, retain, and engage a workforce with the highest productivity and performance. This is no easy task. But can we achieve this when working remotely? Can we still be engaged and motivated and deliver the best business results when we aren’t physically together? The global teams, based in various locations, mastered this way of working before the pandemic. However, a lot of businesses still maintain a very traditional way of working with big corporate offices. Are we, as a population, brave enough to turn this on its head? It would change how our cities are built and designed - there is no secret that corporate office towers are one of the greatest energy-zappers on the planet. It would change how we design our homes, our transportation systems, our energy, utilities - the changes are endless. Can one pandemic transform the world? Is the corporate world ready for this significant shift? Or will we simply move back into our corporate spaces and talk about the days when we all worked from home during the global pandemic and laugh about doing a load of laundry between meetings, our pets getting fitter, and so on... So, the question we must ask is: will this year simply be a distant memory? I have always believed in the notion that out of crisis comes opportunity. There is no better example in the world right now about how we can turn a crisis into an opportunity to reshape the future of work. As business leaders and HR professionals, we may not have the answers just yet, but the answers will come from asking the right questions. While we may not have all the answers, we have to start asking the right questions and adapting to our new normal. Let’s open our minds and challenge ourselves to not only think differently but be brave enough to change the future. There were so many silver-linings in 2020, so many unexpected developments that challenged and stretched us, enabling our growth, and we persisted and learned what we’re made of. We’ve made it this far, and we’re still navigating this time of uncertainty. The only thing I know is that we have the strength and stamina to go a little further to get to the other side of this as transformed, changed, and better humans for it. Belinda Avery Global HR Director Helix Leisure
Introduction The coronavirus pandemic is still ongoing, and experts and public health officials are warning of impending waves of COVID-19 cases (known, as The Dance, when businesses reopen and close due to additional waves). If the Fall and Winter bring a second wave, you will need to continue seeking ways to support your guests and staff and keep your FEC coronavirus-free. If you didn’t face it in the first wave, prepare to do it now.