Up next in our ‘Follow the Sun’ series is Anne Ujjin, our Regional Managing Director for South East Asia, who is based in our Bangkok office.
Could you tell us a little bit about your background?
“I have been working with interTouch in business development and sales for almost a decade and it’s the best move I made in my professional career. I first joined the company in 2011 as Business Development Manager, and after a one-year gap in 2017 I re-joined the company in 2018. Prior to entering the hospitality technology sector, I was working in the airline and travel industry, most recently with Qantas Airways.”
What have been some of your most memorable moments over the years with interTouch?
“I still remember the moment I was in a meeting with a customer signing my first contract. It was overwhelming and I was too excited to keep that feeling to myself. I rushed back to the office and told my boss and colleagues ‘we made it’. They all smiled and showed enthusiasm to make it happen and ensure a smooth implementation. In that moment I could feel how great and important the team environment was and it confirmed my feeling that I am in a great company. It has been 10 years since that first customer signing and today they are still a strong partner with us.”
What makes interTouch a great place to work?
“The best part of working at interTouch is the people and the business environment. We always help each other wherever and whenever needed, and this creates a family culture. In addition, the company offers plenty of opportunity for employees to learn and grow and it is great to work with a management team that is on the same page and in pursuit of a shared goal.”
What is the most exciting part of your role?
“What I enjoy most is being part of the team’s success and contributing my decision-making, communication and problem-solving skills. It gives me a great sense of pride when we achieve success as a team.”
What do you see as the key USPs of interTouch in South-East Asia?
“It’s our approach to customer service that makes us stand out. We are well-known in the market and are reputed as a premier service provider to the hospitality industry.”
What do you see as the biggest trends in hotel technology?
“Covid-19 has accelerated the demand for touchless technologies, including in-room voice controls, which I believe will have a big impact on the industry. Enabling guests to control their in-room experience from climate control and entertainment to amenity requests and food orders will be essential to a safe and comfortable hotel stay post the pandemic.”
Once we can all travel again, what cities/places/destinations are on your bucket list?
“Switzerland is on the top of my list.” I want to follow the footsteps of HM King Rama IX where he spent 18 years of his life there, from 1933 to 1951”
Do you have a role model in life / business?
“One of my role models is Sir Richard Branson, I really like the way he thinks, manages people, drives innovation and looks after his stakeholders. His quote: ‘Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to’, is one of my favourites in business.”
What are your key learnings from the Covid-19 pandemic?
“Nothing is permanent. We need to adapt to the trends that may arise in the future. We need to understand the changes that take place and adapt ourselves in a timely manner, not just in business but in life.”
What’s your outlook for the hospitality industry in 2021 and beyond?
“I anticipate a change in traveller behaviour, which will have an impact on the hospitality industry. I believe business travel will be significantly lower than before the pandemic as it was proven that business can be done with less face-to-face meetings. For leisure travel, health and safety will remain a major concern for the time being, which the travel and hospitality needs to respond to.”
What makes interTouch a great company to do business with?
“We always deliver what we promise to our customers and are known as a trusted, reliable business partner.”
How does the company differentiate itself?
“With our global footprint in 60 countries, we are an industry leader in guest-facing technology deployments and support, known for our high levels of service. Our solutions are flexible and modular and support the requirements and service levels of different types of hotels and their respective guest segmentation.”
How do hotels benefit from interTouch solutions?
“Our hotel partners focus on enriching the guest experience and driving guest satisfaction and they see us as a trusted provider in enabling them to deliver this. Our experienced team supports hotels from the start of the project until the very end, to ensure the successful deployment of guest technology. Our value proposition has always been providing an exceptional service and our expert technical team and support staff provides this with through our 24/7/365 customer service centre.”
What are the key characteristics of a strong salesperson in (hotel) technology?
“It is very important to be a good listener to thoroughly understand the needs and requirements of the customer. This will allow you to provide a tailored solution th