Hospitality and Tourism Fundamentals

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Zoning codes

The objective of zoning codes is to promote the safety, health, and general welfare of citizens. The earliest zoning ordinance on record in the USA was enacted in 1913 in New York City to regulate the height, size, and layout of buildings. The motion made by the president of Manhattan Borough stressed the need to limit building heights to stop the congested living and street conditions. In 1916, a more comprehensive ordinance was adopted to control the density and uses of land. During the 1920s, zoning codes were enacted in all regions of the nation.

Vortals

A vortal is a gateway to Web content on a particular subject area. A vortal may also be more simply defined as the industry specific equivalent of the general purpose portal (e.g., Yahoo.com) on the Web. Vortals are also known as vertical portals, VEP or Vertical Enterprise Portals, vertical market Websites, Vertical industry portals, or voice portals. Vortals can be corporate portals, business intelligence portals, Web hub, or Interest Community Website.

Vending

According to the National Automatic Merchandising Association (NAMA), vending is defined as ‘providing service at an unattended point of sale through the use of monetarily driven equipment’ (NAMA, 2008). Vending machines can be found in many areas ranging from schools to businesses to medical facilities to hospitality properties; it is estimated there are over 6 million such machines in use.

Value drivers

Value drivers are indicators of a company’s core values. Expressed in terms of measurable operating variables or activities that approximate the potential and often intangible assets of companies, changes in value drivers significantly impact the market value of a company. For example, a hotel company’s value drivers may include growth, market share, technology, level of service, and amenities. The main utility of a value driver lies in its function to measure an overall corporate performance and estimate the company’s market value by adding non financial aspects to the evaluation process.

Value added statement

The difference between what a hotel pays for the goods and services that it sells and the price that it sells them for represents the hotel’s value added. Preparation of a value added statement can allow management to consider what proportion of value added is consumed by expenses such as staff costs, rent paid, etc. As can be seen from the example below, this can be facilitated in a value added statement by stating all elements of the statement as a percentage of the total value added.

Total quality management

Total quality management (TQM) was developed by W. Edwards Deming, a management theorist, in the early 1950s. Deming sought to offer a new way for American manufacturers to improve the quality of their products by reducing defects through worker participation in the planning process. American manufacturers were slow to embrace the concept but Japanese manufacturers were quick to adopt the principles, particularly in streamlining the design of automobiles.

Tipping

Tips are voluntary payments made to service providers after they have delivered a service product. In American restaurants, it is customary to tip a waiter or waitress 15 20% of the check amount. These restaurant tips amount to approximately US$20 billion a year and represent nearly all of US waiters’ and waitresses’ take home pay. Even in countries with less generous tipping norms, tips often make up a substantial portion of servers’ incomes. Thus, tipping is an important issue to restaurant servers around the globe. It should be a concern of restaurant managers as well.

Switching costs

Onetime costs facing a hotel or restaurant as it contemplates switching from one supplier’s product or service to another supplier. Such costs may include direct expenses such as a different purchase price, modification in equipment used (such as having to change the hotel linen cart configuration to accommodate the changing sizes of amenities) plus any related testing and retraining expenses (Porter, 1980). Good customer or volume discounts, generated over time by combining purchases, could be lost.

Switch companies

Global Distribution Systems (GDS) are used extensively by travel agents to make reservations for airline seats and, to a lesser degree, hotel rooms, car rental, and other travel services. Switch companies (sometimes called ‘Universal Switches’) act as a bi directional translator, converting electronic messages between the unique languages used by each of the four major GDS and the large number of proprietary central reservations systems used by the hotel companies (and vice versa).

Strategy implementation

Strategy implementation means putting the formulated strategy into action in hospitality organizations. It may also be defined as carrying out essential activities to make strategy work. Strategy implementation in the hospitality management field is often treated as a tactical activity and it is usually taken into consideration after strategy has been formulated. However, lately it has started receiving more attention since it has been realized that in hospitality organizations the main difficulty is the implementation of strategies rather than the development of them.