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Can the Hospitality Industry Survive in the COVID-19 Pandemic?

Can the Hospitality Industry Survive in the COVID-19 Pandemic?

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the world. The hotel industry is one sector that has been hit. The hospitality industry, which is one of the mainstay sectors of tourism, is the most affected due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Based on data, mid-March the hotel occupancy rate in various regions of Indonesia fell by 50 percent and threatened to continue to decline. Some hotels in Indonesia must do it to survive amid this pandemic. One of the hotels that experienced a decline in tourist visitors is in Bali. The tourism industry as a whole as well as in Bali has declined from 60% until February 2020, thus making the hotel and restaurant businesses choose to reduce the efficiency of employees. Some hotels and restaurants in Bali have also implemented several a many of the additional policies to respond to this difficult situation by scheduling employees to take time off, take vacations and work hours since February 2020, negotiate longer payment terms with vendors, and collect unpaid receivables. Some hotels are still operating, but with very low occupancy rates even below 10 percent. Employee reductions are currently being carried out by many hotel and restaurant businesses because of the lack of visitors due to the coronavirus (COVID-19).

As a matter of fact, the Covid-19 pandemic is inevitable, Covid-19 will still come because of the time it wants it to appear, even though the whole world is panicked about its presence, but the most important thing right now is how to break the chain of distribution. In this case, the government issues a social distancing / physical distancing letter and works from home / Work From Home (WFH) and finally the Large-Scale Social Limitation (PSBB). This should be addressed as an "Evaluation Opportunity" and as a trigger moment for evaluating the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in preparing for the business after the COVID-19 pandemic ends and future business growth strategies, where it takes intelligence for business people to explore the available power as possible so that a business can still survive and breathe long.

Furthermore, at this time the hotel business is trying to rise up through the packages they offer such as the isolation package in the style of a five-star hotel. fortunately, this is temporary so it cannot save everything. Some hotels in Bali did take advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic. One of them offers a complete package of independent isolation inside the hotel. Consumers can quarantine themselves or even work form hotels (WFH) complete with food rations and laundry facilities. Regarding the health protocol, of course, every hotel conducts regular cleaning in every corner of the hotel and prohibits its staff from making direct contact with guests. This is one way the hotel sector can continue to survive amid a long pandemic. And then, this method can also empower hotel staff so that not many more are affected by the termination of employment.

Furthermore, restaurants that are still operating also revised shorter operating hours and only provided delivery and takeaway services, without the dine-in concept following instructions from the central government. Bali’s hotel also limits the buffet, but if the model offers, then the officer must wear a mask. In some hotels the switch from a buffet to an outdoor seating arrangement. The hotel restaurant no longer provides paper menus and switches to digital on the wall or through the customer's cellphone. Payments made on the table side on sanitized mobile credit card terminal.

The entrepreneurs in the field of food and beverage (F&B) also tried to get up by using an online marketing system. This is an alternative choice for getting turnover and retaining workers. One that survives to market some of its products through digital applications. As a company and those who are entrepreneurs remain together so that our employees continue to work. Currently, they rely on sales through the online system. However, the government still tries to help restaurants stay open and keep going. In fact, they guarantee all the food from the restaurant still pays attention to cleanliness and safe for consumption. One of the tips to be able to rise from adversity is to ensure the cleanliness of the food we make. Not just making attractive promos, providing health insurance to customers can also be an attraction for the F&B industry to survive. During this coronavirus pandemic, the company even runs several rules to maintain food quality. We especially pay attention to cleanliness. All employees are required to wear masks and all body temperature is measured before work to ensure their health. Looking at this, we can argue that from several business sectors such as food and beverages, household products in Bali have become an industry that can still rise and survive despite very little growth.

COVID-19 pandemic also disrupts the stability of the tourism business, even the economic impact is more devastating than disruption arising from digital technology or the industrial revolution. Disruption is a change that arises due to digital technology which has an impact on the rising business value of a service/goods. Government It can be explained that Digital Disruption can also shake the establishment of the tourism industry. The hotel business in the country suffered a setback from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic also considered a "Disruption" or troublemaker and troublemaker that disrupted the stability of the tourism business and weakened the economy in all sectors.

In the face of Disruption, business people create new innovations. The following are three (3) steps taken by business people in dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic disruption:

1.     Continue to develop a business even in uncertainty. A good businessman is a businessman who realizes that the business world is uncertain, uncertainty is something that cannot be avoided. Businesses should explore and plan what must be done in the face of change.

2.     Focus on unusual ideas/thoughts.

Business people must be willing to accept innovation "out of the box" and tolerate unusual thoughts.

3.     Creative and Innovative

Creative; the government's recommendation with the Work From Home program, the hotel is no less creative by offering the Long Stay package, which is packed with the exact same name as the Work From Hotel, which has never existed and had not been thought of before, but with demands for change and a little creativity then becomes a trend. Innovative; currently almost all hotels and restaurants are empty so that hotels compete to make meal box packages and market them online via social media plus supplemented service delivery (free delivery) that really spoil consumers, some offer a variety of café drinks and peddling it to visitors, etc., which are creative ideas and innovations from each hotel.

Actually, entrepreneurs understand disturbance, not exceptions but rather the global situation that is happening right now. True hoteliers make competition to exploit their strengths and dare to be innovative. Acceleration steps are needed for hoteliers to bring business in the long term, especially now in dealing with the disruption of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Of course, the hospitality industry throughout the country hopes that the COVID-19 pandemic will soon end so that the economy can bounce back and tourism agitation in the islands has gone up again.

From the whole discussion, it can be concluded that although many business sectors have begun to rise, many major changes will be experienced after the COVID-19 pandemic period ends. Adapting to change is key for the hospitality industry to survive amid significant economic pressures for the industry today. Industry players are also committed to orient towards a long-term business strategy and currently focus on maintaining financial strength and independence that are key to the company's operations and business performance. Moreover, the application of operational standards based on health protocols is also the priority now. All businesses must prepare contingency plans in the face of a future pandemic crisis in terms of digitizing business processes, planning for stronger cash flow, and strengthening supply chains again. This is solely to be able to survive and rise again. There may be changes in new habit patterns in the future that affect many aspects such as the business world. This can be a phenomenon of new work patterns by focusing on software or artificial intelligence as a result of changing times. Besides that, hotel industry businesses also ensure that revenue sources continue to be optimal, both in terms of the accommodation and non-accommodation business, and continue to ensure that they continue to provide the best service for customers. The current adjustments still take into account the priority scale for employees and partners by ensuring each employee does not lose his job and continues to support partner business to keep going in this current difficult situations.

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