Survey Reveals Top Priorities for Hospitality Leaders: Data Security, Integration, and Growth


PHILADELPHIA, PA — A recent survey conducted by FreedomPay, in collaboration with Toast, a cloud-based restaurant management software company, highlights the critical priorities for enterprise hospitality leaders. The findings reveal that data security, system integration, and growth enablement are key factors shaping merchant preferences and trust in payment solutions and point-of-sale (POS) providers.

Key Insights from the Survey

The survey disclosed several important trends:

  • Technology Budget Allocation: 53% of merchants report difficulties in deciding where to allocate their technology budgets. This underscores the necessity for integrated solutions that provide comprehensive value and support informed decision-making.
  • Trust Factors: The quality of customer support (49%), user-friendliness (46%), reliability (44%), and integration capabilities (44%) were identified as the most significant contributors to trust in a payment solution or POS provider.
  • Data Security and Privacy: All merchants (100%) emphasized the importance of data security, while 98% highlighted data privacy as crucial when selecting a payment solution. Additionally, growth enablement (82%) and speed (81%) were also highly valued.
  • System Integration: Integration between payment/POS systems and other software is high, with 15% of merchants having fully integrated systems and 70% reporting a very high level of integration. Nearly all merchants (98%) place strong value on having an integrated payment solution.

Nate Ware, SVP Sales & Digital Development at FreedomPay, highlighted the implications of the survey results. “The survey with Toast highlights that integration, understanding customer behavior, and ensuring security are paramount for merchants,” Ware said. “This also shows that most merchants are striving for a fully integrated ecosystem to drive growth and enhance operational efficiency. At FreedomPay, we are committed to providing the integration and security that merchants need to thrive and succeed.”

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Understanding customer behavior, including shopping and purchasing patterns, is essential for enhancing the customer experience and driving sales. Moreover, merchants prioritize security and minimal system downtime to safeguard operations and ensure business continuity. Responsive and reliable customer support significantly contributes to fostering a sense of security and trust among merchants.

Kelly Esten, GM of Enterprise at Toast, remarked on the significance of these priorities. “The survey really underscores merchants’ need for seamless integration and a thorough understanding of customer behavior to fully enhance operational efficiency,” Esten said. “For merchants, prioritizing robust data security and reliable customer support is crucial for fostering trust with customers.”

Elevating Hospitality: Tech Trends Shaping Success

The survey reveals the evolving landscape of the hospitality industry, where technology plays an increasingly vital role in operational success. The emphasis on data security and privacy reflects growing concerns over cyber threats and the importance of protecting customer information. As data breaches become more frequent, merchants are rightfully prioritizing robust security measures to maintain consumer trust.

Integration emerged as a pivotal factor, with merchants seeking seamless connections between their POS systems and other software. This trend highlights the need for a unified approach to technology that enhances efficiency and streamlines operations. Fully integrated systems can provide real-time insights into customer behavior, optimize inventory management, and improve overall service delivery.

Customer support remains a critical component in building trust and ensuring smooth operations. The quality of support can significantly impact a merchant’s ability to address issues promptly and maintain uninterrupted service. Reliable support services are essential for mitigating risks and enhancing the user experience.

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The focus on growth enablement indicates that merchants are looking beyond immediate operational needs to future-proof their businesses. Solutions that offer scalability and adaptability will likely be in high demand as the market continues to evolve.

In conclusion, the survey conducted by FreedomPay and Toast provides valuable insights into the priorities of enterprise hospitality leaders. By addressing key areas such as data security, system integration, and customer support, merchants can better position themselves for sustained growth and success. These findings underscore the importance of a holistic approach to technology in the hospitality industry, ensuring that businesses can meet the demands of today while preparing for the challenges of tomorrow.

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