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Minor Hotels leverages Zendesk data and automation to deliver bespoke, world-class service

Minor Hotels is renowned for creating memorable experiences for guests at its portfolio of more than 540 resorts, hotels, and residencies across six continents. In 2015, Minor Hotels introduced Zendesk to elevate customer experience across its channels: email, chat, and web forms. Today, over 160 agents are delivering personalized customer experience faster by leveraging data and automation.

Minor Hotels
Zendesk has enabled us to accelerate both our response and resolution times, ensuring our guests receive a personalized and seamless customer experience.

Ian Di Tullio

Global Chief Commercial Officer at Minor Hotels

Building a solution from scratch would require extensive resources, highly skilled experts, and complicated implementation. It had to be something that could function out of the box, and Zendesk was the answer.

Arporn Hutasuwan

Senior Digital Engagement Manager at Minor Hotels


Travel & Hospitality



Properties managed







improvement in full resolution time


quicker response time

With a hospitality portfolio spread across 55 countries and four decades in the industry, Minor Hotels is renowned for delivering exceptional customer service through its eight hotel brands. “Our goal is to offer a seamless customer journey from start to finish. Whether they’re staying at a resort or calling our hotline, we want each experience to have the special touch that our brands are known for,” says Ian Di Tullio, global chief commercial officer at Minor Hotels.

Minor Hotel Family

Giving customers a unified experience

In 2015, Minor Hotels introduced Zendesk Chat to the group’s website to create an additional communication channel for customers. At the time, the company relied on a siloed assortment of channels to manage customer queries, including an email solution, a telephone system, and multiple social media messaging channels. Each channel functioned independently, without options for integration, data optimization or analysis. “The email system lacked sophistication. It had trouble handling multiple users and the large volume of daily emails, which caused it to inevitably crash,” explains Arporn Hutasuwan, senior digital engagement manager at Minor Hotels.

Minor Hotels was looking for a simple tool to resolve this problem. “We wanted a solution that could \integrate our existing systems together to make an omnichannel customer contact center,” says Hutasuwan. The main priority was finding an out-of-the-box solution that would be easy to use for all staff across the group’s contact centers that could be seamlessly deployed across multiple locations.

Setting up the groundwork

The first step was swapping the legacy email system with Zendesk Support, followed by the telephone system and social media channels. The breadth and depth of integrations supported by Zendesk enabled these various channels to be integrated with the Minor Hotels’ customer relationship management (CRM) solution and another tool used to power chats on Minor Hotels brands’ mobile apps and websites.

After the successful deployment at its contact center in Thailand, Minor Hotels began expanding Zendesk services to its agents working in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Australia. Prior to Zendesk, the team used email to track around 1,000 tickets a month. Today, more than 160 agents use the platform, managing more than 100,000 tickets a month. “Since day one, Zendesk has helped with the implementation step by step to ensure a smooth transition across all the different contact centers we operate. They fully supported us, whether it’s changing how we onboard agents in different regions or setting up live training opportunities,” explains Hutasuwan.

Minor Hotel Room

Faster, more personalized interactions

Minor Hotels saw the biggest impact on its customer support team’s efficiency. Agents can now access everything they need on a single platform instead of toggling between email, telephone and a variety of chat options. Several manual tasks are now automated, such as the macros that fill in necessary forms, and automatic ticket generation for each inquiry on all channels. “Since agents work faster and smarter and no longer waste time on tedious manual tasks, the first response time was drastically reduced by 40 percent,” says Bryan Bailey, global head of strategy, distribution & revenue management at Minor Hotels. Tickets are now resolved in half the time, with full resolution time faster by 55 percent, all while maintaining customer satisfaction scores (CSAT) of 98 percent.

Customers don’t just get faster responses, but also seamless interactions with Minor Hotels. Since all customer channels function through Zendesk, customer profiles are compiled and easily available for agents to refer to when needed. “Before, we didn’t know who a customer was when we picked up a call or opened an email. Now, Zendesk automatically pulls up the ticket with the customer’s interactions and history with the brand so we can greet them by name,” says Hutasuwan. Based on this central data source, an automatic workflow prioritizes ticket assignment using each customer’s recency, frequency, and monetary (RFM) score.

Empowering optimal performance

No longer dependent on manual tracking, automated reporting across verticals enables agents to manage their own workloads effectively. “We’ve set KPIs for metrics such as CSAT and average first reply time. Each time an agent reaches their target, we celebrate. It’s not just about giving agents autonomy to keep track of their tasks, but also being a great performance motivator,” explains Kanchana Vadhanabhuti, director of customer contact center.

Efficiency and automation not only boosted the performance of individual agents, but also optimized contact center operations. With data on previous call volumes readily available, the number of agents required at each center is now factored in without having to collect additional data during annual hiring and budgeting. “Having the metrics helps us understand when we have an increase in tickets, so we know when we need additional agents. This enables us to use our resources effectively,” says Bailey.

There were unexpected benefits as well: during the COVID-19 pandemic, being on the Zendesk platform meant that Minor Hotels’ call center agents could effortlessly transition to a work-from-home arrangement and maintain business as usual.

The group’s corporate team also uses the Zendesk Guide. When one of the group’s properties calls in with a query, corporate agents use this knowledge base to find and resolve the problems. The corporate team also uses Zendesk for internal ticketing, enhancing operational efficiency, and speeding up prioritization and resolution.

Minor Hotel Property

From good to exceptional customer service

Minor Hotels is also exploring Zendesk AI offerings, as soon as they become available, to use the data collected by Zendesk to further enhance customer experience. “One of the things we noticed right away was that the same questions would often be repeated by multiple customers. We’re exploring the option of creating an AI chatbot that could help deal with those queries immediately, without customers having to wait for an agent to be available. This will definitely make our response times even faster,” explains Hutasuwan.

Given the performance improvements thus far, Minor Hotels is looking to expand Zendesk into individual hotels and find more ways to use it to enhance customer experience. Automated scheduling and ticket allocation at the contact centers is next in the pipeline. At present, supervisors delegate inquiries to team members who are responsible for different service areas. With Tymeshift, a workforce management solution for Zendesk, this entire process will soon happen automatically, saving the group time and money. “We’ve been looking at how we can further leverage automation and AI to create even smoother customer experiences. Minor Hotels is world-renowned for its luxurious and bespoke experiences, and ensuring this happens at all levels of customer interaction is essential to our hospitality ethos,” concludes Di Tullio.