Competitive Advantage in Tourism and Hospitality Organizations


Hospitality and tourism are closely related fields. These fields have grown together and have assumed the form of well-established industries in many economies today. The magnitude of these industries have grown so much that they contribute a significant portion to the economic revenues of some counties such as the US, European countries like Switzerland, France, Belgium and Asian countries like Malaysia, Indonesia and Maldives. Therefore the importance of these industries must be recognized to avoid undermining them.

Following the realization of the worth of these industries, many organizations have emerged on the local and global scenario that provide with tourism and hospitality services to consumers, which are primarily tourists and travel / adventure enthusiasts. With the bloom in the industry with various organizations rendering tourist and hospitable services, there has been a remarkable change in operations standards. Each organization must compete for a bigger share of consumers to maximize profits. The competition in the industry highlights the importance of attaining a competitive advantage over other organization functioning in the same industry. This means organizations must adopt fads which will give them an edge over other organization rendering the same services.

Thus, efficient utilization of resources is of pinnacle importance for organizations willing to invest in a competitive advantage. However attaining a competitive is not as simple an activity as it would seem. There are several different types of resources available to organizations which may be utilized to gain an edge over competitors while others must be acquired through long term plans and strategies.

Broadly categorizing these resources leaves us with two variations: external and internal resources. Whereas tourism and hospitability-related organizations are heavily dependant upon shifts and adaptations in external factors and resources, the internal resources are what ultimately determine the competitive advantage of these organizations. The organizations must manage their internal resources most efficiently in order to meet the challenges posed by the external operating conditions of these industries. Therefore it can be suggested that the astute use of internal resources are what gives a firm sustained competitive advantage.

Purpose Statement

This paper is a concise critical evaluation of the extent of sustained competitive advantage a firm can attain with the astute use of internal resources. The paper will present the thesis statement of the paper to outline the argument thought the paper, followed by a literature review. The review of literature outlines the significance of the topic, the various internal resources available to tourism / hospitality organization, the efficient employment of these resources towards the goal of competitive advantage in light of management theories. An analysis by the author follows the literature review to critically analyze the extent of competitive advantage from an astute use of internal resources.

Literature Review

The tourism and hospitality industries are operating in a global environment. The extent of globalization introduces the organization working in the industry to compete beyond borders, besides the competition faced from within the local market. Therefore organizations need to be highly competitive to get hold of a greater share of consumers in the global markets. However, tourism and hospitality industries are sensitive to global fluctuations in demand and conditions (such as travel safety and seasonal shifts). Keeping this under consideration, organizations need to strengthen the use of their internal resources to solidify their operations in the fierce competition. This generates the need for organization to realize the importance of efficiently utilizing their internal resources towards organizational objectives.

Before we can indulge in an analysis of the extent of competitive advantage tourism and hospitality organizations can get through smart utilization of internal resource, we must first establish what these internal resources are. We will orientate from identification of the internal resources of organizations towards the utilization of these resources by organizations to gain competitive advantage.

There are abundant internal resources that are available to organization and can be employed towards attaining competitive advantage in the tourism / hospitality industry. However, these resources will be limited to the most common organizational internal resources identified by the various literature reviewed in the course of writing the specific paper. These internal sources are listed and concisely discussed in context to how tourism / hospitable organizations employ these resources for getting competitive advantage:

Information Technology

The use of integrated systems, networks and software have great importance in the