Marina Bay Sands leverages hi-tech to “do more with less”

Marina Bay Sands has been deploying technology to raise productivity and improve guest experiences… but just how? We put the question to Ian Wilson, Senior Vice President of Non-Gaming Operations, Marina Bay Sands.

At Marina Bay Sands, we have worked hard to instil a culture of ‘doing more with less’.

We have in place a productivity and service strategic roadmap that guides the company in its operational efficiencies and service quality. The roadmap is largely based on three main areas: data analytics, innovative technology and team member engagement. Improving operational efficiencies will give our team members more time to create unforgettable experiences, which in turn enhances Marina Bay Sands’ reputation.

Can you give us some examples?

Our productivity initiatives have been focused on replacing low-value, labour- intensive jobs within our integrated resort so that our staff can devote their time and energy to more meaningful roles and add value to our organisation.

Within our F&B operations, we have harnessed robotics to automate certain menial tasks. For example, our team worked with suppliers to develop a cutlery roll-up robot – a unique industry solution exclusive to Marina Bay Sands. The robot is capable of assembling cutleries in only half a minute, and can produce an average of 3,600 cutlery roll-ups a day for use within Marina Bay Sands’ restaurants and banquet operations.

We also have a napkin folding machine to execute the labour-intensive task of folding napkins for our restaurants and banquet services as well. The machine, which can fold up to 800 napkins per hour, helps save the time of seven employees and reduces Marina Bay Sands’ reliance on casual labour. It currently halves the number of labour hours needed to fold napkins.

To enhance our service management and channels of communication with guests, we have also started using Chatbots. The predictive technology has allowed us to spend less time answering repetitive queries and chasing business units for answers – in fact, we now save about 210 man-hours a month.

We have also invested in data analytics to help our teams track performance in operations, forecast manpower demands, allocate resources and optimise performance and ultimately, service standards. The best example of this is within our Limousine Services team at Marina Bay Sands – where we started to employ data analytics and scientific forecasting methods to better manage demand for limousine services. We developed a dynamic high-frequency forecasting capability to optimise resources by renting cars only when needed, and to schedule drivers more accurately. As a result of this system, Marina Bay Sands is able to save about S$4 million on limousine services annually.

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Photo: Ian Wilson, Senior Vice President of Non-Gaming Operations, Marina Bay Sands