9 Ways Online Employee Scheduling Software Saves Casinos Money

If you’re fed up with all the annoyances and inefficiencies of your casino’s scheduling process, we feel you. Paper-based scheduling, excel sheets, and all the other piecemeal, Frankenstein-esque, wrong-tool-for-the-job scheduling processes used by casinos (and other businesses) just don’t get the job done or make anyone happy.

Online employee scheduling software offers a better way.

Here are 9 ways the best online employee scheduling software will help your casino reduce time spent on scheduling, slash errors down to near-zero, make employees and managers happier because they get along better, and save money you’re currently hemorrhaging on these sorts of problems.

1.    Employees Can Check Schedules from Anywhere

If your casino’s scheduling system requires your employees to call someone, check their email, or come in to work to see their schedules, you are losing time to scheduling inefficiency and creating all kinds of avoidable problems and delays.

Most online employee scheduling software systems let employees check their schedules using their phones. They log in to their account and see their upcoming schedule for days, weeks, or months in advance. 

Employees LOVE this feature. They don’t need to wait for the schedule to ‘come out’ like before. It just shows up on their phone and they can view it at any time, from anywhere. It could not be easier.

2.    You Can Adjust Quickly to Mis-Scheduled Shifts

If a particular shift is overscheduled because the crowds you were expecting aren’t showing up, you can quickly adjust your casino floor employees’ schedules. Maybe you were expecting big crowds for a basketball or baseball playoff game, but the series ends in four games and you were expecting a crowd for game 5.

You can adjust that by sending messages to your employees who were scheduled and whose shifts you want to move.

Or, perhaps a shift is underscheduled and a big crowd shows up. You can quickly see your part-timers who are available for extra shifts so you can avoid calling people who might trigger overtime for that week.

With online employee scheduling software, you can do this on the fly. It takes just minutes to make big on-the-spot scheduling decisions that directly affect your bottom line.

3.    Employees Can Easily Make Shift Swap Requests

As a casino manager, you can set up your online scheduling software so that you get to approve every change request. For casinos, this is critical because there may be certain employees you do not trust to work with certain other ones or on certain shifts or locations.

And, you also want to be sure you have highly skilled employees distributed across your table games areas during all the most important shifts. Typical employees may not realize how important that is when they make shift swap requests. But with scheduling software such as Casino Schedule Ease, you can quickly determine if their swap will cause problems or not.

4.    You Can Map Out the Schedule Weeks or Months in Advance

With employee scheduling software, you’ll be able to schedule as far out as you want. For instance, maybe you have a big event coming up in a few months. You may not schedule every day between now and then,
but you can schedule the dates clustering around that big event to be sure you are adequately staffed with your best people on those high-revenue days.

You don’t want your best people taking vacations when you need them most. Especially your most high-skilled table game employees!

Scheduling software also allows you to respond factually and confidently to shift swap requests. You won’t have to guess. You won’t risk making the employee feel unfairly treated. You will know if the swap will work because you can see the whole department’s schedule weeks in advance, whether it’s table games, food and drink service, security, housekeeping, or any other department.

5.    Employees Can Easily Make EO Requests

When there’s a slow shift or a worker has something come up in their personal life, online employee scheduling software enables them to
make early out requests quickly and easily.

Most casinos are big places. Sometimes it can take forever to track down the person you need to talk to. And if the scheduling manager isn’t in the office when an employee needs him, frustration mounts.

Just like the shift swaps, employees can make EO requests from their phone, right where they are, and you can approve or deny it, or ask to discuss it by sending back a personal message.

6.    Easily Plan Ahead for Anticipated Busy Days

Being understaffed is a terrible thing for a casino. Online employee scheduling software allows you to be ready for the big days you know are coming. Whether that’s weekends, certain holidays, special times of year, or dates with big events in town, your software will help ensure your table games and other key money-making departments are ready for prime time. 

7.    Staff Can Access Their HR Data

It’s not just your scheduling managers and operations people who will love online employee scheduling software. Your HR people will love it too. They don’t like fielding calls asking “How much vacation time do I have? What? That’s it?”

Calls regarding FMLA, accrued vacation, overtime, and other schedule-related HR information can all be accessed through each employee’s scheduling software portal. And if you get the best casino employee scheduling software, that data will be stored securely in the cloud, so you don’t have to worry about a room full of servers to guard with your life.

8.    Staff Can Select Shift Preferences

With the hundreds or sometimes thousands of employees working at casinos, you have a great diversity of people on your staff. Parents will have different needs than part-time students. You’ll have people who hate working days, people who hate working nights, people who don’t care, people who can only work certain days, certain hours on those days, and everything in between.

With online employee scheduling software, all that preference information will be right at your fingertips once it has been uploaded, and you can use it to craft the perfect schedule.

9.    You Can Automate the Entire Scheduling Process

The eight previous reasons are more than enough to justify scheduling a free demo of our casino scheduling software.

But this last reason is the best one of all so far.

When you read #8 and started thinking about “crafting” the perfect schedule, it might have crossed your mind that, if you had to do all that work yourself, making the schedule would still be a challenge. Yes, it would. Creating a schedule still won’t be easy in terms of who to assign where, and when.

Yes, you’ll have all this information at hand, but you’ll
still have to navigate it all to produce a workable schedule.

Wouldn’t it be so much simpler if a computer could produce the
schedule instead? Isn’t this the age of technology?

Yes! And the best online employee scheduling software will empower
you to automate your entire scheduling process. The computer considers all the known variables, including each employee’s preferences and history, and creates a schedule that in theory will work – for everyone. And it can do this at the touch of a button.

If you’re still creating schedules the hard way, again – we
feel for you. But now is the time to look into making a change.

Not all Online Employee Scheduling Software Products Are Equally Good

Casinos are not restaurants. They are not hotels. They are not bowling alleys. Casinos are more like small cities. The big ones have restaurants, AND hotels, AND all kinds of games and activities, AND so much more. 

Beyond all this, your revenue is tied to the skill levels of particular employees. You can’t just put any dealer at the high-roller tables.

Casino Schedule Ease was created specifically for casinos.
Though there are hundreds of online employee scheduling software options out there, almost none of them were built for casinos, and they will struggle to achieve what you really want and need, particularly in the area of employee skills. 

One thing that sets Casino Schedule Ease apart is what we call ‘assignment-based scheduling.’ This means, our system ranks each employee on their skill level, so you can be sure your best skilled workers are all staffed on the right days and the right shifts – but also at the right spot. Same with average skilled workers and brand new hires.

And yes, this too is automated. Once the data is uploaded, the system creates the schedule – including the very important skills-based factor.

Schedule a Free Demo of Casino Schedule Ease Today

You have nothing to lose, and a much easier and less stressful workplace to gain.


Casino Employee Fraud – 10 Strategies to Protect Your Profits

The 2016 Report to the Nations found an average loss of $2.7 million in revenue to employee fraud and theft. That represents 5% of total revenue, every year, for each company in their study.

That is a staggering sum of money considering how much your casino or other type of business also spends on taxes, expenses, employee payroll, and other costs. Eating up 5% of your total revenue just to fraud means you’re losing a much greater percentage of your net profits.

In other words, that 5% of total revenue lost to employee fraud is 100% taken from what would have been your profits. For example, if your net profit after all taxes and expenses would have been $10 million but you lose $2 million to fraud, now your net profit is only $8 million – a 20% loss. If your net profit would have been $2.5 million but you lose $2 million to employee fraud, you net only $500,000 – an 80% profit loss.

For a little more detail on the numbers in the study, the median loss was $150,000. That means half of companies in the study lost less than that, and half lost more. So, a smaller number of huge losses due to employee fraud are bumping up the average. The report states that 23.2% of the cases in their study lost $1 million or more.

But to a small business, losing $150,000 can be far more catastrophic than a large business losing $1 million. Again, 100% of these losses come from your profits – money you would have gotten to keep.

To protect your casino from employee fraud, begin implementing the strategies below as soon as possible. Or, if you’re already using them, revisit and strengthen them across your entire casino operation. Also, see 7 warning signs an employee may be engaging in theft, or considering it.

  1. Delegate Tasks Among Multiple Employees

For casino employee fraud that happens behind closed doors, such as with vendors or on computer screens in your accounting department, what often facilitates that fraud is one person having too much control over sensitive data.

By splitting up certain tasks, such as having one employee review bank statements but another employee sign checks and make payments online, you reduce the likelihood that one person can set up their own little fraud scam to fleece your profits.

Reducing casino employee fraud is in large part accomplished by minimizing the opportunities to commit it.

  1. Get Documentation for Every Signed Check

When you start considering all the checks your casino writes to vendors and contractors for all the zillion things it takes to run a casino, you will realize that your vulnerability to employee fraud isn’t just confined to the casino floor, table games, food and beverage, and slots. Contracts with vendors, where one employee and a vendor team up to steal from your casino, are a major problem area.

Insist on documentation and receipts for all purchases that include details about exactly what was purchased.

  1. Cameras Cameras Cameras

This one isn’t new of course, and these days, every casino uses surveillance cameras. However, the challenge arises when the time comes to access and utilize the reams of data all your surveillance systems are collecting.

With video recordings now stored in the cloud, it actually takes longer to export the videos you want to view than it does to record them. So if you’re looking for video of a certain employee’s actions for the past six months, you will have a major challenge simply accessing and viewing all the relevant data.

It is critical that all your cameras and other technological surveillance systems can talk to each other. You need to be able to integrate the times for when things happen. For instance, if a bartender is skimming on drink profits, can your payment processor link up its times with your surveillance cameras? That’s what you’ll need if you want to produce ironclad proof of their theft.

  1. Use Identity Verification Software when Hiring

Most people who want to work at casinos are fine people. But some want in because they want to be around all that money. And some have records. So they falsify their identities. Catching the liars and imposters before you hire them is essential.

You can get software that aids in verifying a new hire’s identity so you can be sure you aren’t about to hire someone who has been blacklisted by the Gaming Control Board. If they’ve lost their registration because of fraud, you want to know it. Here’s one identity verification software service (Casino Schedule Ease has no affiliation with this company and offers this just as an example, not an endorsement).

  1. Conduct Frequent and Publicized Audits

This is one of your most powerful deterrents against casino employee fraud.

Conducting audits of your finances and security systems in secret may help you catch fraud after the fact. And that’s good. But it’s better to prevent it from happening in the first place. Make it well-known that you conduct frequent unannounced audits at irregular intervals.

When employees know that not only is someone always watching on surveillance cameras, but that someone is also looking closely at financial transactions at all levels of operations within the casino, the majority of employees who might have considered trying to steal from you will choose otherwise.

Nothing beats the fear of getting caught. The Report to the Nations referenced at the start of this article found that only 5.2% of employee fraudsters had prior convictions. And only 8.3% had been previously fired for fraud. There is no doubt substantial overlap between those two groups.

That means the vast majority of employee fraud is committed by first-time offenders. Doing it the first time is always the scariest. So, the more fear you can put into them that they will be caught, the fewer who will attempt to steal.

  1. Have and Enforce an Employee Code of Conduct

When expectations are known and communicated, behavior improves. The Report found that where controls such as a code of conduct and frequent audits are present, financial losses to employee fraud were 14.3-54% lower, and people were caught 33.3-50% more quickly.

You will lose a lot less money to fraud and you’ll catch the thieves faster, if you implement the strategies on this list.

  1. Create a Healthy Company Culture – with Integrity

Leadership plays a big role in preventing fraud. When employees feel unknown, uncared for, and devalued, they start to consider doing things they normally would not. A lack of communication is a breeding ground for resentment.

You must make it a priority to keep your team engaged and informed. There is a ton written about creating healthy and positive company cultures. If your casino staff, departments, and managers all feel isolated in silos and unappreciated, make it a top priority to start fixing this now.

Casino Schedule Ease is a terrific way to start changing your company culture. Employees frequently have schedule change requests, early out requests, and inquiries about vacation time, family medical leave, and so much more. All these requests burden your systems and personnel. But delays and lack of communication can infuriate your employees.

With our scheduling software – built specifically for casinos – your team can access everything on their mobile phones. They can make change requests and EO requests and get answers quickly. Employees love our software, and they will appreciate you for providing them with this convenience. Try our 90-day free trial.

One caveat about company culture is that your leadership and supervisors must also abide by the cultural values you create. Integrity across all levels is critical, or the culture breaks down. You can’t get angry at a bartender for skimming profits if the bartender’s supervisor gives free drinks to a pretty lady or a best friend.

  1. Create a Multimedia Reporting Hotline

In the Report, businesses with no reporting hotlines were only 28.2% likely to catch employee fraud, whereas ones with hotlines were 47.3% likely. That’s a huge difference for something this simple.

All you have to do is create a phone hotline for employees to use if they see or learn about employee fraud or other abuses taking place. To increase employee buy-in, create an online form and a dedicated email address as well. In other words, make it easy to report abuses and fraud. You should be doing this anyway for reasons other than just fraud, like employee safety.

People who care about honesty and a good reputation will report abuses and fraud – but ONLY if they feel safe in doing so. Make it easy and safe for your whistleblowers to take action.

  1. Require Management Certification of Financial Statements

This is another way to combat backroom employee fraud and theft. Again, the more people who are looking at your financial statements, the harder it will be for someone to set up fraudulent scams. With managers looking at statements, you would need at least two people to set up a recurring fraud.

If you also delegate different tasks to different people as mentioned earlier, now you’d need three or more people to get away with it. Opportunity for theft decreases exponentially the more you can set up your operations in this manner.

  1. Train Your Managers and Surveillance Teams

How many managers and surveillance staff at your casino have ten or more years of experience? How many know what to look for to spot employee fraud on the casino floor and table games?

Do they know how to spot the false shuffle? Do they know the signs that a dealer is colluding with a friend at their table? Your managers and surveillance teams need to be trained to spot fraud. Working with security firms can help you elevate the skillsets of your critical staff to prevent on-floor employee theft and fraud.

How Else Can We Prevent Casino Employee Fraud and Theft?

In addition to implementing the above strategies, it also helps to know the warning signs that an employee might be considering stealing from you.

The good news is, you can spot at least seven warning signs relatively easily if you know what to look for. Some warning signs are evident before the person decides to steal. Other warning signs are indications that fraud and theft are already occurring.

See 7 warning signs of casino employee theft


7 Warning Signs of Casino Employee Theft

How to Spot Employees Who Have a Higher Chance of Stealing

Casino employee theft is a major problem in the gaming industry. Estimates have found that 5-7% of revenue is lost to theft every single year. That’s a huge amount of money to lose for nothing. If you can figure out how to reduce or eliminate employee theft, it will make a huge difference in your net profits. You should start by learning how to spot the warning signs of an employee who may be prone to stealing.

In many ways, it is the smaller casinos that get hurt even more from employee theft. Across all industries, 33% of business bankruptcies happen because of employee theft. Therefore, learning to spot employees who may have a higher chance of trying to steal from you isn’t just gratifying, but good business.  

You begin by understanding why employees steal in the first place, from any business. 

Why Casino Employees Steal 

Global Gaming and Business Magazine explained the driving forces for casino employee theft in terms of a triangle – the fraud triangle. 

Casino Schedule Ease

The potential for theft greatly increases the more parts of the triangle are in play. The three aspects of the fraud triangle are: 

  • Motivation for stealing – the reasons employees do it despite the risks 
  • Rationalization – how they convince themselves their actions are justified 
  • Opportunity – the ease with which they believe they can get away with it 

The third part of the triangle – opportunity – is the piece of the triangle you have the most ability to combat. You can’t do much about rationalization, but being aware of how employees justify their thefts helps you spot possible culprits, as you’ll see in a bit.   

As for motivation for why employees steal, GGB boils this down to the 4 B’s – beer, boobs, betting, and borrowing. In other words, substance addictions, sexual deviancy and addictions, gambling, and perceived or real financial desperation.  

Here’s an example of some economic rationalizations for casino employee theft: In a down economy, desperation increases. People justify theft because they “need” the money. In good times, casinos are very busy, and opportunity increases because it’s easier to hide in the bustle of the crowds. And employees will rationalize theft this time because since your business is making so much money, you can afford to lose a little extra and no one gets hurt. 

Warning Signs Your Employees Are at Risk of Turning to Theft

These 7 warning signs are where you begin to combat casino employee theft. Look for these behaviors among your staff – and not just your low-level employees. As you’ll see in a bit, managers and supervisors can fleece you too.

1.     Territoriality

Have you ever re-assigned an employee to a new task or
department, or changed their routine in some way, even an insignificant one? An employee who is scamming you will resist these kinds of changes, often vehemently. 

They will lie about the reasons why your changes upset them, because the real reason is that these changes will mess up their little operation. Watch out for employees who hoard their duties and tasks and resist any changes to processes and systems.

2.     Living well beyond their means

You know what you’re paying people. If a guy making $50k per year is driving around in brand new luxury cars, wearing $5000 watches, and always has a well-dressed lady by his side, something might be off.

3.     Financial complaints and difficulties

Employees who frequently complain about financial trouble will be more likely to take advantage of an opportunity to steal if they see it. Desperation is a primary motivation that leads to rationalization. (See how that triangle works?).

Be on the lookout for employees frequently complaining about their finances.

4.     Refusing vacation time

This is especially true in your bookkeeping and accounting departments, but also your table games, money counting, and other areas. If an employee has a scam going and knows how to hide it, being gone for a week or two and having a temporary person replace them risks having their scam discovered.

Employees who never take vacations, or who always cash out their vacation time, are ones to keep your eyes on.

5.     Reluctance to train, delegate, or share duties

This is another form of territoriality. An employee who is stealing doesn’t want to train anyone new because that person will probably discover their scam. Delegating tasks that are critical to their coverup causes the same risks, as does newly sharing duties they used to do on their own.

This is one way to fight employee theft. Change your systems and processes now and then, and see who gets the angriest about it. If their reasons don’t quite make sense, take a closer look at whatever they have control over. It is actually your longer-term employees who are more likely to consider stealing, because they will learn to spot the holes and gaps – the opportunities.

6.     Too cozy with vendors or customers

Many casino theft situations involve non-employees. Vendors are a prime source for theft, because both parties can agree on the scheme and work together to falsify the paperwork. Keep an eye on any casino employees who just seem a bit too friendly with non-employees.

7.     Family problems

Divorce is expensive. Family-related medical or legal costs, or education expenses, can be crippling. The stress from these expenses will motivate some employees to try to cover the costs using your profits.

And let’s be clear: Many warning signs on this list can occur for all kinds of reasons. No one is guilty simply because they have family trouble. People can refuse vacations for all kinds of reasons. System changes can truly make someone’s work harder and it isn’t wrong to complain about that. 

But security experts have seen these issues crop up repeatedly in employee fraud cases. If you want to head off employee theft before it costs you, keep your eyes and ears tuned to these warning signs.

How Many Thieving Casino Employees Have Prior Records?

A large and detailed study that looked into employee theft  across multiple industries found that only 5.2% of employees who steal had prior records, and only 8.3% had been previously fired for theft.

While that may be surprising, the fact remains that the vast majority of employees who steal are first-time offenders. 

That’s why figuring out how to systemically monitor for these seven warning signs is so important. You want to dissuade employees from making bad decisions – things they have probably never done before.


Types of Scams Run By Casino Employees

Any employee with access to your computer systems who also can convert points, reward, or chips for cash has a greater opportunity to steal. They can do things like generate replacement player cards for themselves and their friends, and cash the points. Others can create multiple accounts to get free play money.

Managers who have access to drop box storage rooms have been found pre-counting cash before the count team arrives. If that manager also controls surveillance, they have a higher chance of success. Again – opportunity.

Scheming dealers can pay out money to their friends even for losing hands.

Other scams, as mentioned earlier, will involve vendors, such as rewarding contracts to someone in exchange for a kickback, over-billing, and other methods of skimming cash. Here’s an article with more types of casino theft scams caught by security and law enforcement.

Real Examples of Casino Employee Theft

There are countless stories of casino employee theft to be
found online and in the news. But each one offers another glimpse into the methods and the motives for how and why employees might try to steal from your casino. 

This casino theft involved an employee who printed false vouchers, and got away with $14,500 before getting caught. 

Here’s a huge scheme involving eight people that netted $5.2 million before they got caught.

In this one, two table game staff stole an unknown amount of money, and got sued by the casino’s insurance company for over $800,000. 

And here are two casino thefts masterminded by higher ranking employees, a slot supervisor in one case, and a VP of player development in the other. These cost the casino tens or hundreds of thousands in losses.

There is plenty more where these came from.

The point is – yes, you should be focusing your security on preventing customer thefts. But your employees need to be watched too, because they actually have far more opportunity to steal than your customers do. If they get motivated past the breaking point by any of the 4 B’s, it won’t be long before they rationalize whatever thieving schemes they dream up and decide to try it, despite the risks. The Nevada Gaming Control Board says that about 20% of their arrests are casino employees.

What Can You Do to Minimize Employee Theft from Your Casino?

See 10 strategies for combatting casino employee theft


5 Online Casino Scheduling Hacks Every Casino Needs to Be Using NOW

With casinos forced online to survive, your scheduling system needs to perform at 110%. There’s no room for error. See 5 keys to online employee scheduling.

How Scheduling Software Can Help Your Online Casino Get Through Covid 

The casino industry has taken a beating. Probably the worst in history. You’ve probably had to lay off a lot of valuable, proven, loyal, and expert employees because of the response to the covid-19 pandemic. And if you haven’t done so already, you’re probably looking at online gambling as a way to keep your casino afloat until this crazy time finally ends. 

Other casinos have already made the switch, and now generate large portions of their revenue from online gambling. And unlike pure online casinos, you don’t intend to stay here forever. Your in-person gaming, hotel, and food and drink service will return. 

But what about your employees?  

How are they getting through this time, and how will you bring back everyone else when normal life finally resumes? (A bit later, we’ll show you how the Resorts casino in Atlantic City recalled over 300 employees in a matter of hours.) 

When it comes to scheduling, managing a team of employees to facilitate mostly online gambling is quite a different task than managing scheduling for all the departments it takes to operate a real casino.  

Here are five ways scheduling software can get your online casino through this pandemic: 

1. Simplify the Schedule Creation Process 

With an online casino, most of the customer service is done virtually. This means it can be done from home, and in theory, anywhere in the world. So whether you’ve hired people from other countries or have scheduled your regular employees so you can serve online customers 24 hours a day, you need to always be sure your online casino is fully staffed to answer questions and serve customers. 

There are a ton of online casinos people can choose from. 

If they get bad service and slow responses from your team, they’ll just go find another online gambling site.  

It is therefore absolutely imperative to always have your customer service team fully staffed and ready to go.  

With casino scheduling software, you can map out your schedule weeks or even months in advance. You can be sure all 24 hours of employee shifts are covered every day, and that there is always an ‘expert’ support person working in case a situation becomes too complicated for your front-line service reps. 

2. Always Have Staff on Hand to Serve VIP Customers Even in Online Casino Scheduling 

With the right casino scheduling software, you will always know which VIP caretaker will be on duty to make sure your high rollers receive the extra attention they expect. 

In an online casino, you simply can’t afford to miss opportunities due to unavailable staff. It can cost you a customer – for life. 

High rollers spend far more than average customers ever will. Imagine one of these high-value gamblers having a question and not getting an answer for several minutes, whether from a live chat window or a phone call. Depending on the situation, they might give up and leave the site.  

You don’t have any food and beverage revenue to fall back on right now. Lose that customer, and all their money is lost with them. 

Scheduling software will assure you that your VIP staffing needs are secured, weeks in advance. No last minute panicking. 

3. Respond to Schedule Change Requests and Surprises via Mobile Device  

Imagine one of your best VIP caretakers gets forced to self-quarantine, which often happens with no advance warning.  

You need a system that can quickly rework that person’s schedule and shift the other employees around so your casino service continues uninterrupted.  

Whether it’s a VIP caretaker, a regular customer service rep, or an administrator, changes and switches will happen. You’ll get vacation and holiday requests. EO requests. Family and medical leave requests. You need a system that can quickly adapt to changing realities. 

And even more, you need a system you AND your employees can engage with entirely online through their mobile devices. 

So, not only can you rework the schedule of specific employees at a moment’s notice, but your employees can submit their own requests for changes. And you can approve or deny them, all online, all remotely.  

Suppose an employee requests a shift swap with another rep. You can quickly look at each person and see if the change will cause any problems on your end, like bumping someone into overtime. Then, you can approve or reject the change.  

Employees love this system because it gives them ownership of their schedule. They can see all their shifts. They can see their data like accrued vacation time. They can communicate with you and quickly get answers – all remotely. Scheduling software will keep your employees happy and your online casino running smoothly. 

4. Prioritize Your Team so the Best Employees Serve the Best Customers 

Suppose you have 8 VIP caretakers on your online casino staff. Which of those 8 are your best people? Which ones would you want serving the wealthiest or most famous clients who might show up at your online casino? 

You need a system that does more than just schedule weeks in advance. Pretty much any scheduling software can do that (though not all can do it easily and as flexibly as some). But you also need a system that ranks your employees based on their skill levels so you can differentiate the best of the best, on down to the newest person. 

You probably have a good idea of when your most valuable customers show up, even in an online setting. With Assignment-Based Scheduling, you will always have the most highly skilled reps available when your most valuable clients are online.  

Match up your best with your most valuable customers.  

Only scheduling software built for casinos enables you to do this. Casino Schedule Ease is the only software that can do all five tasks on this list, because it’s the only one built specifically for the casino industry – including online casinos. 

5. Automate Everything!

Lastly, you’re going to have a tough time learning and keeping up with all the new tasks required of online casinos. It’s not the same as before.  

With a schedule that gets created automatically, only requiring a quick look from you and perhaps some minor adjustments, you will save invaluable time and be able to work harder at keeping your casino business afloat. 

Casino Schedule Ease is designed so that, once you have your schedule routine in place, you can create new schedules with the click of a button.  

When other customers see how easy and effortless our system is to use, they never want to leave. See what some of our customers have said.

After the initial Covid lockdowns ended, Barbara Hulsizer from Resorts in Atlantic City suddenly had to recall over 300 employees all at once. Here’s how she describes it: 

We were faced with recalling over 300 employees at one time after Covid, and wondered if there was a way we could do this with Schedule Ease. With their assistance, we were able to recall over 300 employees within a matter of hours. It was shocking. Once we saw that, we realized this is how we need to do business going forward.  

Want to see how Casino Schedule Ease will help your online casino? 

We have greatly expanded the flexibility of our pricing to work with any and all sized casinos through this pandemic.  

Sign up for a free demo 


October Las Vegas News Round-Up

Las Vegas Sands Corporation Possible Move

Las Vegas Sands Corporation Possible Move

It’s been nearly five months since Nevada casinos reopened. As the initial enthusiasm has worn off, it’s becoming evident that this is far from a normal operating environment. With the global pandemic creating uncertainty in the Las Vegas convention business, the main focus for casino owners is what economic recovery will look like in the near future. For one of Las Vegas’s wealthiest owners, the future may no longer be in Sin City. Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas Sands Corp. is exploring the sale of its casinos in Las Vegas and could possibly mark the mogul’s exit from the U.S. gambling industry in order to focus more on the Asian markets. 


As the world’s largest casino company, Sands is interested in selling off the Venetian Resort Las Vegas, the Palazzo and the Sands Expo Convention Center, which together could potentially fetch around $6 billion. All of these properties are all connected along the city’s famous strip. This sort of sale would concentrate Sands’ casino portfolio entirely in Macau and Singapore, two larger casino markets for Adelson, who ranks as one of the world’s richest people, with a fortune estimated at $29.7 billion. According to a gaming expert in Macau, the U.S. is a small and shrinking part of Adelson’s business, accounting for less than 15% of revenue last year but roughly 80% of regulatory pain and burden.

A renewed focus on the Asisan markets makes sense when taking into account that the recent recovery in Asia from Covid-19 has helped improve Sands’ operating results in the third quarter. Though Macau’s recovery from Covid-19 has been slow, there are signs gamblers are starting to return in volume as a visa backlog clears and China has lifted travel restrictions forming a travel bubble with the gambling hub. It should be noted that talks of selling these properties are only in very early discussions and that nothing has been finalized yet.

More Las Vegas Layoffs Expected

las vegas dealer

This year’s holiday season might be a lot less festive for hundreds of resort workers in Las Vegas. According to notices made public on Monday, hundreds of resort jobs in the Las Vegas Valley are facing potential layoffs in December. M Resort Spa Casino, operated by Gaming and Leisure Properties inc. and Penn National Gaming, are reportedly anticipating laying off 236 of its employees from December 21 through January 4. This follows Tropicana Las Vegas, which permanently laid off 828 employees earlier this month and plans to lay off an additional 132 workers over two weeks beginning December 23.

The notices were filed under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act. This 1988 U.S. labor law is meant to protect employees, their families, and communities by requiring most employers with 100 or more employees to provide 60 calendar-day advance notification of plant closings and mass layoffs of employees. Both companies cited Covid-19 as the reasoning for these layoffs. According to VP for Tropicana Las Vegas “These layoffs at Tropicana Las Vegas, Inc. are the unfortunate result of COVID-19 related business circumstances that were sudden, dramatic and beyond our control. The impact on our business was not reasonably foreseeable until now…These significant drags on our business will likely continue for the foreseeable future.” 

These layoffs will not only impact families right before the holiday season, but they will contribute to Nevada’s rising unemployment problem. Last month, the state’s unemployment rate was 12.6 percent, up 8.9 percent from 2019. Nevada’s rate comes in higher than the national unemployment rate of a seasonally adjusted 7.9 percent.

Raiders Offer to Host Super Bowl

football game - super bowl

The Las Vegas Raiders, along with the city of Las Vegas, have offered to host Super Bowl LVIII in 2024. The vacancy in the NFL’s Super Bowl calendar was created when the league elected to postpone the next Super Bowl in New Orleans until 2025 because of a conflict with Mardi Gras. That conflict wasn’t originally an issue under the previous CBA when the NFL had a 16-game schedule. However, with the addition of a 17th game to the schedule and an extra week to the regular season, the game would now run concurrently with the annual event in New Orleans. Though the league will not make any announcement about a replacement city until 2021, anonymous sources within the NFL have said that Las Vegas and Allegiant Stadium will be well-received as a candidate for the 2024 Super Bowl. 

However, in their first year as an NFL city, Las Vegas has already faced major disruptions because of COVID-19. The NFL Draft in April was scheduled to be held on the Las Vegas Strip before it had to be cancelled and hosted virtually instead. The 2021 Pro Bowl set to be held at Allegiant Stadium has also been cancelled. Not to mention that the team’s debut season in its new city has been devoid of fans because of ongoing restrictions. Nevertheless, the team is hoping to capitalize on its status as an entertainment city to host the Super Bowl for the first time in history. If Las Vegas is chosen, you can expect it to be both the biggest sporting event and the biggest sports betting night of the year.

Updating Casino Security

casino security technology

Now that casinos have started to reopen and adjust to a reduced number of patrons, it is a perfect time to rethink and update security and other administrative practices at casinos. Switching to Casino Schedule Ease will help businesses run more efficiently and smoothly while also simplifying the chaos of scheduling and managing a staff 24/7.

This next-generation casino and table game scheduling software delivers the most flexible, user-friendly, customizable, and mobile-accessible experience found anywhere. Utilizing the cloud, this scheduling software hosts, maintains, and backs up all records so casinos are not forced to use their own network resources. Furthermore, Casino Schedule Ease relies on BioStation T2, a state-of-the-art system that requires employees to clock in and out using their fingerprints and takes a photo of the employee so that exact clock in and out times cannot be misrepresented. Casino Schedule Ease is the best thing that could happen to your casino operations.


Sports Betting and the 2020 Election

Betting on Presidential Debates and the Election

As with any presidential election, the run up to Election Day is eventful. Whether it is the Presidential or the Vice-Presidential debates, sports betting is allowing people the opportunity to win cash on it all. According to DraftKings, their Sportsbook is giving bettors located in certain states the ability to win in a free-to-play $50k pool during the first Presidential debate on September 29.

Broadcast on several prominent networks across the country, this debate, which will be held in Cleveland, offers the candidates their first face-to-face opportunity to address several of the country’s most pressing issues. These issues will range from the coronavirus to the economy to the integrity of the election. The 2020 Presidential Debate pool at DraftKings Sportsbook will require no entry fee, is available to users of the sportsbook and will pay out over 4,000 winners. Sportsbook users will have an opportunity to make wagers on 10 different questions and can lock in their answers right up until the start of the debate. According to DraftKing, all prize money, which will total up to $50,000, will be distributed on Wednesday, September 30. 

While it is still illegal for betting in the United States to occur for the actual presidential race, earlier this month the betting average at UK books showed the race rather close. The most recent betting rates show Biden holding a 53 percent chance of winning, to Trump at 46.3 percent. PredictIt, a New Zealand-based prediction market and online betting exchange that offers prediction exchanges on political and financial events, has the Democratic candidate a heavier favorite. These recent betting rates take into account national polls released each week. For example, in an ABC News/Washington Post national poll released this weekend, Biden was favored by 54 percent of likely voters, with Trump at 44 percent. 

Support of Voters

Vote 2020 election

With the Nov. 3 election just a few weeks away, there are continuing warnings from the hospitality sector about the impact from the pandemic. MGM Resorts has already permanently laid off some 18,000 positions nationwide and more industry layoffs are likely. Tribal casinos also report financial challenges. But neither presidential candidate has made it a top priority to bail out casinos. Rather, Presidential contenders Donald Trump and Joe Biden are more focused on trying to capture the support of voters concerned with the gaming industry. Each candidate’s positions differ though based on who they are reaching out to: casino owners or union members.

Casino owners are concerned about revenue and bringing back lost business. Casino workers on the other hand are more concerned about their safety. President Trump, the Republican incumbent who used to own several gaming properties, wants all businesses, including casinos and related venues, to reopen as quickly as possible despite coronavirus risk. Therefore, from the point of view of casino owners, Trump is preferable. This has led to many wealthy casino owners donating to President Trump’s campaign.

According to recent FEC filings, high-profile casino owners such as Las Vegas Sands billionaire Sheldon Adelson and Red Rock Resorts owners Lorenzo Fertitta and Frank Fertitta III are major donors to the Republican Party and to the Trump campaign. On the other hand, Biden, the former Democratic vice president, has proposed another lockdown if COVID-19 sees a resurgence in the winter. This has made Biden the preferred choice when looking from a worker safety point of view. Several powerful casino unions, such as Nevada’s influential Culinary Union, have endorsed Biden. Biden has even called upon Station Casinos and its parent company Red Rock Resorts to negotiate immediately with union workers at several Nevada casinos.

Election and the Online Gaming Industry

casino interior

According to gaming experts, as far as brick-and-mortar commercial gaming properties are concerned, the presidential election will have minimal direct impact on the land-based casino industry. This is the result of the industry as a whole moving past its pariah status and having both political parties respect the rights of the individual states to determine whether to have land-based casinos and how to best regulate them. More likely than not though, the choice of president could impact the regulatory and legal climate for online casinos and gambling. 

The Wire Act, a United States federal law prohibiting the operation of certain types of betting businesses in the United States, is at the center of this debate. The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the Wire Act prohibition on the transmission of wagers applies only to sports betting and not other types of online gambling. The Supreme Court has not ruled on the meaning of the Federal Wire Act as it pertains to online gambling. In an opinion issued in November 2018 and published in January 2019, the Department of Justice stated that the Federal Wire Act applies to all gambling and not just sports betting. However, as recently as June of 2019, a District Court Judge issued a summary judgment that the Wire Act is limited to sports gambling and set aside the 2018 DOJ opinion.

During President Trump’s first term, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has argued in court for harsher restrictions on online betting and continues to oppose the rights of states to offer internet gambling. These efforts have continued to fail in court. With the DOJ’s continued failure in court, many states have completely disregarded President Trump’s efforts to restrain online gambling and close to 17 states have started offering online sports wagering. In contrast to President Trump, Joe Biden told a Culinary Union audience in December of 2019 that he opposed adding “unnecessary restrictions” to the gaming sector and these comments were taken to be in reference to the Wire Act.

Updating Your Security

With the upcoming election and the rise of sports betting in many states, it is a perfect time to rethink and update security and other administrative practices at casinos. Switching to Casino Schedule Ease will help businesses run more efficiently and smoothly while also simplifying the chaos of scheduling and managing a staff 24/7. This next-generation casino and table game scheduling software delivers the most flexible, user-friendly, customizable, and mobile-accessible experience found anywhere. Utilizing the cloud, this scheduling software hosts, maintains, and backs up all records so casinos are not forced to use their own network resources. Furthermore, Casino Schedule Ease relies on BioStation T2, a state-of-the-art system that requires employees to clock in and out using their fingerprints and takes a photo of the employee so that exact clock in and out times cannot be misrepresented. Casino Schedule Ease is the best thing that could happen to your casino operations.


Sports Betting News and Updates

Rise of Sports Betting in Colorado 

Sports betting in Colorado

Last November, voters in Colorado passed Proposition DD, which legalized sports betting in an attempt to shore up gaps in the state’s water budget. The initial expectation was that sports betting in Colorado would eventually generate $10 million to $20 million in annual revenue for water needs. When it was officially launched on May 1 of this year, receipts show that the state has a long way to go before sports betting could hit that expected amount and adequately help the water budget.

The low receipt numbers for the month of May were not due to a lack of interest though. The coronavirus pandemic had shut down all US sports that would traditionally be in-season during the month of May. This, understandably, led to a slow start in revenues as gamblers were relegated to obscure offerings such as table tennis, Korean baseball, and lower-tier international soccer leagues. However, things are starting to look up as many of the major domestic sports leagues returned in June and July. According to the Colorado Division of Gaming, once major domestic sports returned, there is a noticeable upward trend of Coloradans embracing the new form of regulated entertainment during the pandemic.

During the past two months, sports betting in Colorado has jumped nearly 55 percent. This is due to the return of the NHL’s Avalanche and the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the return of the PGA Tour and a fuller slate of NASCAR and UFC events, the return of the NBA’s Denver Nuggets, and the Colorado Rockies taking to the field as Major League Baseball (MLB) kicked off its 2020 campaign. Overall, July has marked the best of the three months thus far that sports wagering has been live and legal in the state and August is predicted to almost certainly be better than July’s, particularly if the Avalanche and Nuggets can extend their playoff pushes. Likewise, the arrival of the NFL season next month could be a boon for Colorado’s sports betting revenue, because the Denver Broncos are the state’s most popular professional franchise. 

You may be asking yourself though, why are gaming companies so interested in Colorado? Well, there are numerous reasons why the Centennial State is such an alluring market for gaming companies. Colorado has a built-in infrastructure of more than 30 commercial and tribal casinos, many of which are already or will eventually be homes to retail sportsbooks. The state also has teams from all four of the major US leagues, several universities competing in Division I sports, and the state is considered one of the fastest growing in the country. Furthermore, Colorado offers geographic insulation as just one of the six states it shares a border with, New Mexico, offers legal sports betting. 

Postponement in Playoff Games

NBA playoffs 2020

Sports betting for many of the major domestic sports leagues were put on hold after the halt and postponement of numerous playoff games earlier this month. In the NBA playoffs, which are taking place in the Orlando Bubble, the teams decided to boycott a number of their games to stand against racial injustice and police brutality; especially in the wake of the shooting of a black man by Kenosha, Wisconsin police. Shortly after, a series of similar protests across other professional sports took place. The Milwaukee Brewers refused to play their game against the Cincinnati Reds. Two other Major League Baseball games, as well as the full slate of WNBA and MLS games, were postponed. The cancellation and boycotting of games in the wake of shootings in Wisconsin has also made its way to the NHL. The league announced the postponement of games originally scheduled for the end of August.

While trivial compared to the protests, according to many of the major online sports betting sites these postponements had an immediate impact on sportsbooks that took action on the games. BetRivers, DraftKings, FanDuel, and PointsBet have already announced that they would void all bets made on the postponed NBA games. No word yet on bets made for the other major sports leagues. Not all sportsbooks have decided to void the bets because of the postponements. USBookmaking, which operates sportsbooks for the Isleta Resort Casino in New Mexico, and Sky Ute Casino Resort in Colorado said that they will honor the bets regardless of the day the games are played.

Sports Betting and Media Deals

Australian sportsbook operator PointsBet reportedly scored a $500 million deal with Comcast’s NBC Sports to become the broadcaster’s official sports betting partner. Under the terms of the deal, PointsBet will become the official sports betting partner of all NBC sports properties, including NBCSN, the Golf Channel, and regional sports networks (RSNs). This partnership between PointsBet and NBC, which broadcasts Sunday Night Football, is the latest in a series of arrangements between sportsbook and media companies. Earlier this year, Penn National Gaming scored a deal to acquire 36 percent of Barstool Sports for $163 million. Experts predict that that price tag could eventually grow to $450 million if the casino operator decides to take full ownership of the sports and pop culture media site. Less than a month later, ViacomCBS and William Hill announced an agreement under which the British bookmaker will be the official data and sports betting partner on all CBS sports platforms.

Updating Your Security

Now that casinos are starting to reopen and adjust to a reduced number of patrons, it is a perfect time to rethink and update security and other administrative practices at casinos. Switching to Casino Schedule Ease will help businesses run more efficiently and smoothly while also simplifying the chaos of scheduling and managing a staff 24/7. This next-generation casino and table game scheduling software delivers the most flexible, user-friendly, customizable, and mobile-accessible experience found anywhere. Utilizing the cloud, this scheduling software hosts, maintains, and backs up all records so casinos are not forced to use their own network resources. Furthermore, Casino Schedule Ease relies on BioStation T2, a state-of-the-art system that requires employees to clock in and out using their fingerprints and takes a photo of the employee so that exact clock in and out times cannot be misrepresented. Casino Schedule Ease is the best thing that could happen to your casino operations.


July Gambling News Round-Up

Las Vegas Recovery Update

It’s been nearly two months since Nevada casinos reopened for gambling. As the initial enthusiasm wears off, it’s becoming evident that this is far from a normal operating environment. Besides the implementation of current safety measures, the main focus for casino owners is what economic recovery will look like. Earlier this month, the second-quarter results came in for Las Vegas casinos and it was reported that there has so far been a year-over-year revenue drop of 45.6 percent and a 61 percent decline in revenue when compared with the same month in 2019. Overall, it could be a while before Las Vegas looks like it did prior to the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic

Many people in the casino industry believe that the return to normalcy is tethered to efforts to develop a vaccine that will vanquish the virus. However, casino owners are facing increased pressure because they are unable to control the timeline of an available vaccine. Even though numerous pharmaceutical companies are making progress towards a vaccine, a safe antidote to the coronavirus is likely still several months away.

Most health officials believe that at least one of the vaccines currently being developed will be finished by December or early 2021. If this is correct, it would still take several months before the product could be widely distributed. If Las Vegas hopes to financially rebound and reach capacity levels from previous years, they will most likely not be able to until the second half of 2021 or even early 2022. 

Tribal Casinos Update

Gambling in Las Vegas

As Native American tribes start to recover from the coronavirus pandemic, many tribal casinos are still trying to figure out the best regulations and precautions to implement in order to welcome back guests safely. In Iowa, for example, four major casinos — the Blackbird Bend Casino, Meskwaki Bingo Casino, Prairie Flower Casino, and WinnaVegas Casino Resort — have reopened in the last two months and have added new rules for patrons to follow. Among the new precautions is face mask requirements and a ban on smoking and vaping inside the gaming venues.

When asked about the new smoking and vaping ban, the chairman of the Ponca Tribe, which owns Prairie Flower Casino, said that allowing smoking would have conflicted with the venue’s face covering requirement. Though some visitors disagreed with the ban, the tribal casino has set up a smoking area, approximately 50 feet from the entrance, for smokers. WinnaVegas Casino Resort in Sloan, owned by the Winnebago Tribe, also has been smoke-free since early June. With masks required inside the venue, the casino’s marketing director has stressed that their first priority is the safety of the guests, team members, and community members. Similarly to Prairie Flower Casino, WinnaVegas has allocated a designated outdoor smoking area located 20 feet away from the entrance.

In other tribal casino news, the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community has reached a deal with American iGaming operator Golden Nugget Online Gaming Incorporated to enter the online casino and sports betting market in Michigan. The Keweenaw Bay Indian Community is currently responsible for Ojibwa Casino-branded venues in the small northern Michigan communities of Baraga and Marquette. With this new deal, the community would be able to offer a variety of online casino, gambling and sports betting entertainment options.

Although Michigan legalized sports betting and online casino gambling late last year, the state has not yet awarded any casino an iGaming license. If the Michigan Gaming Control Board approves this license soon, it is believed that this iGaming enterprise could go live as soon as the end of October. However, due to the state’s lack of movement around license approval and the coronavirus, it is likely that they will have to wait until next year before launching.

Sports Gambling News


With the return of major US sports, including the NHL, there has been a return in sports betting. In Colorado, where it has only recently become legal, there is increased optimism about the trajectory of sports betting within the state. According to recent data, even with a shortened sports calendar, there was a 49 percent increase in sports betting in Colorado during the month of June when compared to May. These figures come from the business conducted by six internet operators and one retail sportsbook location operating during the month. Overall, Colorado’s online sports wagering market, which is expected to drive growth there, is attracting more retail and online operators and therefore lead to an increase in revenue and taxes in the months ahead.

In other sports betting new, DraftKing has been named the first “Official Betting Partner” of the PGA Tour. This deal gives the sportsbook rights to use PGA Tour trademarks, opportunities to advertise within the tour, and content and video distribution privileges. Though DraftKings became the PGA Tour’s first official betting partner in July of last year, the two entities are now furthering their partnership. According to DraftKings, golf is the fourth most-wagered-on sport and activity has only increased since the PGA Tour resumed their tournament last month. When it returned last month, DraftKings reported more gambling than it ever had on the first day of the four-day tournament.

Updating Your Security

Now that casinos are starting to reopen and adjust to a reduced number of patrons, it is a perfect time to rethink and update security and other administrative practices at casinos. Switching to Casino Schedule Ease will help businesses run more efficiently and smoothly while also simplifying the chaos of scheduling and managing a staff 24/7. This next-generation casino and table game scheduling software delivers the most flexible, user-friendly, customizable, and mobile-accessible experience found anywhere. Utilizing the cloud, this scheduling software hosts, maintains, and backs up all records so casinos are not forced to use their own network resources.

Furthermore, Casino Schedule Ease relies on BioStation T2, a state-of-the-art system that requires employees to clock in and out using their fingerprints and takes a photo of the employee so that exact clock in and out times cannot be misrepresented. Casino Schedule Ease is the best thing that could happen to your casino operations.


June Casino News Round-Up

Casino Coronavirus Update

As of early June, casinos in nine major US gaming jurisdictions, including Nevada and Pennsylvania, have begun to open back up. As more casinos open their doors, state officials are imposing limitations to ensure the safety of visitors. The most notable limitations include restricted occupancy levels, additional safety measures, and available gaming capacity. These limitations could impact Las Vegas’s push to reopen all of their hotels, restaurants, casinos and shops in time for the Fourth of July weekend.


Besides the implementation of current safety measures, the main focus for casino owners is what economic recovery will look like. Many analysts are warning that recovery for the gaming industry will not be the V-shaped recovery that many are hopeful for. Instead, casinos have been told to expect the recovery to stretch out over the next three years. This forecast is based roughly on the expectation that reopenings will be slowed by economic headwinds and travel restraints caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Furthermore, destination spots, such as Las Vegas and Macau, will have the slowest recovery in comparison to more regional casinos. This is due to destination spots having a greater reliance on tourism, air travel, and convention whereas regional spots can advertise as being a local, drive-in location.

For some states, implementing safety measures are not enough for government officials to grant casinos the ability to reopen. No reopening date has been set for Atlantic City’s nine casinos. Many are pointing at New Jersey as having the second-highest number of virus cases in the nation as the reason for the delayed reopening. While the casinos may still be closed, many establishments have taken advantage of Governor Murphy’s recent easing of virus restrictions and are offering outdoor dining. The Golden Nugget Atlantic City and the Landshark Bar & Grill at Resorts Casino Hotel have opened their outdoor deck for food and drinks. 

Tribal Casino Reopening News

As Native American tribes start to recover from the coronavirus pandemic, many tribal casinos are trying to figure out the best way to welcome back guests while also protecting everyone. Earlier this month, the Cherokee Nation announced that they would welcome back guests to its 10 casino properties throughout northeast Oklahoma. Based on the success of these 10 openings, the remaining 7 properties in the state will open. All properties will operate at a reduced capacity with enhanced health and safety protocols in place. Those protocols include physical distancing, enhanced cleaning and sanitization, facemask requirement, and noninvasive temperature screenings for both team members and guests. Anyone with a temperature above 100.4 F will not be permitted to enter the building. Furthermore, each casino floor will be closed to the public from 2 a.m. to 10 a.m. everyday to accommodate deep cleaning and sanitization.

In comparison to the Cherokee, the Navajo Nation has decided to wait until July to reopen their casino operations in an effort to curb the spread of the virus. In preparation for their opening next month, the Navajo have taken additional steps to ensure the safety of all visitors and workers. This includes deep cleaning and sanitizing all of their properties. These additional steps not only apply to their casinos but were implemented across their entire reservation, which includes parts of Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah.

Sports Betting Debate


As casinos and gaming establishments attempt to recover from the devastating economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, one mode of gambling may show some promising results. Globally, sports betting is seen as an engine for economic recovery this year. 

In the United States, sport betting is now available in a number of new states. DraftKings, a sports betting and gaming provider that operates in at least nine states, has expanded into more networks. In early June, they announced a partnership with Bay Mills Resort & Casino in Michigan to enter into a new market access deal that will hopefully bring the U.S’s number one-rated mobile sportsbook to sports fans across the state. According to recent announcements, Michigan presents a number of gaming opportunities for DraftKings and they plan to collaborate with Bay Mills to provide residents with the best-in-class experience. As sports across the United States return, DraftKings aims to provide consumers with an innovative, immersive, and entertaining gaming experience. In addition to mobile and online sportsbook access, the partnership will allow Michigan sports fans to place sports bets in person at a retail betting location at Bay Mills Resort & Casino. 

In Brazil, sports betting has recently been increasingly seen as an avenue for economic growth. This hasn’t always been the case though. Brazil has traditionally resisted most forms of gambling expansion, including sports betting. However, momentum has been building towards legalizing commercial casinos in recent months. In May, Brazil’s Federal Deputy called for casinos as a way to revitalize the Brazilian economy. However, even with this recent policy change, combined with the pandemic and the realities of any bidding process, the implementation of sports betting in Brazil is expected to be delayed and most officials believe that 2021 will be a more realistic goal for making this available in Brazil. 

Updating Your Security

update casino security and administrative practices

Now that casinos are starting to reopen and adjust to a reduced number of patrons, it is a perfect time to rethink and update security and other administrative practices at casinos. Switching to Casino Schedule Ease will help businesses run more efficiently and smoothly while also simplifying the chaos of scheduling and managing a staff 24/7. This next-generation casino and table game scheduling software delivers the most flexible, user-friendly, customizable, and mobile-accessible experience found anywhere. Utilizing the cloud, this scheduling software hosts, maintains, and backs up all records so casinos are not forced to use their own network resources. Furthermore, Casino Schedule Ease relies on BioStation T2, a state-of-the-art system that requires employees to clock in and out using their fingerprints and takes a photo of the employee so that exact clock in and out times cannot be misrepresented. Casino Schedule Ease is the best thing that could happen to your casino operations.


Reopening Plans of U.S. Casinos

Casinos have been devastated by the coronavirus pandemic. Places such as Las Vegas, San Diego, and coastal Louisiana, which normally rely on tourism, conventions, and other mass gatherings to drive foot-traffic, have seen their sources of revenue completely disappear. Many major casino operators – such as Caesar, Wynn Resorts, and even MGM Resorts International – have had to find alternative revenue for the past two months. For many, that has involved opening up their restaurants to serve local residents via delivery and takeout options.

Hope is on the horizon though. As the national infection rate begins to slow down, many states, and casinos, are starting to reopen again. To discover what reopening will look like within the casino industry, we have decided to look into the reopening plans for the major casino operators in Las Vegas. Let’s briefly examine a couple of the casinos that have already opened this month, and touch on the closing of some casinos due to the coronavirus. 

Las Vegas’s Reopening Plan

COVID-19 social distancing

All across Las Vegas, casinos are trying to figure out the best solution for their guests’ safety. Earlier this month, MGM Resorts International unveiled a “seven-point safety plan” to reopen its Las Vegas casinos and hotels. This safety plan included the closure of all buffet-style meals, the new additions of plexiglass barriers and handwashing stations, and enforced physical distancing at slot machines and card tables. One other aspect of MGM Resorts’ plan includes the implementation of touchless ticketing for entertainment shows and virtual check-in and check-out for their hotels.

It is important to mention how the current proposed reopening protocols mostly address the safety needs of employees and guests, and do not directly address how the Las Vegas casino will protect entertainers who perform on its stages. Many casinos are expecting guests and hotel employees to screen themselves for coronavirus symptoms before entering. Once inside, employees will be required to wear protective masks and gloves. 

Along with rivals Las Vegas Sands and MGM Resorts International, Wynn Resorts is using their Macau casinos as a reopening model and implementing strict coronavirus screening and social distancing protocols. In all of the Wynn casinos, there will be strict rules regarding how many players can play at the same time. They will be removing some seats in the casinos, rearranging machines, or even turning some off. In addition, hand sanitizer will be offered to players at table games. 

It is predicted that many of the casinos in Las Vegas will struggle to make money under these conditions. While it is not a return to normal, it is a baby step toward that. In theory, this will help many of the major casino operators cut their losses and bring back some customers. It will however be a long road back to normalcy. 

Some Casinos Have Already Opened 

Chandelier room Las Vegas casino

While casinos in Las Vegas finalize their reopening plans, many casinos elsewhere in the United States have already started reopening this month. In Louisiana, state casinos were permitted to reopen their doors beginning May 18th. This marked the largest reopening so far among U.S. casino markets hampered by the coronavirus shutdown. Casinos will be limited to 25% occupancy for the time being and the games must be spaced appropriately to abide by social distancing guidelines. Louisiana’s reopening is important for another reason. Most of its gaming venues are considered regional properties, the type that is expected to rebound quicker in comparison to destination markets such as Las Vegas. Additionally, Louisiana has a history of luring customers and tourists from Texas, where there are no traditional casinos.

In addition to Louisiana, Harrah’s Cherokee Casinos in North Carolina has begun a gradual reopening. As North Carolina begins to lay out a framework for easing restrictions relating to the pandemic, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) and its casinos are looking forward to a return to operation, but with extensive health and safety precautions in place for the safety of employees and guests. Areas where social distancing can be practiced, such as the gaming floor, hotel and some restaurants, were the first to open.

Areas where social distancing is not possible, such as the spa, valet, poker, buffet and concerts, will remain closed until it is appropriate to reopen. Furthermore, access to the casinos is going to initially be by invitation only. During this initial phase, only invited guests will be able to make hotel reservations, or access the properties. It is expected that the number of invitations will increase over time.

Casinos Closed Permanently

COVID-19 casino closings

While most casinos in Louisiana and the United States are coming up with their reopening plans, there is at least one casino that has decided to shut its doors for good. The DiamondJacks casino in Bossier City announced earlier this month that they would permanently stay closed due to the economic devastation brought forth by the coronavirus. Officials with DiamondJacks have stated that there are currently no plans for it to switch owners or for a new investor to reopen the casino. DiamondJacks is at least the second US casino to announce its permanent closure as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, which forced all US tribal and commercial casinos to shut down as federal and local governments sought to control the spread of the coronavirus. The Lakeside Inn in Nevada announced its permanent closure in April. Only time will tell if more casinos will follow the path of MGM International and Harrah’s Cherokee Casinos or fall victim to the coronavirus and join the ranks of DiamondJacks and Lakeside Inn in permanently closing.

While we may not yet know whether there will be a second wave of the coronavirus, we are able to track the casino industry’s response and future plans. As more and more U.S. casinos continue to open, many are eagerly awaiting to see what the new normal will look like in these entertainment meccas. To stay on top of the latest casino and gambling news, be sure to keep visiting the Casino Schedule Ease blog.


Coronavirus Update on Las Vegas Casinos

As some states begin to flatten their coronavirus infection curve, there have been increasing calls for quarantine and social distancing rules to be relaxed. What impact that will have on the spread of the virus is uncertain at this time, but what is known is that this is a public health crisis forcing many local economies to take a nosedive. Few places were hit harder than Las Vegas, where a full one-third of the local economy is in the leisure and hospitality industry – more than in any other major metropolitan area in the country. Most of those jobs cannot be done from home. As governors and mayors across the country wrestle with the question of when and how to reopen their economies, Las Vegas faces particular pressure because of its dependence on tourism and hospitality. To discover just how hard it will be for Las Vegas to reopen, we have decided to take a closer look into the current impact the coronavirus is having on Las Vegas and the government and casino industry’s responses to reopening. 

Impact on Las Vegas


Governor Steve Sisolak ordered all casinos and gaming facilities to close to prevent the spread of the coronavirus starting in mid-March, and has extended the order until at least the beginning of May. Since then, Las Vegas’ casinos and industry workers have been struggling to cope in this uncertain time. Across the state of Nevada, gaming companies have reported a nearly 40 percent drop in gaming revenue since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.  In Las Vegas, specifically, that number is closer to 46 percent. Nevada’s casinos reported more than $600 million in revenues in the month of April, a significant decrease compared to last year’s data. This number is expected to fall even further in May.

Nearly 350,000 Nevadans have filed for unemployment since the start of the pandemic, and the jobless rate in Las Vegas is a reflection of the pandemic’s impact on the casino industry. More than 98 percent of the nearly 307,000 employees represented by the Unite Here Local 226 Culinary Workers Union, which represents casino workers in Las Vegas and Reno, are currently unemployed due to the crisis. Applied Analytics, a Las Vegas-based economic research firm, has reported that the jobless rate in the city is close to 25 percent, nearly double the rate during the height of the Great Recession. Prior to March, the state had reported its lowest unemployment rate in history, 3.6 percent in February.

Government Response to Reopening

coronavirus mask

While the coronavirus’ impact on the gaming industry in Las Vegas has been substantial, many agree that the city’s casinos should be reopened. Solutions from state and local officials, however, have been divided on how to properly respond to the crisis. Gov. Steve Sisolak announced earlier this week that decisions for reopening casinos and other nonessential businesses would be determined by the state public health standards. Specifically, the governor stated that Nevada would have to see a sustained decline in confirmed cases of the coronavirus in order to consider reopening the gaming industry.

At the same time, the mayor of Las Vegas, Carolyn Goodman, publicly called for casinos to reopen operations immediately and begin to formulate their own preventative measures for enforcing proper sanitation procedures and social distancing guidelines. On April 21, the Nevada Gaming Control Board released a six-page memorandum detailing procedures that the state’s gaming facilities must follow in order to reopen properly. These procedures include a formal announcement of the date and time of their planned reopening, guidelines for registering laid-off employees, as well as a detailed plan by casinos on how they plan to properly ensure the health and safety of their visitors. There is no word on whether the reopening of Las Vegas’ casinos will apply to the rescheduling of major sporting events, concerts, and shows.

Casino Responses to Reopening

hand washing

Las Vegas’ major casinos are also making their own preparations in order to safely reopen their facilities to visitors and tourists. In mid-April, the CEO of Wynn Resorts wrote an opinion article arguing that Nevada should reopen its gaming facilities, citing the state’s flailing economy and the fact that health officials in the state have noted that they have begun to flatten the curve of new coronavirus infections. Las Vegas Sands, which owns both the Venetian and Palazzo casinos on The Strip, announced that, upon reopening, it would be screening guests as they entered the hotel with thermal cameras in order to check if guests are running high temperatures, a major symptom of the coronavirus. Las Vegas’ Treasure Island casino announced earlier this week that it has begun to take guest reservations at its resort starting on May 15. For many of the casinos, their primary concern in reopening their facilities is to drive-markets in states like California, which represented roughly 23 percent of the city’s total visitation in 2018.

Looking to the Post Coronavirus Future

While we may not know when this public health crisis will be under control, we are able to track its impact on the economy and the entertainment industry. Although the governor’s last formal extension of Nevada’s stay-at-home order was extended to April 30, it is likely that Gov. Sisolak will extend the order until at least the first or second week of May. Even as almost all of the U.S. commercial and tribal casinos in the country have been temporarily closed, many are wondering what it might look like for casinos to bounce back after this pandemic is over. Hope is not lost however, as some casinos are still paying their workers or are setting up food banks for their employees and customers to take advantage of. To stay on top of the latest casino and gambling news, be sure to keep visiting the Casino Schedule Ease blog.


Closure of All U.S. Casinos Due to Coronavirus

With the number of infected people in the United States continuing to rise, the coronavirus has effectively changed the way that the country operates. This public health crisis is forcing the economy to a crawl and is upending entire industries — from sports to travel to entertainment. As a $261-billion-a-year industry, the casino and gambling industry have been hit hard by the coronavirus. To discover just how hard of an impact it may have, we have decided to take a closer look into the recent closure of almost all U.S. commercial and tribal casinos in the country, and what it might look like for casinos to bounce back after this pandemic is over. 

Decline in Tourism 


In February, amid the United States’ implementation of international travel bans because of the coronavirus, some cities started to see their tourism numbers begin to drop. Las Vegas, even without all of their international clients, still had tourists flock to take pictures in front of the Fountains of Bellagio and the replica Eiffel Tower at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel and Casino. Inside these establishments, gamblers were still rolling dice and collecting chips and people could be seen dancing in the multistory nightclubs. 

However, this would not last long as the effects of the pandemic started to grip Sin City. Major conventions, like the National Association of Broadcasters, which draws in over 90,000 attendees each year, canceled. By the end of the second week of March, almost all conventions held in Las Vegas through May had been postponed or cancelled. 

Casinos Start to Close Their Doors


Due to the intensifying coronavirus outbreak, and its unprecedented economic fallout, huge shutdowns within the casino industry have occurred. In total, 95 percent of all commercial casinos have announced that they will close starting this week. For example, the Wynn Resorts, a major casino operator, announced it would close its Wynn Las Vegas and Encore properties. They have also announced that all full-time employees would be paid through the temporary closures. MGM Resorts International, another major entertainment company, announced the temporary closure of all of its domestic hotels and casino operations. They will also not be accepting any reservations before the beginning of May. 

In addition to the closure of commercial casinos, the American Gambling Association (AGA) announced that at least 97 percent of the country’s 524 tribal gaming properties are closed. Those that remain open are mostly Native American convenience stores that feature gaming machines. It is important to note that while states lack the authority to force tribal casinos to shutter their operations, as the venues are on sovereign territory, almost all tribal nations that operate gaming are closing their casinos in a nationwide effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

With many of the nation’s biggest attractions — from Disney World to March Madness — closing or suspending service because of the pandemic, it is unclear how long the casino gambling industry, which supports 1.8 million jobs, can last during a shutdown. 

Impact of Sweeping Coronavirus Closures


Casinos were already feeling pinched as patrons shy away from handling chips, cash, slot machines and playing cards. Not only has consumer spending plummeted as more and more people avoid restaurants, shopping centers, and large public gatherings, but it has also sparked layoffs to occur all across the country. A prolonged shutdown of this magnitude into the summer could have shattering effects in gambling meccas such as Las Vegas and Atlantic City. The industry in these cities are a big regional employer and one of the top economic engines for both of these states. 

According to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, in 2018 about 37.6 percent of the workforce in southern Nevada were supported by tourism. The impact of the sweeping closures was felt immediately with over three times as many people filing for unemployment than normally. In an attempt to help out their workers and not have food spoil, many casino restaurants across the country have been transformed into makeshift food banks. In Las Vegas, card dealers, servers, bartenders, housekeepers and others normally keep the revelry running for over 40 million visitors a year. However, by last week, barricades were placed outside casino doors. All of the cash machines were emptied. The slot machine screens were turned off and all of the tables had been wiped down and bar stools stored away. 

Bouncing Back from the Coronavirus

However, even after the pandemic is contained, it’s hard to say how quickly casinos will be able to bounce back. For many casinos, simply opening the doors will not be enough. According to financial service company, Standard & Poor’s, even after the coronavirus is under control, casinos should expect further financial hurt as states continue to implement social distancing and travel restrictions. Nevertheless, there is more hope for regional gaming markets compared to destination markets such as Las Vegas as customers are more able to drive to local properties, rather than fly or travel long distances.  

While we may not know when this public health crisis will be under control, we are able to track its impact on the economy and the entertainment industry. Even as almost all of the U.S. commercial and tribal casinos in the country have been temporarily closed, many are wondering what it might look like for casinos to bounce back after this pandemic is over. Hope is not lost however, as some casinos are still paying their workers or are setting up food banks for their employees and customers to take advantage of. To stay on top of the latest casino and gambling news, be sure to keep visiting the Casino Schedule Ease blog.


How the Coronavirus is Impacting Casinos in Macau

Seven times larger than Las Vegas, Macau is dependent on the millions of tourists that come from the mainland every week. The beginning of the year is especially profitable for Macau as tourists arrive to spend the Lunar New Year holiday at the city’s baccarat tables and Michelin-starred restaurants. However, this year has not been full of guests and celebrations. Casino operators in Macau are taking a beating as fear of a new threat, the coronavirus, has caused a surge in trip cancellations to the casino hub. As a major player in the casino world, it is no wonder we have decided to take a closer look into the history of Macau, how the coronavirus is affecting this city, and what the future holds.

History of Macau

Macau at night

Human settlements within the Macau region started forming around six thousand years ago. The region was settled during the Han dynasty, but it did not develop as a major settlement until the Portuguese arrived in the 16th century. The initially small population of Portuguese merchants rapidly became a growing city, and around the late 1500s, a government was formed to handle municipal affairs. Macau entered a period of decline in the 1640s following trade routes with Japan and Portugal being severed and the Portuguese revolution against Spain. For the next 300 years, it would switch between being a Chinese and Portuguese colony. 

During the mid-1900s, refugees from mainland China swelled the population of Macau as they fled from the Chinese Civil War. Access to a large workforce enabled Macau’s economy to grow. As the colony expanded, so did the textile manufacturing industry and tourism industry in Macau. This was also the period in which casino gambling became legalized in Macau. Following deadly riots in 1974, Portugal formally relinquished Macau as an overseas province. 

Returning to Chinese control in 1999, Macau became the only part of China to allow casino gambling. Almost overnight, Macau rapidly urbanized and constructed large-scale infrastructure projects, including Macau International Airport and transformed it into a thriving hub for entertainment and fine dining. In 2002, the government allowed open bidding for casino licenses to attract foreign investors. Along with an easing of travel restrictions on mainland Chinese visitors, this triggered a period of further economic growth. Gambling companies built vast casinos that now illuminate the skyline. Often compared to Las Vegas, Macau offers everything, from a miniature Eiffel Tower to a gilded-dragon cable car that floats past dancing water fountains at the Wynn Palace. 

Impact of Coronavirus

people protecting themselves from coronavirus

A respiratory virus that originated in China and has already spread to more than 35 countries, the coronavirus is leaving many experts fearing a pandemic may be on the way. In Macau, authorities have already identified numerous individuals that have been sickened by this illness, among them a hotel employee at Galaxy Casino, one of the city’s busiest gambling establishments. Authorities have suspended basic public services and have urged residents not to leave their homes except to get food. To combat this virus from further spreading in the region, officials in Macau also asked its 41 casinos in early February to close for half a month. This move not only shut down the world’s largest gambling city but was also a big financial hit towards American casino operators like Wynn Resorts and Las Vegas Sands as well as the local companies that sustain the territory’s economy. 

Since gambling accounts for four-fifths of the Macau government’s revenue, closing all casinos for 15 days is going to drastically impact yearly financial performance. It’s like closing the Las Vegas strip for 15 days, but six times over. According to some reports, the Wynn Resorts in Macau was losing as much as $2.6 million per day during the closure. Furthermore, the drop in casino revenue comes after a particularly challenging year for the companies in Macau. Slowing economic growth in both China and across the world has some worrying about reduced gambling activity this year.  

Looking Ahead

It should be noted that some analysts have downplayed the potential for the coronavirus to financially affect Macau’s casinos’ long term, pointing to how quickly gambling revenue rebounded following the SARS outbreak in 2002. However, SJM Holdings was the only major casino operator in Macau at the time and it did not have the competition from Galaxy Entertainment or Las Vegas Sands like it does today. Furthermore, there are currently no signs of when a bounce-back might come. New instances of coronavirus are still being discovered every day and the disease’s global reach is growing.

Entering this year, the consensus view among Macau casino operators was that the first half of the year would be slow before a rebounded materialized in the back half. But that outlook did not account for the coronavirus. The outbreak has now caused analysts to believe that it’s nearly impossible to project any financial projections for 2020. At the very best, the two-week closure could shave 5 to 15 percent off Macau’s gaming revenue this year. 

After taking a look at the history of Macau, it’s amazing to see how far they’ve come, but seeing how they will continue to progress in the future still remains a mystery. While most of China remains shut down by the coronavirus, the global economic outlook, the fortunes of major casinos, and the jobs of workers around the world depend on how quickly China, and Macau, is able to come back. To stay on top of the latest casino and gambling news, be sure to keep visiting the Casino Schedule Ease blog.


New Casino Trends for 2020

With the first month of 2020 almost over, it is important to take a moment to look ahead and examine emerging trends that may influence the casino industry this year. While last year brought about the closure of Resorts Casino Tunica and many other notable casinos, the future is looking very bright with plenty of new planned openings scheduled for this year. It should come as no surprise then too that technology is going to continue to play a major role in the casino industry. Therefore, here are some new openings and technology trends to be on the lookout for in 2020.

New Casinos Opening in 2020

Circa Resort

Las Vegas strip lit up at night

For the first time in more than four decades, an all-new resort is being built on Freemont Street in downtown Las Vegas. Standing at 459 feet tall, this 44-story resort will take up an entire block and be home to 777 rooms. According to owners Derek and Greg Stevens, Circa will have a two-level casino and a nine-story parking garage, known as Garage Mahal, which will be located across the street from the resort. The property is also planning to have the longest outdoor bar to be located on Fremont Street and a six-tiered pool area that includes a 125-foot television screen.

While all of those other amenities are nice, the real showcase of this new resort is the three-story, stadium-style sportsbook. Expected to be the biggest in Las Vegas, Derek Stevens’ has stated that his vision for the sportsbook was inspired by the sportsbooks at Caesars Palace and the Hilton. The Circa’s sportsbook would also include the Vegas Stats & Information Network and is expected to become the center of sports wagering in downtown Las Vegas. If everything goes smoothly, the new resort will be open in December of this year.

Emerald Queen Casino and Resort

ferry outside Tacoma, Washington

While the Puyallup Tribe has been successfully running the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, Washington for the past 15 years, the tribe has only recently been able to make major strides in replacing the former bingo hall into a mega-casino and resort. Construction on this new facility spans over 310,000 square feet with a 110,000-square-foot gaming floor, a 21,000-square-foot event center with 2,000 seats and a 200-room hotel with spa and conference rooms. The casino will incorporate tribal art throughout, a cedar paneling that is evocative of a tribal longhouse and will feature exterior metal panels in a design reminiscent of basket weaving. Drawing comparisons to hotels in Las Vegas, the Emerald Queen Casino and Resort is sure to attract many visitors traveling down I-5. The grand opening is scheduled for next month.

This is just one of many renovation and expansion projects among tribes across the country. These groups are looking to increase profits and 2020 will see the completion of a variety of major improvement projects among Indian owned casinos.

New Legislation, New Opportunities

Atlanta Motor Speedway

Atlanta Motor Speedway

Georgia is one of only a handful of states that does not house a land-based casino, but that might change in the near future. Earlier this month the Special Committee on Economic Growth, a committee made up of 15 state representatives, hosted a public hearing to gather input from the local community on possible gambling expansion at the Atlanta Motor Speedway and over 200 residents showed up. However, in order to pass gambling legislation in Georgia, it would require an amendment to the state constitution. This means that a two-thirds majority vote in both the house and senate would need to occur before citizens could even have a chance to vote on it at the ballot box.

If new legislation were to pass, the site of the hearing would be the site of the state’s first casino. Ed Clark, president of the Atlanta Motor Speedway, released plans last year to add a casino, hotel, an indoor and outdoor water park, a concert venue, a nightclub and several other attractions to the racetrack. His plans would turn the speedway into a year-round attraction instead of just during the NASCAR season.

This would not be the first speedway in the country to renovate their facilities with casinos. Both Kansas Motor Speedway and Delaware’s Dover International Speedway each have casinos attached to them.

Pamunkey Indian Tribe and the City of Norfolk

Docks at Norfolk, Virginia

Earlier this month, the city of Norfolk, Virginia, signed a $10 million agreement with the Pamunkey Indian Tribe for the purchase of 13.4 acres of land for the development of a waterside resort casino. The signing comes after over a year of negotiation between the City Council and the tribe.

The proposed Pamunkey Resort and Casino would include a four-diamond, full-service convention hotel, several onsite restaurants, an entertainment venue, a luxury spa, and both indoor and outdoor swimming pools. While construction has not even started yet, it is projected to create thousands of full-time jobs and attract millions of new visitors to the city each year.

However, while 2020 is an exciting time for Norfolk and the Pamunkey Tribe, there is a minor speed bump before any construction can even begin. According to a provision in the agreement, the tribe cannot fully purchase the land until they are given the right to conduct commercial gaming. Since commercial gaming is not yet legal in Virginia, the General Assembly would need to first legalize commercial gaming before any party could begin to reap the benefits of this new project. The state did adopt legislation last year that specifically would allow casinos in five cities, including Richmond and Norfolk, but the legislation would need to be passed again this year to become law.

The tribe has modified its development plans in an attempt to be more actively involved in current General Assembly deliberations regarding possible casinos in Bristol, Danville, and Portsmouth. With the possibility of the federal process for a tribal casino taking years, by the time the tribe’s project would be ready to proceed, other casinos would likely already be operating.

As the year 2020 continues to unfold, we are expecting more big news in the worlds of casinos, gambling and gaming. Visit Casino Schedule Ease to learn more about how management software is helping casinos meet modern demands and to stay up-to-date with the latest news happenings through our blog.


A Brief History of Slot Machines

Since their creation back in the 19th century, slot machines have remained one of the most popular casino games in the world. Internationally, slot machines are known by different names. Whether it is “fruit machines”  in England or “pokies” in Australia, they have grown in popularity throughout the years and are now a huge hit on a global level. Step into a casino and you will almost immediately understand why these machines are so popular. That is why we are taking a closer look into the history of these gaming machines, their evolution, and what the future holds. 

Before we discuss the invention of slot machines, it is important that it is made clear that most dates mentioned are going to be approximations. This is due to the fact that this is quite a controversial subject and many people claim to have been the first to invent the machine. 

The Creation of Slots

Old style slot machine

Nevertheless, the very beginnings of slot machines date back to the late 19th century. It is believed that Sitmann and Pitt, from Brooklyn, New York, developed the first gambling machine in the early 1890s. A precursor to the slot machine, this gambling machine used cards as symbols and was based on poker.

Soon after its introduction, this machine proved to be extremely popular and could be found in many bars across the city. When a player inserted a nickel and pulled the lever, the drums would spin and random cards would show up. Rather than having automatic rewards, this machine would give out prizes such as free drinks or free cigars.

A few years later, Charles Fey is created with the first slot machine. Dubbed the Liberty Bell, this machine only had three reels but had the ability to trigger payouts automatically. The popularity and success of the Liberty Bell set the standard for the modern slot machine and while his design was eventually copied and sold by other competitors, the three-reel model can still be found in some slot machines today. 

The Electromechanical Slot Machine

In 1963, Bally Manufacturing developed the first fully electromagnetic slot machine called Money Honey. This machine featured electronic reels that were activated when the patron pulled the side lever. Interestingly, the electromechanical approach allowed Money Honey to be the first slot machine with a bottomless hopper and automatic payment of up to 500 coins. For those unfamiliar with the term hopper, it is a mechanical device that rotates coins into the coin tray when a player collects credits/coins. Later on, after gaining more popularity, the lever was removed from the machine and replaced with a button.

The Introduction of Video Slots

Video slots with two screens

Around 15 years after the introduction of Money Honey, the first electronic slot (aka video slot) was developed by the Las Vegas-based company Fortune Coin Company. Using a modified 19-inch Sony Trinitron color receiver for the display and logic boards for the slot machine functions, this prototype was mounted within a full size show-ready slot machine cabinet.

The first of these video slot machine was placed at the Hilton Hotel in Las Vegas. However, it did not find initial success like its predecessors. It is believed that since players were unable to actually see the reels rotating, they did not believe they were slot machines. That all changed within a year. By 1978, International Game Technology (IGT) bought Fortune Coin Company and made modifications to the video slot machines. Once modifications were made, these machines started gaining widespread popularity across the Las Vegas Strip. Very quickly, video slots could be spotted in almost every casino in Vegas. 

The next big year for slots came in 1994. Two big milestones occurred for slots that year. First, the very first online casino introduced video slots. Online video slots provide a convenient gaming experience for millions of people around the world, without the hassle of going to a casino. Today, they are classified as a huge success within the gaming industry.

The second milestone was the unveiling of the first electronic slot machine with two screens. This occurred in Australia in 1994 and made its way to America two years later. With two screens, players were able to experience changing displays and the ability to claim a potential bonus. If a player activated a bonus round, a new screen will appear with a chance to win a bonus game. According to the Nevada Gaming Almanac, these new machines currently generate over 70% of the incomes for casinos in Las Vegas. 

3D and the Future of Slots

Modern slot machines

Casinos are constantly trying to find new ways to entice audiences and keep them coming back. In the slot industry, that’s currently happening with 3D slot machines. While the machines themselves are not a holographic 3D piece of machinery from the future, they are created to make the video screen as much 3D as possible. Available both online and in casinos, 3D slots do not require any special glasses. The designers of these machines specifically created the symbols and characters to be as lifelike as possible.

If you really concentrate, sometimes the art on the slot machines look so real that it can feel like they’re popping out at you. These 3D slot games are pretty similar to video slots except for the extremely high-quality graphics which they contain. Right now, they are seen as the latest evolution of slot machines and a good indicator that the slot industry is continuing to grow. 

After taking a look at the evolution of slot machines, it’s amazing to see how far they’ve come, and how they continue to progress. With technology continuing to evolve, there’s no telling what could be introduced next. It’s amazing how such a simple machine has become huge in the entertainment industry.

To stay on top of the latest casino and gambling news, be sure to keep visiting the Casino Schedule Ease blog.


The History of the Bellagio

Las Vegas Bellagio

Walk down the Las Vegas Strip and it would be almost impossible to miss the Bellagio and its famed dancing fountains. Celebrating its 20th birthday last year, the elaborate and eye-catching Bellagio has redefined the Las Vegas experience. With its world-renowned restaurants, exclusive poker rooms, conservatory and botanical gardens, gallery of fine art, and a Cirque du Soleil production, it is no wonder the Bellagio is listed as one of the top hotels in the world. That is why we are going to take a closer look at the history of Bellagio, the many attractions that it provides and what the future holds for this famous hotel and casino.

The Grand Opening

Inspired and named after a resort town on the shores of Lake Como in Northern Italy, the Bellagio was opened on October 15, 1998. The brainchild of Steve Wynn, then head of Mirage Resorts, the resort had an original design and construction cost of $1.6 billion dollars; making it the most expensive building in the world upon completion. 

The Bellagio reportedly spent $88 million on its opening night ceremony. It all began around 11 p.m. with Steve Wynn giving a 40-minute welcome speech and then processed by Cirque du Soleil’s aquatic show, “O”. There was a fireworks show reportedly scheduled, but it had to be canceled due to high winds. By 1:00 am, the casino and other public areas around the Bellagio were packed with an estimated 15,000 people. Just a few VIP celebrities that were present at the opening night included Michael Jordan, Clint Eastwood, Drew Barrymore, George Lucas, and Nevada Governor Bob Miller. All VIPs present were highly encouraged to donate to The Foundation Fighting Blindness.

Famous Bellagio Poker Room

Famous Bellagio Poker Room

The Bellagio is partners with the World Poker Tour and has hosted the annual Five Diamond World Poker Classic since its inception in 2002. Due to the high table limits, it is very common to see professional poker players at the Bellagio poker room. Many, in fact, call it their home base or the “Office”. The very high-stakes games at the Bellagio are played in “Bobby’s Room“, named after famed professional poker player Bobby Baldwin. It is reported that stakes at these games can range up to $8,000 and that the total pots exceed $1 million dollars. 

Non-Casino Attractions

The Fountains at Bellagio

Since the beginning, the Bellagio has made efforts to entice tourists with amenities that extend beyond the casino. Step outside the main doors and look upon the Fountains of Bellagio to find such an effort. Set in an 8-acre manmade lake, the Fountains is a choreographed water feature with performances set to light and music. While the performances take place in front of the Bellagio, there are numerous vantage points on the Las Vegas Strip where people can watch the show.

Typically, the show takes place in the afternoon every 30 minutes, and from 8 pm to midnight they occur every 15 minutes. If you look at the hotel tower around two minutes before a show starts, you will see the lights beginning to change. The color of the lights indicates the type of show (i.e red, white, and blue are used for Independence Day). While the resort tries to do shows every day, they do cancel shows unexpectedly if there are high winds or if there is a planned event. For VIP guests taking part in special occasions, such as weddings, the Bellagio offers the chance to choose the music for that day’s fountain performances. Interestingly, from 1998 to 2010, the Fountains of Bellagio was the largest fountain in the world. It has since been surpassed by the Dubai Bay fountain and Okada Manila.  

Besides the Fountains, the Bellagio is home to various works of art. When the property was first built, the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art displayed the personal art collection of Steve Wynn. After the hotel was sold to MGM in 2000, the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art became a rotating exhibition space that displays artwork on loan from numerous museums and private collections from around the world.

Popular Culture References

Ocean's Eleven Movie Poster

Just three years after opening its doors, the Bellagio served as the central setting for one of the highest-grossing films of 2001; Ocean’s Eleven. In the film, a group of thieves conspires to rob the vault inside the Bellagio. The antagonist in the Ocean’s Trilogy, Terry Benedict, is also loosely based on Steve Wynn. In addition to owning and developing two of the same casinos as Wynn (The Mirage and the Bellagio), Benedict also has an extensive art collection. In the film’s 2007 sequel, Ocean’s Thirteen, two of the characters stand in front of Bellagio, reminiscing about Dunes Resort and Casino, which had previously occupied the site.

Additionally, the Bellagio Fountains make multiple appearances in pop culture. Artists such as Britney Spears, Drake, and Bruno Mars have all used the Bellagio Fountains as a backdrop for some of their most popular music videos. In 2008, the fountains made a brief appearance in the Disney animated film Bolt.  

Looking Ahead 

With major casinos on the Las Vegas strip undergoing renovations and new properties being built every year, there is increased pressure to cater to new audiences and increase revenue numbers.  Just last month it was announced that MGM Resorts would be selling the Bellagio to The Blackstone Group for $4.25 billion. Per the agreement of the deal, The Blackstone Group would hold ownership of the property, but MGM Resorts would lease the space and continue to operate the Bellagio for an estimated annual rent of $245 million dollars. The deal is expected to be finalized by the end of this year. Since the Bellagio was one of the first in Las Vegas to showcase major attractions alongside their casinos, it will be interesting to see what the future holds. To stay on top of the latest casino and gambling news, be sure to keep visiting the Casino Schedule Ease blog.


October Gambling News Round-Up

Georgia Pushes to Legalize Casino Gambling


Historically, Georgia has not been a gambling friendly state and efforts to pass legislation to legalize gambling have been shut down. Despite this, Ed Clark, the President of the Atlanta Motor Speedway is hoping that a $1 billion proposal for a casino resort will change minds. Clark is advertising the casino as a way to continue to grow Georgia’s economy and bring 3,000 construction jobs and up to 5,000 other casino jobs to the area.  

The proposal comes at a time when the state is experiencing a dip in tax revenue and government agencies are being ordered to reduce spending. Clark is hoping that these economic circumstances will help him make his case and help make gambling a more attractive option than it has been in the past. 

Clark has already released a rendering of the potential casino and resort complex. This massive project could include hotels, restaurants, concert venues, indoor and outdoor waterparks, theme park and an interactive golf driving range. It would be located just 29 miles from downtown Atlanta and within easy driving distance of 8.5 million people who live in and around Atlanta. 

It remains to be seen whether the state legislation will be sold on the idea and if local residents will welcome gambling in the state. A vote within the next year should decide the matter at least temporarily. Even if the gambling remains illegal, there is sure to be a continued push for a change in the laws from entrepreneurs looking to make money.

Football Fuels Sports Betting


With both college and NFL games being played across the country, sports betting is bringing in big revenue for participating states. In Mississippi, one of the first states to offer sports betting once it became legal, September was a lucrative month with $37.9 million in bets. That is twice as much as the previous month. Mississippi has a 12% tax rate on casino revenue, which has resulted in $675,790 going back to the state and various municipalities where casinos are located.  

Iowa was also an early adpoter of sports betting and has also been seeing big numbers early in the football season. Unlike Mississippi where betting is only allowed on casino grounds, Iowans can take advantage of mobile betting right from their smartphone. As a result, 56% of all bets were made through a mobile device. With football season in full swing both states are expected to rake in significant profits that will be funneled back into the communities.

Debates Continue over the Chicago Casino


For months, we have been following developments in Illinois as lawmakers and developers work to bring a major casino into Chicago. So far, it has been difficult to come to an agreement about the exact location and now Mayor Lori Lightfoot is campaigning to have the casino run as a state-owned business. The Mayor wants to leverage the casino to help address the city’s $1.3 billion in debt and try to make up for a budget shortfall.  

However, the legislation is reluctant to revisit a bill that has caused a lot of uproar and controversy across the state. The entire project continues to be stalled by disagreements and lawmakers argue that making additional changes to the project would only reignite debates and lead to further delays and unnecessary conflicts. 

The delays are due to a tax structure that is scaring away investors. Currently, the owners of the casino would end up paying a tax rate of 72% on the gross gaming revenue (GGR), making it far and away the most heavily taxed casino in the country. If operating costs reach 30% of the GGR, which is quite likely, the casino would be in the red on day one. Understandably, investors don’t want to take on that risk.

If Mayor Lightfoot is unable to convince lawmakers to make the casino a state-owned venture, then she is calling for changes to the tax structure so that the project can actually attract funding from private sources. The next option would be to raise property taxes in order to bring in additional revenue, but this is a move that both the mayor and city residents would rather avoid. At this point, it is up to the legislature to decide how to move the casino project forward and it looks like they aren’t in a hurry to resolve the issue.

Facial Recognition Technology May Be Coming to Casinos

Konami Gaming is looking to replace rewards cards with facial recognition technology at slot machines and other games. Gamblers would simply have to share a photo of themselves at the casino rewards desk and eliminate the need to carry around a card. The technology would also be used to increase security, target customers with different offers and collect data on users’ behavior.

However, many argue that this technology violates privacy rights. While guests can choose not to use the facial recognition and ask to have their information deleted, many see this tool as problematic. Konami and participating casinos may have to iron out usage policies before the technology goes live so that they can avoid any lawsuits. 


Biggest Casino Headlines of September

It has been another exciting month in the casino industry. From major deals and new casinos to stalled projects, there is a lot to catch up on. Learn more about some of the biggest happenings across the country and what they could mean for the future.

Change of Leadership in New Jersey


In August, Kevin Ortzman suddenly resigned as the Regional President of Caesars Atlantic City and the President of the Casino Association of New Jersey. An internal investigation was launched after Jocelyn Agnellini-Allison filed a wrongful termination lawsuit. She had reported that Ortzman was seen kissing a subordinate employee. Not long after reporting the incident, she was terminated. In her lawsuit, she claims that she was retaliated against by her superiors and then fired without cause. Amid these allegations, Ortzman stepped down from his position.

While Caesars continues to deal with the lawsuit and leadership changes, the Casino Association of New Jersey has just named a new president. Steve Callender, who has over forty years of experience in the casino industry, will take over the association. He is now in charge of advocating for all nine Atlantic City casinos and working to represent their best interests. Looking forward, Callender will have to help casinos navigate increased competition as gambling becomes legal in more states. He will oversee the expansion of sports betting and online gambling while also dealing with mandates from lawmakers. For example, new laws require employees to carry emergency devices and Callender is responsible for ensuring compliance. The change in leadership was abrupt and unexpected, but hopefully it will be a positive thing for Atlantic City.

Norfolk Votes to Build Casino


Competition along the east coast continues to increase and Norfolk, Virginia, is now slated for its own casino. On September 24th, the city council voted 7-1 to move forward with a deal to sell land to a local tribe that will build a $700 million resort, casino and spa on the site. The complex will include restaurants, a luxury hotel and hundreds of gaming tables.

In recent months, the council and the town manager have been extensively researching the potential impact of the casino. While there are still some unanswered questions, the council clearly feels comfortable taking the next steps in getting the casino built. There has been some resistance from the public and they have the chance to submit a petition that would then put the issue back before the council and provide the opportunity to amend or repeal the project. It remains to be seen whether opponents of the project will pursue this course of action. In all likelihood, the council’s vote will stand.

Chicago Casino Project Stalled


All summer, there has been excitement about the prospect of Chicago’s first urban casino, but the project seems to be stalled. Part of the problem has to do with the city’s tax rate. As the law stands now, casino developers would pay a 72% tax rate and additional fees. Existing riverboat casinos pay tax rates of 15% to 50%.

For investors, developers and financiers, this simply isn’t a viable business deal. The Gaming Board is turning to the state lawmakers and asking them to make changes to the tax laws that would provide casino operators with more profits and attract investors so that the project can move forward.

The city is also having trouble deciding on a location. Most of the proposed locations have been on the southside and westside of Chicago. These options are also turning away potential investors because they don’t think that tourists will venture to these areas of the city.

The Chicago casino was a part of a more expansive gambling bill that cleared the way for additional casinos to be built throughout the state of Illinois. While the Chicago project is dealing with major obstacles, other casino projects are moving forward more smoothly.

Caesars Looks to Sell Properties

The resignation of Kevin Ortzman couldn’t have come at a less inopportune time. Caesars is in the middle of finalizing a deal with Eldorado Resorts to sell their properties for a total of $17.3 billion. While the properties will retain the Caesars name, the future of these properties is uncertain.

In Las Vegas, the Rio Las Vegas, which is owned by Caesars and located off the strip, has recently been sold to the real estate firm Imperial Companies for $516.3 million. As part of the deal, Caesars will operate the casino and pay $90 million in rent. Since Imperial doesn’t have much experience in the casino industry, many are speculating the property will be repurposed once the lease agreement is over. The future of the Rio may not involve gaming at all.

Movie Goer Wins Big


This is exactly the kind of story that keeps people going to casinos, playing the lotto and hoping to win big. On September 21st, a local man was visiting the theater inside the Aliante Casino and Hotel to catch a movie. To kill some time, he put $20 into the Wheel of Fortune slot machine and a few minutes later a $1.25 bet had resulted in a $935,176 jackpot. A simple trip to the movies netted this man a huge payout. Luck was definitely on his side.

Be sure to keep visiting Casino Schedule Ease to stay up-to-date on all the latest industry news and be the first to know about breaking headlines.


A Brief History of Atlantic City

In past posts, we have taken a closer look at the origins of the Las Vegas strip, how the city as evolved and its contributions to art and architecture. For this post, we are turning to America’s other famous gambling hub and diving into the history of Atlantic City. While gambling in the city wasn’t legalized until 1976, the city has a rich history that has helped shape the town we now know. Taking a look at the past may also provide some insights into the future of the city.

Prime Real Estate


In 1853, when Las Vegas was still a desolate stretch of desert, developers were recognizing the potential of Atlantic City. The city sits along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean and is surrounded by islands, making it the perfect place to build a resort town. The Belloe House was the first hotel to be built and within a year, the town had been incorporated and began receiving trains. Soon, nearly 500,000 visitors were heading to the city to escape New York City and enjoy the supposed health benefits of ocean water and clean air.

Much of the city’s PR and branding was spearheaded by Dr. Jonathan Pitney, who came to be know as the “Father of Atlantic City.” By touting the town as a health resort, he was able to boost tourism. In fact, he was responsible for the construction of the United States Hotel, which boasted 600 rooms and 14 acres of ground, making it the largest hotel in the country at the time.

By 1870, the first boardwalk was installed. While the boardwalk would eventually become a permanent feature and an iconic part of the city, these early versions were torn down at the end of the season. Their main purpose was to help keep sand out of hotel lobbies.

As the century came to an end, the city continued to gain in popularity. Eventually a toll road and second railroad were added to accommodate the influx of traffic. Smaller boarding houses began to be built. Despite all the construction, the city maintained a sense of luxury that attracted the rich and influential.

The Heyday of Atlantic City

Atlantic City has gone through several periods of revival, but the biggest boom time occurred at the turn of the century. Dozens of new hotels, including the famous Marlborough-Blenheim and Traymore Hotels were built and the 24 story Claridge hotel became known as the “Skyscraper by the Sea.”


During Prohibition, when other cities were cracking down on alcohol, the Atlantic City police and local officials turned a blind eye as liquor was smuggled into the city. Visitors could easily visit restaurants and nightclubs and grab a drink. Organized crime became such a big part of the city that they actually held a national conference there in 1929. It was also around this time that the city served as the inspiration for the first version of Monopoly, which still features the street and railroad names of the city.

New Challenges

After Prohibition, the nightclub scene flourished, but the city as a whole began to decline. More people owned automobiles and were able to come for a few days without having to stay for a week or more at a time. This new found mobility also meant that tourists could easily explore other cities along the coast and around the country without having to rely on the railroad. Commercial airlines also made travel easier and had people flying to tropical destinations like the Bahamas instead of hopping the train to Atlantic City. Finally, the emergence of suburbia and a healthy middle class meant that more families were building luxurious homes with swimming pools. This afforded people to enjoy the summer at home rather than spending money on an ocean side resort.

By the end of the 1960s, the city was trying to find new uses for hotels that weren’t in demand. These once popular and luxurious buildings were converted into nursing homes and apartments or simply demolished. In 1974, the city voted on a referendum to legalize gambling, but it failed. By 1976, residents had changed their collective mind and decided that gambling might just be the key to breathing new life into a crumbling city. Eventually, a total of 11 casinos were built and these locations began hosting big name boxing matches that brought in national attention.


Unfortunately, the Great Recession, which hit the US in the late 2000s, put a stop to a list of major construction projects that were already in the works and expected to bring even more business and big names like Steve Wynn into the area. Even as the rest of the country began to recover from the economic downturn, Atlantic City struggled to find funding for half finished projects and the state continued to lose revenue from gambling. Governor Chris Christie went against public sentiment in 2010 and offered Revel Entertainment Group $261 million in tax credits to finish building the revel casino. Within just ten months of opening the casino was forced to file for bankruptcy.

A New Resurgence

While Atlantic City continues to feel increased pressure as more surrounding states legalize gambling, the city has been making major strides. They were one of the first states to legalize sports gambling, giving them a leg up on the competition. Major casinos have also undergone renovations in order to cater to a new audience and revenue numbers are up almost across the board. There are more family friendly attractions, helping to revive the resort feel that once made the city a destination. With new projects on the horizon, the future is looking bright and Atlantic City could experience another historic and definitive resurgence. To stay on top of the latest casino and gambling news, be sure to keep visiting the Casino Schedule Ease blog.


August Casino News Round-Up

August has been a busy month in the casino industry. From Indiana to New Jersey and Nevada, there have been some big shake ups that have made the news. Keep reading to get caught up on what has been happening across the country and get a preview of what to expect this fall.

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Closes


In March of 2018, Sir Richard Branson, the head of Virgin, announced the purchase of the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. At the time, the plan was to temporarily close the hotel so that it could be re-branded and renovated. Construction was expected to be completed by the end of 2018, but a series of delays have pushed back the project.

Virgin has finally completed construction plans and announced a timeline. The location will shut down in February after the Super Bowl and reopen some time between October 2020 and January 2021. This is quite a deviation from the original plan that was expected to take just four months. Apparently, a more thorough audit of the building revealed the need for additional changes that have significantly expanded the scope of the project. Expected changes include a larger casino floor, more spacious conference center, new restaurants and a five-acre pool deck. In addition, all 1,500 rooms will be upgraded.

While the project is exciting news for some, it has put the casino’s 1,650 workers in a precarious position. The company has offered a retention bonus and employees won’t have to re-interview if they want to return to their position once the casino opens. However, it remains to be seen how many employees will stay on board after at least eight months of closure.

The Sahara is Undergoing a Facelift

The SLS Las Vegas Hotel & Casino is in the middle of a major facelift that could also include some rebranding and a return to its original and recognizable name, The Sahara. The project most notably includes the addition of the “Infinity” gaming floor, which will cater to high-rollers who like to make big bets. This section of the gaming floor will feature rich decor, specialty cocktails and elite gaming opportunities. The casino’s new owners are hoping to restore some of the luster that has been such an important part of the history of The Sahara.

Tiverton Casino and Hotel Earns Community Support


Any time a new casino opens, there is bound to be push back from the community and differing opinions about the advantages and disadvantages of building a casino. However, the Tiverton Casino and Hotel has received continuing support from local residents and government officials, which recently culminated in a permanent license to operate on a 24-hour basis.

The casino opened in September of 2018 and has performed well since then. For the first year of operation, the casino was granted a pilot license that would allow them to stay open 24-hours, but also allow the community to review this plan and make adjustments after a trial period. After 12 months, a hearing was held to evaluate the impact of the casino and decide how to move forward. Fortunately, there have been few issues. The only request for changes came from the fire and police departments who asked for better communication tools to aid first responders. The casino immediately committed to installing new equipment to make the necessary improvements.

The only local resident to speak out at the public hearing had nothing but nice things to say about the casino and how the business is fitting into the community. Hopefully, the Tiverton Casino and Hotel can continue to experience success and support. Moving forward, their biggest challenge may be increased competition from the recently opened Boston Harbor Encore Casino located just down the road.

Indiana Opens Doors to More Gambling Opportunities


In April, Indiana Governor, Eric Holcomb signed a massive gambling expansion into law. Not only is sports betting now legal in the state, two riverboats, which have operated on Lake Michigan, now have permission to move inland and set up shop on dry land. Spectacle Entertainment, which owns the boats, has made a deal with Hard Rock to build a $400 million facility that will include a live music venue.

The move to expand is in direct response to a bill passed in Illinois that is also working to bring more casinos to the state, including one in Chicago. Indiana has already experienced a 30% drop in gambling revenue over the last ten years and they aren’t about to concede more business to Illinois without a fight. The expansion is meant to keep Indiana residents in the state and try to maintain business from Illinois customers. The upcoming Hard Rock casino will be located just 18 miles from one of the proposed Chicago casinos sites. Indiana is hoping that it’s close enough to draw in visitors.

Currently, Indiana casinos have shuttle locations in Illinois that make it easy for people across state lines to make the trip. However, it will be hard to compete once there are several casino options right in and around Chicago. Illinois Casino Gaming Association Executive Director, Tom Swoik fears that all the construction and expansion will create a market that is saturated. With so much competition in close proximity, casinos will really have to ramp up amenities to draw in customers. Based on this new law, it is clear that Indiana isn’t willing to let Illinois take over the market without making some aggressive moves.

Looking Forward

This year has seen major changes in gambling laws and regulations across the country and there is every indication that the industry will continue to move at a rapid pace. For casinos, the real challenge will be delivering the same level of service as they focus on expanding. That means taking advantage of tools and technology, including software like Casino Schedule Ease, to help streamline processes. This will ensure that quality isn’t sacrificed in the name of building bigger and better facilities.

Keep visiting our blog to stay up-to-date with the latest happenings in the world of gambling and casinos.


The History of Neon Signs and Las Vegas

It is impossible to talk about the history of Las Vegas without mentioning the city’s famous neon signs. These elaborate and eye-catching signs were works of art that help put the city on the map. When neon lights first became popular, they were a symbol of a new and modern age and there was nothing quite as modern as a city rising out of the desert and offering glitz, glamour, freedom and a whole new level of entertainment. That is why we are going to take a closer look at the history of neon signs, how they helped shaped Las Vegas and what role they play now.

The Discovery of Neon

The Scottish chemist, Sir William Ramsay, is credited with discovering neon, xenon, argon, krypton and isolating helium and radon during the 1890s. These six gases are known as the noble gases because they don’t like to bond with other atoms. Ramsay was determined to discover the rare gases that are a part of air and was able to successfully identify new gases. During his experiments, he took these invisible gases, placed them in sealed gas tubes and charged them with electricity. The result was a colorful spectrum of light that glowed in ways that had never been seen. Ramsay went on to win the Nobel Prize for his efforts and discoveries.

Over the next decade, scientists around the world toiled away trying to create an efficient and practical way to light homes and businesses. Thomas Edison’s incandescent bulbs were promising, but they didn’t last long enough. Daniel McFarlan Moore thought that gas tubes Ramsay has experimented with were the answer and opened his own lighting company. His products were more efficient than the current bulbs, but they were still prohibitively expensive and prone to leaks. In 1910, tungsten filaments were placed in bulbs, making them more efficient than ever and basically eliminating any interest in tube lamps.

However, that didn’t stop the engineer Georges Claude, from continuing to experiment with electrifying tubes filled with nobles gases. Eventually, he was able to create 20 foot tubes that would safely operate for up to 1,200 hours. Claude recognized that neon light wasn’t ideal for lighting homes, but he clearly saw the potential for neon to transform advertising. In 1912, the first neon sign was installed outside a barbershop in Paris to attract customers. It worked like a charm and neon had begun its ascent.

Neon Lights Come to the States

While neon lights are practically synonymous with Las Vegas, Los Angeles was actually the first city to be illuminated by these new lights in the 1920s. At that time, Las Vegas was still just a blip in the desert, but LA was a thriving city being fueled by modern businesses selling new technology. The first neon signs in the US were installed outside California’s first Packard dealership. The signs were an instant hit and even caused traffic jams as drivers stopped to marvel at the glowing lights.

From there, neon signs spread like wildfire. Businesses of all kinds started investing in the signs and trade schools opened so that craftsman could learn the skill of making elaborate glass tubes. Creating signs became a true art form and innovators were constantly pushing the limits of design. Over time, designers were able to achieve over 40 color combinations by playing with the gas mixture and tinting the tubes. Eventually, neon signs included moving parts for even more spectacular displays of art and engineering.

Las Vegas Embraces Neon

Neon signs had proven that they could draw in people, so when Las Vegas was looking for a way to get people to the city, neon signs seemed like the perfect solution. One of the city’s first neon signs was installed at Fremont East’s Boulder Club in 1936. As the city continued to grow and showcase experimental architecture that simply wasn’t being practiced anywhere else in the world, neon signs became their own form of decoration. They weren’t just signs, but essential parts of some of Las Vegas’s most iconic buildings, including Lady Luck, The Mint and the Golden Nugget.

Over the next few decades, competition drove casinos to build more luxurious buildings and cover them in even more creative and jaw-dropping neon signs. The neon lights served as great advertising tools and they helped to light up the streets of Las Vegas and gamblers continued well into the morning hours. The 1960s were the heyday of neon signs in Vegas and the city was practically a shrine to neon. It was home to five of the world’s tallest electric signs. By the late 60s, plastic signs were all the rage because they offered a cheaper alternative and the city was looking for new and creative ways to market itself. New developers looked at neon as a sign of the past and they were looking towards the future and more modern design aesthetics.

Preserving Vegas’s Neon History

While elaborate neon signs may no longer define the strip, these lights have played an important role in the history of the city. That is why many are working to preserve and repair iconic neon signs and put them on display for the public. In 1996, the Neon Museum was founded and it now hosts hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. The collection showcases design trends and technological advances through time and allows visitors to experience famous signs. In fact, the visitor center is actually a restored version of the lobby from the La Concha Motel. From there, visitors can wander the 2.62 acres of outdoor displays or register for a guided tour. It is the perfect place to learn about the history of Las Vegas and get up close to some truly impressive signs that helped to shape the city.

Today, Las Vegas continues to push the limits of design and technology. It is truly an innovation hub where big dreams are turned into reality in order to attract and impress customers. The best in everything from architecture, software and design are on full display in the city. Casino Schedule Ease is happy to be a part of the city by providing casinos with the latest in scheduling software that simplifies even the most complex scheduling needs that involve a constant cycle of hundreds of employees.


July Casino News Round-Up

Casinos, sports betting and gambling recently entered a new era that is defined by growth and expansion. Laws that once restricted gambling are being lifted and more states are embracing casinos, increasing the number and gambling licenses and doing their best to get in on a lucrative industry. At the same time, technology is influencing the way people game and a robust economy means that more people are spending their disposable income on traveling to casinos and resorts. This month’s casino news round-up highlights all this along with the month’s biggest stories so that you can stay on top of what is happening in the industry.

Chicago Works to Build First Casino


At the beginning of June, Illinois passed a massive bill that expands gambling in the state and opens the door for up to six new casinos across the state, including one in Chicago. This bill is unprecedented in its scope. It not only legalizes sports gambling and allows existing casinos to increase their games by 70%, it also clears the way for slot machines to be installed in airports. But perhaps most significant is that fact that the bill authorizes a casino in one of the nation’s largest cities.

Now that the legislation has passed, Chicago is faced with the challenge of finding a location. Currently, feasibility studies are being conducted and 5 potential locations have been proposed although two of these locations were rejected by the alderman who don’t want a casino in their territory. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot is hoping that the construction process can be well underway in 12-18 months, but that timeline depends on being able to find a suitable location within the next few months. It remains to be seen just how smoothly this project will go, but it is now inevitable that Chicago will be home to a casino within the next couple years.

Strong Opposition to Napa Valley Casino

While cities across the country are welcoming gambling expansions, there is a battle brewing in California’s Napa Valley. The Mishewal Wappoo Tribe, who are native to the Napa Valley, are fighting to regain their federal recognition. If they succeed, they would be able to build a casino without having to get approval from the community. Local vineyards are not happy about the prospect of large scale developments in one of the nation’s most famous, fertile and lucrative agricultural areas.

As it stands, Napa Valley is zoned in a way that promotes land use for agricultural purposes and works to limit traffic and pollution in order to protect the ecosystem. However, the tribe argues that the vineyards actually cause significant water pollution, so while a casino might put additional stress on the area, the vineyards aren’t without their own problems. The potential for a casino in Napa Valley is certainly a contentious issue, but it remains a big question mark. The tribe will first have to be recognized by the federal government and their petition has been stuck in court since 2009.

Two Las Vegas Casinos Score Big with Visitors

The travel website TripAdvisor crunched their data and came up with rankings for the top 50 casinos in the United States. Encore and The Wynn Las Vegas took top honors because approximately 75% of their ratings were five-star ratings. That means that most customers give the casinos a perfect score. Customers were asked to provide feedback on cleanliness, location, value and service and these two Vegas staples performed well in all categories.

The list included other hotels and casinos from the strip and Atlantic City, but other locations and tribal casinos also fared well. The Beau Rivage Resort & Casino in Biloxi came in third and the WinStar, which is operated by the Chicksaw Nation earned a fourth place spot. This is good news for gamblers across the country who are looking for a venue a little closer to home. While Las Vegas has plenty of great resorts and casinos, some of the best might also be right in your backyard.

Oklahoma Tries to Renegotiate Tribal Gaming Contracts

Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt is taking on the Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association (OIGA), which consist of 38 tribes that run a total of 130 casinos. Under the current contract, tribes pay 4%-6% or their slot revenue and 10% of table game revenue to the state. Stitt argues that these rates, which were established 15 years ago, are way too low and don’t reflect the current market.

The OIGA is hoping that a united front will prevent the Governor from being able to force a renegotiation. As it stands now, it is unclear whether Stitt actually has the power to prevent the current contracts from renewing as is, but the tribes aren’t going to take any chances. However, the OIGA Chairman has made it clear that the tribes may be open to talks if the state is willing to discuss sports betting and how that might play in to a larger deal that could be lucrative for the tribes.

Technology Powers Expansion of Casino Industry

There has clearly been a cultural shift in the way people and governments view gambling. This has led to new laws that lift restrictions, but the rapid expansion of gambling around the US wouldn’t be possible without the introduction of new technology based solutions. Sports betting, especially on a large scale, is a complex undertaking and new software is making it possible for casinos to quickly enter the market as soon as it becomes legal in their state. Learn more about emerging sports betting technology.

Technology is also making it possible for casinos to quickly scale up and manage large staffs that include hundreds of dealers, cashiers, bartenders and other employees and operate on a 24/7 cycle. Casino Schedule Ease is helping casinos across the country more efficiently handle complex scheduling challenges, maximize employee productivity and reduce the workload on managers. These types of tools are making it possible for casinos to take full advantage of changes in the laws and leverage them to increase revenue.

Casino News Takeaway

The momentum is steadily growing as more states change their laws regarding gambling. This will continue in the coming months and may result in some battles as communities resist development and states enter profit sharing negotiations with organizations. At the same time, these changes are opening the door for entrepreneurs and programmers to offer new solutions to meet a changing market. Keep visiting our blog to stay up-to-date on all the latest casino news.


The Status of Online and Sports Gambling in the U.S.

For decades, laws regarding gambling in the U.S. remained strict compared to other countries and few changes were made to expand the industry. However, there has been a major shift in the past few years and things are rapidly evolving as more states legalize sports betting, expand online gambling and increase the number of casino licenses. To help you stay up-to-date, we have put together a list of the latest changes and how they may affect your state and surrounding areas. 

New Hampshire Legalizes Sports Betting

Perhaps the most significant change to gambling in the U.S. has been recent legalization of sports betting by the federal government. Since the Supreme Court’s ruling, states have been scrambling to decide not only whether they want to take advantage of this opportunity, but also the best way to do so. Some states already had legislation in place so that they could be prepared for the final ruling. Others have taken a wait and watch approach so that they could perhaps learn from other states and transition more smoothly into the world of sports gambling.

On July 12th, New Hampshire officially became the 9th state to legalize sports gambling. The state joins Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey, Mississippi, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Arkansas to create a largely east coast contingent of states supporting sports gambling. New Hampshire residents will be able to gamble through a select number of online companies and retail locations. The legislation also specifies that a new Division of Sports Wagering will be established and gamblers will not be able to wager on any college teams or games from within the state. Residents can expect additional adjustments as these laws and regulations are put to the test and evaluated.

The Future of Sports Betting

It looks like North Carolina may be the next state to officially legalize sports betting. Lawmakers were unable to pass a budget on time, which means that there will be more time and opportunity for gambling bills to make headway. At this point, it is practically inevitable that sports betting will be classified as a Class III game, which is permitted on Indian owned casino locations. Unless there is a drastic change, gamblers will be able to make sports wagers at NC casinos within the next year.

Pennsylvania Casinos Lost Suit Against State Lottery


A battle between state sanctioned casinos and the state lottery has been brewing in Pennsylvania for the past few months. Seven casinos filed a lawsuit against the state claiming that the new online casino inspired games were too close to the real thing and would result in a loss of revenue. Part of the problem was that online games were available to residents 18 and over while casino games could only be played by those 21 and over. The casinos saw this as a clear and unfair advantage. Casinos also tried to make the argument that any loss in revenue would hurt the residents of PA since a portion of their profits goes directly back into tax collection and community projects.

While the judge acknowledged that the casinos had a valid argument, it turns out that the state’s gambling laws are ambiguous enough to allow for both the lottery and the casinos to operate without conflict. With so much money at stake, neither side is calling it quits and you can expect more appeals and suits to follow before the matter is finally put to rest.

Sports Betting Goes Live in NY

New York State has been proactive about not only legalizing sports gambling, but launching programs as soon as possible. On Tuesday, July 16th, the Rivers Casino & Resort in Schenectady had its ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open its sports betting lounge that spans 5,000 square feet and offers enough room 80 people. There is also a VIP section that can accommodate up to 18 people along with 14 kiosks and six betting windows.

In the coming year, an additional three upstate locations will open sports betting facilities. While some are happy with this rate of expansion, others have argued that the state should have also allowed mobile locations. As it stands now, NYC residents will have to travel several hours to visit New York locations or take a shorter drive and spend their money in New Jersey, which was one of the first states to adopt sports betting. New York based casinos are hoping that residents and those from neighboring states will visit their locations for the beautiful accommodations. Only time will tell whether NY gamblers opt for better proximity and spend their dollars in NJ, or stay loyal to their home state.

With advances in technology improving the security of online gambling and easing fears around issues of identity verification, it is likely that this type of gaming will continue to expand. To keep up with when laws are changing and how technology and software solutions, such as Casino Schedule Ease, are transforming the industry, be sure to keep up with our blog. You can rely on us to keep you up to date and on top of the latest trends.


June Casino News Round-Up

Grand-Opening of the Encore Boston Harbor Resort


Earlier this month, we took a closer look at the long history of the location of Encore Boston Harbor resort and casino and the extensive work that went into turning an environmental wasteland into one of the city’s most luxurious destinations. On June 23rd, the Encore Boston Harbor officially opened for business and thousands of people lined up to watch the opening ceremonies and be one of the first to get a glimpse of the interior. The first day of business appears to have gone off without a hitch. While many local residents have expressed concerns about increased traffic and congestion, there weren’t any major problems or delays as around 50,000 people visited the area to check out the resort. (Click here to see some photos of opening day)

Looking forward, developers are banking on the success of the Encore Boston Harbor casino and already making plans to expand the area with additional hotels, apartments, convention centers and other amenities that will help draw people from all over the world. They are also preparing for the possibility that sports gambling will soon become legal in Massachusetts and they have their eyes on new locations that will accommodate sports bettors. Finally, they are looking at ways to improve transportation access with road projects, a potential footbridge across the Mystic River and other solutions to help people easily travel to the area. If the Encore Boston Harbor is a success, the area is in store for some more major changes that could put it on the global map.

50th Anniversary of the World Series of Poker


The very first World Series of Poker (WSOP) featured just 30 players and mostly happened behind closed doors. In the end, Johnny Moss became the first world champion and the only real record of the event is a photo someone snapped to document the occasion. Since these humble beginnings, the WSOP has become a major event that isn’t just played out in the open on the main floor, but is featured on ESPN. Fifty years later, the 2019 WSOP championship began in late May and a champion won’t be crowned until July 13th. The final ten days of the tournament will begin with around 8,000 players, most of whom will have paid a $10,000 entry fee, and culminate with a single winner who will take home millions.

While the pioneers of the first tournament couldn’t have possibly predicted how the sport would explode, but it didn’t all happen by chance. A lot of work has been put into building the sport. The leadership behind the WSOP has been innovative when it comes to making the sport more inclusive so that relative unknowns can have the chance to make it to the final table. They have also been savvy in cultivating poker stars, building relationships with TV networks and turning poker into a spectator sport that millions of people tune into watch. Finally, they have continued to evolve as tastes have changed in order to keep the sport fresh. This includes moving the tournament from the original Binion’s Horseshoe location to more modern casino facilities. With this forward-thinking approach to the sport, it seems likely that the WSOP will be just as popular in another 50 years.

Gambling Addiction Clinics for Minors


The National Health Service in the UK recently announced that it will open 14 clinics to help minors deal with addiction to gambling. While this is happening across the pond, the US may want to take notice. According to recent studies conducted by England’s Gambling Commission, the country has 450,000 underage gamblers, which is more than those who have reported smoking, drinking or taking drugs. The Commission also found that kids are mostly being enticed into gambling by advertisements and their peers.

However, these kids aren’t visiting the casinos and playing the slots. Instead, they are engaging in a more high-tech and deceptive form of gambling tied to video games. In certain games and apps, players can purchase “loot boxes”, which include rewards that will help with the game. The player doesn’t know what is in the box until they make the purchase, so they end up gambling real-world money on digital prizes that vary in usefulness. These kinds of gambling opportunities for kids has caused the number of underage gamblers to quadruple in two years and prompted the UK government to take action to treat gambling addiction in minors.

While the United States has strict laws governing online gaming, the trend seems to be going towards easing restrictions. More states are legalizing sports betting and online gambling. As state governments continue to debate new laws, it might be worth taking a look at the UK to better understand potential problems and take action early on to prevent similar consequences.

Casinos Go High-Tech

You might not think of the hospitality industry as one that would be influenced by new technology. After all, hotels, resorts, restaurants and casinos are all about customer service and going above and beyond to make the customer happy and that often comes down to human interactions. However, new technology is actually making it easier to provide a better customer experience so casinos and resorts can earn customer loyalty.

Casino Schedule Ease is one software solution that is helping casinos harness the power of technology to streamline process and free employees from more mundane tasks so that they can focus on the customer. This tool makes it easy for scheduling managers to visualize the casino floor and manage employee preferences and requests for time off and place the best people in positions where they will thrive. Employees also benefit from clear communication with management so that they can get their preferred time slots and locations. Ultimately, this leads to better employee job satisfaction and morale, which directly translates to better customer service. In this way, technology is helping casinos improve the customer experience, attract new visitors and ensure repeat customers.


The Unique Story of the Encore Boston Harbor

History of the Encore Boston Harbor Casino Site

The Encore Boston Harbor resort and casino has an unlikely backstory. In January 2015, when Wynn Resorts first purchased the 33 acres of land along the Mystic River that is now home to the resort, it seemed like the least attractive spot to build any sort of large public or private gathering space. The land had been zoned for industrial use and hadn’t been accessible for over 100 years. During that time, the area had been home to a variety of plants that relied heavily on chemicals, which inevitably contaminated both the surrounding land and water.

In fact, a large portion of the land used to be White Island, but backfill was used to connect the island to the mainland and create more shoreline. Over the years, the site was used by a long list of industrial companies. As far back as 1804, a dye house operated there and was followed by Cochrane Chemical Company, Merrimac Chemical Company and Monsanto. In 1983, Boston Edison bought the land and was the last industrial owner before it was bought up by Rose Construction Ventures with the goal of making it ready for development.

Around the same time that Rose Construction Ventures acquired the land, the state of Massachusetts passed the Expanded Gaming Act, which meant that Las Vegas style casinos were allowed to operate in three different designated territories. Once the Act was passed, casinos went to work creating proposals and trying to win one of these lucrative contracts. Eventually, Wynn Resorts was awarded the contract in large part because they had agreed to massive cleanup efforts along with long-term investments to address new traffic that would be coming into the city.

While the Gaming Commission approved the deal and there seemed to be support from the public, not everyone was happy about the outcome. The major of Boston, Martin J. Walsh, though the final deal was “unacceptable” and several neighboring cities filed lawsuits. These early legal challenges would be the first of many to come through the construction process.

The Site Cleanup

Wynn Resorts first estimated that the clean up of the Encore Harbor site would cost $30 million. When it was all said and done, the company had spent $68 million to make the site safe to host hotels and restaurants. Much of the resources went to removing polluted soil. Once the operation was in full swing, around 5,600 tons of soil was being removed on a daily basis. Ultimately, it took about 5 months to remove all the soil and ship it to various landfills around the country.

For the final phase of the remediation project, the company went to work creating a living shoreline and dredging the Mystic River to make it safe for large ships to dock at the casino. The portion of the river along the site was one of the most polluted, with sediment that contained arsenic, lead and a whole host of other toxic chemicals. Ultimately, the dredging process revealed that the pollution was much worse than anyone had anticipated. As the sediment was removed, many of the chemicals were released back into the water, further complicating the clean-up process. However, Wynn Resorts was committed to taking all the necessary steps to thoroughly clean the local environment, even if that meant doubling their spending.

Once the final clean-up had been completed, the next step was to try and restore some of the habitat. For almost two centuries, the area had been totally devoid of any ecosystem. Casino development will actually restore plant and wildlife to the area and mark the first time in the area’s long history that the environment can return to a natural state.

Will the Casino Be a Success?

While there is no doubt that the construction of the Encore Boston Harbor casino has had a positive impact on the environment and helped to clean up a highly toxic swath of land, there is still some skepticism about whether the casino will ultimately succeed. The area surrounding the resort is still an industrial hub that is home to a subway train repair depot, water and sewer plants and other industrial buildings. The presence of the shining 27 story tall resort and surrounding park that now allows access to the waterfront, doesn’t exactly fit in with the rest of the neighborhood. This contrast begs the question: Will customers visit this location and spend $650 a night on a room?

The casino is offering free shuttles, buses and luxurious water ferries to try and make it easier to get to the location, but that doesn’t guarantee that the resort will be a sought after destination. In part, the developers are banking on the hope that the large population that makes up Boston will help to feed customers into the casino. It also helps that the resort is really the only game in town with the nearest competition a full two hours drive away. While the location is a little unconventional, it also offers strategic advantages that may just lead to its success.

From the beginning, the casino has made lofty predictions of earnings, including $800 million in revenue in the first year. However, many experts put that number closer to $600 million. Either way, the resort will need to perform well in order to justify the expense of cleaning up the site, paying out millions in fines and legal proceedings and building a hotel that caters to an affluent audience who can afford to stay at a luxury hotel. With the opening scheduled for June 23, it won’t be long before we get a closer look at the interior and see how visitors react to the new resort. If nothing else, this project has led to the restoration of the harbor and created a place where residents and guests can enjoy the shoreline for the first time in over 200 years.

If you would like to learn more about the casino industry, rapidly evolving changes concerning gambling laws, how technology is changing gaming and much more, be sure to visit Casino Schedule Ease. As the industry’s premier provider of scheduling and management software, we have stay up-to-date on all the latest news and pass it on to you.


Plan Your Summer Vacation

Planning a summer vacation that the whole family will enjoy can be quite a challenge. Everyone has different interests and it can feel nearly impossible to please the kids while also allowing the adults to have some fun. Fortunately, there are plenty of family-friendly casino resorts in beautiful locales that will provide opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, try new activities and spend some time playing your favorite games. Here is a list of the best family- friendly casino resorts that will keep the entire family busy and happy.

Atlantis Paradise Island Resort


It doesn’t get much better than the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort in the Bahamas. This luxurious casino and hotel provides five miles of beaches, a world famous water park, a marine habitat and dolphin cay where you can swim with the dolphins and even shadow a trainer for a day. You can also enjoy a day at the golf course, charter a fishing boat, spend the day shopping on the island and much more. There is truly something for everyone.

During the day, you can sign your kids up for a themed adventure that is hosted by the staff and includes a meal. You can even hire a kid concierge to organize activities and make your life a little less stressful. While the kids are off swimming or taking a cooking lesson, you can enjoy the black jack tables or relax in your personal cabana.

While all this might sound like an expensive vacation, you might be surprised to see just how affordable this resort can be. The resort is only 30 minutes from the airport, which makes transportation easy and you can save when you combine flight and hotel deals. Also, be on the lookout for promotional offers, such as a complimentary night free when you book five nights in a row. Finally, keep in mind that the resort fees include access to a movie theater, water park, casino and other free activities that you would have to pay for at other locations.

Courtyard Isla Verde Beach Resort

Take the family to Puerto Rico to experience the local culture and enjoy miles of one of the world’s most beautiful coastlines. There is no shortage of things to do in San Juan. From rain forest excursions and snorkeling to golfing and deep sea fishing, it won’t be a problem for everyone to find an activity that fits their interests.

Black Oak Casino


The Black Oak Casino in Tuolumne, CA, is located right outside Yosemite National Park. This resort provides the perfect way to enjoy one of the country’s most beautiful and popular destinations while also getting your fill of gaming and activities. Spend your days hiking and taking in the natural wonders of the area and indulge in a gourmet meal and world-class entertainment in the evening. Kids can take advantage of the underground arcade and spend some time at the bowling alley. If you would like to experience this stunning part of the country, but you aren’t the type of family that likes to pitch a tent and spend a week in the woods, this resort will allow you to enjoy nature without compromising comfort.

Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort and Casino

The name alone should speak to your sense of adventure. This beautiful resort is located in Mescalero, New Mexico, and sits on the shores of a beautiful lake and is surrounded by a world class golf course. It provides the perfect summer getaway for families who want to get out and enjoy the warm weather. The resort features a ZipRider, a dock for fishing, plenty of watersports and opportunities to go horseback riding and hiking and enjoy the mountainous landscape that defines this area of the state. If you want to experience a trip that allows you to enjoy the rustic outdoors and return in the evening to a gourmet meal, spa treatment and a night of gambling, the Inn can deliver.

The Pechanga Resort and Hotel


The Pechanga Resort and Hotel has long been known as California’s largest resort, but recent expansions have made it one of the largest on the west coast. The extensive grounds offer a wide variety of activities for the whole family. Kids will love the 4.5 acre pool complex that includes two waterslides and a family lagoon. Adults can catch a live show at one of the many onsite venues and play their luck at the many tables and games throughout the casino. There is also beautiful golf courses and delicious restaurants that offer both casual and fine dining experiences. Every day can be full of new activities and you can’t beat the prices. This location is a more affordable and family-friendly alternative to options located right on the Las Vegas Strip.

Planning a family vacation doesn’t mean that everything has to be kid-centric. There are options that will allow you to enjoy the beauty of the outdoors, the comfort of a luxurious hotel and the entertainment choices of a full-scale casino while still providing plenty of family activities. You can spend your days playing with the kids or you can take advantage of concierge services and other hosted events to get some much needed alone time with your spouse. You won’t have to worry about keeping the kids entertained and they will be off having their own adventures.

The right casino and resort will allow everyone experience an enjoyable and rejuvenating vacation. Take a closer look at different destinations and choose among the beauty of the islands, the mountains and some of the country’s most celebrated national parks. To learn more about different vacation options and how Casino Schedule Ease is helping casinos around the world improve their businesses and offer families better experiences contact us today. Our experts will be happy to answer all your questions.


The Latest Gambling News

The 2019 Kentucky Derby Breaks Records


It was just a couple weeks ago when Tiger Woods staged an amazing career comeback that cost sports books big money and left a few lucky gamblers with major wins. On Saturday, the world watched as another upset took place at the Kentucky Derby. This event broke both sports and betting records and produced some significant payouts for people who made relatively small bets.

If you missed the action, here is a recap. While the 2019 Kentucky Derby was essentially a wide-open race, there were a few favorites. Based on point standings and previous wins, Roadster, Game Winner and Improbably were slated as the top three contenders. These horses were expected to see the most betting action although their favorable odds also meant a lower payout.

As the 1.25 mile race came to a close, Maximum Security was the first to cross the finish line, but the results were immediately challenged and after 22 minutes of deliberation, the winner was disqualified. This decision marked the first time in the 145 year history of the Kentucky Derby that a horse was disqualified because of a foul. After reviewing the tape, the race stewards found that Maximum Security veered out of his lane, causing contact that then forced other horses to change their course. The argument is that this brief moment of contact ultimately affected the outcome of the race.

Small Bets Make Big Winners

When all was said and done, the $3 million purse was awarded to Country House, gamblers lost $9 million that was bet on Maximum Security and those who took a chance on the race’s longshot won big. According to the sport book TwinSpires, the largest bet made on Maximum Security was $8,000, which would have meant a $36,000 prize. The biggest bet made on Country House to win was $2,500, which ended up netting the bettor $162,500. One gambler in Las Vegas bet a total of $8 on the superfecta and ended up with a $78,000 win. These numbers also mean that Country House has the second biggest payout in the history of the race.

The extraordinary race also set overall betting records for sports books around the world. This year, $165.5 million was bet on site, which is a full 10% increase over last year. Once you add in wagers that were made through legal online sources, including TwinSpires, which is the official mobile betting platform of the Derby, a total of $250 million was bet on race day. A significant portion of this money came from Japan, where horse racing is a popular sport.

The recent longshot wins in major sporting events has more people putting down their money and hoping to win big. It is easy to imagine that sports betting will also become more popular as it is legalized in more states in the coming years. Next year’s Derby may not be quite as exciting or controversial, but it is sure to bring in new bettors.

Indiana Legalizes Sports Betting


Indiana is the latest state to officially sign legislation into law and make sports betting legal. While the debate over the morality and impact of gambling continues, Governor Eric Holcomb is arguing that sports betting is highly regulated and will bring much needed jobs and revenue to the state. He is also making the case that it is important to be an early adopter so that money isn’t lost to competing states.

The bill was surrounded by even more controversy than usual because of close ties between the Governor and other top officials and Spectacle Entertainment, which has been lobbying for the bill. Despite several potential conflicts of interest, the bill was widely supported by legislators. The next big challenge for the state is making sure that Spectacle Entertainment isn’t allowed to build a monopoly around gambling in the state. They are already slated to control a large portion of the business and this could present problems down the line.

MGM is Cutting Jobs


MGM Resorts International has been struggling to keep up even as gambling markets expand and many competitors continue to experience growth. Shares in the company have dropped 12% since last August and the company started making moves in January to cut labor costs. The goal is to boost operating cash flow by a full $200 million in the coming year. Unfortunately, that means making major cuts to labor costs.

While the company has been clear that jobs are on the line, that did little to ease the blow as 254 people lost their jobs. Only management positions were affected and experts estimate that the cuts will save the company $13 million per year. Ultimately, MGM is looking to cut $100 million from labor costs, so more layoffs are expected in the coming months. We will keep watching over the next year to see whether these cuts have a positive impact on profits without affecting the daily operations and quality of the customer experience.

How Casinos are Using Technology

A lot has been said lately about the changing demographics of gamblers and how casinos need to leverage technology to create more social games that attract millenials. What isn’t always at the forefront of the conversation about technology and casinos is how new tools are going to work behind the scenes. Ultimately, casinos are a part of the hospitality industry, which means their success relies on providing an excellent customer experience that creates repeat business. This requires a skilled workforce, but it also means being able to effectively manage and motivate that workforce.

Casino Schedule Ease is one software solution that is being used by casinos to improve the employee experience, which ultimately creates a better customer experience. This software streamlines the scheduling process so that managers can match employees up with the best shifts and table assignments to fit their needs and take full advantage of their skills. The dashboard makes it easy to visualize the casino floor, view time-off requests, complete complicated schedules and much more. For casinos looking to reduce labor costs and improve every aspect of performance, Casino Schedule Ease offers an effective, versatile and customizable solution.

The past couple of weeks have been full of major events in the world of gambling and casinos. Be sure to check back in with our blog to stay on top of all the latest news and learn how it might affect you and your business.


Las Vegas on a Budget

Las Vegas has a reputation for being an extravagant city that is full of luxurious attractions and accommodations. With so much glitz and glamour, it may seem like a trip to Las Vegas is beyond your budget; however, there are plenty of affordable things to see and do that will allow you to experience everything the city has to offer without emptying your wallet. Here are just a few budget-friendly destinations and tips that will help you get the most out of our Las Vegas trip.

Visit the Flamingo Wildlife Habitat

It doesn’t get much better than a free attraction. There is no charge at the Flamingo Wildlife Habitat and you can spend the afternoon walking through the beautifully landscaped grounds and get up close and personal with exotic animals. The 15-acre park is home to Chilean flamingos, pelicans, turtles, koi fish, parrots and much more. Be sure to schedule your visit around the morning and afternoon pelican feedings and get your picture taken with one of the park’s parrots. The Flamingo Wildlife Habitat provides a family friendly destination and a peaceful alternative to the typical hustle and bustle of Las Vegas.

Fall of Atlantis Show


There is no shortage of great shows to watch in Las Vegas, but $100+ per ticket might be more than you want to spend. The Fall of Atlantis show located inside the Caesars Palace Forum Shops features all the special effects, explosions and professional production value you would expect from a Las Vegas show but without the price tag. This free show plays every hour on the hour and tells the story of Atlantis with the help of animatronic figures. While you are there, you can also do some shopping and check out the salt water aquarium.

Fremont Street

Freemont Street was specifically designed to provide a walkable downtown area where visitors can enjoy local restaurants, shopping, bars and other businesses. This area covers 6 blocks and provides the perfect place to spend an evening strolling and taking in the sites. Throughout the year, you can find free concerts and other events and take in the Famous Viva Vision Light show that plays every hour. The show is projected on a video screen that measures 1,500 long and 90 feet wide and is suspended above the street. Once the show starts, the lights totally transform the street and provide a one-of-a-kind experience.

O’Sheas Lucky Hour


For some affordable adult fun, check out O’Sheas Lucky Hour, which runs from 10 a.m – 2 p.m. and 2 a.m. – 6 a.m. During these hours, you can get great deals on drinks, including $ 4 Guinness drafts and $5 Jameson shots. You can enjoy some drinks, listen to live music, play beer pong or try your luck at the gaming tables. This large venue also offers outdoor space and a fun atmosphere without the cover charge and pricey drinks. The casual, yet energetic atmosphere may be just the right place to blow off some steam and have some fun.

High Roller Observation Wheel

From zip lines to roller coasters, Las Vegas is full of plenty of rides for those who love a big thrill, but if you like things a little more low-key, the Higher Roller is a great option. The observation wheel will take you up 550 feet and provide great views of the city and the valley. One rotation takes 30 minutes and you can enjoy the ride in a comfortable and spacious cabin. There is even a happy hour cabin option that comes complete with a bartender. Daytime tickets start at $22 and you can save money by purchasing them online.

The Neon Museum

Over the years, the Vegas strip has been home to iconic architecture and neon signs. While some of the signs have been retired, you can still visit them at the Neon Museum where they are working to restore many signs and use them to tell the story of Las Vegas’s history. Currently, there are nine fully restored signs that are located throughout the city and can be viewed on your own walking tour. You can also choose among self-guided tours, guided tours and a multimedia experience that brings the old signs to life with photos, lights and music. Tickets start at $23 and you can get a discount if you buy them online.

The Mob Museum

The Mob Museum explores the history of the mob and law enforcement. It begins with a look at how the mob shaped Las Vegas and eventually went on to have international reach. There are plenty of interactive displays and exhibits, including the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre Wall complete with bullet holes from the assassination of seven members of the Bugs Moran gang. General admission for non-residents $26.95 although you might want to spend a little more to take advantage of the audio tour.

Golden Nugget Shark Tank

This feat of engineering is designed to make you feel like you are swimming with the sharks without all the danger. The pool cost $30 million to construct and features a 200,000 gallon shark tank. You can swim up to the glass and watch the sharks or you can take a ride on the water slide, which runs directly through the tank. It is a unique experience and a great way to escape the steamy Vegas weather. Hotel guests have free access to the pool or you can swim there for $25.

Enjoying the extravagance of Las Vegas doesn’t mean that you have to spend extravagantly. There are plenty of affordable attractions that will allow you to get to know the past and present of this truly unique city. Many of the hotels are open to visitors and local museums provide fun and affordable places to spend the day. In most cases, you can save money on admission fees by purchasing tickets online. For more information on the best Vegas attractions and how our software solutions are helping casinos across the world operate more efficiently, contact Casino Schedule Ease.


Casino News Roundup

It has been a busy couple weeks in the casino and gambling industries. With sports betting legalized in several states, major sporting events like the NBA finals and the Masters golf tournament are garnering more attention. There have been some big winners, especially with Tiger Woods beating 14-1 odds to win his first championship in 11 years. Meanwhile, competition is heating up in Atlantic City and Las Vegas as casinos continue to make improvements and cater to today’s audiences. Keep reading for a roundup of all the latest casino and gambling news you might have missed.

Tiger Woods Costs Sportsbooks Big Money


While Tiger Woods is one of the most recognizable names in sports, he hadn’t won a major tournament in 11 years. Going into the Masters tournament, no one was predicting that this would be his comeback and initial odds were placed at 14-1. As the tournament wore on, more betters were putting their money on Woods even as he fell behind on the last two days. William Hill, FanDuel and DraftKings have reported that between 20%-30% of all the incoming bets were being put on woods.

Clearly, the fans were rooting for Woods and hoping for both a comeback tournament and a big win that would put some money in their pockets. As a result, sportsbooks had a rough week with payouts of well over $1 million. In fact, one customer placed a $85,000 bet with 14-1 odds, which meant a single payout of $1.19 million. It is the largest payout on a golf bet in history and will probably remain so for some time.

While sports betting companies took a major hit with Woods’ win, they won’t have trouble recovering. There is plenty of money coming in as people continue to bet on sporting events, including the NBA finals, which have just gotten under way. Most experts agree that the Warriors are on pace to win the championship again, but there is a lot of disagreement about who they will play in the finals. Fans could end up making some money if they make some lucky bets.

The Palms Casino Takes Luxury to a New Level


The Palms Casino and Resort opened in 2001 and immediately set a new standard for luxury in a city know for extravagance. It didn’t take long for the location to become a pop culture icon and a recognizable symbol of entertainment and what Las Vegas had to offer. Eighteen years later, the Palms is undergoing a $690 million renovation that will surpass anything the city has seen before. Here are just some of the highlights:

  • A multi-million dollar art collection. What says sophistication more than priceless works of art? Contemporary artist, Damien Hirst, is responsible for much of the new art, which includes a 60-foot bronze sculpture. This impressive piece is the focal point for the 73,000 square foot day club, which is converted into a night club in the evenings.
  • The Empathy Suite will hold the record for the most expensive accommodations in the world. A weekend stay will cost $1 million and features a butler, chauffeured car and a recording studio. The 9,000 square foot villas was also designed by Hirst and features his unique art and furniture.
  • The new Palms also features “the most pools at a resort in North America” and an LED screen that is 270 feet tall and the largest in the entire city.
  • Visitors can also dine at a long list of five-star restaurants and enjoy shows from some of today’s most popular artists, including Cardi B, Alicia Keys, Hozier and Skrillex.

The new Palms Resort and Casino is a perfect example of what many are calling a second wind for Las Vegas as the city continues to work to stay relevant and maintain its reputation as an entertainment capital.

A Look at the Numbers


Some recent studies have revealed interesting insights into who is visiting Las Vegas and why. In 2016, 27% of visitors were going to Las Vegas for the first time. Compare that to 2018 when 18% of visitors were there for the first time. Keep in mind, that the overall number of visitors hasn’t significantly decreased, which means that more and more people are returning to Vegas for repeat trips. Looking to the future, the city may want to look at ways to attract new visitors. Obviously, the people who make the trip are having a great time, but there may be some room for growth when it comes to bringing in first time visitors.

On the other side of the country, Atlantic City is feeling the impact of increased competition. Last year it saw the introduction of two new casinos and legalized gambling in surrounding states. While overall gaming revenue is up 25%, some of the oldest casinos are experiencing a decrease in profits that range from 8% to 11%. For now, the market is strong, but customers are taking their business to newer establishments or those that have undergone recent renovations. It looks like Atlantic City casinos will have to invest in upgrades if they don’t want to lose out to newcomers.

The Future Looks Bright

For those who have been anxiously awaiting the legalization of sports betting, this inaugural year has already proven both exciting and groundbreaking. Fans have won some big pots and there are plenty of big games and matches on the schedule in the coming months. Las Vegas and Atlantic City are also continuing to experience solid business as people make return visits to check out new casinos and entertainment venues.

As construction and upgrades continue in casinos across the country, we can expect to see more extravagant and sophisticated buildings that combine the latest technology with priceless art and high-end decor. With competition increasing everyday, casinos will be leveraging everything from back-end management software, like Casino Schedule Ease, to world-renowned designers and architects to pull in customers. This is great news for anyone who likes to gamble and is looking for an excuse to go on vacation.


The Psychology Behind Gambling

Humans are interesting creatures. We tend to be superstitious. We often act in ways that are contrary to our best interest and while we think of ourselves as individuals, our behavior is actually quite predictable. Gambling is an excellent example of this and provides some insight into how we think and how we are motivated. In this post, we will take a closer look at what happens in the minds of gamblers and how casinos use psychology to design games, floor layouts and other aspects of their business.

Inside the Mind of a Gambler

There have been countless studies on why gamblers make certain bets, what factors influence their confidence in their wager and other phenomena. Here are a few interesting facts about the psychology of gambling:

Placing a bet actually makes you more confident that you will win. One study surveyed horse track gamblers before and after they had placed their bet. It turns out that their confidence increased once they had put money down. Committing to the outcome of the race made them feel like they had a better chance of winning.

People who are in a good mood gamble more. In fact, studies have found that both good weather and winning local sports teams lead to people to take more risks. Essentially, a positive mood makes people feel like everything is going to turn up sunny and they are more likely to win.

The gambler’s fallacy is a well-documented process. It describes the belief that if a certain number or pattern has come up frequently, then it is inevitable that a different outcome will happen soon. This is the logic that motivates roulette players to put all their money on red after there has been a long series of black numbers. In reality, the odds don’t change based on previous events.

Despite the fact that most forms of gambling are completely random and the final outcome is unpredictable, people continue to believe that they can beat the system. For example, slot machine players will often stick with a machine that has paid off more frequently or they will find a machine that hasn’t had a big win in a while because they think it might be due. If you have frequented casinos, you have probably also noticed people with lucky charms and rituals that they perform. While these superstitions might bring some sort of comfort, there is no way to predict or influence outcomes.

Losing is just exciting as winning. Research shows that even gamblers who are losing are still experiencing an adrenalin and endorphin high. This means that even people who walk away from the casino having lost more than they won, report having an overall positive and enjoyable experience.

How Psychology Influences Casino Design


From grocery stores to hotels, a lot of thought goes into designing public and retail spaces and the same is true with casinos. Specific casinos designs have been shown to increase visitors and make people feel more relaxed as they gamble. Bill Friedman was the first to write about casino design in the seminal work: Stripping Las Vegas: A Contextual Review of Casino Resort Architecture. He used psychological insights and an exhaustive analysis of casino performance to identify 13 design principles that became known as “gaming design.”

This approach to casino design includes:

  • Immediately placing gambling equipment in the lobby
  • Creating a maze-like floor that encourages visitors to wander and always brings them back to gambling
  • Focusing on gambling decor as opposed to opulent decorations
  • Low ceilings are preferred to high

While Friedman’s work was the standard for some time, the past few decades have seen a design shift that reflects a new understanding of psychology. The latest design trend has been dubbed the “playground design” and flies in the face of what we used to think about how visitors respond to design. In fact, playground design is almost the exact opposite of gaming design.

Instead of the maze-like design, which could make people feel trapped, confused and anxious, casinos now have a more direct layout with clear paths to certain destinations. There are clear sight lines and wayfinding tools so that people can easily navigate the entire casino. The thought is that the more relaxed people feel, the more likely they are to enjoy their time and make bigger bets.


The low ceiling principle has also been left behind in favor of high ceilings covered in fabric. This approach adds a feeling of openness and warmth. The fabric helps to absorb sound, add softness and prevents the space from feeling too cavernous and overwhelming.

Perhaps most notably, casino lobbies and entrances have received a complete makeover. Gambling equipment has been removed and the decor has been upgraded to provide a more sophisticated and elegant look. This approach welcomes visitors to a unique experience and makes them feel transported to a different place. Today, the decor is being more expertly used to set a mood rather than simple reinforce gambling.

This shift in design principles signifies a new understanding of the psychology of consumers and gamblers. Today’s casino visitors are more interested in the overall experience. They want to try their hand at winning a big pot, but they also want to enjoy a new experience that takes them away from their daily life and allows them to relax and enjoy the natural high that comes with gaming.

In order to meet these changing needs, casinos are revamping traditional designs, incorporating more restaurants and entertainment venues and working to create a more seamless and convenient experience. This can be seen in everything from more direct floor layouts to new management tools, like Casino Schedule Ease, that improve processes and operations. While people will remain hopeful that their lucky charm will work and the next big jackpot is just around the corner, consumer behavior and preferences will continue to evolve. That is why understanding the psychology behind gambling and casino design provides valuable insights into the future.


The Latest Casino Business News

Lately, the federal government has dominated the business news with new trade agreements, the 2019 budget proposal and major tariffs on long-time partners. With so much going on, some groundbreaking deals and developments in the casino industry have managed to fly under the radar. From changes in the way employees are compensated to new deals between casinos and professional sports team, the landscape has shifted significantly in just the past few weeks. Here is a round-up of what has happened and why it matters.

Carl Icahn Takes Control of Caesars

Carl Icahn has earned a reputation as a shrewd businessman and corporate raider. Over the years, he orchestrated the hostile takeover of Trans World Airlines and has tried to buyout Marvel Comics, Lionsgate Films and several pharmaceutical companies. While not all of his pursuits have been successful, it appears that he now has firm control of Caesars and is looking to sell the company. In the past, companies have resisted his efforts to purchase and dismantle the business, but it looks like Caesars is all too happy to pass their financial problems on to someone else.

Caesar’s financial problems came to a head in 2015 when the company declared bankruptcy. By 2017, they merged with Caesars Acquisition Co., and Caesars Entertainment Operating Co. Inc. and were able to restructure the business enough to come out from bankruptcy protection. Typically, these types of deals are meant to streamline financial dealings, relieve immediate debt problems and provide money to invest in the future. In this case, the merger appears to have created more confusion and created “one of the most – if not the most – financially convoluted casino firm(s) in the world.” For that reason, even those who oppose Icahn, haven’t really been left with much of a choice but to relinquish the company.

In February, Icahn purchased a 9.78% stake in the company, which was recently upped to 15%, making his the largest stakeholder in Caesars. Icahn has also moved more of his people onto the board and he is expected to entertain purchase and merger offers that were rejected in the past. While he is sure to make a nice profit, shareholders aren’t happy about the turn of events and the company’s stock price has dropped 8% since Icahn started buying up shares. Only time will tell whether Icahn’s presence will be a boon to Caesars or only to Icahn.

Casino Employees See Pay Increases

In past posts, we have talked about all the perks that go along with working at casinos. Employees enjoy bonuses, competitive wages, free meals, on-site fitness facilities and much more. Now it looks like the package is getting even sweeter for casino workers across the world as wages continue to increase. In Macau, wages have been outpacing inflation rates, which has allowed employees more disposable income. Many of the city’s casinos have also decided to show their appreciation by providing non-senior employees with a raise. This may be part of an effort to fill an estimated 1,321 open positions that were reported during last year’s fourth quarter.

Macau’s pay raises seem to have inspired MGM China, who followed suit with their own raises. Employees who have been with the company for more than a year recently received a pay increase of 3.8% to 7.1%. This is good news for anyone looking for a career that offers continued professional development and the opportunity to earn more. Hopefully, other casinos will continue to recognize the importance of employee loyalty and offer wages that not only keep up with the cost of living, but provide for a better future.

MGM and Red Sox Form Partnership


In the wake of legalized sports betting, casinos and teams are finding new ways to form mutually beneficial relationships. Recently, the MLB closed on a deal that makes MGM the league’s “official gaming partner.” Now, the Red Sox have taken things a step further by establishing their own exclusive partnership with the casino. As part of the deal, MGM will have prime advertising spots behind home plate and access to other marketing opportunities through team owned media outlets. The casino will also host fan experiences at Fenway and host the annual Baseball Winter Weekend where attendees can meet and chat with the players during various events. This relationship may be a signal of what is to come and the boundaries between sports and gambling continue to blur.

Churchill Downs Expands

Churchill Downs is also making decisive moves to make sure that they get their share of the future of sports gambling. The gambling company recently bought the Rivers Casino Des Planes in Illinois, a state that is expected to legalize sports gambling in the near future. They also purchased the Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin in Farmington. This deal provides Churchill with 27 gaming tables, 600 slot machines and the opportunity to open the property’s first sports book. Now that the deal has been finalized, construction of a sports betting facility is expected to follow shortly. The Churchill Downs company is one of many who are doing their best to capitalize on this new form of betting and remain proactive.

Software Plays a Larger Role

Behind the scenes, there are a lot of deals being made among casinos and software companies in order to improve operations. As casinos and betting operations become more sophisticated, running these large scale resorts also becomes more complicated. Companies like Casino Schedule Ease, are working to streamline management tasks so that casinos can continue to offer an excellent customer experience. More and more establishments are recognizing the need to update processes and turning to software solutions. This is especially true as more states approve gambling and the number of casinos expand and increase competition. Software solutions, like Casino Schedule Ease, are helping casinos to transition into the future of business.

These big business deals and wage increases signal a healthy industry that is poised for growth. As restrictions on gambling continue to loosen and sports betting becomes more established, we are sure to see more creative collaborations and takeovers. And with the introduction of new technology into the industry, the future of casinos looks bright and full of potential.


A Brief History of Gambling

There are certain things that simply seem to be a part of human nature. From the beginning of time, we have developed ways to communicate and express ourselves through language and arts. We have been compelled to travel and explore new parts of the world while also continuing to solve problems. Apparently, humans have also always been risk takers who like to have a good time and are willing to gamble in the hopes of a big pay off. In fact, the first hard evidence of gambling can be dated all the way back to 3000 BC. While previous posts have looked at the history of U.S. and international gambling hubs, this article will take a closer look at the history of gambling as a whole and why it is such an ingrained part of our collective culture and history.

The Early Days of Gambling


It is almost certain that some form of gambling and games of chance have always been around, but the first archaeological evidence dates back to Mesopotamia around 3000 BC. Researchers discovered the first six-sided dice that was used for gambling and something called astragalomancy, which used the dice to predict the future and divine certain truths.

There is also evidence from Ancient China that highly organized gambling was being practiced around 2300 BC. Tiles were used to play basic games of chance, but the country quickly developed larger and more sophisticated forms of gambling that were used to fund state projects. In fact, it is possible that the Great Wall was made possible through gambling.

By 500 BC dice games and other forms of gambling had become all the rage in Greek, Roman and Egyptian culture. However, the government in Rome wasn’t exactly behind this trend and imposed strict fines for anyone caught gambling. Citizens were so dead set on playing that they came up with the idea for gambling chips. Authorities couldn’t penalize them for playing with fake money and players could later settle debts.

Over the decades, China continued to invent new games and gambling only increased in popularity. Gambling houses were everywhere and provided a source of entertainment that people couldn’t seem to resist. China is also credited with inventing the first set of playing cards. While it is unclear exactly how they were used or how closely they resemble our modern 52 card packs, these early cards opened the door to a whole new set of games.

Early Versions of Modern Gambling


Around the 1400s, the first versions of games that are still played today began to appear in drawing rooms across Europe. Baccarat is the earliest recorded game that you can play in casinos across the world today. This two player game certainly evolved over the centuries as it made its way from Italy, France and Britain to Cuba and finally to the US. Today, this game is popular because it involves high stakes and makes for a great spectator sport. Guests can cheer on the player as they try to beat the bank and win huge pots.

Blackjack is another game that can be traced back to circa 1600 and remains one of the most well known and best liked casino games. The exact origin story of the game is hard to pinpoint, but it can be tied back to Europe. At the time, there were several games being played in France and Spain that resembled black jack, making it safe to assume that these different variations were eventually melded into one version as people traveled. Over the years, the game went by different names, but became known as blackjack in the 1930s when Nevada casinos offered 10 to 1 odds if players won with a black Jack and an Ace of Spades.

The First Casino


While China had been home to gambling houses for centuries and games of chance were played in the streets and homes of people across the world, what is considered the first casino opened its doors in 1638 in Italy. In fact, the term casino has Italian origins and roughly translates to summerhouse or social club. The Ridotto was established by the Italian government to try and regulate and control gambling. Providing a legal, state sanctioned place to gamble was supposed to cut down on crime and make the Carnival season a little less wild. However, by 1774 the casino was shut down after a reform government came into power and decided that the casino was actually encouraging extreme and immoral behavior. This also marks the beginning of the age old debate about whether casinos help or hurt communities.

Gambling Gains Momentum

Over the past couple centuries, gambling has hit some major milestones. Here are just a few of the highlights:

In 1796, the first roulette wheel appeared in Paris.

Around 1829, the modern version of poker began being played in New Orleans and eventually found its way to Las Vegas. In the 1970s poker tournaments started becoming more popular and eventually morphed into the highly competitive game it is today.

The first slot machine, also known as the one armed bandit, was developed. Early versions allowed player to win gum and cigarettes, but they quickly switched to money prizes. In 1976, the first video slot machine hit the market, which gave rise to a whole new era in gambling.

Gambling was outlawed in the US in 1910, but the Depression led to the legalization of gambling in the US. Since then regulations on gambling have continued to relax. Today, 44 states have lotteries, sports betting has been legalized, online gambling is officially legal in four states and casino construction continues at a rapid pace.

The Future of Gambling

As with all other industries, technology is poised to revolutionize gambling and casinos. Already, there has been movement towards online and mobile gaming and in-house games are becoming more sophisticated and interactive than ever before. Technology is also revolutionizing the way casinos run and manage their resources . Software, like Casino Schedule Ease, allows casinos to operate more efficiently and meet the evolving demands of today’s customers. As traditional games face increasing competition from computerized alternatives, it will be interesting if roulette, black jack and other standards can survive the test of time.


Recap of the 2019 Global Gaming Awards

Awards season is here, and no, we are not talking about the Emmys and the Oscars. In case you missed it, the winners of the 2019 Global Gaming Awards were announced on February 4th, at a ceremony in Hippodrome Casino in the heart of London. This second annual event honored winners across 16 different categories that cover the full range of the gaming industry. From online operators and game designers to payment providers and chief executives, the event showcased the diverse set of skills and elements that go into a successful gaming operation. This event also marked one of the few times in history when the world’s major gaming leaders were all gathered in one place. For those who are still catching up on the latest news, here is a recap of the 2019 Global Gaming Awards highlights.

How Winners are Chosen

While the Global Gaming Awards are still relatively new, they have already become the trusted standard and even a nomination is a prestigious achievement. Submissions to each category are reviewed by a panel of 50 judges who choose a first and second choice. The awards specifically look at the past 12 months of performance and recognize those who have achieved remarkable success in their field over the past year.

Best Casino


The Casino de Monte-Carlo took top honors this year. This beautiful casino located along the shores of Monaco has a long and storied history. While the opening date is officially listed as 1863, Princess Caroline first started developing the idea for a casino and spa as early as 1848. The royal family and the Monaco government, which still own a controlling interest, were in desperate need for a way to generate revenue. This began massive talent recruiting and construction projects that would eventually culminate to what is now regarded as one of the world’s best casinos.

From the beginning, it looked like the Casino de Monte-Carlo was doomed for failure and destined to be a financial catastrophe for the tiny country. There wasn’t an extensive infrastructure in place to accommodate an influx of people. It simply wasn’t easy to get to Monaco and the accommodations were less than impressive. However, over the years, the project continued to evolve and attract new leadership and investors. Despite a rocky start, the Casino de Monte-Carlo has managed to survive for 156 years and earn this year’s title of best casino.

Second Place: Hippodrome Casino
Third Place: Holland Casino

Corporate Responsibility Programme

The Global Gaming awards isn’t just about recognizing casinos and gaming companies that have managed to expand and increase revenue. The awards also work to identify innovators within the industry. This year’s winner of the Corporate Responsibility Programme category is working to help people enjoy responsible gambling. Kindred has created a Player-Safety Early Detection System that uses data to analyze user behavior and detect any potential problems before gamblers suffer personal, financial and psychological pitfalls.


Clients can use the program to set deposit and loss limits, block betting websites and receive reality checks when their behavior indicates that there might be a problem. Kindred is designed to encourage responsible gaming and use technology to better understand trends in user behavior. From there, Kindred can take a human approach that treats people as individuals rather than just a part of a larger data set.

Second Place: Mr. Green Ltd. Green Gaming Predictive Tool
Third Place: Senet Group – When the Fun Stops Stop campaign

Chief Executive


This award is meant to showcase leaders who “have made the most significant impact on any industry company.” The winner for 2019 was Kenny Alexander of GVC, a company that was founded in Luxembourg in 2004 and is currently traded on the London Stock Exchange. In 2007, Alexander took over as CEO and beginning in 2016, he embarked on a bold plan to significantly increase shareholders’ earnings over the next three years. He was able to achieve remarkable growth by taking over Bwin. Party Digital Entertainment and Ladbrokes Coral and it looks like there is no sign of slowing down. In that past ten years, the company has gone from earning millions to billions and the future looks bright for both GVC and Alexander.

Second Place Joint Winners: Pontus Lindwall and Jesper Svensson 
of Betsson Malta

Casino Product


Casino games and products have been changing rapidly over the past few years. Consumers are looking for more interactive games and a completely different casino experience. NetEnt responded with a new take on classic slots just when it seemed like these types of machines were about to become a relic of the past.

The company capitalized on the popularity of the Jumanji movies to create a gaming experience that combines elements of a traditional slot machine with the board game that drives the plot of the movie. This crossover experience has proved a gamer favorite and earned Jumanji top honors as this year’s best casino product.

Second Place: Mr. Green – Live Beyond Live
Third Place: IGT – CrystalCurve

The Rest of the Winners

If you would like to learn more about winners from the other categories and nominees that are definitely work taking a closer look at, be sure to visit the Global Gaming homepage. You can also view results from the inaugural 2018 awards and get a better idea of how the industry has evolved just over the past couple years.

It is nice to see individuals and companies from all areas of the industry receiving recognition from their peers for all their hard work. The entire industry is changing rapidly and highlighting successes is a great way to continue to encourage innovation. With any luck, the number of categories will expand and other companies, like Casino Schedule Ease, who are working to improve operations and management procedures, will also be celebrated by the industry for their contributions.


Big News from Macau and What it Means for Casinos around the World

When it comes to gambling, the United States has Las Vegas and China has Macau. This coastal area is an international destination for high-rollers and developers looking to capitalize on the booming gaming industry in the area. Over the past few months, Macau has been  in the news as the region worked to recover from the devastating typhoon Mangkhut that struck in mid-September of 2018. Fortunately, rebuilding efforts have been propelled by wealthy business owners and a government eager to get the area back up and running and bringing in revenue. This month, Macau is once again in the headlines with two big controversial stories involving casinos and massive amounts of money.

The Ho Family Saga and a Gambling Empire

For the past ten years, the Ho family, which consists of four wives and 17 children, has been battling for control of Sociedade de Turismo e Diversoes de Macau, the parent company of the original gambling company that put Macau on the map. The family patriarch, Stanley Ho is currently 97 years old and regarded as the godfather of gambling. His empire is worth billions and includes nineteen casinos. In 2006, the casino revenue in Macau exceeded that of Las Vegas and Ho is now one of the richest men in the world. In June of 2018, Ho finally decided to go into retirement and the battle over leadership of his companies heated up. Now it appears that there is a clear winner and a new head of Macau.


With a large family comprised of individuals each vying for their own portion of an enormous pie, you can imagine the infighting that has occurred over the years. When he first announced his retirement, his daughter Daisy Ho was tapped as the next Chairman and Executive Director. She currently serves with Timothy Fok, who is the son of Ho’s original business partner. The rest of the executive board consists of Ho’s third wife, Ina Chan, and Ambrose So. As you might imagine, this fractured power structure immediately gave rise to a family feud.

Many of Ho’s children currently serve as heads of his various companies and have become billionaires in their own right, but that hasn’t stopped them from seeking control of the entire empire. Just recently, Pansy Ho, who is credited with helping to create MGM China formed an alliance with some of her siblings and the Fok Foundation. This new partnerships now controls 53% of the company, giving them the majority vote and effectively wresting power from Ho’s fourth wife, Angela Leong.

While this latest alliance appears to have put a temporary end to the family feud, it is unlikely that the other family members will resign to the results without a fight. One can only imagine what will happen once Ho passes away. There is a good chance that the family will be bogged down with lengthy and expensive litigation, which could prove fatal for the company as they continue to face new market challenges. Too much focus on power grabbing could mean the disintegration of a legacy as more Asian countries enter the market and Macau looks to create a more diversified economy that isn’t solely reliant on gambling.

A Bankrupt Construction Company May Hinder Progress


The Hsin Chong group has been responsible for many large casino projects across Macau, including the Parisian Macao Resort and other Sands China backed projects. Despite this prior success, the company is having trouble settling up with its creditors and is seeking help from bankruptcy proceedings to help restructure the company and continue to operate. According to a filing made on January 22nd, the company is in default for $15o million.

According to Hsin Chong, their major work on phase 3 and 4 of the Galaxy Macau Resort has been completed and any delays are not due to their financial troubles. However, there appears to be some disputes about the value of certain projects and whether the company has met their responsibilities. As it stands now, phase 3 of the Galaxy Macau Casino won’t be open before mid-2020.

Hsin Chong is hoping that corporate restructuring will allow the company to continue to bid on construction projects and return to the Hong Kong stock market. The company’s trading abilities were suspended in 2017 and have yet to be reinstated. Hopefully, legal intervention and some liquidation will help to put construction projects back on track and help restore the company’s reputation.

Lessons from Macau


In some way, Macau has been a huge success with revenues surpassing those of Las Vegas and new casino construction constantly in the works, but it can also serve as a cautionary tale. While there is no arguing that the Ho family has achieved extraordinary success, their market share has been cut in half over the past few years from 30% to 15%. The competition is on their heels and infighting may be making them blind to potential threats as more casino licenses are approved and neighboring countries are beginning to fight for their share of an extremely profitable industry.

At the same time rapid construction may not be taking into account consumer demand or looking closely at companies providing these services. In the rush to build and earn, casinos may be partnering with less than reputable companies who may not be able to deliver on their promises and stay on budget and schedule.

Ultimately, in the race to build more and make more, casinos risk losing sight of the future and investing time and energy into the right places. At a time when technology and innovation are pushing every industry, it would be a mistake to ignore these areas and spend money on the status quo. Moving forward a successful business plan must include new games, management software like Casino Schedule Ease that improves operations and amenities that speak to a changing customer base. Despite its historic success, Macau may lose its top spot as the world’s gambling hub if business owners don’t take a longer view of where the market is going.




How Las Vegas Influenced American Architecture

From the very inception of Las Vegas, it flew in the face of longstanding conventions, yet is has continued to survive and avoid fizzling out as a passing trend. The city is a true hub of innovation that spans all industries and disciplines, including architecture. While most people probably wouldn’t think of the city as a design marvel, it achieved something truly spectacular that has continued to serve as a model of city planning. The popularity of Las Vegas has also provided valuable insights into what people actually like when it comes to aesthetics.  These factors have put a lasting mark on American culture and changed the trajectory of architecture. In this post, we will take a closer look at just how all this came about.

In the early 1960s, Modernism had taken over and designers were gravitating towards sleek and minimalist buildings that could be cheaply constructed using concrete, steel and glass. They were rejected the frills that defined many classic buildings. This movement was so sweeping that it didn’t just affect new builds. Many architects were pushing to have old buildings torn down and replaced with new modern alternatives. There was little appreciation for the historic significance of existing architecture or what it might teach us.

Las Vegas: An Anti-Modernism Haven

Meanwhile, in Las Vegas, construction was continuing to ramp up and they clearly couldn’t care less about Modernism. From signs to buildings, Las Vegas was all about big, bright and bold. They weren’t trying to limit frills. They were trying to add as many as possible. An entire city, that didn’t feel bound by traditional rule of architecture, was rising up out of the desert.

Example of modernism architecture.

Architects tended to scoff at the city and consider it an ostentatious mess, Denise Scott Brown recognized that there were important lessons to be learned from Las Vegas. As a young architect, she was immediately drawn to the city and it didn’t take long to recognize that Las Vegas had actually done a tremendous job in city planning. More and more Americans owned their own cars and the wide roads along the strip were driver friendly. In addition, all the large, garish signs actually achieved a bigger purpose: They were perfect way-finding tools that helped draw in customers. Las Vegas was incredibly functional in a way that most big cities weren’t.

Build it and They Will Come

Modernism also seemed to be quite short-sighted in the way it viewed how people interacted with their buildings. Essentially, people who were using these common spaces had no say in whether they like Modernism or if they preferred more classic design. Architects were hired, plans were made and new buildings were constructed. The actual occupants had little say in the matter. Although, if foot traffic is any indication, Americans preferred the glam and glitz of Las Vegas. Even back then, people were flocking to the city. Today, it hosts tens of millions of visitors, which is more than other iconic cities like Paris.


In 1972, the book Learning from Las Vegas was published and architects were forced to rethink their support of Modernism. This seminal work was written by Denise Scott Brown, Robert Venturi and Steven Izenour and gave rise to a period of Postmodernism. Through their work, they made the argument that buildings should be designed with a  purpose in mind while also considering the types of places people love. Their ideas took hold and buildings became better tools for the public.

The Next Phase of Vegas Architecture

While Learning from Las Vegas and the architecture of 1960s Las Vegas was certainly influential on a massive scale, this movement also eventually died out. Another defining characteristic of Las Vegas is that it is always in a state of change. This ability to remain flexible and meet the needs of new and emerging customers have been at the heart of its survival. It also means that casinos are often destroyed and rebuilt again to reflect the times.

Today, world-class architects are being hired to appeal to Millennials who enjoy urban spaces. These casinos will surely succumb to future trends as Las Vegas continues to be a shape shifting and incredibly influential city. If you want to see the future of architecture, Las Vegas may be the place to look. No other city is quite as daring or equally geared towards innovation in all its forms.

Must-See Buildings in Las Vegas

Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health


This building was designed by the famous Frank Gehry and is a perfect example of his unique style. The building looks like something out of a fairy tale and is a truly impressive feat of design and architecture even if you aren’t a fan.  It features swooping metal arcs and rooms that appear to be melting into one another. The interior is even more mind-boggling, yet also super efficient and functional since this building hosts patients.

El Cortez Hotel and Casino


If you are interested in seeing parts of Las Vegas that have survived countless rebirths, then be sure to visit the El Cortez Hotel and Casino, which opened in 1941 and holds the record of being the longest running casino. It showcases the Spanish revival style that can be see in other parts of the city.

The Luxor Hotel and Casino


If you have never visited Las Vegas before, there are any number of impressive hotels and casinos along the strip. One of the more classic landmarks is the Luxor, which is built to replicate the Egyptian pyramids and incorporates several architectural styles. It also provides a great photo opportunity.

Las Vegas is much more than bright lights and gambling. It is a city with a rich history that has influenced the way the rest of America thinks about architecture and designing cities. Looking forward, it continues to serve as an incubator for innovative ideas that include everything from cutting-edge software, like Casino Schedule Ease, to gaming stadiums that are changing how people compete and socialize. The city serves as a good example of what can happen if you don’t fee limited by conventions.










A Brief History of Casinos in Las Vegas

The new year is just around the corner and it is that time of year when everyone starts to reflect on the past and look forward to the potential of the coming year. Over the past twelve months, we have spent a lot of time looking at major happenings in the casino industry and thinking about what these changes might mean for the future. With so much going on, it is easy to lose sight of exactly how far the industry has come in just under a century. That is why now seems like the perfect time to take a look back at the evolution of American’s largest gambling and casino destination: Las Vegas.

Las Vegas before the Lights


Las Vegas was incorporated as a city in 1911. Before that time, it was just a hot, dry, desolate and unforgiving stretch of desert. There was nothing in the way of resources or business to attract settlers, so it remained largely wild and only really known to cowboys. In 1905, the Salt Lake, Los Angeles and San Pedro railroad began construction in the area. This project was meant to connect main rail arteries with ports along the Pacific Ocean and it brought in a rush of workers who inevitably wanted some entertainment to keep them occupied while they toiled away in the desert. An influx of men into the area gave rise to gambling, speakeasies and brothels. It truly was the wild west and if you were looking for a little work and some trouble, Las Vegas had it all.

Early on, there were some efforts by the state to try and control what was happening in Las Vegas. In 1910, Nevada outlawed gambling, but this did little to actually dissuade people from losing their paycheck at a game of cards. For workers, it wasn’t hard to find a nearby speakeasy where they could grab a drink and try their luck at gambling. By 1931, gambling was once again legal in the state and organized crime was already setting up shop. Over the next two decades, the city and what would come to be known as “the strip” was attracting millions of visitors a year.

The first Las Vegas building boom began with the El Rancho Vegas in 1941. This was this first casino and resort that included 63 hotel rooms. Most of the early resorts adopted an old west theme that spoke to the early roots of the area, but in 1946, mobster Bugsy Siegel introduced a new vision for Las Vegas that is still alive and well today. He wanted to inject the city with a whole new level of luxury and sophistication. His Flamingo hotel was the first to go beyond themed resorts and offer a more swankier destination that felt a lot more like Hollywood. Other resorts quickly followed suit and the strip became a destination for tourists, performers, celebrities and the rich elite.


Part of the success of these early resorts was their ability to attract immensely popular performers, such as Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley. While Siegel was murdered in 1947, his new Las Vegas had already gained momentum and the 1950s and 60s saw tremendous growth and the grand opening of legendary properties, such as the Sands, the Sahara, the Riviera and the New Frontier.

Las Vegas Enters a New Era

In 1966, the eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes checked into the Desert Inn and decided he didn’t want to leave. To him, the solution was simple: buy the hotel. And while he was at it, he bought up a few other hotels. At first, these purchases just seemed like the whim of an extremely rich and unpredictable man, but his investments ushered in a new era where business men and conglomerates would take over the city and the mob would be pushed out. At that point, it practically became a contest to see who could build the biggest, most luxurious resort on the strip.

Steve Wynn is credited with building the first mega-resort in 1989, which that set the bar for other developers. When the Mirage first opened its doors, it was the largest hotel in the world with 3,044 rooms. The design would be copied by other Vegas resorts, including Mandalay Bay and Treasure Island. It was also the first resort to host Siegfried and Roy and Cirque du Soleil.

The Great Recession Hits Las Vegas


Before the Great Recession, the Las Vegas housing market was one of the hottest in the country. Housing prices were up 80% and then the housing bubble burst and Nevada became the state with the highest number of foreclosures as more people became underwater on their homes. Those who had come to Las Vegas to work on home and casino construction jobs could no longer afford to live and across the country, people simply didn’t have the money for a Vegas vacation. Banks began restricting lending and huge resort development projects came to a screeching halt. It was a tough time for the city and the industry, but things have bounced back and we are well into a significant period of growth and construction with new casinos popping up all over the country.

Today’s casinos are a far cry from those lonely and dusty western themed casinos in the middle of no where. Modern resorts are more sophisticated, luxurious and cutting edge than ever before. If you want a taste of the future and how technology will influence out lives, all you have to do is look to Las Vegas. The casinos have been some of the first to adopt software management tools, like Casino Schedule Ease, embrace online gaming as a live spectator sport and incorporate automated technology into their daily operations. Just take a look at The Tipsy Robot where your drinks are made by robots.

Over the past decades, casinos have managed to weather legal issues, recessions and other challenges and continue to lead with innovative solutions that meet the changing demands of customers. Looking towards 2019, other industries may want to take a closer look at the history of Las Vegas and how it is survived and influenced growth in other markets around the country. There are clearly some important lessons to be learned.



How to Be a Better Casino Manager

Working in a casino is a fast paced and challenging career. If you are a part of the management team, then you are also faced with a set of challenges that are unique to the industry. In this post, we will look at ways you can improve your management skills and use available tools to provide a better work environment. For those who are looking to develop professionally and be a better casino manager, here are some tips that can help you succeed.

Start with a Strong Team


Taking your time during the recruitment process can make your job as a manager a lot easier. When it comes to casinos, it may be more difficult to find people with direct experience. While prior experience is a plus, it is even more important to search for candidates with the right set of qualities. The right employee will learn quickly, gladly take on new challenges and adapt easily. Instead of focusing too much on job history, look for people with these qualities:

  • Self-motivated. Once an employee learns the ropes, you want to be able to trust them to get the job done and show initiative. These types of employees will be problem solvers and require less of your attention.
  • Positive attitude. Having a positive attitude doesn’t necessarily mean a bubbly, out going personality. It does mean positively contributing to a pleasant work environment. You want people who are willing to admit mistakes and quickly regroup and who don’t spend time complaining and bringing down employee morale.
  • Flexible. Casinos require a lot of moving parts to operate smoothly. For employees, this means opportunities to take on new challenges and support other staff members when the need arises. You want employees who are willing to work outside their job title and who are interested in moving up in the company.
  • Dependable. As a manager, the last thing you want to do is have to constantly follow-up with employees to make sure that certain tasks have been completed. This can be a huge time suck. Look for employees that have demonstrated dependability so that you can rest assured that jobs are being completed on time and correctly.

Lead by Example

As a manager, you aren’t simply in charge of delegating work and making sure everyone is doing their job. You are also a leader and your employees will look to you as an example of how to act. Leading by example also helps you earn their trust and work better as a team. If you want to be an effective leader you need to:

  • Work alongside your team. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty, pitch in when necessary and show everyone that you know the ins and outs of their position.
  • Show everyone respect. Belittling employees is a surefire way to sabotage your team. Be careful with your words and handle problems in a private and professional manner.
  • Be open to feedback. Your team will be the first to know if a certain process or procedure simply isn’t working or if there is a better way to do things. Listen to their ideas and don’t be afraid to take receive feedback.
  • Avoid micromanaging. No one wants someone constantly looking over their shoulder. Clearly communicate goals and objectives and let your employees do their thing. Given a certain amount of freedom, you might be surprised to see them come up with innovative ideas that improve the workplace.

Proactively Seek out New Tools


Don’t just be open to new ideas, but go the extra mile to find new tools that can help your team perform better. Technology and innovation are rapidly advancing, which means that there are constantly new ideas, software programs and management tools available on the market. From communication platforms and professional development programs, there are plenty of solutions on the market that can streamline processes and offer new learning opportunities for both employees and management.

Casino Schedule Ease is just one example of such technology. This scheduling platform has been especially designed to address the needs of the casino industry and simplify the scheduling process. Using this technology, casino managers can more easily tackle the challenges of staffing a gaming table, restaurants, bars and other areas of the casino that run on a 24-hour schedule. Employees can be placed according to their strengths and personal preferences while also easily requesting time off through the portal. Incorporating these type of tools into the workplace demonstrates a willingness to support employees and provide an optimal work environment.

Be an Effective Communicator


Clear communication is at the heart of any successful project or team. You need to be able to clearly relay goals and expectations to your employees. It is all too easy for frustrations to grow when signals have been crossed or employees feel like they aren’t being kept in the loop or held to obvious expectations.

Keep in mind that being a good communicator also means providing clear paths for communication. Start by putting processes in place so that employees know exactly what to do if they need to request a day off, share an idea, file a complaint, etc. This can streamline communication and empower employees to take action as needed.

Be a Motivator

Your employees are looking to you for leadership. They want to see that you are both motivated to succeed and ensure their success. It is up to you to set the right tone, keep morale high and make sure that everyone is motivated. This can also entail providing incentives in the form of financial compensation, recognition or opportunities to advance. The key is to understand what motivates your employees and reward them when they perform well and exceed expectations.

As a casino manager, it is important that you continue to stay on top of industry trends while also sharpening your own skills. The more time you invest into becoming a better leader and fostering relationships with your employees, the better your business will run. The right management style will also help retain loyal employees and build an experienced team. Implementing just a few of these tips can make a big difference.


November Casino News Wrap-Up

Over the last year, the legalization of sports betting has dominated the news across the casino and gambling industries. This major milestone is on-track to transform the way casinos do business and the way states regulate gambling. While many are gearing up for big changes that will continue to unfold over the coming months, there have been plenty of other developments in the casino industry that might not have caught your attention. In this post, we will look at some of the major stories that have been overlooked and what they could mean as we look forward to another year in the gaming world.

Is the Casino Industry Too Saturated?

We have been covering a lot of new casino openings in the US and around the world, but could the construction boom be hitting a ceiling? Atlantic City is continuing to enjoy a resurgence and investors are betting that the boom will continue. Locations in New York State and the southwest are also expanding existing casinos and breaking new ground, but there are some signs in Mississippi that the market may have reached a point of saturation.

On November 28th, Caesars Entertainment Corporation announced that it would be closing the Tunica Roadhouse Casino. The company may have overestimated the demand for gambling in the local market. Tunica is already home to seven other casinos, including the Caesars Horseshoe Tunica location. The drive to build and compete might have clouded the company’s judgement when it came to understanding the limitations of the local market. Ultimately, the casino is the smallest in the area and 150 workers will be affected. Considering the size of other locations, this is a relatively small blow, but it could be an early indication that casinos may want to focus on the success of existing locations and not get too far ahead of the game with new construction.

Philadelphia on Schedule for 2020 Opening of New Casino


While certain areas have reached market saturation, other cities are going full-steam ahead with projects. The Live! Hotel & Casino Philadelphia is a $700 million casino and hotel project that is underway in the city’s stadium district where the Phillies, Eagles, Sixers and Flyers all play. Over the past decade, Philadelphia has seen other major casino projects fall apart at the last minute. Even this project has seen its share of roadblocks, but with demolition and construction permits in hand, it looks like this casino will become a reality. The location means that the casino has the potential to be a part of a truly unique entertainment destination that could bring big revenue to the city and the state.

Virginia Makes Bid to Open First Full-Scale Casino


As gambling continues to expand in states where it is already legal, more states are looking to capture their own portion of the pie. Most recently, Virginia lawmakers are expected to share more details about their plan to introduce a bill to the legislature that would open the door to building a $150 million casino resort and hotel in Bristol. While the plan is still in the early stages, initial estimates expect that the casino would add 2,000 jobs in the first year and make an economic impact of $1.9 billion for the entire state.

Historically, Virginia has staunchly rejected the legalization of gambling in the state, but recent developments may turn the tide. The legalization of sports gambling and the opportunity for big revenue has softened resistance from some opponents. Perhaps more importantly, the federal government recently ruled that the Pamunkey Tribe could open a casino in the state. Virginia won’t be able to collect any tax revenue from this new casino, so they are looking for ways to enter the market and get their own share of profits.

While the bill has yet to be introduced to the legislation, it looks current events have created the most favorable environment so far for those looking to legalize gambling in Virginia. Developers have already chosen the abandoned Bristol Mall as the new site. Many local residents would love to see something done with this vacant building. If everything goes according to plan, new gambling laws would go into affect in July of 2019 and construction would begin immediately.

Wynn Resorts Tries to Win over Everett, MA


In 2011, Massachusetts passed the Expanded Gaming Act, which allowed for up to three commercial casinos to open in the state. MGM Springfield opened in 2018 and Encore Boston Harbor, a Wynn Resorts project, is schedule to open in June of 2019. (The final license may not be issued for some time while the state waits to see if a third casino would create too much competition.) In recent months, the casino has come under fire and faced accusations of federal racketeering that implicate mob involvement in the project. Wynn resorts has denied any illegal activity and characterizes the accusations as retribution from a competitor who was unsuccessful in securing the gambling license.

While it remains to see if anything comes of the pending lawsuit, Wynn Resorts has been faced with a public relations problem. In an effort to connect with community and demonstrate a commitment to make a positive impact, the company announced that it would donate $10 million over the next four years to local social programs. A committee will be established to help choose which programs receive funding. This gesture may help ease any negative affect recent lawsuits have had on the reception of the impending casino.

As more states legalize gambling and casino construction continues to ramp up around the country, increased competition will require casinos to operate smarter and more efficiently then ever before. This means being proactive about catering to the evolving needs of a new generation of customers and implementing the latest management software, like Casino Schedule Ease, to provide a superior customer experience. These operational factors will play a larger role in the success of casinos as consumers have more and more options when it comes to gambling. If market saturation becomes a more widespread problem over the next decade, only the best run casinos will survive.



Major Investments in the Casino Industry are Underway

A strong economy in 2018 has translated into a strong year for casinos and resorts. People have more disposable income and feel confident that they can spen a little money and not have to worry quite so much about hoarding it away for a rainy day. As a result, there have been some major sales and spending projects announced in the last few weeks by entertainment companies. As the economy continues to thrive, we can expect to see more construction, expansion and upgrades to casinos across the country. Here are some of the most notable recent events that signal casinos and consumers are ready to spend.

Dan Gilbert Sells Greektown Casino


The Greektown casino in downtown Detroit was supposed to serve as a centerpiece of the city’s revitalization during the 2000s. When the casino first opened its doors in 2007, it initially drew in curious crowds from the suburbs, but the casino had difficulty turning a profit in the long-term. Part of the problem was that there simply weren’t any other businesses and restaurants in the area to help support the casino. It was a stand alone destination in a city that was struggling with crime and a dismal economy.

By 2013, the casino had undergone bankruptcy reorganization and  was purchased by Rock Gaming, which is owned by Quicken Loans and multi-billionaire, Dan Gilbert. In recent years, Detroit has experienced significant growth that began with small business setting up shop and eventually led to big investors taking on larger projects. This has been good news for everyone, including casinos. Despite this, Greektown Casino has a current debt of about $400 million.

To address debt issues and free up money to invest in other projects, Dan Gilbert sold the casino for $1 billion to Penn National Gaming and VICI Properties. On the surface, this sale may look like a sign of trouble, but ultimately, it may be a good thing for Gilbert, Detroit and the Greektown Casino.

Gilbert plans to use the money from the casino sale to invest in other projects throughout Detroit. These projects will create new jobs, attract new residents and bring in visitors. This influx of people into the city means a greater demand for food and entertainment.

New leadership may also be the thing to help turn the casino around and help make it profitable. With the right strategy, the new investors will be able to capitalize on the healthy economy, consumer confidence and a major metropolitan area that is experiencing newfound prosperity and growth.

Harrah’s to Get Major Facelift

Just over ten years ago, Atlantic City looked like it was on its last leg. Half of the city’s casinos shut down after revenue dropped by 50% and 10,000 employees were let go. This lead to a home foreclosures an exodus that left the city limping along and looking back fondly on the good old days.

Not many could have predicted the turnaround that has happened over the past ten years. The city is humming with new construction and casinos are experiencing unprecedented revenue growth. In August, gaming revenue for the state was up 24.13% over the same month last year. The legalization of sports betting is helping to propel these numbers, but casinos were already experiencing double-digit growth percentages in the months before sports betting was introduced.

While there are projects underway all over the city, Harrah’s is the latest to announce a major upgrade. Caesar’s Entertainment Corporation is planning a $56 million renovation project that will focus on improving rooms in the Coastal Tower. The entire project should be completed by the summer of 2019 and offer modernized rooms that cater to business people who need access to high-speed internet and other technology.

This upgrade is just the latest project from the company. In recent years, they have spent a total of $250 million building on new construction and upgrades that include the Waterfront Conference Center and the addition of the Gordon Ramsey Steak restaurant.

Choctaw Casino and Resort Expands … Again

Investments in casino and resorts haven’t been limited to major gambling hubs. The Choctaw Casino and Resort in Durant, Oklahoma just announced their latest expansions project, which happens to be the fourth since the casino opened in 2006. This latest project will add a 1,000 room hotel, lounge bar, conference facilities, restaurants and much more. Perhaps best of all, the expansion is expected to bring over

Casino Stocks Expected to Gain Strength


In 2017, casino and gaming stocks enjoyed a banner year, which lead experts to predict that 2018 would yield similar, though not quite as drastic, results. Much to everyone’s surprise, leading stocks experienced significant declines with some dropping as much as 30%. These numbers were especially surprising considering the overall strength of the global economy and increases in gaming revenue.

It appears that investors have backed away from gaming stocks because they became skeptical about whether gaming could sustain the same pace of growth. Despite these doubts, the industry has proven that it is still building momentum. With new casino construction projects underway across the world, the rise of esports and the legalization of sports betting in the U.S., 2019 stock investing could end up looking a lot like 2017.

With a booming economy and major investments being made in casinos across the country, 2019 looks like it will be a lucrative year for the industry.  Looking forward to the next twelve months, it will be interesting to see how technology continues to affect the industry and which companies will join the ranks and begin investing in new construction and upgrades. As technology makes managing casinos more efficient and cost-effective, we can expect to see that money fed back into properties for further improvements. It promises to be an exciting time for the entire industry.

To learn more about the role of technology in casinos and the future of the industry, visit Casino Schedule Ease.


A Proposed Casino Raises Age-Old Question about Crime and Gambling

Bristol, Virginia is the latest site of heated protests against casinos and gambling. On October, 21, 2018, hundreds of local citizens gathered for a rally against a proposed casino and convention center. Several churches from around the area sponsored the event and local pastors gave fervent speeches against what they perceive as the slippery slope of gambling. The rally resurrected the age-old question of whether there is an actual relationship between the presence of casinos, gambling and increased crime.  You might be surprised to learn how much of this debate is based in assumptions, deeply held beliefs and emotions that don’t necessarily reflect the facts.

The Case of Bristol, Virginia


The 550, 000 square-foot Bristol Mall off of Gate City Highway currently sits empty. Local businessmen have proposed turning the space into a resort and casino space complete with a hotel and conference center. In September, the City Council and School Board voted to support the project although it still has to be approved by the state’s General Assembly before construction can begin.

While the casino would make good use of vacant space and provide jobs and revenue to other local businesses, there has been passionate opposition to the project from the religious community. As Pastor Dewey Williams says, “I consider Bristol to be the buckle of the Bible Belt,” and many describe the casino as the devil’s work and view the addition of a casino as an assault on families and the community. They claim that the casino will increase crime, cause in influx of drugs and create gambling addicts. Throughout the years, these same arguments have been used to push back against legalized gambling, but how much truth is there to these claims?

Do Casinos Cause an Increase in Crime?


On some level, it seems like commonsense that adding a location that offers 24/7 access, serves alcohol and attracts additional people into the area would cause an increase in crime. This logic also aligns with criminology studies that have determined that crime isn’t evenly distributed throughout communities. Instead, it is concentrated in what are known as “hot spots,” which “are often characterized by forbidden or specifically encouraged activities, such as alcohol consumption, in places of public access.” At first glance, a casino appears to meet the definition of a hot spot. In fact, it is a widely held belief that casinos increase crime and this argument has been used time and again at rallies and during legislative debates, but it doesn’t necessarily hold up under closer examination.

The most comprehensive and credible studies on crime and casinos examined trends in Atlantic City before and after the addition of casinos. In 1977, the year before casinos opened, there were 4,391 index offenses. In 1980, that number had jumped to 11,899. While that might seem like a clear indication that casinos increased crime, it doesn’t represent the whole picture. Scholars had to take into consideration the fact that the casinos added 27 million annual tourists to a permanent population of just 38,000 residents. They also compared crime rates of nearby communities during the same time period to determine whether there were more widespread trends. Ultimately, they concluded that “casinos have no direct effect on serious crime in Atlantic City, and that crime has risen due to factors other than the casinos themselves.”

To be fair, these studies were conducted in the 1990s and exclusively looked at crime rates in Atlantic City. The limitations of these early studies are exactly why researchers conducted a more extensive study that was published in 2003. This research compared crime rates of cities with casinos to control cities without legalized gambling facilities. They also took into account pre and post crime statistics in cities with casinos and looked at specific crimes, including: larceny, simple assault, drug violations, etc. The researchers found that “When examining the crime rates adjusted for population at risk, there are no crimes in casino communities that are statistically different from control communities.” As more people enter a certain area, the number of crimes will increase, but in casino locations the crime rate continues to be proportional to the population without any significant differences from similar communities.

Common Misconceptions about Casinos


Those who are quick to buy into the assumption that casinos cause crime often have a distorted view of what a casino actually entails. For example, the proposed Bristol casino would only dedicate 10% of the space to gambling and games. The vast majority of the complex would be used to house a hotel and convention center along with restaurants and entertainment venues.

Modern casinos are vibrant entertainment centers that provide a variety of amenities that require them to run like well oiled machines. They utilize the latest in gaming, security and employee management technology to create a superior customer experience. It is also important to remember that poor security and crime problems would reflect poorly on the business, so it is in their best interest to go above and beyond to lay to rest any fears about an increased potential for crime.

It is also easy to forget that a casinos have the potential to bring thousands of high-paying jobs to communities that need them the most. Bristol has long been in need of a revitalization and the casino will bring 2,000 jobs in the first year and 5,200 by the seventh year. The developers are billing the casino as a “family friendly resort” that will be locally owned by long-time residents who are “committed making [it] a safe place for all in the region.” Opponents recognize the need for new businesses, but view the casino as a place that will encourage sinful behavior and be a plight on the community.

Ultimately, it is up to each community to decide what is best for them, but it is also important to separate fact from fiction during the decision-making process. The rally in Bristol has once again brought the debate about casinos and crime into the spotlight, but now there is more research than ever to demonstrate that there aren’t any clear and direct correlations between casinos and crime. To learn more about what makes modern casinos tick and how they can offer a superior employment experience, visit Casino Schedule Ease.





Highlights from the 2018 Global Gaming Expo #G2E

The 2018 Global Gaming Expo, otherwise known as G2E, got underway on October 8th, in Las Vegas. While the event opens with the Global Gaming Awards, which honors products, executives, suppliers and other industry notables who are making an impact, the week is also full of informational panels and other events. Participants can explore the floor of the Sands Expo and Convention Center where new games, slots and other casino management tools are being showcased. There is plenty to see and do and with the recent legalization of sports betting, you can be sure that it was a topic on everyone’s tongue. Here are some of the highlights from the first two days of the expo:

Are Casinos Ready for Blockchain?

There are a lot of blockchain enthusiasts around the world who want to explore the marriage of blockchain with gambling and casinos, but frankly, there is a significant knowledge gap about this technology. Businesses aren’t rushing to adopt a new technology that has not been tried and tested on a large scale. The idea of a decentralized banking system also makes some people nervous, but proponents like Jez San, the Founder of FunFair Technologies, thinks that there are huge benefits to be enjoyed for both players and casinos. His goal is to educate audiences at G2E and begin to convince some decision-makers that this avenue is worth exploring. It doesn’t look like casinos are quite ready, but the presence of blockchain discussion panels signals a certain amount of openness to the idea.

Millenials are Bringing Back Skills-Based Games


At Gamblit Gaming, they deal with a demographic where the average age is 36, which means that they have to adjust to the wants and needs of a younger audience who might not be drawn to traditional slot machines that require little interaction or skill. As a result, the G2E is filled with bright skills-based games that also tap into nostalgic childhood memories of playing early video games like Pac-Man. Designers are also using the popularity of classic games to create Pac-Man and Galaga slot machines, which combine the best of both worlds.

It looks like game designers are also turning to celebrity names, movies and popular TV games shows and mobile games to draw in audiences to their slot machines. Partnerships with names like Deal or no Deal, Mad Max and Doodle Jump all point to a gaming world that is pulling from other markets to bring players familiar content.  This is a great way to tap into media that has an existing audience and provide them with a new, more interactive experience with their favorite brand names.

Rethinking Slot Booths


Manufacturers are even rethinking the classic slot booth design and experimenting with different cabinet shapes and sizes. The goal is to keep players in their seat for as long as possible and designers are interested to see what design elements draw in and retain players. As you might imagine seating also plays an important role and has been a focus of redesigns. New models feature ergonomic seats that can rumble and move in conjunction with events on the screen for a more immersive experience. While designers understand that these elements influence player’s behaviors, they are still working to pinpoint specifics. The G2E provides the perfect opportunity to gather valuable data and feedback.

Sports Betting Takes Center Stage


As expected, the big draw to this year’s expo is excitement around the new world of sports betting. Now that the Supreme Court has legalized sports betting, states are in the process of deciding how they want to handle this new revenue source and what kind of regulations need to be put in place. Educational panels, including a keynote address from ESPN anchor Scott Van Pelt, have been attracting packed crowds as the experts weigh in on how the industry can and should address this major shift in the industry.

JCM Global used their booth to showcase their software that turns slot machines into a kiosk for sports betting. They are also pushing monitors that display betting odds to casinos and nightclubs. One of the big challenges is that the average person, who may not have any prior experience with sports betting, can be intimidated by the sportsbook and simply stay away because they aren’t sure how to interpret the numbers and place a bet. It is going to be to vendors and manufacturers to make sports betting as accessible as possible if they want to appeal to a larger audience.

A Global Reach

Vendors and manufacturers from around the world flock to Vegas each year for the G2E. It is the perfect opportunity to network, get a feel for where the industry is headed and try out new products. This year, companies from Osaka, Dusseldorf, Sydney and other places throughout the world have met to enjoy the sites and maybe close some deals. With over 400 booths on the expo floor and 26,000 attendees, there is sure to be a diverse crowd that represents a wide swath of the gaming and casino community.

Management Solutions on Display

In addition to games, the event is being used to highlight management software that allows casinos to operate more efficiently and handle a complicated set of needs. Casino Schedule Ease is just one example of how software innovations are helping casinos to reduce their labor costs while also producing better results. This program is designed to help casinos schedule employees throughout the hotels, restaurants and gaming floors that can make up a casino. With a 24/7 operating schedule, it is especially challenging to provide adequate coverage, provide the best possible service and keep employees content. Casino Schedule Ease makes this delicate balance possible, while also free up time for the scheduling manager.

While sports betting continues to dominate the gambling world, there are a lot of other exciting happenings at G2E. You can check out their website and watch videos of all the celebrities, performers and other special guests who are making appearances. In the meantime, we will continue to track new innovations spurred by the expo and bring you the latest news.




Best Must-See Shows in Las Vegas

Nashville might be the music capital of the country and NYC is home to Broadway, but no one can hold a candle to Las Vegas when it comes entertainment. Guests can experience the best in big name musical acts who have been lured to the city with ongoing residencies along with the world’s premier magicians, acrobats and other performers. If you are still stuck on the idea that Las Vegas is for gamblers, you need to take a closer look at what casinos truly have to offer.

Major Acts with Residencies in Las Vegas


In 1944, Liberace was the first musical star to be offered a residency in Las Vegas. Based on his success, the idea caught on quickly and was followed by residencies from Frank Sinatra, the Rat Pack and Elvis Presley who performed 837 consecutive sold out shows from 1969 to 1976. After Elvis left the scene, Vegas went through a bit of a slump and wasn’t able to attract the same level of star power. All that changed in 2003 when Celine Dion signed a major contract that allowed her to create a unique show that took full advantage of the latest in staging and technology to provide concert-goers with an unforgettable experience.

Dion’s first residency brought a certain amount of legitimacy and respectability back to the idea of establishing a residency in Las Vegas. She effectively opened the door for other acts to follow suit. As a result, Elton John, Bruce Springsteen, Britney Spears, Jennifer Lopez and others have set up shop in Las Vegas for some period of time.

Here are just some of the major stars that are currently playing in Las Vegas or who have signed contracts to begin a residency:

Lady Gaga

In late 2017, Lady Gaga signed with MGM’s Park Theater to open a show that will provide a full review of her career. The first show is scheduled for December 28th, 2018.

Celine Dion

Dion returned for a second residency and her show continues to be a hot ticket item. While she has performed hundreds of shows, time is running out to see her in Las Vegas. Her residency is supposed to end in January 2019.


At 72 years-old Cher is still performing regularly and can be seen this October and November at the Park Theater at Park MGM.

Mariah Carey

No one quite embodies the term diva quite like Mariah Carey and you can catch her belting out all her classic hits at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace. Be sure to check the website for dates.

Other Must-See Shows in Vegas

While there are plenty of great concerts to choose from, Las Vegas is home to some of the most creative entertainment acts that can be found anywhere in the world. If you want to experience world-class, mind-bending acts, here are some must-see shows:


Las Vegas Weekly named Absinthe “the #1 greatest show in Las Vegas History.” This variety show mixes circus style performances with burlesque and vaudeville for a risque show that is definitely for adults only. It is a non-stop combination of comedy, danger, acrobatics and just about anything else you can imagine, all set on a circular stage in the middle of the theater. The audience is right in the action, which helps create a more immersive experience that everyone is raving about. Based on the success of the show, it will probably keep running for some time, but don’t wait to be the last to catch this groundbreaking spectacle.

Ka by Cirque du Soleil


Cirque du Soleil was started in 1984 by two street performers. By the 1990s, the traveling troupe of performers had gained a huge fan base and were performing shows all over the world. In Vegas, Cirque du Soleil  now has several permanent residencies, which host 9,000 people per night. Ka is one of the latest shows that features all the great aerobatic performances you have come to expect along with a more concrete narrative that takes the audience on a journey. While all of their shows are sure to wow, Ka is earning especially high praise as the company continues to evolve and improve.

Penn and Teller

This duo has been performing together since the 1970s. While they have appeared on the screen and stage, they are best known for their Vegas shows. In fact, they hold the record for the longest running headlining act on the strip. After decades of working together, their show is just as sharp, funny and entertaining as ever, making it well worth the trip.

Piff the Magic Dragon

You may remember seeing Piff the Magic Dragon on America’s Got Talent. His mix of comedy and magic impressed the judges and eventually led to a headlining show in Vegas. While Piff had enjoyed some success before the show, his appearance helped him become a headliner in one of the most competitive markets.  Today, his show is one of the hottest tickets in town.

Baz – Star Crossed Love

Baz Luhrmann, the director of Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge, The Great Gatsby and other intensely visual films has brought his talent to the stage with a show that pays tribute to some of the best musical numbers from his movies. For fans, the production captures that best of Baz and provides a stunning experience for all the senses.

Las Vegas is enjoying a true resurgence that is being fueled by entertainers. Musicians, magicians, acrobats and other unique performers have been able to find a home where they are welcomed by casinos and audiences alike. The sheer number of major shows also marks a more modern approach to attracting new and repeat visitors. The city is effectively adapting to modern tastes and working hard to respond to consumer behavior. Many of these efforts are made possible by new technology that allows for intricate staging, effective crowd control and better casino management. Everything from software, like Casino Schedule Ease, to infrastructure and competitive pricing have worked to attract the best acts and make Las Vegas the one destination where you can see all the best shows in one place.


Casino and Gambling News You Might Have Missed

In recent months, the news has been dominated with buzz around the legalization of sports betting in the United States. While this is certainly big news, there have been plenty of other big stories that may have not gotten the attention they deserved with all the excitement over sports betting. Fortunately, we have been staying on top of current events and so that you can quickly get up-to-date on all the latest casino and gambling news you might have missed.

Ocean Resorts Helps Hurricane Florence Victims


Leading into the weekend of September 15th, hurricane Florence was on track to make a direct hit on the Carolinas as a category 4 storm. Fortunately, the hurricane lost steam before making landfall although thousands of residents along the east coast were forced to evacuate and head for safer ground. While some had a place to go, many were left scrambling to find or afford shelter. The Ocean Resort Casino in Atlantic City stepped up to the plate and offered free rooms to anyone that was being displaced by the hurricane. It remains to be seen how many people took advantage of this generous offer, but it was certainly a nice gesture from the casino.

Macau Casinos Reopen after Typhoon


While residents in the Carolinas have been dealing with hurricane Florence, Macau, one of the biggest gambling and tourism destinations in the world, is just recovering from a devastating typhoon that shut down casinos and led to the loss of millions of dollars in revenue. Macau encompasses a small peninsula and two islands off the coast of China, making it the perfect location for vacationers while also exposing it to extreme storms. The government mandated shutdown began Saturday, September, 15th and  was the first of its kind since casino licenses were first issued in 2002. A total of 42 casinos were forced to shut their doors because officials predicted excessive flooding in the area. As of Monday, September, 17th, the casinos are allowed to reopen, but word is still coming in about how much damage the area has experienced.

The shutdown that lasted a total of 33 hours, is expected to create a loss of revenue of $186 million. What remains to be seen is how much money will need to be put towards repairs and just when the tourists will return in order to help create a steady stream of revenue once again. Hopefully, the area will recover quickly and the evacuation was able to save the lives of employees and tourists who would have been at risk.

Gamblers Always Like the Odds


An experiment conducted by professors at the University of Waterloo in Canada set out to determine whether making players aware of the statistical probability that they would win at a slot machine would make them less likely to play. Going into the experiment, they had already determined that slot machines use marketing tactics to convince players that they will win. In addition, players almost always overestimate their chances of winning and think that a near miss just means that they are getting closer to a win.

The professors took cues from the Facts Up Front nutrition labeling program that is used in the US to design a program to test whether prominently posting winning stats would affect how players gambled. In the end, educating players about their chances of winning both big and small pots, did not influence whether they played or which machines they favored. For problem gamblers, the labels made people even more confident that they were going to be the statistical oddity and win big. It turns out that even the most conservative gamblers are always willing to play the odds.

David Peters is 2018 Poker Master Winner

A couple months ago, we took a closer look at how poker came to be one of the biggest tournament games in Las Vegas. Over the weekend of September 15th, Aria Resort and Casino hosted the 2018 Poker Masters tournament that included 25 of the top players from around the world. David Peters was the favorite going into the main event and he would eventually emerge victorious and take home a prize of $1,150,000. Peters is just 31 years-old and has managed to accumulate over $24 million in prize money over his career.

New Technology that Will Facilitate Sports Betting


Even with other big stories breaking, it is hard to get away from sports betting completely. While each state is immersed in its own legal technicalities and working to decide how they want to handle sports betting, casinos are turning to the tech industry for solutions on how to smoothly integrate betting without disrupting other aspects of the business. Specialists in mobile technology have introduced the DraftKings and playMGM apps, with more to follow soon.

Meanwhile casinos are also dealing with other logistical issues related to expanding their offers and adding employees to help manage sports betting. In general, creating a schedule for a casino that runs on a 24/7 clock can be a bit of a nightmare, but when you throw a handful of wrenches into an already complicated system, things can go haywire quickly.

That is why more and more casinos are adopting Casino Schedule Ease (CSE) to manage all their personnel management and scheduling needs. This advanced software has been especially designed to address the challenges that face casinos and provide employees and managers with a simpler way to communicate and optimize scheduling practices. With the help of CSE, casinos managers are able to save time and increase employee morale while also improving the customer experience. This type of technology till continue to play a vital role as casinos work to adapt to new gambling preferences and customer demands.

In the coming months, casino and gambling news will probably continue to be dominated with updates about sports betting. Be sure to turn to us for the latest news that includes and goes beyond the latest in sports betting.



The Latest News on Sports Betting in the U.S.

Sports fans and gamblers alike are filled with excitement and anticipation over the recent legalization of sports betting. While individual states are still working to hash out their own rules and regulations about how to implement and manage sports betting, there have been some major developments worth noting. If you are eagerly waiting for sports betting to come to your neck of the woods, here are some updates on the latest developments:

Sports Betting in New Jersey


Sports betting has been legal in Las Vegas since 1992, so industry watchers are keeping a close eye on New Jersey to see how the nation’s other gambling hub handles this new source of revenue. The official ruling that legalized sports betting was handed down by the Supreme Court on May 14th of 2018. By  August 1st, DraftKings Sportsbook had opened online sports gambling to anyone located in New Jersey. This quick action by the sports giant effectively created a temporary monopoly on betting.

Since then, other Atlantic City Casinos have been scrambling to launch their own in-house and online programs so that they can get their own slice of the pie. As of publication, the following establishments have live sportsbooks on premise:

  • Borgata
  • Bally’s
  • Golden Nugget
  • Harrah’s
  • Monmouth Park
  • Ocean Resort Casino
  • Resorts AC
  • The Meadowlands

When it comes to online sports betting, DraftKings has been joined by SugarHouse Sportsbook, which is associated with the Golden Nugget, and FanDuel Sportsbook, which operates in conjunction with the Meadowlands. While casinos in the area are sure to follow suit, they still have programs in the works.  Part of the problem is that  casinos and racetracks are required to have a physical sportsbook in place before they can launch an online version. This means that many establishments are scrambling to simultaneously create both in-house and online betting programs.

Reasons Behind Delayed Launches


From a logistical standpoint, creating an online sports betting program that is user-friendly and addresses regulatory requirements is a challenging task. Now throw in cyber-security and risk management issues and you have a truly monumental set of challenges. Certain states are taking these potential threats seriously and being exceptionally cautious when it comes to rolling out online gambling opportunities. They want to make sure that citizens can safely enter their credit card information without having to worry about fraud and money laundering. The fear is that online gambling accounts actually create an ideal target for hackers. In a tech-based world where cyber-security experts and hackers are in a constant game of cat and mouse, these concerns are certainly well-founded. Sports betting fans in certain states may have to remain patient and state legislators and gambling organizations work to create an approach to security that everyone feels comfortable with.

Deciding on a Fair Tax Rate


Many state governments are waiting and watching to see how online sports betting plays out in other states so that they can make informed decisions about how best to tax game play. Some estimates predict that this form of betting could earn $150 billion annually. In 2017, Nevada set a new earnings record with $248.8 million in revenue. For states who are looking to reduce budget deficits and provide for their residents, that kind of money could mean a healthy influx of tax money.

One of the big challenges is finding the right tax rate and deciding when is the right time to enter the market. Nevada has a long history of imposing a 6.75% tax, which includes income tax on winnings and an excise tax on casino revenue. New Jersey chose a 8% tax while Pennsylvania has imposed a 34% tax before sports betting and online gambling has even reached the state. Sportsbooks will also have to deal with the fact that major leagues and even individual teams are also going to be looking for a piece of the profits, which only continues to narrow their own profit margins.

When it comes to timing, early adopters have the greatest earning potential, but this high risk approach could also result in a series of glitches that could turn into a public relations problem. States that already have some experience with regulating gambling and taxing products that have previously been illegal, such as marijuana, will be the ones most likely to move aggressively on this opportunity.

Upcoming Launches


States who are looking to move quickly on sports betting are also keeping in mind that football season is right around the corner. The Super Bowl is the single largest betting event and fans will be placing wagers all through the season. Launching before the first game may mean that money that was previously spent on illegal bets can now be taxed.

As it stands, Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware and Mississippi all have operational sports book. This fall, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island will join the ranks. From there, we will have to wait and see how different states respond and handle this latest change in gambling legislation. Some may seize it as an opportunity while others are perfectly happy to take a more cautious approach.

Ultimately, the legalization of sports betting the the revenue earning potential of online betting are forcing casinos to take a closer look at how they are leveraging technology and protecting their patrons from cyber attacks. Establishments that can effectively onboard new programs and assemble a talented IT team will have the competitive edge and the chance to seize a larger portion of the sports betting business. This means forming new partnerships with tech companies and innovators who may hold the key to successfully moving with the pace of technology.

Already, casinos across the country are turning to specialty software providers like Casino Schedule Ease (CSE) to provide custom solutions that directly address industry related challenges. CSE provides users with the ability to easily schedule hundreds of employees and adequately staff casinos that operate on a 24/7 schedule. It also streamlines the communication process and allows managers to create a visual map of the casino floor. These types of innovations will become increasingly necessary as casinos partner with sportsbook companies and look to increase their online capabilities.





Are New Casinos Performing as Expected?

Over the past year, we have excitedly watched the opening of several new casinos along the east coast. For places like Atlantic City, these additions were expected to revitalize the city and mark a turning point in the local economy as the city responds to changing demographics and customer behavior. Cities further north in New York were also anticipating that the opening of the World Resorts Catskills location would be the key to bringing a virtually non-existent job market back to life. Now that these locations have been operating for a few months, it is time to take a look at how they have been doing and what the future might hold.

World Resorts Catskills Falls Still Gaining Momentum


Back in March, we took a closer look at how casinos were being used to revitalize upstate New York. The opening of the World Resorts Catskills was the culmination of over six years of campaigning by Governor Andrew Cuomo. He saw the casino as a way to provide the area with a much needed economic boost. After passing new legislation, the casino finally received the okay to begin building. Ultimately, the casino added over 2,000 new employees at wage rates well above the area’s average.

With the hopes of an entire region riding on the success of the casino, there has been a lot of pressure to succeed. Early numbers indicate a slow start, but these reports don’t necessarily tell the entire story. According to an earnings report that was filed in late June, the casino lost $58 million in the first five months. When the casino opened, they estimated revenue earnings at $250 million in the first year. A recent analysis by Moody’s Investor Service put that number closer to $150 million, however, the casino still has seven months to get on pace and meet expectations.

What the Numbers Don’t Say


From the beginning, the resort and casino was designed to roll out in phases, so while parts of the casino opened in February, there has yet to be a full launch of all amenities. In December, a $33 million entertainment complex is on schedule to open, which should bring in additional tourists who may like to gamble, but also want to see a show and enjoy other forms of nightlife. This next phase of the project will include a hotel and other non-gaming amenities that will appeal to sports fans. Once this final portion of the casino opens, there is sure to be a significant spike in revenue.

The recent federal legalization of sports betting is also sure to provide a financial boon for the casino, which will help it meet projected performance goals. While New York state is still working out their own regulations, this major shift in legislation is expected to significantly increase revenue for existing casinos and act as a catalyst for all sorts of other betting operations.

Hard Rock Vs. Ocean Resort


Further down the coast in Atlantic City, revenue numbers are looking more promising. While there have been some major closings in the past few years, the Hard Rock casino and the Ocean Resort both opened this year and the city has enjoyed its best month since 2010 with a revenue total of just under $300 million. These record breaking numbers are due, in part, to the successful performance of the Hard Rock Casino during its first full month or being open to the public. During July, the Hard Rock earned $32,386,465 which puts it in second place among a total of nine casinos.

However, these numbers don’t necessarily tell the whole story. The Ocean Resort opened a full 10 days into the month, giving them a real disadvantage in a head to head comparison. In addition, the Ocean Resort is one of the first casinos in Atlantic City to welcome regulated sports betting and this should be a major driver for revenue in the future. The casino that is able to most effectively leverage the popularity of sports betting may be the one that comes out on top.

For industry experts, it is no surprise that Atlantic City is beginning to pick up steam when it comes to earning revenue. The city has an established reputation and casinos have become such a part of the local economy that recruiting and hiring experienced workers is easy. They are also experts at running large casinos, hotels and restaurants that service thousands of people per day. With sophisticated technology and software like Casino Schedule Ease, they are able to easily organize workers and improve the customer experience by operating like a well-oiled machine.

When it comes to early reports on the World Resorts Catskills location, many are quick to negatively interpret the numbers, but it is important to keep in mind that after just five months in business, these reports don’t tell the full story. As the casino complex finalizes the last phases of construction, more amenities will be available to the public. A full-scale launch, paired with the introduction of sports betting, is sure to help the new casino meet initial expectations and provide an economic boost to an area that needs help.



What the New PA iLottery Means for Gambling

For years, online gambling and lotteries have been largely outlawed in the U.S. In the early days of the internet, online poker games were all the rage, but it didn’t take long for the government to shut down these types of games. Since then, gambling has been limited to casino environments or state run lotteries that require players to purchase tickets at designated retail locations. Now, technology and regulations have both advanced enough that some states are revisiting online gambling and using it to produce additional revenue. This most recent development clearly points to a future where casinos and states will be able to utilize technology to move the industry forward while also promoting responsible play.

Pennsylvania Launches iLottery


On June 4th, 2018, Pennsylvania launched their iLottery, which is the first of its kind in the country. This program allows PA residents to play games on their computer or mobile device and win prizes of up to $250,000. The iLottery is designed to meet the demands of users and provide a more accessible mode of game play that can be used while on the go. In its first month, the lottery earned $21.6 million and hosted 45,000 new players. The extra revenue is slated to be used to support older residents in PA who need assistance.

Safeguarding Game Play

As mentioned above, the early days of online gambling were a bit like the wild west. The internet was a completely new tool and there was little regulation on any front. Ultimately, this left players open to dishonest companies looking to make a quick buck. It also meant that there weren’t any protections in place to help ensure responsible game play. Fortunately, all that has changed and the PA iLottery may provide a useful example of how states and other institutions can allow gambling while also protecting players.

The iLottery allows players to put certain settings in place that will help them adhere to customized limits and help them avoid spending beyond their means or getting too caught up in trying to win that big pot. Players can use time limits, spending limits and deposit limits to control their gambling. They can also opt to take a break for 30 days or even exclude themselves from being eligible to play for one to five years.

In addition, to play the iLottery, users must create an account and then make a deposit. Players aren’t allowed to use credit cards, which also helps reduce the risk that they will build debt through gambling. These safeguards should help mitigate any of the potential ricks associated with gambling and allow people to play more responsibly.

Opposition to Online Gambling


The road to Pennsylvania’s online iLottery has not necessarily been a smooth one. Even after the initial bill was passed, lawmakers showed strong opposition. Ultimately, they expressed fears that there wouldn’t be adequate regulations to ensure that underage people weren’t abusing the system. There was also some fear that the games would be addictive and people outside of PA would be able to access the system and participate illegally.

However, it appears that these arguments were largely unfounded. From the very beginning, PA’s legislation was specifically designed to avoid abuse and create an environment for safe and responsible gaming. We have clearly learned some lessons from the late 1990s when the internet was completely unregulated and people immediately looked for ways to make a dollar.

Perhaps the only real argument against online gambling is that it can become addictive. However, it is difficult to pin down any reliable statistics about how many people suffer from gambling addiction. There are so many organizations lobbying for their own interests that it is hard to distinguish fact from fiction when it comes to gambling addiction. Those who oppose gambling on moral grounds have a tendency to inflate numbers and people within the industry downplay the problem. It doesn’t help that much of our information comes from self-reporting. We only know about incidents of addiction if the addicts themselves are willing to share their experience.

The most accurate estimate of gambling addiction indicates that it affects 1-3% of all Americans. Incidentally, gambling addiction is often paired with other addictions, such as alcohol and drug abuse. In order to help address concerns surrounding gambling addiction, the PA iLottery website prominently displays helpline numbers and other resources to help addicts deal with their problem. This is perhaps the best and only way to deal with addiction, which appears to simply be a part of human nature.

The Future of Online Gambling


Support for online gambling is picking up momentum in state’s across the country. As technology continues to improve, states are able to offer effective security, regulations and safeguards that solve many of the problems that caused online gambling to become taboo and illegal in the first place. As more states legalize online gambling, iLotteries and other forms of gaming that involve wagering and prize money, there will be increased pressure on the federal government to weigh in with an updated stance on the issue. It wouldn’t come as a surprise if we were to see gambling laws made on the federal level within the next few years.

The PA iLottery is just the latest noteworthy milestone in a larger trend that is seeing the casino and gaming industry fully embrace technology and what it might be able to do for business. Casinos are redesigning their spaces to accommodate large eSports arenas that can house hundreds of spectators. Traditional slot games are being replaced with more interactive games that encourage players to socialize. Behind the scenes, technology is reducing fraud and cheating and software, like Casino Schedule Ease, is helping casinos attract and retain customers by providing a new level of customer service.

After less than two months in operation, the PA iLottery has generated significant revenue and there haven’t been any problems with fraudulent use, etc. If the iLottery continues to demonstrate that the combination of technology and commonsense regulations can support safe online gambling, it won’t be long before other states adopt this type of gaming. From there, the sky just might be the limit when it comes to how technology can improve the casino and gaming industries.





How Poker Became an International Sensation

Now that the World Series of Poker has become a major sporting event with millions of fans and pots totaling well over $8 million, it is hard to believe that poker began at a single table at Binion’s Horseshoe in Las Vegas, which is now known as Binion’s Gambling Hall. From that small table, located between the bathrooms, the poker phenomenon quickly built steam over the years and is now widely played in homes and casinos around the world. Here is a look at how the game has evolved and become the international sensation it is today:

There is some  disagreement about the exact origin of poker. Some maintain that the  game is a direct descendant of  As-Nas, a popular 16th century Persian card game. Others trace the game back to French roots, but it is not entirely clear how our modern version of poker came into being. While early variations of poker have been played across the world for centuries, it wasn’t until 1970 and the inaugural World Series of Poker tournament that the game began its meteoric rise in popularity. Today, modern poker champions are household names and immortalized in the Poker Hall of Fame.

The first poker tournament attracted top players, but it was an exclusive club. Most of the players knew each other personally, which gave the event a special feel. Players treated the main event like a reunion and enjoyed the chance to face-off with familiar players and friends. By 1982, there were just 52 players in the tournament. Later that decade, satellite tournaments were introduced and people from around the world were given the chance to win their way into the tournament through local play. Today, the tournament features over 45 variants of the game and over 8,000 participants.

Poker Goes Online

During the 1990s,  poker went online and this move played a huge role in the exponential growth of the game in the coming years. Planet Poker was the first online poker gaming site and others soon followed. In 2003. Chris Moneymaker won his berth in the World Series game on the website PokerStars. He went on to win the entire tournament and spark the imagination of thousands of amateur players. His unlikely rise to poker stardom showed that it was possible to go from relative obscurity to become a millionaire player in the blink of an eye.

Legal Challenges


Online gambling in the U.S. was outlawed in 2006 under President Bush. After the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 was passed, players had to settle for games that didn’t include any wagering or exchange of money. However, the Poker Players Alliance (PPA) and other organizations weren’t about to let this law stand without a fight. Over the years, lobbyists and organizations fought to bring back legal online poker.

The battle over online poker had many ups and downs over the years. By 2010, the Washington State Supreme Court upheld a law that made online gambling a felony. In 2012, a New York federal judge made the ruling that poker should not be labeled as gambling because it requires a certain amount of skill and isn’t entirely up to pure luck. Since then, certain states have made the move to legalize online gambling and allow residents to play for money. Currently, residents in New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania can legally play online poker.

In 2011, the U.S. Department of Justice seized several major online poker website domain names, which also meant that the player’s accounts were frozen. A couple of the sites were charged with running a Ponzi scheme that took a reported $300 million from players. Some of the cases were settled when the companies paid some hefty fines, but this incident, which became known as Black Friday, meant that online poker was on the government’s radar.

The World Series of Poker may have introduced a larger audience to poker, but moving the game online democratized poker and allowed anyone to try their hand at winning huge pots. Players have been able to hone their skills from the comfort of their home without having to pay huge buy-ins to get access to legitimate tournaments that are a stop on the path to the World Series tournament.

The Future of Online Poker


Based on the popularity and revenue earnings of online poker in the few states where it is legal, it is likely that other states will begin to regulate and legalize online poker. This trend reflects both evolving ideas about gambling and a society that is more connected than ever before. There is no industry, including the casino and gambling industry, that has been untouched by advances in technology. As more aspects of the casino industry go online or become automated, it only makes sense that online gambling games, including poker, will also continue to become more prevalent and accepted across the country.

Online poker is part of the casino industry’s strategy to attract a new demographic of customers. Millenials are drawn to more interactive gaming experiences that include a social factor. As a result, casinos are moving away from solitary slot machines and changing their layout to provide an environment that feels more like a lounge. Even the backend of casino management is receiving a technology makeover with software programs like Casino Schedule Ease, which simplifies the usually complicated job of scheduling a full staff that is required to keep a casino up and running 24/7.

If you look at the rise of poker from unknown origins to a single table in Las Vegas and finally on to an international poker tournament that rivals other major sporting events, it may seem like an extraordinary story. However, when viewed in the greater context of advent of the internet and changing mores around gambling, the current popularity of poker and the prestigious World Series of Poker Tournament feels more like an inevitability. While there has been resistance throughout the years when it comes to fully legalizing online poker, it seems that advancements in technology are pushing the game and the entire casino industry forward more strongly than specific laws. As a result, more players will have the opportunity to break into the top tier of players, which is a truly unique aspect of poker that gives it an added draw.





What the Las Vegas Labor Battles Mean for the Future

Up until June 3rd,  about 25,000 MGM Resorts International employees were ready to go on strike and cause a major disruption to business along the Vegas strip. The company and the Culinary Workers Union Local 226 were able to reach a tentative agreement that will keep casinos open and employees off the picket line for now, but this latest dispute is indicative of a larger issue that Las Vegas and other gambling centers around the world will need to address in the coming years.  Casino workers are facing increasing job insecurity as technology and automation replaces workers and this is creating serious unrest and conflict that will only continue to build.


Things first came to a head with the expiration of the existing contract, which was set to end on June 1st and negotiations for a new five-year contract seemed to be going nowhere. While the negotiations have covered wage increases and workload limits, they have also been used to express concerns about industry wide automation that is replacing workers with robotic technology. According to recent studies, casino workers have good reason to be concerned. In the next 15 years alone, 47% of all U.S. jobs will be at risk of being taking over by artificial intelligence and other automated technology. When researchers looked at just the Las Vegas job market, that number jumped to 65.2%, which means that over half of Vegas workers could lose their jobs despite steady industry growth.

Robots are Taking over Las Vegas


One sign of things to come is the Tipsy Robot bar located in the Planet Hollywood Casino. While the theme of the bar was designed to create a fun customer experience, you can imagine that it is unsettling for bartenders to see robots creating perfectly poured and proportioned drinks at the rate of 120 drinks per hour. The robots even dance and entertain customers.

Robots are also taking over concierge and room service duties. Interactive robots can provide directions, information about local destinations and hotel services and wayfinding maps. Customers can also digitally place food and drink orders and their room service will be delivered by a robot. Clearly, the technology is available and hotels and casinos are beginning to embrace its capabilities and incorporate automated solutions into their business model.

How Can Casinos Protect Human Jobs?


Of course, the big drawback of relying more heavily on robots is the human factor. People will lose their jobs. Should casinos hold on to increasingly antiquated business processes just to save jobs that will only become increasingly obsolete as technology continues to advance at such a rapid pace? It is a tough question that simply isn’t going to go away.

Casino workers unions are making the argument that technology can be incorporated without totally eliminating human interactions. According to the Culinary Union Worker’s secretary-treasurer, “We support innovations that improve jobs, but we oppose automation when it only destroys jobs.” Another spokesperson made the point that workers should be retrained instead of completely laid-off and discarded. While this would certainly be an ideal solution, it remains to be seen whether retraining is part of the casino industry’s long-term plan for phasing new technology into all aspects of their businesses.

With all this talk of job losses, automation can begin to seem like a dirty word, but it is important to remember that much of this technology actually improves lives and makes businesses more efficient. For example, Casino Schedule Ease is a popular software scheduling program that streamlines and automates certain administrative tasks and ensures that employees are able to work their ideal shifts and easily request time off. In this instance, technology eases the burden on managers and improves the workplace for employees. Ultimately, this also creates a better customer experience. In this case, automating specific tasks benefits everyone involved.

Essentially, casinos and businesses across all industries, are being faced with a digital revolution and the way they handle it will have lasting consequences. Without a transition strategy, the switch to automation will feel sudden and brutal. However, there is the option to slowly and deliberately incorporate new technology as workers are retrained and given new employment opportunities. If nothing else, hopefully, these negotiations have made it clear to both workers and casinos that the tides are turning and now is the time to prepare for a future where robots and AI will replace workers. There is simply no use in continuing to fight this reality. Instead, everyone involved needs to acknowledge what is at stake and start developing a strategy that will protect workers while also embracing technology.

Where Negotiations Currently Stand


As it stands, MGM workers were able to reach a tentative agreement that provides an immediate raise along with yearly wage increases for the next five years. However, another approximately 25,000 workers, who belong to other unions and help keep 25 hotels running, have yet to reach a final deal and could still go on strike. There is no set day for the strike, but if it happens, it would be the first strike in the city since 1984.

For the City, a strike couldn’t come at a worse time. The Vegas Golden Knights have made the Stanley Cup play-offs in their first season in the league. The rest of the strip is also experiencing one of the most profitable periods in recent memories as more people are enjoying disposable income and taking advantage of all the city has to offer.  A strike would end up costing hundreds of millions of dollars a day, which gives workers some pretty strong negotiating leverage.

The tension between employees, businesses and technology is one that is happening in industries all over the world, but the recent contract negotiations in Las Vegas helped bring this problem further into the light. While it looks like things may be quieting down on the strip, there are still contracts being negotiated and the MGM agreement only spans five years. It is also clear that robots will become increasingly visible and workers won’t be able to fight off the changing nature of the workforce for much longer.


Supreme Court Ruling: Sports Betting Is Now Legal in US

On May 14th, the Supreme Court ruled against the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), which had become a federal law in 1993 under George H.W. Bush. At the time, sports betting was already illegal, but the law took things one step further by preventing states from being able to regulate and earn tax revenue from betting. Nevada was grandfathered in under the law, which means that it has been the only state to allow sports betting over the past 25 years. New Jersey filed a lawsuit, claiming that the law was unconstitutional and in a 6-3 decision, the court sided with the state and effectively struck down PASPA. So what does this all mean?


How Big is Sports Betting in America?

Make no mistake about it; Just because sports betting has been illegal in 49 states, doesn’t mean that it isn’t a thriving industry. The underground market makes approximately $150 billion a year. Legal sports gambling in Nevada earns just $5 billion. That is a enormous amount of money that states want to the right to tax. States argue that bookies, who have been running an extensive black market fueled by the internet, are the only ones who have really been profiting off the law.

Who Is Against Legal Sports Betting?


You might be surprised to learn that the NCAA, MLB, NFL, NHL and NBA have all strongly opposed legal sports betting and supported the  PASPA as an instrument to protect the integrity of their games. In 1992, the sitting commissioner of the NFL, Paul Tagliabue, had this to say to Congress:

Sports gambling threatens the character of team sports. Our games embody our very finest traditions and values. They stand for clean, healthy competition. They stand for teamwork. And they stand for success through preparation and honest effort. With legalized sports gambling, our games instead will come to represent the fast buck, the quick fix, the desire to get something for nothing. The spread of legalized sports gambling would change forever—and for the worse—what our games stand for and the way they are perceived.

The major professional and amateur leagues fear that bringing more money into the sports arena will undermine the very things that make sports great and lead to more corruption and games that are intentionally thrown. Now that PASPA has bee declared unconstitutional, teams may be forced into partnerships and sponsorships with bookmakers or risk completely losing out on any slice of the financial pie.

Opponents of PASPA

Those who have long been opposed PASPA claim that making sports betting legal will actually make it more difficult to fix games. They argue that by bringing betting into the open, it will be easier to regulate and monitor. Leagues and regulatory agencies will be able to identify irregular behavior and prevent corruption.

From an economic standpoint, states stand to gain billions of dollars in revenue and some experts estimate that 1.4 million jobs will be created. Legal sports betting will also help money stay in the states instead of being shipped overseas, which is where a lot of gamblers place their bets now.

Finally, proponents of legalized sports gambling argue that addiction and other illegal activities related to betting will decline. Compulsive gamblers will feel less stigmatized and be more likely to seek out help. Gamblers will also be operating in a more regulated environment, which means more reputable bookies and more fair deals. While a lot of this is speculation, there is no arguing that individual states to stand to gain a lot from being able to regulate and tax sports betting without federal oversight.

What’s Next for Sports Betting?


Many states have already been pushing through legislation in anticipation of the Supreme Court ruling. That means that they are primed and ready to pass sports betting laws and quickly implement the practice throughout the state. In fact, one sports bookie in New Jersey has already built a booth at Monmouth Park and is ready to open. Casinos throughout Atlantic City are also gearing up to incorporate sports betting in their locations. New Jersey has been preparing for this legal shift for some time, but other states up and down the east coast are also looking forward to benefiting from this new revenue stream.

Delaware is likely to be the next state to enact sports betting laws. They have been trying since 2009 to expand current sports betting options and are currently about 90 days from being able to enact specific legislation. Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia are all expected to follow closely behind with a total of about 20 states legalizing sports gambling within the next year.

Don’t expect the Federal government to give up on their case though. Ultimately, the Supreme Court is only tasked with deciding whether a law is constitutional, not whether it is fundamentally right or wrong. This leaves plenty of space for Congress to go back and create another law that will pass constitutional muster. The fight over legalized sports betting is anything but over, however, it will be years before there are any major changes.

For now, states, bookies, casinos and major sports leagues have no choice but to adapt and find the best ways to move as quickly as possible to address the new challenges associated with a $150 billion industry instantly becoming available.

  • States will have to decide how they are going to regulate betting and enact laws that leagues, gamblers and venues can accept.
  • Bookies may be looking to expand their operations while also complying with new laws.
  • Casinos and other betting venues will have to hire more personnel, which means a greater demand on resources. Betting booths may need to be installed along with additional employees and hardware and software. Casino Schedule Ease could serve as a vital tool during this time of transition and expansion.
  • Leagues and individual team will need to consider whether they want to partner will specific bookmakers and what steps they will take to reduce the likelihood that money will play a factor in how games turn out.

While it remains to be seen exactly how the recent Supreme Court ruling will affect sports and the gambling industry, overturning PAPSA marks a historic decision and a new era.



Best Restaurants Located inside Las Vegas Casinos

In recent years, Las Vegas has become home to world-class entertainment with some of the biggest names in music taking up permanent residence. At the same time, the town has become one of the premier food scenes in the country as casinos look for more ways to attract visitors and offer a unique experience. Today, the strip attracts some of the biggest chefs and plays host to a wide range of restaurants that serve up gourmet food at a variety of price points. For those who want to enjoy some great food as they gamble, here are some must visit restaurants that are located right in Las Vegas casinos.

Michael Mina Seafood at the Bellagio

You know a restaurant must be good when it is simply named after the chef. Michael Mina is an award winning Michelin-star chef who has a clear passion for seafood. The menu features only the freshest ingredients and focuses on seasonal dishes and unique takes on classic seafood recipes. Many of the offerings come directly from Mina’s cookbook. To enjoy a well-rounded dining experience, consider ordering from the tasting menu and asking for wine pairing recommendations. This is the best strategy for sampling as much as possible and experiencing how the right wine can bring out the flavors of a well-designed dish.

Joel Robuchon at MGM Grand

Joel Robuchon has been dubbed the “Chef of the Century” and is the mastermind behind the only Las Vegas restaurant to be awarded three Michelin stars. His French cuisine can be sampled through a 6-course or 16-course meal. This is fine dining at its best, so be prepared for a more formal venue. Notable dishes include French classics like steak tartar and free-range quail.

Guy Savoy at Caesar’s Palace

Guy Savoy is a world-renowned French chef and owner of 5 restaurants. While most of his establishments are located in the heart of Paris, Las Vegas visitors have the unique opportunity to eat at his only restaurant outside of France. The location is small and intimate, which helps create a true dining experience. Be prepared to spend top dollar on your meal, but the cost is worth being able to eat at a two star Michelin restaurant right in the heart of Las Vegas. Don’t leave without sampling the famous artichoke and black truffle soup, which has helped the restaurant to earn the AAA Five Diamond Award and the Forbes Five Star Award.

Estiatorio Milos at the Cosmopolitan

If you aren’t a fan of French cuisine, then consider visiting Estiatorio Milos, a Greek and Mediterranean restaurant that prides itself on offering the freshest seafood available. Once you are seated and ready to order, you will be taken over to a cooler where you will be able to choose the exact fish you want to eat for dinner. Your choice of delicacies will then be expertly prepared and served up with fresh, seasonal vegetables and delicious sides.  Compared to other dining options, the prices are relatively affordable with entrees ranging from about $30 to $50. While you can always opt for the lamb chops or filet mignon, it would be a shame not to sample some of their fresh seafood during your visit.

Gordon Ramsay Steak at Paris Las Vegas

Gordon Ramsay is probably one of the most recognizable names and faces in the culinary world. He trained under Guy Savoy and has hosted and starred in numerous television shows where he is known for demanding excellence and losing his temper now and then. While you might not want to work for him, you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to eat one of his steaks at Paris Las Vegas.

The atmosphere is a little more loud and energetic than some of the other restaurants on our list, which gives it a more causal feel. The dining area is meant to evoke the atmosphere of busy London streets and includes a giant Union Jack flag on the ceiling. Whether you order the ribeye or Kobe beef cap, you won’t be disappointed.

Holstein’s at The Cosmopolitan


If you want to enjoy a hearty meal without having to worry about spending a fortune or putting on some formal attire, then swing by Holstein’s for what some say are the best burgers in Las Vegas. Keep in mind that these aren’t your average burgers.  They offer over 25 gourmet burgers with creative toppings and recommended beer pairings for a full dining experience. Also, be sure to save room for dessert because you don’t want to miss out on sampling one of their giant and famous shakes that come topped with all sorts of extras, including an entire donut.

The Buffet at Wynn


No Las Vegas restaurant list would be complete without mentioning at least one buffet. The Buffet at the Wynn hotel and casino has long been regarded as one of the best options in town. The dining area is bright, colorful and full of beautiful flower arrangements that will make you feel transported to a different place. Food choices come from around the world and the buffet includes 15 live cooking stations and over 120 different dishes. You can sample new foods and enjoy your favorites as prepared by world-class chefs. If your brought your appetite to Vegas, then the Buffet at Wynn is worth checking out.

If you have never been to Las Vegas or it has been while since your last visit, you will be amazed to see what area casinos have to offer. As casinos work to attract new customers and stand out from the competition, there has been an incredible influx of technology along with entertainment and dining options. The casino floors are being revolutionized by new games, hospitality is being improved with management and scheduling solutions like Casino Schedule Ease and the biggest names in food, music and entertainment are taking up residence in Las Vegas. You don’t have to travel any further than the strip to experience some of the best food in the world.


The High-Tech World of Casinos

When you think of technology, places like Silicon Valley probably come to mind, but you might be surprised to learn just how high-tech gambling destinations like Las Vegas have become. With millions of tourists visiting every year and billions of dollars at stake, casinos rely on a wide range of technology to operate more efficiently, create a better customer experience, improve safety and encourage visitors to spend more money. Here are just a few of the technology based tools that help keep Las Vegas casinos on the cutting-edge:

Anti-Cheating Technology


You have probably seen at least one movie where savvy criminals are able to beat the house, but in real life, it is incredibly difficult. Almost all of the technology that is designed to prevent and catch cheating is completely invisible, so gamblers don’t even know they are being monitored. Surveillance begins the moment you pull onto the casino property with license plate scanners that match information against a database of cheaters and gambling addicts. Biometric face recognition can also be used to identify unwelcome visitors.

At the tables, both cards and chips are now commonly equipped with tracking information. A system called Angel Eye uses cards that are printed with unique barcodes in invisible ink. This prevents any card switching. Small homing chips can also be embedded in casino chips. Authorized chips will emit a signal that is detected by reading equipment at the cashing booth. Any counterfeit chips can quickly be identified.

Powerful Analytics


In the past, pit managers made adjustments to the gaming floor based on their own observations and years of experience in the casino business. There wasn’t a system in place to test the performance of changes or measure results. Basically, what games were being featured and where they were placed was all left to educated guesses.

Today, casinos are using data and predictive modeling to measure specific ROIs and make more informed decisions. In addition to using data to determine the best placement of games, analytics are being used to decide which customers are offered special deals on hotels and meals. Customers who are more apt to gamble and spend a certain amount at the casino are offered a free dinner or a discounted stay at the hotel. By identifying customers who are more likely to gamble, the casino is able to practice highly targeted marketing and increase revenue.

Analytics can also be used to identify trends that might be an indication of cheating. TableEye21 uses an overhead camera and a variety of other technology to track what cards are being played and how much is being wagered. At the same time, advanced software is analyzing all the information and providing detailed stats that can reveal if a player is counting cards and if the dealer might be working with some of the players at the table.

IBM’s Relationship Resolution software is another analytics tool that can detect larger cheating rings. Using massive amounts of data, the software can identify relationships that wouldn’t be obvious at first glance. For example, the software might identify a playing trend only to discover that the dealer and winning player were college roommates. While casinos were the first to use this technology, the government quickly recognized its powerful implications and adopted the software following the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Scheduling Solutions


Software is also playing an important role solving scheduling challenges, which in turn improves employee job satisfaction and leads to a better customer experience. Imagine working as a scheduling manager at a busy Las Vegas casino. You have hundreds of employees with different skill sets and preferred schedules and a casino that needs a capable staff 24/7. The logistics of effectively trying to place everyone while also taking into account unexpected emergencies, is an organizational nightmare. That is exactly why Casino Schedule Ease was invented.

Casino Schedule Ease allows managers to work with a visual map of the casino floor and easily assign employees according to when they can work and where they perform the best. The software also streamlines the communication process by providing a single portal where employees can request days off and managers can see who is available to fill slots. Ultimately, this technology frees up time for managers while also working to get the most out of each employee.

Increased Safety and Security


As discussed in a recent blog post, casinos are looking for new ways to improve security without introducing obtrusive solutions that take away from the fun environment and put visitors on edge. Having to walk through a metal detector doesn’t exactly provide a warm and welcoming greeting, but it is the most effective way to identify weapons and prevent them from entering the building. That is why more forward thinking casinos have already incorporated invisible metal detectors at all their entrances. These devices can’t be seen by visitors, but are constantly at work and being monitored by uniformed and undercover security personnel.

Enterprise Level Content Management

Paperwork and casinos don’t seem like two words that would go together, but the average casino produces 45,000 pages of documents a year. That is a lot to keep track of and manage. From human resources to accounting, casinos rely on many of the same departments and back-office components that any other average business needs to operate. That is why many casinos are going digital and getting rid of paper documents altogether. Not only does this approach streamline communications, it also reduces costs and provides better access to important information.

When it comes to casinos, the use of technology goes well beyond new games. Casinos rely on a wide variety of hardware, software and services to better manage their facilities and their employees while also constantly working to improve the customer experience. In fact, the items list above represent just a small portion of the technology that casinos use on a daily basis. There is a lot more going on behind the scenes so that visitors can have a safe and pleasant experience.




How Casinos are Working to Improve Security

Recent events have heightened anxieties over safety and forced hotels, entertainment venues and casinos to re-examine their security and emergency response plans. Mass shootings have been a harsh reminder that no one is immune from these seemingly random acts of violence and made it clear that the hospitality industry has to take additional measures to make sure that guests feel safe. The challenge is that the presence of metal detectors and uniformed guards can actually make guests more aware that safety is a concern and cause unease. This means that venues need to implement subtle security solutions that still allow guests to have fun and enjoy their stay without constant reminders of potential threats. It is a complicated issue and one worth taking a closer look at.

Casinos Could Be Held Liable for Shootings

It is an unfortunate truth that at this point in our history, mass shootings are considered “foreseeable.” This type of violence has reached a level of saturation that it is no longer acceptable to say that we didn’t see it coming or there was no way to prevent it. Essentially, casinos are responsible for recognizing and preventing this type of threat. In the future, it is feasible that casinos could be held legally liable for a shooting on their property. This puts added pressure on security teams to improve safety and institute preventative measures.

What’s the Best Security Solution?

At the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, where a gunman killed 58 people and injured almost 500 by firing into a crowd of concert goers from his hotel room, metal detectors and X-ray machines were immediately implemented. However, these extra measures are set to be phased out over time because they are simply too inconvenient. Guests don’t want to have to wrangle their luggage and go through security lines just to be able to check into their room. Hospitality is supposed to be about creating an enjoyable customer experience and while metal detectors might work on a practical level, they also present some real challenges when it comes to creating a fun experience.

Casinos and hotels have also relied heavily on security cameras to monitor guests, but these measures do little to actually prevent incidents. A camera might be a deterrent to some, but they certainly aren’t enough to identify someone with a gun and ill intentions. Consider the fact that the Mandalay Bay shooter was able to bring in duffle bags full of weapons and go completely unnoticed. High powered assault rifles can be broken down and stowed in suitcases, which wouldn’t raise any alarm unless they were identified by a metal detector.

Wynn Casinos Provide a Look at the Future of Security


Casino magnate Steve Wynn has been warning that Las Vegas is a perfect target for some years only to be labeled as paranoid. Despite this criticism, he has been quietly working to beef up security at his properties for some time and has managed to incorporate less intrusive solutions. While many of the measures are kept private, we do know that there are invisible metal detectors at every entrance and hundreds of undercover security personnel who are constantly patrolling the floor. These guards work on two hour shifts to prevent boredom and ensure that they continue to stay alert and vigilant. There are also trained handlers with dogs that can sniff out bombs and drugs. While many thought that Wynn was worrying too much, many casino owners may now be looking to him as an example of how to handle security.

Going Low-Tech


There is an app for practically everything, including new mobile room keys, but this technology is problematic when it comes to hotel and casino security. High-tech tools tend to eliminate the need for guests to interact with the staff, which means fewer opportunities to observe strange behavior or notice red flags. Well-trained hotel staff can be one of the most important security tools. This means that while the rest of the world might be going mobile, hotels and casinos are better off staying low-tech and encouraging more personal interactions.

Moving forward, casinos will have to think more like the secret service and be aware of vulnerabilities. This means monitoring rooftops, having sniper teams in place and organizing events so that there are clear evacuation plans. There has to be a clear plan for both preventing an attack and responding to a shooting in a way that limits the number of casualties and injuries.

Ultimately, the best way to improve security comes down to people. While there are some high-tech solutions that can be unobtrusively incorporated in a way that doesn’t distract or inconvenience guests, security personnel and hotel staff are the best line of defense. Casinos need to invest in targeted training that teaches staff what to look for and put in place a clear procedure for reporting any suspicious behavior.


This also means that casinos will need to implement better staff management strategies to ensure that there are enough staff and undercover security personnel moving on the floor and stationed at entrances. Scheduling software, like Casino Schedule Ease, will serve as an invaluable tool when it comes to making sure that hundreds of employees are in the right locations. Software will also make it easier to constantly rotate security experts so that they can stay alert.

Las Vegas and other gambling hubs host millions of visitors each year. Unfortunately, that also means that these locations are prime targets for people looking to inflict maximum harm. It is a sad reality, but one that can’t be ignored. For casinos and hotels, the challenge then becomes one of providing adequate security without introducing new levels of inconvenience. When it comes to technology based solutions, invisible metal detectors are some of the best tools available. However, the best way casinos can invest in and improve security is through staff training. Staff should be constantly interacting with guests and on alert for suspicious behavior. Without a well trained security team and staff, it will be easy for attackers to go unnoticed.






Casino News Round-Up: What You Need to Know

Things are heating up around the world when it comes to the casino and gaming industry. New regulations are being introduced, casinos are opening and existing complexes are expanding to incorporate more opportunities for shopping and entertainment. All of these happenings reflect emerging trends that are worth taking a closer look at, so we have gathered up some of the most important and revealing stories to help keep you up-to-date.

Russian Casino Turns Focus to Amenities


In many ways, Russia is a new market for casinos and gaming. In 2015, the Tigre De Cristal, which is owned and operated by a Hong Kong-based firm, opened in Murav’inaya Harbor and became the first casino in the region. The initial phase of construction included 121 hotel rooms and suites. Over the course of just a few years of operation, the casino has had trouble accommodating visitor demand and now plans to add 500 more rooms. This second phase of construction will also focus on adding other amenities, including: shops, a golf course, a ski resort, entertainment facilities, etc.

While this might not be breaking news in the US, it does give an indication of what customers and gaming enthusiasts expect from today’s casinos. Not only will casinos have to incorporate more sophisticated and modern gaming options, they will have to provide a more comprehensive experience that provides year-round activities. For some casinos, this trend may signal the need for a major shift in strategy.

Cherokee Nation to Open New Casino


Russian and Asian partners clearly have a vision for the future of the gaming industry and are taking immediate measures to ensure their new casino meets the changing demands of customers. The Cherokee Nation is also taking steps to upgrade their facilities and update their strategies in an effort to meet these same challenges. The Cherokee Nation has been operating casinos throughout the US for well over 20 years, but they also seem to be taking notice that traditional gambling models might not be the best approach in a modern world.

As a result, the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma is opening a new branch of their Tahlequah location that will replace the existing casino.  Construction broke ground on March 26, 2018 and the Cherokee Springs Plaza is scheduled to open in 2019. This new complex will feature more space for entertainment and dining along with a luxury golf course. The hope is that all the amenities will attract lucrative convention contracts.

Las Vegas Opens First eSports Arena


Time and again, we have talked about the evolution of gaming and its effect on the gambling. If you have been skeptical about how far Vegas-style casinos would stray from traditional games, then it is time to take a look at the first eSports arena located in the Luxor casino, which opened to the public on March 27, 2018. This 30,000 square-foot complex will allows visitors to participate in multiplayer games, creating a more competitive and interactive gaming experience. The arena will host classic games, like Pong and Pac-Man, along with more modern and sophisticated games.

The Las Vegas eSports arena is just one of six complexes that is the result of a partnership between MGM Resorts International and Allied Sports. Ultimately, the Vegas location is meant to be the flagship destination that will host championship events and televised competitions. For those who have been wondering about the future of gaming and the viability of slot machines in a market that is increasingly dictated by the preferences of Millennials, the eSports arena is a good sign of what is to come.

New Hampshire Won’t Join East Coast Gambling Trend


In recent years, we have watched as more states along the east coast have loosened restrictions on gambling and even passed amendments to allow for the construction of Vegas-style casinos, complete with hotels and entertainment. Typically, those pushing for new casinos are interested in improving the economic conditions for residents in local economies. However, these measures are often met with a lot of resistance.

Just recently, New Hampshire once again voted against legalizing gambling. State Senator Lou D’Allesandro has been a staunch advocate in favor of legalized gambling for the past 20 years. He continues to argue that New Hampshire is losing out on revenue while states up and down the east coast are capitalizing on this industry. While the vote was close, 11-10, the state will continue their ban on gambling, perhaps to the relief of neighboring states who don’t want to have to deal with increased competition.

What Does it All Mean?

There are some major takeaways from these stories and trends:

  1. Younger customers, who now make up the bulk of casino business, are more interested in an experience than simply sitting at the tables and slot machines. For casinos, this means providing more entertainment options and modernizing management tools in order to provide a more seamless experience. From adding golf courses to incorporating scheduling software, like Casino Schedule Ease, organizations are going to have to go the extra mile to win over new customers. Perhaps most importantly, this is true whether you are doing business in Russia, China or Oklahoma.
  2. When it comes to modern gambling, multiplayer is the name of the game. As we can see from the opening of the first eSports arena in Vegas, it isn’t too much about the game, but the competitive experience. People are flocking to the arena to play old-school video games like Pac-Man with the added draw that they will be directly competing against other players and can experience a fully immersive day of gaming.
  3. While gambling laws and restrictions are becoming more relaxed, especially along the east coast, there is still a lot of skepticism around gambling and resistance to making it legal in certain areas. In New York state, much of this resistance was put aside in the hopes that casinos would give a needed boost to areas that were suffering due to the decline of manufacturing. As the economy continues to evolve, we may see more states looking towards casinos and the hospitality industry to provide jobs and revenue to local economies.






How the Seasons Affect Casinos and Gambling

It is almost the end of February, which means that spring is within sight and cabin fever has officially set in. People are looking to get out of the house and perhaps enjoy some warmer weather. For casinos, especially those located in southern cities, now is the perfect time to offer great deals and attract additional customers. However, northern locations are experiencing a whole different set of challenges. While most tourist destinations have predictable peak seasons, casinos seem to operate by a different set of rules. Understanding the ebbs and flow that come with the seasons and month to month changes can help casinos develop pricing and  marketing strategies and effectively schedule employees for more effective budgeting.

Seasonal Statistics for Vegas Casinos


Because Las Vegas enjoys relatively warm weather throughout the year, they aren’t quite as susceptible to seasonal fluctuations as casinos in cities like Atlantic City. However, there are some notable trends worth paying attention to because they represent real opportunities for casinos to change up their strategies and try to bring in more customers during slow times.

For casinos located along the strip, January is the busiest month with revenue rising about 6% above the average numbers. May and December are also usually busy months while April and June are historically the slowest. You might expect a real slow-down between Thanksgiving and Christmas as people either stay home for the holidays or travel to spend time with relatives, but Las Vegas has been able to temper this revenue lull by hosting huge events like the National Rodeo Finals and offering great room bargains to keep a steady stream of revenue flowing.

It is important to note that while December isn’t one of the slowest months when it comes to revenue, it is clearly the month with the fewest visitors. Throughout the month, fewer people visit, but those who do make the trip are still spending plenty of money. Ultimately, it all comes down to New Year’s, which is a huge earner for Las Vegas and the reason why despite fewer visitors, it is still a strong earning month that leads directly into the strongest earning month, January.

Unlike most resort destinations, with Las Vegas, there isn’t a direct correlation between the number of visitors and the amount of revenue casinos earn. High-rollers and a big holiday, like New Year’s can turn a month when there are fewer visitors into a profitable time. For casinos, this means that they have to be looking at a several different variables and how they will play out in order to design marketing strategies and effectively staff their facilities.

Seasonal Statistics for Atlantic City


As another well-known gambling destination, Atlantic City (near and dear to our hearts) also offers some interesting insights into seasonal gambling trends. You might assume that Atlantic City performs better during winter months as people are looking for something to get them out of the cold and also out of the house. In reality, the summer months are a boon time for the city. Visitors are on vacation and looking to have a good time. The beach, combined with plenty of entertainment and gambling options, make August the busiest month with revenue numbers a full 23% above average. In contrast, November is the slowest month and revenue totals drop a full 30% below average. These represent much bigger swings than can be found in Las Vegas where even the highs and lows don’t stray too far from the average.

For visitors who are purely interested in gambling, December-February are the best months to visit. Hotel prices drop significantly to try and lure in more customers and there aren’t any crowds. However, this also means that many of the attractions are closed and the entertainment schedule isn’t quite as full.

For Casinos, surviving the winter months without losing too much revenue can be tricky. Obviously, cutting back on attractions and lowering room rates are two options, but there are some other tools that can help cut down on costs.

Tools for Reducing Spending During Slow Months


One of the easiest ways to reduce expenses, which can be vital during slow months, is to work on staffing casinos more efficiently. Too many people working on the floor will eat away at profits. For employees who earn part of their income through tips, being overstaffed can also mean that they earn less, which inevitably leads to lower employee morale and higher turnover. To help combat these issues, many Atlantic City Casinos have turned to Casino Schedule Ease for help.

This simple to use yet sophisticated software program has been especially designed to help casinos manage their unique scheduling challenges. It allows managers to optimize their employees and create the best possible schedules that not only keep the casinos running, but cut down on costs and improve employee relations. Casino Schedule Ease also means that managers will have more free time to focus on other areas of the business and can avoid wasting time try to solve scheduling puzzles.

Employees can simply log into the Team Member Portal from any computer switching and offering days that they would prefer to work. They can also request time off and communicate any other preferences. The manager is then able to quickly synthesize all this information and create an optimal schedule. The software even provides a visual diagram of the casino floor to help managers place employees at the tables and areas where they perform best. With such precise tools, managers can avoid being understaffed during the busiest months and cut down on staffing costs during slow months.

While Las Vegas, Atlantic City and other casinos all over the world may not follow the same seasonal trends, each location will have their own patterns. Casinos can use this information to decide when to raise or lower room rates, when to schedule big name entertainment and how best to staff their facilities according to demand. With tools like Casino Schedule Ease, Casinos can put this information to work for them and better weather slower months when revenue inevitably dips.






Casinos are Hiring: Why it Might be a Great Career Move

While certain famous gambling hubs in the US have experienced their fair share of ups and downs over the past decade, many casinos are looking to shake up leadership and undertake bold new expansions. This is good news for gamblers who don’t want to have to travel to other parts of the globe to enjoy high quality establishments, but it is even better news for workers looking for high paying jobs that also come with great benefits. If you have been underemployed or simply dissatisfied at your current position, casinos are hiring and it might be a the right career move for you.

Which Casinos are Hiring?

1. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City


The Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City is scheduled to open in the summer of 2018 and the company is in the middle of a hiring frenzy. They need to fill over 3,000 positions by this summer in order to be ready to welcome the public. Right now, the company is holding massive job fairs to try and recruit new hires. They even contacted former employees from the recently closed Trump Taj Mahal. Out of 1,600 employees who received a letter or email, about 1,400 responded and scheduled an interview. That is a pretty good sign for those who are wondering if casino employees like working in the industry.

What they are looking for in applicants

Hard Rock has a very specific and recognizable brand. They are all about the high energy, rock and roll experience and they want team members who will interact well with the customers. That is exactly why employees wear shirts that say “I’m with the band” and managers are known as producers. If you are an outgoing person who loves music, then you might be the next rock star they are looking to hire.

2. Sycuan Casino in San Diego


On the other side of the country, San Diego is experiencing a casino building boom and that means massive amounts of jobs. Currently, six out the the area’s 10 casinos are in the middle of expansion projects. The Sycuan Casino alone is looking to add 700 jobs. While some of the positions are entry level, they are also looking to fill upper management positions that come with six-figure salaries.  As a result of the area’s booming economy, the San Diego area has an unemployment rate of 3.3%, which means that casinos are desperate to attract employees.

For job seekers, it is definitely an employee’s market. Casinos know that they have to offer enticing compensation packages to get workers to relocate or travel longer distances to their new jobs. If you are looking to start on a career path, then the Sycuan Casino is ready to offer you a highly competitive salary along with plenty of benefits and job perks. Keep in mind that they are also interested in employee retention, so there will also be opportunities for career advancement.

What they are looking for in applicants

Casinos are a part of the hospitality industry, which means that they are in the business of creating a customer experience. If a visitor has a good time, they are more likely to return and provide positive PR through word-of-mouth recommendations. Employees have to be outgoing, friendly and willing to go the extra mile when it comes to creating pleasant and memorable interactions with customers. While some of these skills can be learned over time, Sycuan Casino is looking for people who can hit the ground running because things are moving quickly with the expansion.

Why Casinos Offer a Great Career Path


If you have never worked in a casino before, you might be surprised to learn exactly what they have to offer. With thousands of employees working at any one location, casinos can’t afford to have constant turnover. They need a staff of happy and well-trained employees to keep things running. This means that they are very concerned with employee retention and go above and beyond to maintain job satisfaction.

Great Salaries, Benefits and Earning Potential

For management level positions, the average salary is $70,000 with the potential to earn over $100,000 depending on where you work. Dealers begin with a generous base salary and can effectively double their take-home pay with tips. On top of pay, employees enjoy great health insurance, retirement benefits, bonuses and onsite perks. Employees often eat for free and have access to fitness centers and plenty of recreational activities. Casinos also try to boost morale and strengthen teams through softball teams, retreats and other fun outings.


For some people, one of the biggest drawbacks of working at a casino is the 24-hour cycle. There are workers who prefer the night shift for a variety of reasons and others who need more flexibility in their schedule so that they can attend family events. Fortunately, casinos rely on advanced scheduling software like Casino Schedule Ease to help them manage scheduling and ensure that the specific needs of different employees, along with special requests, are addressed. As an employee, you can use the dashboard to log-in and list preferences and request days off. Managers can then easily process all this information and optimize worker’s schedules and make sure they are placed at tables or areas where they perform best. With conscientious managers and tools like Casino Schedule Ease, you won’t have to worry about being stuck with a shift that doesn’t fit your schedule or your lifestyle.

Start a Career Instead of Landing a Job

Finally, as mentioned above, perhaps one of the best parts of working at a casino is they that they are looking to offer a career and not just a job. If you are an ambitions and hard worker, there aren’t any limits to what you will be able to achieve with the right casino company. You can take advantage of education credits, advancement opportunities and plenty of training and certification programs that will help you develop new skills and become even more marketable.

Casinos across the country are undergoing massive expansions projects and they need skilled and capable workers right now. It is an employee market where you can enjoy great compensation packages, flexible scheduling and career oriented positions. Now is the perfect time to consider a career in the casino industry.





Top Marketing Tricks that Work for Casinos … And Some that Don’t

Marketing in the casino industry can be tricky, especially in 2018 when the gambling is in a state of flux. Casinos are starting to realize that the same old techniques aren’t going to produce the same results. Patrons are younger, more tech savvy and simply have different expectations when it comes to entertainment. With that in mind, we decided to take a look at classic marketing techniques that are still standing the test of time and other approaches that could be updated.

The Keepers

Sex sells

Let’s face it: Las Vegas is a sexy town. As the saying goes, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” The entire city has been branded as a place where you can go and let your hair down and return to your normal life after a long weekend of fun. While this marketing technique might not play as well to audiences in Pennsylvania, a little excitement and risk is part of what makes gambling fun. The idea that sex sells is still a valid one when it comes to marketing, especially in the casino industry.

The VIP Experience.


If you have ever watched a movie that takes place in a casino, then you are familiar with the allure of the high rollers. These are exclusive patrons who receive the VIP treatment and whose every whim is catered to by the staff. Any time you can offer a special experience that isn’t available to the average customer, you are going to have a marketing win. It is an age old truth that people want to feel important, stand out and be seen. Creating VIP packages will continue to be a valuable tool.

Variety is the spice of life.

One of the great things about casinos is that practically anyone can play and have the chance to win big and enjoy a taste of luxury. If you can’t afford the VIP treatment, casinos offer a low entry fee. For example, all-you-can-eat buffets for $2.99 or dime slot machines. Offering a unique experience that comes with a low price of entry means everyone can participate and allows casinos to cater to a wide variety of customers. Some people get more of a thrill out of a good deal than dropping thousands of dollars on a VIP experience. It is a good idea to market to the full range of consumers who walk through the doors of casinos.

Where There is Room for Improvement

Gambling is risky. Gaming is fun.

Language is incredibly important. The word “gambling” comes with some negative connotations. Gambling is risky and people naturally associate it with losing money, even if they do it hoping to win big. There is also gambling addiction, which makes the practice seem seedier than simply gaming. Replacing gambling with the word “gaming” helps casinos convey more of a entertainment factor. People are visiting to play games and have fun, not try to win enough money to pay their mortgage that month.

Focus on creating an experience.

This has been another noticeable shift in the casino industry and the way it markets itself. In the past, gambling was the main attraction and the food, drinks and shows were just part of the fun. More and more, people are looking for the full package: a completely immersive experience that includes great customer service, luxurious accommodations and plenty of entertainment options. Casinos have adapted to these increasing demands, but there is still room for improvement.

While some casinos have been leaders in catering to Millennials by incorporating more lounge spaces and social gaming experiences, others have been slower to adopt new approaches. In some cases, the problem comes down to logistics. Running a casino requires complex feats of organization and messing with an existing process by throwing new games and bars into the equation can be a nightmare.

The casinos that have been able to successfully adapt to changing markets and implement changes are using technology to help their efforts and streamline processes. Software like Casino Schedule Ease allows managers to schedule and optimize employees and employees can easily request shifts and communicate with managers. By simplifying this process, casinos are able to operate more efficiently, adapt more quickly to customer demands and make the move towards better service that helps to create a well-rounded experience for patrons.

Make the move to digital and mobile.

Believe it or not, casinos still spend a surprising portion of their marketing budgets on print advertising. This can make sense when it comes to billboards, but physical fliers and newsletters are a waste of money. Making the move to digital and mobile advertising would allow casinos to target customers based on their location and their search habits.

For example, geo targeting allow companies to serve ads based on whether potential customers are within a certain range of their business. Imagine being able to set up a 20 mile virtual perimeter around the casino and send people ads, enticing them to stops by whenever they are close to the casino. It is simply a smarter, more effective way to market.

Take full-service to a whole new level.

Another way to create a better experience for customers is to anticipate their needs and go above and beyond. Most casinos are self-contained. Patrons don’t have to leave to do some shopping, eat at a great restaurant or even receive a spa treatment. The more you are able to provide convenient services, more likely they will be to stay in the casino and spend. For example, instead of just providing a fully stocked gym, why not also provide a free trainer and fitness classes throughout the day? You could even stock locker rooms with free supplements and protein shakes. These gestures can pay off in a big way through positive word of mouth marketing and customer loyalty.

There is no arguing that the casino industry faces some unique challenges when it comes to marketing, but there are some simply changes that can be made to keep up with new demands. The first step is to recognize what is working and where there is room for improvement. From there, it is important to arm yourself with the right tools, like Casino Schedule Ease software and mobile marketing geo targeting apps, to set yourself up for success.




How Casino Scheduling Software Can Help Develop a Superior HR Strategy

The importance of a strategic HR strategy cannot be underestimated. HR departments go beyond simply managing employees and handling workplace conflicts and work to recruit and retain the best possible talent. Dedicated and satisfied employees directly translate into a better, more welcoming casino, and these employees will ultimately ensure the success of your establishment. With all that in mind, we have put together a comprehensive guide to help you better understand HR management strategies and how you can take advantage of tools like Casino Schedule Ease to improve your business.

What is Human Resource Management?


At the very heart of human resources is the idea that employees are a casino’s most valuable resource and their health, well-being and overall job satisfaction should be a top concern. This means that the HR department works to attract talented employees who will positively contribute to the company and then provides those recruits with competitive compensation, benefits, training and opportunities for advancement. All of these factors help set employees up for success within a company and make them more likely to be loyal to their employer.

The HR department also needs to ensure that all their efforts and services are designed to align with the short and long-term goals of the casino. This means that the casino should have establish a clear vision of how they want to position themselves in the industry and how they want to continue to grow over time. A clear set of objectives will allow the HR team to create specific strategies that will ensure that these goals are met.

Why is HR Important?


Think of the HR department as the captain of a team. If one player is suffering from an injury or in a performance slump, the entire team is affected. It is up to the captain to address the needs of each player so that the team can operated as a cohesive unit. The HR department needs to sure up any weaknesses, so that the entire organization can continue to grow and strengthen. This also means being aware of changing needs because businesses and employee are dynamic entities. There won’t be a one-size-fits-all policy that can be put in place and stand the test of time.

Without a coordinated HR department and clear strategies for recruiting, retaining and managing employees, casinos will experience high turnover rates. Ultimately, this eats away at employee morale and makes it difficult to create a consistent experience for visitors. You don’t want to have to be constantly training and integrating new employees. Instead, you want to be able to rely on a experienced staff of consummate professionals who feel invested in the success of the casino.

Having a HR strategy in place also allows management to make quick decisions and handle issues as they arise. When managers are faced with a challenging decision, they can easily determine which course of action best aligns with the HR strategy. This not only streamlines the decision-making process, but it also provides clear justification for a decision, which can then be communicated to other parties involved as needed for greater understanding and consistent management practices.

How Casino Scheduling Can Improve Your HR Strategy


One the biggest challenges that casino managers face is how to best schedule hundreds of employees so that their talents are being put to good use, customers are receiving superior services and employees are happy with their work/life balance. Unlike most other businesses, casinos operate on a 24 hour schedule. This makes it even more difficult to make sure that enough tables are being manned by qualified dealers throughout the night and day. In addition, many employees many not be able to work just day or just night hours because they have other responsibilities, including children, to take care of. You can’t simply place people in time slots without creating conflict and ending up with a lot of disgruntled employees on your hands.

Casino Schedule Ease was designed to address all these problems and provide a comprehensive and easy to use system that allows managers to align their scheduling efforts with larger HR strategies. It also serves to streamline the communication process between employees and managers so that workers can easily request time off or provide notification of any potential scheduling conflicts.

Benefits of Casino Schedule Ease


Here are some additional benefits of Casino Schedule Ease and how it can support HR strategies:


  • Mangers can view a detailed map of the casino floor that will help visualize the scheduling process.
  • Successfully automates up to 90% of the scheduling process so that users have more time to focus on other tasks.
  • Offers a flexible design so that casinos can set their own parameters and make adjustments as needed.
  • Provides robust reporting tools in order to quickly view and digest important information.
  • User friendly design is intuitive and easy to onboard for anyone familiar with Windows software.
  • Mangers can assign each employee with a skill rating so they are appropriately placed in a way that ensures success.
  • Employees can submit their availability and be automatically assigned based on pre-determined parameters. Managers can also easily make adjustments to the constant schedule at any time as the need arises.

Casino employees also enjoy the fact that they can simply log-in to the system to submit scheduling requests and view their assignments for the week. The system provides a centralized dashboard for both managers and employees, which helps facilitate communication and automate almost the entire scheduling process.

Comprehensive HR strategies need to cover a wide range of issues for both employees and employers. Casino Schedule Ease provides a simple and affordable solution that can help you create a superior HR strategy that directly addresses challenges for all employees. When used as part of a larger strategy, the software will help casinos define goals, create policies that are in alignment with these goals and make sure that everyone involved is poised for success. Automating and streamlining the scheduling process also means that casinos will be able to retain better talent and cultivate lasting relationships with patrons. A small investment in scheduling technology can have far-reaching benefits.



A Look at International Casino Trends and What They Mean for U.S. Companies

North America is responsible for over 46% of the market when it comes to casino revenue. As the clear leader, it is important for U.S. casinos to look to international trends when developing progressive strategies to build on existing success and continue to attract international customers. While many of the trends that are affecting the international market are also occurring in the U.S., there are a few worth noting and taking into account in 2018 and beyond.

New Marketing Strategies


You may be surprised to learn that casinos around the world still rely heavily on direct mail marketing. It is still by far the most popular marketing tool despite a whole host of digital options. Moving forward, casinos are looking to adopt more technology-based techniques and optimize social media and mobile advertising.

The real challenge here is to serve ads in a way that feels personal without being intrusive. Younger demographics are used to constantly being barraged with online ads, which means that they have become desensitized and don’t have a problem simply skimming over ads. Casinos are going to have to develop high quality content that is both informative and entertaining in order to grab the attention of their target audience.

Winning over Millennials


Not only are casinos looking to win over Millennials with new marketing strategies, they are also changing the landscape of their casino floors to attract more customers from this age group. This goes beyond incorporating new types of games and includes re-purposing underutilized space with more intimate lounges and speakeasy type bars that reflect the tastes of younger gamblers.

Online Gambling

While brick and mortar casino locations are still by far the largest source of revenue, there is an increasing demand for online gambling. Countries who do allow online gambling are raking in all the money from this profitable form of betting. The U.S., in particular, has been especially strict about regulating online gambling. As it stands now, only a few states permit this form of gambling and only residents of that state are allowed to participate. However, as the international online gambling market continues to grow, the federal government may feel more pressure from casinos to loosen restrictions. It will be interesting to see how the U.S. continues to handle this trend.

Smaller Scale Gambling Operations


In the United States, we are used to large gambling meccas like Las Vegas and Atlantic City. A visit to one of these cities is meant to provide an immersive experience that includes fine dining, entertainment and superior accommodations. Hotels are built to serve the casinos and act as an additional, luxurious draw to consumers. All the glitz and glamour is part of the bigger experience.

This same approach to attracting customers has been used around the world, but there is now a noticeable shift towards smaller scale gambling operations. Instead of making the casino the destination, companies are bringing gambling to existing destinations. For example, there are more slot machines and games showing up in hotel lobbies, bars and restaurants. Casinos aren’t as concerned about bringing customers to them as they are about meeting customers where they already are.

Continuing this trend in the U.S. is problematic because of gambling regulations, but again, it is a trend worth watching. U.S. companies may want to start exploring new ways to partner up with the hospitality industry.

Social Gambling and Interactive Games

It should come as no surprise that more interactive games that allow you to play with and against your friends are also gaining popularity across the globe. Technology has the power to make us feel more isolated, but it can also help us connect and turn gambling into a more social activity. Apparently, a trend towards more social experiences is one that crosses all borders and will continue to be important on an international level.

What Other Countries Can Learn from US Trends


There are also some big things happening in the U.S. that may be of interest to foreign casino companies also looking to stay competitive. While the presence of technology is becoming more visible on the gaming floor, it is also being used to address management challenges and streamline many of the complicated processes that keep casinos running.

For instance, Casino Schedule Ease (CSE) is a software program that helps managers to easily schedule employees and maximize performance. Just imagine the balancing act required to make sure that all the tables are covered over a 24-hour period by an employee who has the skills and experience to expertly run each game. Not to mention all the unexpected variables that can pop-up during the day, including unscheduled absences.

Casino Schedule Ease allows employees to log into a centralized dashboard and put in requests for vacation time and let managers know what days and times they prefer to work. Mangers can use the software to create an ideal schedule that takes into account the needs of the casino and preferences of individual workers. CSE even provides a visual representation of the casino floor to help managers create a clear picture of who will be placed where.

This type of management and scheduling software is allowing casinos to run more efficiently and provide both employees and guests with a better experience. As a result, casinos enjoy more repeat business and are able to reduce operational costs. Moving forward CSE and other software will increasingly become invaluable tools that allow large scale casinos to better manage daily challenges. International casinos may want to take note of this growing trend as they continue to look for ways to increase revenue and stay competitive.


It would be a mistake for casinos to ignore what is happening across the globe in the gambling industry. Even though the U.S. owns the largest share of the market, being the leader can often result in complacency. Taking a larger view of the market can help identify emerging trends and help casinos position themselves for ongoing success. On that same note, international casinos may want to take a look at how major U.S. companies are using technology and software, like Casino Schedule Ease, to improve performance and increase revenue.



New Casino Openings and Trends for 2018

The year is quickly coming to a close and it is time to start looking forward to 2018 and preparing for emerging trends that may influence the casino industry over the next 12 months. While there have been some notable closings over the last year, the future is looking bright with plenty of new openings scheduled. Each upcoming casino represents a new aspect of the casino industry and reflects not only what consumers are demanding, but also how more established casinos are going to have to adapt in order to survive. It should come as no surprise that technology is going to play a major role in these new openings and throughout the entire industry. With all that in mind, here are some new openings, tools and technology trends to be on the lookout for in 2018.

New Casinos Opening in 2018


Soboba Casino

While the Soboba band of Luiseno Indians have been running the Soboba Casino in the foothills of San Jacinto for the past 21 years, the tribe has already made major progress on a replacement that is location just one mile down the road. The new facility will span over 480,000 square feet and offer a hotel, events, cafes, bars and much more. Construction has been underway for some time now and on December 11th the tribe held a “topping” ceremony to celebrate a building milestone. If everything goes smoothly, the new casino will be open in the fall of 2018.

This is just one of many renovation and expansion projects among tribes in California and across the country. These groups are looking to increase profits and 2018 will see the completion of a variety of major improvement projects among Indian owned casinos.

Desert diamond West Valley Resort and casino

This project has been in the works for years and while it might not officially open in 2018, much of the project will be completed in the coming year. The Tohono O’odham Gaming Enterprise is heading up the project and building a large facility in Glendale, Arizona’s, Westgate Entertainment District, which is already home to many trendy spots. It will play host to slot machines, bingo, poker and plenty of restaurants and other amenities.

Getting the project off the ground has been challenging. Federal legislation looked like it would be able to stand in the way, but court rulings continued to favor the tribe. In the interim, the tribe opened a temporary casino, but the state of Arizona refused to approve a liquor license, which put a major damper on business. Now that they have finally been cleared for Class III gambling and were given a license to serve alcohol, the project is in full swing. Once all phases of the project have been completed, this large facility will take up over 1 million square feet and create over 3,000 jobs for tribal members and the community.


Resorts World Catskills


If everything goes according to plan, the Resorts World Catskills will be opening in mid-February, about two weeks ahead of schedule. This would be a plus for the casino because the new opening date aligns with the Lunar New Year and their target audience. The casino is looking to capitalize on Asian patrons and will offer games that are popular in China along with employees who speak Mandarin. Right now, the biggest challenge is hiring enough employees to staff the facilities, which include a hotel, spa, restaurant, bar, casino retail stores and more.

While the Resorts World Catskills is one of many openings schedule for 2018, it is notable because it represents a couple key trends.

  1. Relaxed gambling laws are creating more competition away from traditional hubs like Atlantic City and Las Vegas. Casinos are spreading up and down the east coast and taking over more rural areas.
  2. Resorts World Catskills is being billed as a destination casino. They aren’t just trying to pull in people from the region, but trying to entice world travelers to visit. While they aren’t the first casino to cater to Asian customers, they do represent a unique model.

Tools and Technology Trends for 2018


In previous posts, we have looked at important factors that may have contributed to major casino closings in 2017. One common thread was that some casinos failed to adopt technology and other management tools that allowed their competitors to operate more efficiently. In 2018, technology will continue to be an important tool, not only on the gaming floor, but also in the back office. If there is one thing casinos should pay attention to in 2018, it’s how they can use technology to run a better business because you can be sure that the competition is already using these tools to get the edge.

While consumers will be looking for updated games that are more interactive and provide a social element, casinos also need to pay attention to the complete visitor experience. This means staying organized and running a tight ship. Casino Schedule Ease is one increasingly popular tool that is being used to streamline employee scheduling and communication so that managers spend less time on administrative tasks. It also automatically optimizes employee placement on the floor so that they are able to play to their strengths. Perhaps best of all, the software allows employees to easily request time off and get shifts that best fit their personal life. Ultimately, happy employees translate in a better business and customer experience, so while scheduling might not be the most glamorous aspect of the casino industry, it plays a vital role in overall success.

For 2018, look for trends that include casino openings in less populous and popular areas of the country. While Vegas is getting some upgrades, some of the most exciting new projects are being executed by tribes across the country. These projects represent some real challenges to established markets. For those looking to stay competitive as tribes expand their reach, it will be important to utilize technology to improve efficiency and offer a better customer experience. Look for software, like Casino Schedule Ease, to be a more common staple among successful casinos who want to leverage the power of technology.


Why Some Casinos are Shutting Their Doors While New Resorts are Being Planned

If you have been paying attention to the news lately, you may have noticed that there are some seemingly contradictory happenings in the casino industry. Since 2014, Atlantic City has closed a total of five casinos. Meanwhile, major new casino projects are underway. In fact, Virgin Group, headed by billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson, is looking to expand its hotel holdings by opening a casino in Las Vegas. With so many casinos closing, paired with promising new openings, it is important to examine why some longstanding institutions have crumbled and how new casinos can ensure success.

The Collapse of Atlantic City


Perhaps the most notable decline in the casino industry can be seen in the downfall of Atlantic City. This New Jersey town was once the only gambling hub outside of Las Vegas, but it has been rapidly declining in recent years. At the height of its success, there were 12 fully operational casinos playing host to tourists from around the country looking to try their hand at winning big. Today, five of those casinos have closed although a few are in talks to reopen as hotels, water parks or other entertainment venues. Yet, even these deals seem to be fraught with challenges and there have been many negotiations that have fallen through and delayed re-openings so that massive hotels still sit empty on the boardwalk.

What happened?

It is impossible to trace the collapse of a city and an industry back to one particular event. A variety of factors combined to create a complicated web of challenges that ultimately drew business away from the city. For starters, new legislation in other states eased gambling restrictions, increasing competition. People who used to make the trip to Atlantic City can now stay closer to home. City leaders are quick to point to this cause, but there are also some other important factors to consider and some of the blame needs to be put on the casinos themselves.

Many casinos made the mistake of resting on their laurels and failing to recognize and adapt to emerging trends. Even if gambling has been a popular past time, consumers are a dynamic group who will always demand better games, entertainment and service. As we have discussed before in this blog, casino patrons are looking for more concerts and entertainment acts, as well as, interactive games that go beyond simply sitting at a slot machine and pushing a button repeatedly. By all accounts, Atlantic City casinos failed to recognize these trends. Instead of making meaningful changes that would attract today’s consumer and increase revenue, companies turned to financial juggling that was meant to cut costs. When the ship started to take on water and sink, casinos chose to put all their effort into bailing out the water instead of fixing the hole.

New Casino Openings

While it remains to be seen whether Atlantic City can quickly adapt to changing markets and make a full recovery, Las Vegas could be a good example to look to for guidance. While the strip has experienced some closures over the past few years, many of these casinos were renovated and reopened. Even those that were completely demolished are being reborn as more modern establishments that speak to the demands of customers who want more advanced gaming and a better overall experience.


The announcement that Virgin Group and Branson are looking to take over an existing building and create a casino that embodies the Virgin brand is another sign that new life is being breathed into Las Vegas. Virgin has long built itself as a innovation leader and a “sexy aspirational lifestyle brand” that is “savvy enough to think like a guest.” This is the kind of attitude and approach it is going to take to ensure the continued success of casinos and the gambling industry as a whole.

How Can New Casinos Achieve Success?

First and foremost, new casinos need to learn from past mistakes, especially those made in Atlantic City. That means being able to take a step back from thinking like a casino and actually stepping into the shoes of guests and target demographics. It also means adopting new technology that will provide better games, automate operational tasks and improve the overall customer experience.

In Atlantic City, casino owners were looking to cut costs by renegotiating leases and shuffling money around, but these were only temporary fixes. Fortunately, there are other ways to reduce overhead costs while also improving the visitors experience. Technology like Casino Schedule Ease is specially designed to address the unique needs of the casino industry. This software effectively automates and organizes the scheduling process for benefits that include:

  • Less time and valuable man-hours spent managing employees
  • More ideal schedules for individual employees, which increases morale and improves employee retention rates.
  • The ability to strategically place employees where they perform best.
  • A centralized dashboard the streamlines communication.
  • The ability to get the most out the the entire staff and provide a better overall customer experience.

It is certainly no coincidence that three of the casinos that have been able to weather the downturn in Atlantic City, have all taken a proactive approach to incorporating new technology. Borrgata, Tropicana and Resorts all use Casino Schedule Ease to help create a better employee customer experience.

With the right technology there is a way to both increase revenue and reduce operational costs. The key is not to rely too heavily on one tool or another and present a united front of innovation that looks at every aspect of how employees and visitors experience the casino. Happy employees will translate into loyal customers. Combine that with advanced games, great food and entertainment and a continued commitment to progress, and you have a recipe for success.


The casino industry isn’t the first to fall victim to a false sense of confidence. The American automotive industry also failed to push for progress and underestimated their competition, which ultimately lead to a historic government bail-out. It is easy to become comfortable being the leader, but history has shown time and again that hubris can cause companies to be blind to important changes in the market. While Atlantic City has had to relearn this hard lesson, there are positive signs that new casinos across the country are actively avoiding the same mistakes and seeking out new ways to use technology to ensure success. With plenty of available tools on the market, the future could be looking bright for the entire industry.








How Technology is Changing the Casino Industry

Technology is revolutionizing the casino industry for employees, managers and patrons. New management and scheduling software makes it easy for casinos to manage hundreds of employees who are working around the clock to provide hotel, restaurant, entertainment and gambling services, all under one roof. Patrons are also being wooed by new games that take advantage of the popularity of TV shows and social media to create a more interactive gaming experience. Almost every area of the gaming industry is getting makeovers thanks to technological advances and the result has been a noticeable shift towards growth in the industry that is projected to continue through 2021.

How Software is Improving the Casino Experience

Casinos are a unique destination because they are designed to provide an immersive entertainment experience that goes well beyond gambling. Successful casinos provide a well-orchestrated experience that begins the moment a visitor arrives on the premise. From the building’s architecture and glitz to the employee uniforms, every detail has been carefully considered, so that each patron feels transported and wants to recapture that same sensation in a future visit. At the heart of all these efforts is a commitment to customer service.


Managing hundreds of employees and a constant stream of customers requires a high level of organization. In the past, scheduling and human resource managers were bogged down with trying to recruit and retain experienced employees while also working to balance everyone’s scheduling preferences. This job was further complicated by requests for time off and the fact that certain employees performed better at different roles throughout the casino. Trying to balance all these different variables and ensure that patron’s are being properly served was a daunting task.

With the invention of scheduling software, such as Casino Schedule Ease, casinos can automate many of the complicated processes and administrative tasks that used to plague managers. This frees up time to work towards more meaningful goals, such as innovation and growth. It also means that employees are better utilized throughout the casino, which ultimately translates into higher morale and a better customer experience. Something as simple, yet revolutionary, as casino specific scheduling software can actually trickle down all the way to more repeat customers.

The Marriage of Video Games and Gambling


In recent years, some of the biggest names in video game design have crossed over to creating casino games.  The same CGI and 3D imaging that goes into creating truly impressive scenery and characters in both major movies and games is now being applied to casino games. This move towards graphic-driven design speaks to what consumers are already gravitating towards and capitalizes on a trend to improve the gambling experience.

In some cases, popular games, such as Angry Birds, Candy Crush and Call of Duty are being installed on the casino floor next to more traditional games. By monetizing these games and allowing people to play against the house or one another, casinos are using skill-based games to draw in more millennials. This trend also takes gambling, which can often be a solitary endeavor, and turns it into an interactive and social experience.  The next move may be to allow betting on competitive video game tournaments in the same way that gamblers currently bet on boxing matches and other sports.

It also helps that basic screen technology has come a long way since the first television transmitted a signal in 1927. Today, Ultra HD or 4K technology provides a minimum resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. That is four times as much as full HD television currently offer. Curved screens are also making an appearance in casinos across the world. This technology provides a wider field of view and greater feeling of depth. Combine that with thousands of pixels and cutting-edge graphic technology and you have a truly immersive experience that speaks to all the senses.

The Simpsons Slot Machine


Perhaps the single best example of all this technology at work is The Simpsons slot machine from Scientific Games Corporation. The game features three HD displays and  tablet with a multi-touch button display. It also comes with motion sensing so that users can directly interact with the game. In one bonus feature, players try to physically catch virtual donuts and all the movements are relayed through the motion technology.

The Future of the Casino Industry


The result of better management software that improves the customer experience and the introduction of gaming technology onto the casino floor has caused a  noticeable increase in gambling, especially among millennials. In 1990, revenue from gambling in Las Vegas accounted for 58 percent of casino’s total earnings. By 2014, only 37 percent of total revenue could be attributed to gambling. Instead of spending time at the tables, patrons were coming to enjoy the nightlife and the entertainment and world-class shows, but that is projected to change starting in 2017.

In fact, in early 2017, a study from Research and Markets predicted that the global casino market will grow at a rate of 10.16% between 2017 and 2021. While part of this projected growth is due to the increasing popularity of online gambling and apps, it is also a direct result of more social gambling. Friends can visit the casino and play familiar games that pit their skills against other people in their social circle. Instead of feeding money into a lot machine and hoping for the best, players can actually engage in a little competition and win money in the process.


From efficient management tools that allow casinos to effectively run the backend operations to immersive and interactive games that reflect other trends in gaming, technology is improving practically every aspect of the casino and gaming industry. This is good news for owners who want to drive up revenue, employees who are looking for ideal working conditions and visitors who want to have a fun and entertaining experience that exceeds their expectations. While the casino industry hasn’t been as healthy and robust over the past few decades, all signs point to the fact that new technology is going to allow the industry to pivot and experience significant growth in the coming years.






Why Casinos Need to Pay More Attention to Cybersecurity

If you have learned anything from watching Hollywood heist movies, it is probably that banks and casinos are by far the best places to rob. While old school fictional criminals dug tunnels under buildings and found ways to trick security guards, today’s actual robbers are using technology as their preferred tool and stealing valuable data and personal information from the comfort of their own homes. Cybersecurity is a growing concern for businesses across every industry and that also holds true for casinos.


Hackers aren’t interested in getting a hold of a pile of chips or breaking into the casino vault, they are targeting casinos in the hopes of securing credit card information from guests. These types of breaches not only affect the finances of customers, but it also diminishes the reputation of the hotel and casino and makes it less likely that people want to take the risk of doing business with casinos that have a record of experiencing security problems. This issue will continue to become more important as a variety of casino information is stored and processes are conducted using cloud-based software.

A popular casino with locations around the world,  serves as a cautionary tale of the consequences of poor cybersecurity. Once a year, for the past three years, the casino has experienced major problems. In 2015 and 2016, malware was found installed on the POS system, which allowed hackers to access credit card data and other sensitive guest information. In 2017, eleven of their hotels were attacked through their booking software. While this last incident was not entirely their fault, the incident it still associated with their name.

Why Casinos Face an Increased Threat

Now take into account that many casinos also offer online gambling services, and you have a potential recipe for disaster. A 2015 report by Akamai, a digital security firm, found that online gambling is now the new prime target for distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. In fact, over 50% of all DDoS attacks have been directly aimed at the gaming industry. The goal of this type of attack is to disrupt service so that legitimate users are unable to connect to the host site and conduct normal activities. By overwhelming the site and causing chaos, the attackers hope to create or at least identify another vulnerability that will allow them to steal data. According to the study, these attacks lasted an average of 16 hours before they were able to be stopped. For casinos, that can translate into a significant loss of revenue.

Part of what makes casinos a prime target for attacks is because they handle large amounts of information and transactions. They are essentially a sophisticated banking system with multiple points of contact. Customers and guests enter their information when making hotel reservations, paying for meals, purchasing chips and even buying merchandise at gift shops.


Another part of the problem is the emergence of cloud-based technology. Yes, new software allows casinos and other businesses streamline processes, store data and run more efficiently, but without the right protections in place, these tools can also create vulnerable points of entry for persistent cyber criminals. It isn’t enough to onboard new solutions and assume that current security safety nets will continue to be effective. Cybersecurity is extremely challenging to combat because even as new security measure are put into place, hackers are working on finding ways around these patches.

The Solution

First and foremost, casinos need to realize the extent of the threat they are facing. While many are quick to point fingers at the shortcomings of the casinos that have been effectively targeted, there are few other establishments who are adequately prepared to handle cyber threats. The security platform, UpGuard, evaluated a range of both brick and mortar and online casinos to assess their website security. The results show that even industry giants, like Caesars Palace seem to have let cybersecurity become an afterthought.

Be Proactive


Once casinos are able to objectively evaluate their current situation and understand where there are real gaps, they need to implement solutions and change their entire approach to cybersecurity. Any business that conducts transactions or stores customer data absolutely must take a proactive approach to security. The last thing you want to do is be left trying to play catch up. In a worst case scenario, you will experience a significant revenue loss, damage your reputation and have to compensate hundreds of people who were the ultimate victims of any attack.

Partner with the Right Companies

Individual casinos need to spearhead their own cybersecurity strategies and have experts in place to immediately address any attacks. In addition, they also need to partner with the right companies and providers. As businesses continue to incorporate more software solutions into their daily operations, they need to make sure that those companies also demonstrate a commitment to security and continue to improve their own security protocols. You will want dynamic solutions rather than programs that will quickly become outdated and subject to attack.

For example, Casino Schedule Ease specializes in providing a client server based program that automates scheduling tasks that are specific to the gaming industry. Greektown Casino, Borgata and many other big names rely on this service to run more efficiently and improve employee satisfaction. However, they also turn to Casino Schedule Ease, because the company has demonstrated a progressive approach to providing secure services that are designed to complement and enhance the existing efforts of their customers. Being able to form partnerships with providers who share the mutual goal of advanced security will be an essential part of protecting against increased attacks.


Technology is being used to disrupt industries that were once seen as unchanging and create solutions that streamline processes and put more emphasis on the importance of creativity. While most would agree that this signals progress and the promise of more positive changes, it also create opportunities for criminals to exploit systems for their own personal gain. As part of an especially vulnerable industry, casinos need to wake up to impending threats and make sure they are doing everything possible to thwart attacks. This includes creating their own security strategies and making sure that they are partnering with other solution providers who share the same commitment to security.





The Top Ten Reasons to Work at a Casino

Casinos are a luxurious destination for visitors who want to be entertained, enjoy some fine cuisine and perhaps win a little money, but casinos are also a great place to work. Dealers and other staff members are often treated like part of a larger team and given a wide variety of benefits and perks to keep their morale high. Afterall, a happy employee will help provide a better customer experience and help the casino thrive. Here are the top ten reasons why you might want to consider working at a casino:


Pay. That’s right. Casinos provide employees with generous compensation packages because they understand how important dealers and staff are to the success of their business. A lot of companies will offer a starting wage of $25. From there, you can earn performance and seniority based bonuses, not to mention tips. If you have a friendly and outgoing personality that can keep guests happy, then your earning potential can be upwards of $100,000 per year.


Great benefits and perks. As part of their compensation packages, some casinos offer 401K match programs to help you save for retirement, excellent medical coverage and a range of other perks. Casinos often encourage camaraderie through health and wellness programs, company sponsored sports teams and regular events and outings. In addition, you may qualify for college tuition reimbursement.


Easy and Flexible Scheduling. Casinos operate on a 24-hour schedule, so you can choose the right shift to fit your needs. If you want to be home during the bulk of the day to spend time with children, you can work later shifts and still enjoy a flexible schedule. A well-organized staff also means that it is easier to cover shifts if an employee experiences an emergency.


While it might seem complicated to have to schedule hundreds of employees across different areas of the casino throughout a 24-hour cycle, tools like Casino Schedule Ease simplify the process and make it easy for managers to accommodate employee needs. This software also allows employees to easily request time off and make adjustments to their regular schedule. Casino Schedule Ease is just another way casinos work to create a pleasant and convenient work environment.


Excellent Working Conditions. Casinos need to provide a clean and appealing environment to attract and retain guests and the same goes for employees. It doesn’t hurt that workers get to take advantage of eating food prepared by world-class chefs. Meals are usually free or offered at a steep discount.

Minimum Education Required. You don’t need a college degree to begin working at a casino, but you might end up with some college classes under you belt during your employment. Many casinos offer tuition reimbursement programs for any classes that will help you advance your career within the company. In addition, they will provide all the on-the-job training you need to begin earning great wages and benefits.


Job Security. While no business or industry is recession proof, regulations limited casinos across the country have been relaxed in recent years, opening the door for more employment opportunities. In addition, there is little chance that your job will be outsourced to machines. Guests enjoy interacting with dealers and it is a central part of the gambling experience that won’t be going away soon.


Location, Location, Location. Just think about it: casinos are usually located in some of the nicest places in the world. You get to live and work in locations where people visit to celebrate big life events.


Easy to Relocate. Many casinos are part of a larger corporation that manages properties across the country. That means that you can easily transfer to another location under the parent company. Need a change of scenery or looking for new experiences? You may be able to move across the country and have a job waiting for you with a company that you are already familiar with.


Uniforms. This may sound like a minor selling point, but not having to invest in work clothes or worry about what you are going to wear every day can be a huge plus. In addition, many casinos will launder your uniforms for you. It doesn’t get much more convenient than that.


You Get to Have Fun at Work. Sure, every job involves minor annoyances and there are going to be bad days when you are tired and perhaps under the weather. However, as a casino employee, you get to play games and interact with people who are there to have a good time. If you enjoy people and are a bit of an extrovert, you will feed off the energy of the casino and its guests and actually have fun making sure other people have fun.

If you are looking for a rewarding career where you will feel like a valued member of a team and enjoy plenty of opportunities for advancement, then becoming a casino employee may be the right path for you. Today’s casinos offer highly competitive wages and benefits that are designed to improve retention rates and create a positive environment for employees and guests. While working for a casino might not be for everyone, it does offer a wide variety of benefits for the right people.


What Atlantic City Revenue Numbers Really Mean

A recent report from the New Jersey Division Gaming Enforcement shows that the seven casinos located in Atlantic City earned a total of $244.8 million in August of 2017. While that might seem like a lot of money, it actually amounts to 0.4% less casino revenue than a year ago. Meanwhile, internet gambling, which is available at 5 out of the big seven casinos, enjoyed double digit growth across the board. So what exactly do these numbers mean for Atlantic City, casino owners and managers and the future of the gaming industry?

The Trump Taj Mahal Factor


First, it is important to keep in mind that the numbers include earnings reports from the Trump Taj Mahal, which closed on October 9th, 2016. For those who have been following the history of this casino, the only surprise about the closing is that it was able to be avoided for so long. From the beginning, when the casino opened in 1990, it was at a financial disadvantage. The entire project was heavily financed and was involved in two separate bankruptcy filings by the parent organization, Trump Entertainment Resorts.

In the final days of the Trump Taj Mahal, owners and employee unions clashed over wages, pensions and health care benefits. After the last rejection of a possible deal by the union, the owner, Carl Icahn, decided to simply shut down the casino instead of investing $100 to $200 million to keep the casino afloat over the next year. Although the decision left approximately 3,000 employees out of work, it seemed like a reasonable decision for a business that had lost an additional $350 million over the last few years and showed no signs of becoming profitable in the near future.

What Atlantic City Casinos Actually Earned

Once you remove the doomed Trump Taj Mahal from the earnings report, the numbers start to look a lot more promising. As a whole, Atlantic City’s casino revenue went up by 5.5% although both Caesars and Harrah’s are in the red. Here is an exact breakdown of how the six casinos stacked up against one another and combined to offer an average revenue increase:


As you can see, internet gambling has been much more of a lucrative source of revenue for some of Atlantic City’s oldest casinos.

How Does Internet Gambling Work?

As of 2017, there are only three states (Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey) that have legalized online gambling, which is heavily regulated by the state. In new Jersey, internet gambling became legal, but also comes with the following restrictions:

  • Players must be at least 21 years of age
  • The player must be located within New Jersey. This is verified through a GPS system.
  • Only Atlantic City casinos can offer internet gambling, which must be operated through a server that is located at the actual casino location.

In return, the state is able to tax online gambling revenue at a rate of 15%, which has resulted in $101.25 million in tax revenue since the practice first became legal in 2013.

How Can Brick and Mortar Locations Compete?

It is hard to compete with the convenience of being able to log onto your computer and gamble from the comfort of your own home. Yet, the physical casino locations are an important part of Atlantic City and provide services that simply can’t be found anywhere else. For owners and managers who are looking to experience growth in both categories of in-house and online revenue there are a few key factors to consider:

  1. Entertainment and dining


Those who visit casinos are looking to gamble and hoping to win the big jackpot, but they are also looking for a total experience. They want a night out on the town. If people aren’t going to be spending as much at the tables or slot machines, then it is important to attract customers with great shows and delicious food. You may even find that food, drinks and a good show are what bring people in and the gambling is only a secondary activity. The most important part is getting people through the door.

2. Reducing costs and improving efficiency

One way to increase total revenue is to earn more money overall, but you can also improve numbers by cutting costs. Sometimes, this can be something as simple as introducing more streamlined processes that increase efficiency and require less man hours, which are both valuable and costly.

For example, new technology like Casino Schedule Ease, allows casinos to easily handle scheduling and table assignments in order to optimize productivity and place employees in positions where they are strongest. In fact, Borgata and Tropicana Resorts have adopted this software and seen marked improvements. Casino Schedule Ease makes it a lot easier for employees to request time off and ensure that all openings are covered, which can be especially challenging in a business with 24 hour shifts. Finally, this technology can free up time for managers so that they can spend more time on other tasks.

3. Customer experience

This directly relates to the two previous areas mentioned. If you are able to implement tools and practices that allow you to better manage your casino and improve employee job satisfaction, these efforts will directly translate into a better customer experience. Combine that with great food and entertainment and you have created a destination and not just a place to gamble. Pay attention to every detail of the customer experience and provide superior service and you may just be able to get some of those internet gamblers off the couch and into your location.


The good news is that on the whole, Atlantic City revenue is up. However, it is important to recognize that these numbers are marginal compared to the spike in internet gambling. Any revenue is good, but brick and mortar locations cannot ignore this trend if they want to continue to stay relevant. It is important to not only recognize, but anticipate industry changes and begin to implement progressive technology and solutions that will work to both boost revenue and decrease operating costs. Focus on capitalizing on the traditional hospitality principles that preach good product and services while also utilizing the latest technology to empower employees and improve efficiency.


What You Can Learn from the Top 5 Best Casinos for Employees

With casinos becoming more prevalent, especially along the east coast, gaming industry veterans and rookies alike, have more options when it comes to choosing where they work. While a generous compensation package may be enough to bring employees through the door, overall job satisfaction is what keeps them there and translates into a customer satisfaction. With that in mind, we put together a list of the best casinos to work based on a wide range of criteria that contribute to employee satisfaction and feelings of fulfillment. By better understanding what other casinos are doing right, you may be able to change the culture at your own casino and see vast improvements in employee and customer satisfaction.

Best Casino Ranking Criteria

Here are just some of the criteria we looked at when determining this list:

  • Advanced scheduling and table assignment procedures. Employees want to be able to easily schedule time off, let managers know if their availability has changed for the week and see exactly when and where they are scheduled. Software based programs, like Casino Schedule Ease, streamline the scheduling and communication process, making the casino a more organized place to work. Locations with this type of technology ranked higher among employees.
  • Programs designed to protect and promote employee health and welfare. As we saw, these programs ranged from organizing fun activities that encouraged employees to play to wellness rewards programs that provided support for those looking to improve their health. Either way, these programs signaled that the casinos was committed to helping employees destress and enjoy happier lives both inside and outside of work.
  • Performance based bonuses. Everyone loves to be recognized for their hard work. The best casinos employ a variety of bonus programs that reward hard workers who are often nominated by their peers.
  • Demonstrates a clear sense of values and contributes to the community. Every employee wants to feel like they are a part of something larger and making positive contributions. The best casinos make sure that they define and live certain values and give back through charity, fundraising and volunteer events.
  • Opportunities to advance and earn higher salaries. Any employee wants to know that a job has the potential to turn into a career where they can take on leadership roles, learn new skills and earn more money. Employees were most satisfied when these opportunities are present.

    1. Four Winds Casino – Locations across Michigan

At Four Winds Casinos, employees appreciate the thorough training process that sets them up for success and the focus on creating a pleasant work environment. The employees truly seem to enjoy one another and look forward to interacting with both the co-workers and the guests. It doesn’t hurt that the casino provides them with food throughout the shifts along with employee appreciation days and periodic gifts to employees.

Employees also enjoy a variety of perk programs. The ACES Award Program provides a secret shop that rewards employees when they are recognized for exceptional performance. The company also encourages perfect attendance by rewarding those who haven’t missed a day in the last quarter with personal time off and a mention in the company newsletter. To help keep things light and fun, employees are encouraged to dress up on holidays, participate in the casino softball league and wear their favorite jersey on big game days.

2. Wind Creek Hospitality

– Umbrella company for the Poarch Band of Creek Indians with locations in Alabama and Florida

Wind Creek Casinos are known for their focus on guest service and satisfaction, which can always be tied back to well-trained and happy employees. The company sets out a clear set of values and provides employees with the support they need to live up to those values. Incentives include bonus and reward programs and constant recognition for a job well done. Employees also have the opportunity to focus on their own health and achieve a work-life balance through the wellness program that includes a personal trainer on-site.

3. Harrah’s Resort – Southern California

While Harrah’s is a big name in the gaming industry, this particular location has become a favorite among employees for a wide variety of reasons. With almost 1,500 employees, organization is key and Harrah seems to have mastered the art of keeping everyone perfectly schedule and placed even over a 1.2 million square-foot facility. To help keep employees informed, the casino regularly holds “buzz sessions” to discuss changes and recognize employee achievements.

As a larger establishment, the casino also offers plenty of bonuses and activities. Employee of the month winners receive up to $250 in credits and winners of the Chairman’s Award receive credits that amount to $2,500. After work, employees can participate in walking, running, softball, cycling, soccer and other wellness focused clubs.

4. FireKeepers Casino Hotel – Battle Creek, Michigan

Some might be surprised to see that another Michigan based tribal casino made the top 5 list, but these casinos have clearly realized that the formula for satisfied customers begins with happy employees. At FireKeepers, employees are rewarded not only for performance by also for loyalty. Every year anniversary means a cash bonus.

The casino also demonstrates a clear set of values by providing employees with career paths and encouraging community engagement. Employees can get to know one another and improve morale in the team member dining room and at a variety of casino sponsored charity and volunteer events. The employees have the opportunity to be a part of something bigger instead of simply putting in their time at work.

5. Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Authority – Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

The SIGA is a unique organization because its main focus is to enrich the lives of its First Nation employees. Perhaps more so than any other gaming organization, they are committed to helping employees achieve job satisfaction while also earning a livable wage and creating opportunities to give back to the community. While the casinos are fundamentally profit driven businesses, the entire business model is designed to put that money to good use.

Employees can participate in a long list of community based wellness activities and enjoy plenty of opportunities to earn bonuses and rewards. The list just goes on and on, which makes SIGA an outstanding part of the community that is actually helping to cultivate better citizens through employment.

As you may have noticed, a lot of the top casinos are part of the tribal gaming community. It is clear that these organizations are committed to providing a better life for their employees and serving as a positive force in the community. It may be in the best interest of larger establishment to look towards these casinos as an example of what it means to be successful. While businesses typically measure success in dollars and cents, the truest indicator may be employee satisfaction.

These casinos also offer important lessons when it comes to managing a large population of employees. Through incentive and rewards programs and scheduling technology, the casinos are able to empower individuals and make them feel recognized instead of lost in sea of people. Simple management tools can allow casinos to offer a more personalized experience to employees, which will ultimately translate to a better customer experience.



The Future of the Casino Industry


While different industries continue to try to adapt to global markets and the recover from the Great Recession, the casino industry is benefiting from relaxed regulations and the fact that Americans have more disposable income. Casino industry experts are also projecting a bright future based on the recent election of Donald Trump, an industry insider. Despite some bright spots, data indicates that the casino industry may be undergoing some major geographical shifts and experiencing competition from online gambling, which is leading the gaming industry in both Europe and Asia. For a closer look at the future of the casino industry and what emerging trends to be on the lookout for, keep reading.

Notable Shifts in Casino Regulations

In the past, casinos have been regulated by state laws that were applied across the board. However, regulations are becoming more localized. Instead of instituting broad limitations, local governments are being given the power to make their own decision about how to handle gambling establishments and revenue. As a result, more small casino locations are popping up in the form of riverboats, tribal casinos and cruise ships. Expect this trend to continue and for gambling to become more accepted and welcomed outside of traditional gambling and casino hubs.

Geographic Changes in Casino Locations


In the United States, casinos have been concentrated in two main locations: Las Vegas and Atlantic City. However, both these locations are undergoing major changes while casinos along the east coast continue to multiply and grow. Over the past decade, Atlantic City has lost over half its value. While the gambling and hospitality industries still make significant contributions to the local economy, it is hard to imagine the city returning to its heyday.

Las Vegas is still thriving as a tourist destination, but less and less of the city’s revenue is coming from gambling. In 2016, 34% of the Strip’s revenue came from gambling. Compare that to 1984 when a full 58% or revenue was a direct result of gambling. More people are choosing to spend their time and money on shows and other entertainment.

Those who are almost exclusively interested in gambling and view the shows and restaurants as an added perk and not the main attraction, are heading to smaller establishments. The east coast, in particular, is seeing an expansion of the casino industry. Perhaps most notably, MGM has made major investments in developments near Washington DC and Springfield, MA. The goal is to provide local consumers with the same brand experience that would have in Las Vegas. Industry leaders are betting on the fact that people will be excited to have the casino experience without having to pay for travel.

How Casinos are Winning Back Gamblers

While casinos are still making significant profits, even if less of their revenue is coming from gambling, they are still looking for ways to lure people back to the games. Those looking to introduce disruptive solutions that will lead to true market innovation are turning to skill based gambling games. For example, Konami recently introduced a Frogger slot machine that combines both skill and luck. Players can win performance based prizes. At the end of each round, you can spin the wheel and win additional prizes. It combines classic, interactive arcade games with traditional gambling for a more well-rounded user experience.


These new types of skilled based games appeal directly to Millenials who simply aren’t showing up to engage with typical gambling games. By introducing the arcade element, casinos are able to meet players where they already are and provide a twist on gaming. Instead of sitting at home in front of computers and game consoles, avid gamers can visit the casino and put their skills to work and maybe win a little cash.

The Future of Casino Gambling Games

Arcade themed slot machines are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the future of interactive gambling. Virtual reality games are also poised to become more standard fare in casinos, as well as, team games that allow players to interact with other gamers in the same casino and around the world. Casinos will have to continue to develop innovative ways to incorporate new gaming technology into their establishment to avoid becoming an obsolete form of entertainment.

Beyond the Games: Cultivating Loyal Customers

Modern consumers have higher expectations when it comes to both the types of games they want to see on the casino floor and the level of service. More than ever, patrons expect to visit a well-organized establishment that is able to provide fast and courteous service that helps create a memorable experience. The more casinos are able to provide both cutting-edge games and superior service and hospitality, the more they will be able to build brand loyalty and earn repeat business.


Once again, the solution to a better casino and impeccable service comes down to technology. Relying on powerful management and scheduling software, such as Casino Schedule Ease, allows large casinos with hundreds to thousands of employees to effectively fill openings and make sure that every aspect of the casino is appropriately staffed. A streamlined system with a centralized dashboard also makes it easy for employees to request time off and manage their own schedules. It is the best way to improve efficiency, drive profits and reduce the number of man-hours that are spent managing employees and scheduling.

While the casino industry is still profitable, its growth rate has slowed significantly over the past decades and more revenue is coming from entertainment than actual gambling. If casinos are able to expand into the right markets and continue to incorporate new games that address the evolving interests of customers, then they may be able to stabilize the industry. Brick and mortar casinos will also experience increased competition from online gambling, which makes the ability to provide a positive customer experience even more important. Simplifying the employee scheduling process with the right software is just one way to improve service and earn loyal customers.