All management systems are made to simplify the many tasks being carried out within a hotel on a daily basis. But hospitality today is not what it used to be – new companies and service providers are emerging every few months and each company’s software is built to handle certain specific functions better than the others. This is also influenced by the subset of the industry that they’re targeting, among a number of other variables. Because of this, certain hotel PMS providers will be better equipped to handle activities such as group property account management while others may be more suited to front desk management. The main thing is to find a PMS system that fits your exact requirements.
Another thing to consider is the past experiences of other owners using various PMS systems; the issues they raise regarding the software they’re using could save you a lot of time, effort and money.
With so many companies providing PMS services today and the huge changes that have been sweeping hospitality technology, it’s best to know what you exactly you need before making a decision:
Make a note of the most demanding areas –
Spend some time going through your operations and work out the repetitive tasks that can automated with a PMS, tasks like reservation management, housekeeping duties, night auditing and so on. The best way to go about this is by pinpointing tasks that demand a lot of attention – for instance, multi-channel management is one such issue for a lot of hoteliers. If you’re new to this, your best bet would be to pick a system that focuses equally on all operations without prioritizing any one.
Educate yourself on the options available –
In-house systems with their own servers and personnel can be very expensive for smaller hotels, for whom the ideal option would be a cloud PMS. This allows hoteliers to access their operations from any location. Go through the available hotel PMS and shortlist two or three that best suit your needs, based on your studies. If this is your first time using a property management system, read reviews written by other users of the software you’re interested in. A great way to really explore a PMS system would be by signing up for a trial, if they offer one.
Go with only a company that you can trust –
It might be tempting to go for a free system but these software are often developed on a very limited budget and hence may lack crucial features, and could have an interface that’s laborious to navigate. By the time the manager realizes that he needs to switch systems, it may be very time-intensive to transfer all the recorded information. Try finding a hotel PMS that offers 24 hour live support too, as PMS do require some amount of subject understanding. Facing an unresponsive support team will just delay and complicate a process that’s supposed to be making your life easier.
Although using a PMS does require some basic training, different companies have different approaches when it comes to educating customers. Your ideal system must be one that’s easy to use – it should lighten up your busy schedule for interaction with guests, not demand more of your attention.
With so many different property management systems available today, hoteliers have never been more spoiled for choice. Adopting technology to run key operations is slowly but steadily becoming the norm as more and more owners turn to enterprise software for their businesses. However, the real problem lies in the fact that most hoteliers aren’t sure about what kind of PMS system they need.