Even the smallest independent properties benefit from hotel management software. Whether your boutique hotel, bed and breakfast, or hostel has a few rooms or a dozen, the right property management system (PMS) will put you in control of your business.
There’s real power in having an organized system that frees you up to focus on the guest rather than waste time on repetitive manual tasks. Having the right tool can mean the difference between working ON your business and working IN it. Smaller properties are especially vulnerable to getting sucked into the current of daily operations, as the teams are small and almost always owner/operator driven.
To minimize frustrations and manage your property with an ease and sophistication that impresses guests, consider hotel management software, or HMS. The following are a few reasons why useful hotel management software is a necessary ally for changing your business for the better.
Your time is valuable
Every superhero has a cast of supporting characters. For the busy hotel owner, this cast includes your staff, of course, but technology is another key sidekick that that will boost productivity.
Let’s do a quick calculation as an example. Imagine a 15-key luxury inn nestled in the foothills. To keep it simple, we’ll only consider room revenue. The inn is high-end, with an average rate of $425 per night. At full occupancy, that’s $6,375 in potential revenue each day. At its average occupancy rate of 72%, the average revenue per night is $4,590. There are 24 hours in a day, so that’s $191.25 of revenue per hour. Impressive!
But what happens when you spend 15 minutes taking a guest’s reservation over the phone, rather than allowing for self-service booking that many guests prefer? That 15 minutes of time costs you $47.82 in revenue. Yikes! If you were to invest that 15 minutes (or $47.82) into marketing or technology that earned a new booking, you’d nearly quadruple your money.
Now, consider your day. What’s each hour worth, for both yourself and your staff? Is everyone spending time on value-creating tasks that deliver the greatest return? How is using manual methods to operate your property affecting your overall revenue?
Your time is money, so spend it on value-driven activities – such as creating a profitable hotel distribution strategy.
You’re busy enough as it is
For hoteliers and hosts, the daily list of to-dos is never-ending. There will always be something to be done: a candidate to interview, a guest to greet, a marketing campaign to launch, a maintenance issue to fix, etc.
Amidst the chaos, wouldn’t it be nice to have a reliable solution to lend you a hand? This is when your hotel management software can really save your day. Capable HMS provides peace of mind and helps keep things under control in the following ways:
- Provides an all-in-one solution- Managing multiple systems is a hassle – especially for smaller operations. A useful hotel management solution will combine multiple functionalities, such as a booking engine, PMS, channel manager, and reporting.
- Accessible from anywhere- Modern HMS runs in the cloud. This means that you can get real-time updates on your mobile device from anywhere with internet access – even after you’ve gone home for the day.
- Reduces guest complaints. Accidentally losing a guest reservation, forgetting to handle a special request, or mishandling credit card information are surefire ways to get complaints. An HMS will keep all of your guest data organized. Plus, with all the time you save by automating manual tasks, you’ll be able to give your guests more personalized attention.
- Manages the back-office. Payments, invoices, cash drawers, and financial reports are much easier to manage when the back office is located on the same software.
The ultimate goal is to maintain profitability and free up your time so you can work more efficiently and have less stress.
Your guests expect flawless operations
There are certain areas where quirky is cool and valued by guests: decor, location, and even, to some degree, the personalities of your staff. However, there are some expectations that properties of all sizes must meet. Hotel management software gives you the support you need to be flawless in the operational areas that matter most.
The right hotel management software helps you meet those expectations by providing:
- An online booking engine. Guests can book their reservation via your website rather than calling. An online booking engine empowers guests and gives staff more time away from the phone to handle other priorities.
- Synchronized pricing and availability. One of the major problems with manual inventory management is noncompetitive pricing and availability. There’s always going to be a gap between when the reservation agent takes a phone booking and when that room is removed from inventory elsewhere. Sometimes, a channel may be overlooked, leading to double-bookings – and displeased guests. Since inventory on an HMS with a channel manager is synched from a central pool, it’s always up-to-date. No more double bookings!
- Localization. In order to attract more guests, you need to consider international visitors and make the booking process easier for speakers of other languages. Offering a booking path in multiple languages gives your property a global appeal that broadens your demographics.
Your staff training and communication could be better
Training new staff is part of any business. When you don’t have an organized system or you’re using complicated technology, the process can be time-consuming and frustrating for everyone. Running your day-to-day operations should be simple enough for any new staff member to pick up quickly so you don’t waste precious energy each time you have a new hire.
Efficient hotel management software features include:
- An intuitive interface that’s user-friendly. It just makes sense – and works in the way that you would expect. For example, having a unified calendar view with drag-and-drop functionality that allows staff to easily assign rooms.
- Reports that reduce errors and manual busy work. With the proper HMS, you can eliminate the need for your staff to spend an entire shift in a spreadsheet or having to write out reports by hand. Instead, your team can spend their time analyzing the reports prepared by your HMS so they can identify trends and make action plans.
- Housekeeping management. The front desk should be able to view the status of each room right in the HMS dashboard, and have the ability to assign housekeepers to clean priority rooms first. This visibility reduces communication lapses and helps staff be more efficient.
The hospitality industry is constantly shifting
The beauty of working with modern, cloud-based hotel management software is that it’s updated regularly so the technology is always fresh and ready to support the changing needs of your property. New features and functionality lead the way to adopting better methods of engaging with guests and operating your property profitably. At the same time, the hotel management software should encourage connections to other hospitality technology with a robust menu of integrations, so your property can craft the ideal tech stack.
As you evaluate your choices, look for hospitality management software that is responsive to your needs and in tune with the industry. The hospitality industry is always evolving and your HMS should be your ally in maintaining relevancy and effectiveness.
Are you thinking of adopting hotel management software at your property? Take a quick video tour of Cloudbeds award-winning hospitality management suite to see how it can meet your needs.