Running a lodging operation is a complicated task involving a lot of moving parts. Hoteliers must manage reservations, communicate with guests, and oversee staff—among numerous other tasks. The right property management system (PMS) can alleviate a lot of the work and stress associated with property management and improve operational efficiency. There are many systems on the market these days, so it’s important to do your research. Beyond finding a system with the necessary features your property requires, here are a few of the most important things you should be looking for in a PMS:
There are technological solutions for almost every facet of hotel operations. Revenue management software helps to determine optimal pricing strategies, payment gateways facilitate credit card payments, channel managers regulate inventory offered on third-party distribution channels and the list goes on. Most hoteliers are using a collection of these systems and it’s important to find a PMS that is capable of integrating with them; seamless communication between all systems will maximize efficiency and reduce frustrating errors. When a PMS is integrated with a hotel’s various distribution channels, for example, inventory will be automatically updated across all platforms—eliminating the requirement for manual entry and the potential for double-bookings. And integration between a revenue manager and your PMS makes price adjustments automatic. The PMS will push occupancy information to the revenue manager, which (after determining the best pricing strategy) will push optimal room rates back to the PMS.
We’re living in a mobile era. So, for any tech solution to be relevant today, it needs to be optimized for mobile devices. When it comes to a PMS, this has huge advantages for lodging operators. Not only does it enable managers to oversee operations on-the-go, but it also equips staff to serve customers better. Liberation from the front desk means they can engage with guests in a more personable and authentic way. In fact, many hotels are losing the front desk all-together. A mobile-optimized PMS also streamlines communication between staff. Housekeepers, for example, can update room status in-real-time, ensuring efficient check-ins.
As a business owner, you don’t want the systems you use to limit potential growth. Make sure your tech solutions have the ability to accommodate the needs of an expanding business. Whether you’re hoping to add rooms, build a campsite, open new locations or start offering adventure tours, choosing a PMS with scalability and additional optional modules will give you the freedom you need to achieve your business goals.
Whenever you make an important purchase, you need to do your research. That should include inquiries into the reputation of the provider you’re considering. Your PMS is the backbone of your business, so you don’t want to take any risks. Read what current customers have to say about their experience. Any solution you choose should have a history of reliably serving operations like your own.
And remember to consider the history of adaptability. The tech world is constantly evolving and your provider needs to be able to keep up.
You’re in the hospitality business, so the importance of customer service should come as no surprise. Be sure the PMS provider you choose shows a commitment to strong customer support. It’s essential that staff get adequate training on new systems and that problems are resolved quickly. Take a look at what support they have available. In addition to call-in support, video tutorials and other online resources can be hugely beneficial.
A good PMS is essential for running a successful lodging operation. So choosing the right system matters. When weighing your options, be sure to prioritize integration capability, mobile optimization, scalability, reliability and customer support. Good luck!