Nowadays, more and more small and mid-size hotel owners are making use of effective property management systems (PMS) for the efficient functioning of their properties. A property management system is an application/software designed specifically for hospitality businesses. It basically makes life easier for hotel staff by providing them all the necessary resources and tools to ensure smooth functioning of hotel’ amenities and facilities, thereby leading to better service to hotel’s clients.
A property management system can be of great use in better performance of various tasks in a hotel, such as in reservations, bookings, inventory management, housekeeping, room service, billing and accounting, marketing, report generation etc. Owing to the fact that a Hotel PMS is capable of performing various tasks of a hotel, it should be properly configured to meet the specific needs of a hotel.
The hotel property management systems should ideally have all necessary features that can make life easier for the hotel staff and help them to be as efficient as possible in real time work environment. Let’s throw some light on the reservation feature in a property management system. This feature should be well integrated with the other functions of the hotel and should be able to offer tools that will facilitate the creation and updation of reservations for businesses, groups and individuals. Further, the system should also have functions that will help in keeping track of important factors such as room confirmations, room cancellations, deposits, room blocking, wait-listing etc.
An efficient property management system will also have features that will assist in analysis, forecasting and control of room rates. This will help the management in ensuring that their rooms are being offered at competitive rates in the market. Further, there will be additional features for the management that will help them make sound business decisions and understand whether they’re able to draw enough revenue from their property. If not, the system should be able to generate reports that can help in taking corrective measures.
Another important feature that any successful property management system should have is – Profile handling. The main purpose of this feature is to keep comprehensive records of all the groups, guests, agents, sources, business accounts and other important contacts of the hotel. Room management is the other feature that keeps track of the housekeeping, maintenance and facility management. The accounting feature in a property management system is generally used for accounting functions like billing, invoicing, bill payments, accounts research etc. The reporting feature is basically meant for generating reports for management, which are then used to take critical business decisions aimed at improving customer satisfaction levels in the hotel.
Prior to making a final decision about buying a property management system, you must ensure that you’re fully aware of the needs of your hotel/resort/inn. You should first make a list of all the features that will help in increasing the efficiency of your hospitality business and then invite quotations from various providers. In the end, conduct comprehensive research and carry out comparative analysis to settle on a software which will offer you good value for money.