Checking in to a hotel room, I realize how pleasant I feel when the staff greets me with a smile and assists me with my luggage and processes right from the time I enter the door till I check-in to my room. This gesture gives me a sense of positivity but I wonder if it makes the staff feel positive too? It also makes me think how hoteliers manage their daily tasks so efficiently and still manage to smile at every guest that walks in through their door?
There is a lot that goes behind the scenes to make hotel management and guest experience successful. While we all know that running a hotel business, and especially an independent hotel business is no child’s play, there are ways in which a hotelier can simplify processes which can translate into higher guest experience, better business and happier staff. When a small independent hotel decides to focus on simplifying things, every staff member benefits – from the front desk executives, housekeeping and F&B staff, travel desk to the General Manager.
Let’s take an example
It is not uncommon to see small independent hotels using pen and paper or spreadsheets for taking reservations. Now in this scenario, if a booking comes from Booking.com, the staff at the front desk manually inputs the reservation in the spreadsheet or ledger. After a few days, the same guest calls up to request for airport pick-up and this time, your night staff at the front desk erroneously enters it against another guest’s name. This can lead to multiple issues A. It negatively impacts the guest experience B. It has the probability of translating into an unhappy review of your hotel online, directly affecting your online reputation C. It involves additional time from your staff or General Manager to rectify the issue D. Making up for this lapse by offering a discount or some other compensation to the guest affects your hotel’s revenues E. It hampers the errant staff’s morale, who is often juggling multiple roles in a small hotel setup.
Now, imagine this same situation with your hotel using simple and automated technology like hotel reservation software
Your staff logs in to the system, creates different packages to be distributed on Booking.com and simply selects the add-on services to be included in the packages, in this case – airport pick-up. The system automatically updates the packages on Booking.com. When the guest makes a reservation, he gets to see all the packages displayed by your hotel, reads the description and chooses the one that offers airport pick-up and proceeds with the booking.
This reservation gets automatically captured back into the front desk screen on the system, leaving no room for errors. Further, the staff can assign the task to the travel desk easily, ensuring that the pick-up happens in time and the promised service gets delivered to the guest. This translates into a happier guest, happier staff and also a positive impact on your business. It also frees up staff time so that they can focus on enhancing guest experience and deliver a flawless experience.
In order to adopt technology to simplify processes, the most viable option for small and mid-sized independents is cloud-based property management systems because unlike on-premise systems, they don’t require huge IT infrastructure like servers and other investments. The data backup is powerful, online visibility is stronger, anytime anywhere accessibility is a boon and the real-time updates give your hotel a competitive edge over the others.
Rising adoption rate of cloud-based PMS
Data suggests that independent hoteliers are considering Cloud PMS to meet rising guest demands.
As per 2015 Lodging Technology Study, one in five hotel technology executives said that cloud-based solutions would be a priority this year, and most activity is centered around property management systems (PMS). Current install rates for cloud-based PMS hover at around 9%, and an additional 15% of hotels are planning a migration in the year ahead.
Another survey on property management system users ranging from big hotel chains to independent hotels, ‘38% plan to increase their software investment for 2015, and 55% will maintain the same investment. Among those with a specific investment purpose, 70% will invest in software upgrades’.
How hotels have benefitted with Cloud PMS
Bond Hotel, USA increases occupancy to 95% after quitting manual ways of management
The hotel was earlier capturing reservations manually and lacked online visibility. Using Hotelogix Cloud PMS, the hotel increased its occupancy to 95%.Automation has allowed the hotel to carry out their day-to-day operations effectively… Find out how
Southcliff Hotel, UK saves 6 man hours per day
The hotel adopted cloud technology and bid adieu to issues like rate parity, overbookings, and long check-in processes that were handled manually. Moreover, due to automation, the staff saves 6 hours per day … Read more
When an independent hotelier shifts his focus on simplifying business with the help of automated technology, a lot more can be achieved. It’s good to let your staff do what they are best at i.e. serving guests while technology takes care of the rest.