Independent hoteliers rely on technology to operate today in a way that has never been necessary. Still, many often need help understanding how to approach gaining access to the tools they need within their allotted budget. Without support from a brand, these operators need access to reliable, centralized tools capable of simplifying operations and improving revenue amid an indefatigable labor crisis. Technology providers have stepped up to the plate across the industry to assist in every way possible, but the foundation of any hospitality technology strategy begins with a robust property management system (PMS) capable of providing the support independent operators require.
Here is a look at five ways modern PMS technology is saving independent hoteliers in their day-to-day operations:
Fast, Reliable Training
The labor crisis remains the most significant challenge impacting all hoteliers, but independent operators have fewer options than their branded competition when needing fresh hands. Independents simply don’t have the time to onboard new hires at the same speed they did three or four years ago. To keep pace with hiring, operators need access to comprehensive digital training tools that reinforce key learnings without slowing down hotel operations.
A PMS is only as valuable as an operator’s ability to use it. E-learning services have enjoyed a surge in popularity thanks to their ability to allow hotel workers to learn at their own pace and answer most questions without input from management. Locating a confident PMS partner capable of offering live chat help is also vital for onboarding new trainees during periods of high activity.
Streamlined Loyalty Oversight
Independent hoteliers are always looking for new ways to compete against branded loyalty programs, but this process can be automated with the right PMS in place. An independent organization’s ability to scale its loyalty and benefits program is directly tied to long-term growth throughout hospitality. Today, technology is helping hoteliers improve access to loyalty programs by simplifying their rewards and optimizing delivery to guests.
Modern PMS technology allows hoteliers to manage their independent loyalty programs directly or integrate with loyalty modules alongside the core PMS software. All-in-one PMS technology will enable operators to support their ideal loyalty program, from a simple one-property reward structure to a multi-property benefits plan.
The most important aspect of hospitality to independent operators is the desire to stand out from their competition, and to do so today requires third-party integrations and a robust PMS capable of managing them. Independents must provide potential partners with an avenue to introduce new experiences through open APIs. These capabilities allow them to pursue their ideal growth path and embrace the identity they envisioned for the property at its conception.
To reach this point, independents must have access to reliable technology that works well together. Operators are advised to work closely with their PMS partner to determine which integrations are open to them and how they can arrange their tech stack to support future integrations as they become available.
Cloud-Based Support and Recovery
While cloud-based technology is most often lauded for its ability to improve communication, mobility, and flexibility on property, it is also invaluable for disaster recovery. If independent hoteliers encounter a situation where their data is lost and unrecoverable, it can be challenging to bounce back without branded support. However, with the right PMS partner, independent operators can rest easily that their cloud-based data is protected in case of any outages or breaches and backed up for safekeeping.
Some independent hoteliers may run small operations, but they often have big aspirations. Securing a reliable PMS partner will help fuel an independent’s potential for growth and scalability through flexibility and customization. Whether independents operate a portfolio of all-inclusive resorts, full-service convention hotels, small destination getaways, midscale city-center drop-offs, or a combination of the above, modern PMS technology can adjust to meet their evolving needs.
These capabilities are not novel in isolation, but today’s all-in-one PMS technology is helping operators of all sizes bridge the gap in capabilities between independent hoteliers and big brands. The greatest challenge facing hoteliers today is not if they should adopt these tools but when they will embrace their abilities.
Warren Dehan is the President of Maestro, the preferred cloud and on-premises PMS solution for independent hotels, luxury resorts, conference centers, vacation rentals, and multi-property groups. Maestro was first to market with a fully integrated Windows PMS and Sales & Catering solution and is continuing that trend with leading edge web and mobile based solutions. Platform and deployment independence present Maestro as an investment that will continue to grow and adapt as new technologies emerge.
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