The Ultimate Guide to Select the Right HOTEL MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE SYSTEM
The hospitality world has been witnessing a significant change in recent years due to tech innovations. Hotel Management Software has never lost its momentum. In contrast, the traction for the hotel management software is increasing by the day, because of its enormous benefits.
On the other side, huge numbers of players are getting into the hotel software business. It ends up in a way that hoteliers are often perplexed in selecting the perfect hotel management software for their independent property/hotel chains. Given this backdrop, it becomes crucial for hoteliers to get a clear understanding of hotel management technology and how useful it is.
- What is a hotel management software system?
- Types of Hotel Management Software System
- Cloud hotel management software system
- On-premise hotel management software system
- Differences between on-premise and cloud hotel management software system
- Why do you need hotel management software?
- Benefits of hotel management software
- Common modules available in Hotel Management Software
- Features of hotel management software
- 5 Common functionalities every hotel management software system should have
- How to select the right hotel management system?
- About Cheerze Connect HMS
What is Hotel Management Software System?
Hotel Management System (shortly known as HMS) is a software platform that assists your hotel staff in automating most of your hotel routine operations, streamlining operational workflows, and enhancing the productivity levels with low labor & IT cost.
The hotel management software system is not only a tool that helps you in automating your hotel’s day-to-day management tasks. In fact, the right hotel management system serves you in boosting your hotel’s revenue by increasing bookings. And also it plays a profound role in enhancing your entire guest experience right from the moment the guest books online, throughout their stay, and post-stay.
In other words, Hotel Management Software is the heart of your hotel operations.
Types of Hotel Management Software
Hotel Management Software evolved over the years. Based on the technology leveraged, hotel management software is classified into two types:
- Cloud-based Hotel Management Software
- On-premise Hotel Management Software
Cloud Hotel Management Software
It is a browser-based software. Like on-premise HMS, it also provides all the functionalities that help hotels to run their basic operations. The major advantage is, you don’t need to worry about server maintenance and all other IT-related operations. It will be taken care of by a third-party. You need to create a property account. With Internet connectivity, you can easily manage your hotel on any device at any time.
On-premise Hotel Management Software
It is a desktop-based hotel management software. Even though this technology exists for decades, it still fulfills the growing demands of hoteliers. You can integrate OTAs like TripAdvisor, Expedia, etc. and other third-party systems like accounting interface, SMS interface as the way you do it in Cloud HMS. On-premise HMS has to be installed on your local server, and you can access it only on PCs. The setback for this kind of HMS is, hotels need to invest in server maintenance which makes it costlier that cloud.
Differences between Cloud HMS and On-premise HMS
Today’s workplace demands instant accessibility to the information. Cloud-based HMS offers anywhere any time accessibility to your hotel property management system account. You can view the entire hotel status, do things like assigning tasks for housekeeping staff, room booking, check-ins, check-outs and so on.
When it comes to on-premise hotel management software, you can access your property accouns only on desktops, and within your office premises. If the circumstances demand outside access to the software, It can be done by connecting the devices through a Virtual Private Network (VPN). But it is very complex and time-intensive as you need to go through multiple processes.
Your data is the treasure trove that gives insights about your guests. Therefore, the damage caused by losing this sensitive data is insurmountable.
Cloud-based software stores the copy of your original data automatically in the secondary site (cloud) without any human intervention.
In on-premise HMS, like server maintenance, you need to deploy a backup program, and also assign personnel to manage it.
In case of hardware failures, you can quickly retrieve the data in cloud software, but it took a considerable amount of time to retrieve data in on-premise. In comparison with the cloud, on-premise software users will have more control over their data.
Another factor that increased the cloud HMS adoption rate is subscription-based pricing. As a hotelier, you pay for what you’ve used on a monthly basis, whereas, in on-premise, you need to pay the upfront cost and Annual Maintainenance Cost (AMC) charges.
It is essential that the software you use should scale out to meet your business needs. While comparing with On-premise HMS, cloud applications are very easy to integrate with third-party systems. This gives your business the flexibility to incorporate innovative technologies based on future demands.
You can select either a legacy HMS or cloud-based HMS. The functionality remains the same. But before you select any of this, you need to be well aware of your hotel operational & business goals and identify which solution better meets your needs.
Why do you need a Hotel Management Software System?
The ultimate reason hoteliers count on Hotel Management technology is to take the edge off from their basic hotel operations. In the fast-paced technology world, guests expect faster services from their hosts. Managing operations and meeting ultra high-end guest needs turned out to be a big challenge.
Hotel Management Software helps you in finding the right fit between your hotel operations and guest management.
Your hotel needs a centralized Property Management System to simplify operations in order to reap effective results. A right property management system helps hotel operators to make reservations, room bookings, check-ins and check-outs, posting, night audits, and extended guest stay with few clicks. It drastically reduces the time spent on administrative tasks and lets you focus on growing new revenue streams.
Your Property Management system helps your staff in managing the hotel bookings with no efforts at all. Your staff gets notifications if they receive a booking, and it will automatically update across the booking platforms.
Hence, the time involved in updating bookings manually is reduced, and it avoids other mistakes like overbooking. In such a way, the right Property Management Software allows your staff to interact more with guests rather than involved in doing onerous tasks.
Manage distribution channels
To get notified in this digital world, it is vital for hoteliers to make their digital footprint in distribution channels that include Online Travel Agencies (Expedia, Priceline, etc.), Metasearch engines (Google Hotel Ads, Trivago and to name a few.) Global Distribution System (GDS), and Internet Distribution System (IDS). Connecting with these channels helps you to show up whenever your guests search for hotels or accommodation.
To effectively manage this, you need to have a robust Channel Manager that integrates with your hotel PMS and other third-party booking systems. With the integrated channel manager, you can find it easy to update real-time information about your hotel rooms.
The true purpose of the hospitality industry is to meet the guests' needs and make them gratified. As times change, guest expectation changes too! Understanding the unmet needs of discerning guests is essential which leads you to deliver valuable services.
Your hotel management software with exhaustive guest history lets you understand your guests' needs, their preferences by analyzing their previous stay and helps in delivering personalized service at the time of their second visit.
With this guest insights data, you can also understand the new needs of your guests and make personas to create effective marketing campaigns.
With the right hotel management software, handling hotel operations and guests become a breeze.
Benefits of using a Hotel Management Software System
Investing in the right Hotel technology renders various benefits to you. The benefits will vary based on the software solution you’re choosing to use. Understand your current & future technology goals, business goals and find out the right software that well-aligns with your goals and helps you in achieving that. Some of the benefits are,
A shift from administrative tasks to guest focus
- Hotel Management Software plays an instrumental role in shifting your staff from operation-oriented to guest-oriented.
- By automating hotel operations, it relieves your staff from routine tasks and allows them to provide exceptional guest services in order to make your guest stay unforgettable.
- With HMS, you can attain high operational efficiency by cutting down cost on labor, and other operational expenditures.
A sure-fire way to receive more direct bookings
- You can receive more commission-free bookings directly through your website and Facebook page.
- If you haven’t invested in a web booking engine, you are missing out on a great opportunity in converting your website visitors into guests. Providing your customers the easiest way to reach you is the best way to increase your direct bookings. You can achieve it by integrating your website with an easy-to-use online booking system.
- With the increasing usage of mobile devices, it becomes imperative for you to create a responsive website or optimize your website for mobile devices to ensure a frictionless booking process.
Explore new margins by increasing visibility
- In this digital era, having a strong online presence is essential to acquire new customers. You can maximize your visibility globally by advertising your property in the OTAs and other distribution channels. In this way, you can tread into new margins which you never think of reaching out before.
- The problem arises here! Hoteliers need to log in to multiple third-party systems to add rooms, edit prices, amenities, etc. However, with an effective Property Management System & intuitive booking engine, both integrated with robust Channel Manager, adding and editing the prices across all the distributions become smooth sailing.
Convert your guests into loyal customers
- Indirect competition is on the rise. To outpace competitors, hoteliers need to demonstrate the value they provide to their guests. Anticipating your customers’ needs & providing relevant services is the key to achieve success. Hotel Management Software comes with a comprehensive guest history. It helps hoteliers to understand their guests' needs from their previous stay and assist them in making their guests’ next stay into a pleasant one.
- “Hotels worry about how they can beat their competitors at what their competitors are best at. It’s very unlikely that you’ll provide a better booking experience than booking.com; it’s very unlikely that you’ll provide more choice than Expedia. Success is about identifying where your real strengths lie. For hotels, this is in the guest experience and level of service.” Maarten Plesman, CRO, Revinate
- As stated, providing high service levels is the only way left behind for hoteliers to stand apart from the crowd.
Common Hotel Management Software Modules
Front Office | Back Office | Point of Sales | Booking Engine | Channel Manager | House keeping | Laundry | Bar Stock | Guest History | Food Costing | SMS Interface | Asset Management | Accounts Receivables | Central Reservation System | Central Information System | Gate Pass & Security | Keycard Interface | Loyalty Interface
Features of Hotel Management Software System
1. Easy check-in & check-out
2. Comprehensible dashboard
3. Report & Analytics
4. Intuitive interfaces
5. Centralized platform
6. Role-based access
7. Secure Payment Gateway
8. Mobile optimization
9. Real-time reports on Mobile
10. Mobile booking
11. Responsive Booking Engine
12. Integrated to 200+ booking channels, and much more.
Common functionalities every Hotel Management Software should have
Hoteliers should be very careful in choosing their HMS. Every hotel has a different scale of operations and business. Therefore, it is important for Hotel Management Systems to provide a flexible and efficient system.
Hoteliers should also pick the one which meets their workflow exactly. It is important for every hotelier to know the major functionalities an HMS should have.
· Connectivity with OTA & GDS
o New trends are emerging in every industry and Hospitality industry is not an exception. Tourism and Lodging have changed drastically with Global Distribution Systems (GDS) and Online Travel Agents (OTA). It is important to be connected with top GDS's and OTA's to gain more visitors. HMS should be capable of working directly with such leading OTA's and also be able to manage the bookings generated through them. The biggest advantage is it could help you pull lots of first-time visitors to hotels.
· Channel Manager
o Connecting with OTAs and GDS are inevitable to enhance your visibility in the crowded marketplace. More than this, it is essential to have an efficient & centralized system to manage these distributions smoothly. Channel Manager helps hoteliers to make changes in price, availabilities, and amenities across the channels with simple steps. Besides, it automatically updates the room status throughout the booking platforms and eliminates operational errors like overbookings.
· Booking Engine
o An exclusive booking engine is very important for an HMS as it provides easy accessibility for visitors to reach your hotel for inquiries and reservations. This helps hotels to gain direct revenue without commission. This could be a competitive advantage for hoteliers. They can retain their customers easily by providing such online access, special offers, etc.
· Cloud-powered PMS
o Cloud-based PMS has become popular in recent days due to the enormous benefits it provides. Some of the benefits are Automation of operations, Less investment on Infrastructure, Easy integration to third-party managers, Analyzing and tracking user choices, Personalized service for customers, Automated data backup, Security, and so on. High accessibility is one of the reasons that makes cloud-based systems a preferred choice.
· Integrated System
o Another important functionality that lubricates the hotel operational wheel is the ability to integrate with multiple hospitality tools. Be it an Online food ordering platform or Alexa, integrating these systems becomes pretty simple these days. It is very beneficial for hoteliers which enables them to stay relevant in the constantly evolving world.
· Revenue Management
o Finally, it is important to keep the business going. This requires a strong revenue management system that turns the life of hoteliers easy. Room pricing strategies, Forecasting Room Occupancy helps hoteliers to manage the revenue. It is important to evaluate the hotel's financial success to achieve better results.
How to select the right hotel management software?
Managing your hotel is not easy. You will often be pulled away in multiple directions. To overcome these challenges, you need to have an agile and effective hotel management software.
In the middle of multiple hoteling software, it becomes even tougher to pick the right one. Before making a purchase decision, it is always advisable to go for a free trial to understand the product’s usability, availability, support, and other aspects.
About Cheerze Connect Hotel Management Software System
Cheerze Connect is the most comprehensive hotel management software. With intuitive inbuilt modules, it becomes very convenient for you to manage all your hotel operations in a unified platform. With a mobility solution, you can manage and get access to important records on the fly.
Cheerze Connect recently received Premium Usability award and Rising Star award from FinancesOnline. They stated Cheerze Connect as the most comprehensive and extremely versatile hotel management software.
Are you looking for hotel management software? Do you want to enhance your hotel operations, guest satisfaction, and revenue?
Sign up today for a free trial.