It might have taken a while for everyone to get on board, but today you’d be hard pressed to find any hotelier of significant size who isn’t using a Property Management System (PMS). Property Management Systems today come in two types – the on-premise set up, and the more recent cloud-based system. But to stay ahead of the competition there’s really only one choice here, and that’s cloud.
When the first on-premise PMSs were introduced, they helped hoteliers reduce manual effort, and with it the chance of errors. This left staff free to serve customers. However, those early systems were expensive to install and maintain, and as commerce moved online, lacked the real-time flexibility and security to compete with cloud.
As a result, hoteliers have come to realize that on-premise PMS, great though it once seemed, has too many drawbacks to remain competitive today:
High hardware costs: On-premise systems require hardware to be installed, maintained, and regularly upgraded.
- High software costs: They also need licensed software, which isn’t cheap, as well as qualified IT staff to keep everything up to date.
- Poor security: Vulnerability to data breaches is a major problem.
- Poor online connectivity: OTAs aren’t connected in real-time, so revenue managers cannot respond quickly to changing situations, ultimately leading to lost profits.
- Fixed location: These systems only work on the premises, limiting you to ‘one property one system’. That means everything has to be handled manually and locally.
In contrast, a cloud-based PMS not only addresses these issues, but can also offer a number of significant advantages.
- Lower costs: You can eliminate the need for expensive hardware, avoid paying for licensed software, and relax in the knowledge that you won’t have to pay for costly upgrades.
- Security: It lets you use the latest technology, constantly updating, which means your systems will always remain secure.
- Online integration: Revenue management can be carried out in real-time using integrated distribution channels.
- Remote access: Anyone can access the cloud from anywhere, ensuring you are free to manage multiple properties with a single sign on/centralized control.
- Data analysis: The cloud allows you to capture, store, and analyze data across all your properties, helping you to make better informed decisions.
In short, the cloud is cheaper to set up and operate, and offers greater speed, efficiency, and security than on-premise systems. Meanwhile, managers at the group level can use the data to take real-time decisions to maximize occupancy, ADR, or profits, as required. Managers can access securely stored and up-to-date data from anywhere at anytime, simplifying the process of hands-on management. According to Hotelogix, a leading PMS provider, a cloud-based PMS helps hoteliers to elevate service standards and establish digital connections with guests that would never have been possible with the older technology.
Everyone understands that change is sometimes difficult. When you and your staff are familiar with your current system it might seem easier to stick with the tried and tested – but doing so will leave you at a significant competitive disadvantage. Your guests deserve the best you can offer, and a cloud-based PMS helps you to raise the bar.