There are a number of competing hotel PMS options out there at the moment, but not all platforms are created equal.
The question you need to ask is whether or not the solution you choose will be able to stand up to changing demands and expectations in the long term.
Here are some of the things to look out for in a truly future-proof hotel PMS:
Cloud hosting & mobile friendliness
The influence of the cloud can be felt across every segment of the hospitality market today. In the context of a hotel PMS, this type of hosting solution will make it easier to access the system from any device, no matter where you happen to be located.
Staff will be able to log in and keep up-to-date with information that’s relevant to their role throughout the day, whether that’s changes to the housekeeping schedule, requests for emergency maintenance or any other issue that needs to be handled on the fly.
Hotels have really needed to step up their game in terms of compliance this year, with the rollout of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) still having repercussions.
The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) is also relevant for any organisation that wants to handle card transactions without falling foul of regulators and potentially business-crippling fines.
Your PMS must meet both of these standards, because if it doesn’t, your hotel might face the likelihood of being hit with a major fine and further punitive action. Unfair? Probably – but that’s life in the GDPR age.
A future-proof PMS won’t be inflexible when it comes to bolting on extra functions - especially those supplied via third party providers.
For example, you might want to link your PMS with an external platform that handles payments, or a service that puts you in control of the guest review process.
In this instance, interoperability is a blessing and will enable you to offer even better guest experiences while remaining connected to them long after the date of departure.
The rising threat of security breaches and botnet-based attacks is a big problem for hotels and it’s understandably difficult for independents to fight back against cybercrime with their own, limited resources.
A cutting-edge PMS should give you peace of mind when it comes to data security - especially if it’s hosted in the cloud where it can be protected against malicious activity around the clock.
It’s no longer useful to think of a hotel PMS as a straightforward upgrade from the traditional booking diary and back office ledger.
Ideally your solution should be packed with useful features and optional extras that will give your hotel the best chance of thriving in an increasingly competitive marketplace. And those features should keep coming, too, via effortless updates that arrive regularly.
From managing staff to engaging with guests after their first visit to secure a second booking, a PMS needs to be far more than just a digital ledger.
If you accept the need to adopt a future-proof PMS for your hotel then you’ve already taken the first step on the path to making your business more sustainable and successful.
Don’t settle for second best; pick a PMS that ticks all of the boxes and boasts the flexibility you need to grow.