Accommodation management can feel like you need to be a master of multiple specialisms including marketing, accounting and maintenance, on top of the daily tasks of ensuring your guests are well looked after. Property management systems have evolved so much in the last decade to take account of the changing needs of the market. Whether you are managing a resort, hotel, motel, real estate or residential property, your software should be enabling you to run all aspects of your business smoothly and efficiently. So if your current system is holding you back, it’s time to explore the new generation of property management software features that can save you time and money.
Software options in the accommodation industry are developing at lightning speed so it’s important that you choose to work with a software provider that is committed to not only staying on top of technology developments but setting the trend so that your business can take advantage of the very latest innovations. Here are the key property management software features we think you need to look for.
While having great visibility on as many channels as possible is really important, giving customers the opportunity to book directly with you quickly and easily is still a vital component of a great property management system and avoids the commission costs associated with bookings taken via OTAs. Look for a fully-responsive direct booking system that can be used on any device and integrates with your front desk system to ensure that latest availability is always at your fingertips.
Ensuring your property is visible to as many potential customers as possible around the world is one of the most vital property management software features to look for. Look for a channel manager that has direct two-way integration, automatic and instant updating and multiple connectivity partners, including Online Travel Agents, Meta Search Engines and GDS (Global Distribution Systems) channels.
Working on the go comes with the territory for property managers. This means that one of the most valuable property management software features you need is mobile app technology. From checking room status and availability to getting your guests checked in to asset management, maintenance and property management inspections, you need tools that are built specifically for this. You need to look for software suppliers that understand the unique demands you face and have in-house app developers who ensure that you can manage your business from anywhere on any device.
With so many aspects of your property to manage, buying separate pieces of software can prove costly and time-consuming. If your property management software system can also manage trust accounting this is just one less unnecessary add-on that you have to consider. Of course, it’s important to also ensure that it’s compliant with statutory legislation as well as being fast and easy to use.
Stand out from your competitors and have your guest communication personalised and tailored to your business and customer needs. Communication is a key part of the day-to-day job for most residential property managers. Whether it’s emailing tenants or communicating with property owners or maintenance managers, you need to be able to create templates and automate as much of your communication as possible. Look for property management software that incorporates this as standard.
Getting used to using new software and making sure you are getting the full benefit of all the available features can be time-consuming and frustrating. Look for software suppliers with a great onboarding program as well as an excellent reputation for having a local, easily accessible support team and service desk. Having ‘how-to’ e-learning tools available for you to access yourself can also save you precious time trying to figure things out yourself.
Comprehensive, accurate real time data is vital in any business but none more so than the accommodation industry. That’s why robust property management analytics are a must when looking at the most important property management software features. Look for an easy to use dashboard that allows you to track your booking progress against your pre-defined goals and compare daily, weekly or monthly booking forecasts against budgets.
Finally just a few thoughts on the concept of cloud technology. A huge number of property management software companies now extol the virtues of their cloud-based software. At HiRUM we take a slightly different view. For us, the benefits of the cloud can only be fully realised through Private Cloud – the only safe Cloud solution you can introduce to your business from a data security perspective.
HiRUM Software Solutions have been at the forefront of property management software for over 20 years. In fact, our Complete Business Solution, has been designed to not only include all of the property management software features we have talked about here but many more.