You got the message loud and clear: To be successful, hospitality companies must invest in technology. In response, you tossed aside your papers and pens and adopted the best Property Management System (PMS) to meet your hotel's needs. So why aren't you seeing the results you expected?
1. Your staff was unprepared for change
A great deal of time and effort goes into planning and facilitating a new PMS implementation. Hundreds of hours are spent selecting, refining and configuring the system to make sure it meets IT requirements and that it addresses all the different needs of your hotel's guests. A critical element that is often overlooked is the impact the PMS will have on the hotel's staff. While it's tempting to leverage all the new capabilities, your staff can only absorb change at a certain pace. So while your PMS may be ready to roll with all the latest bells and whistles, your employees may be feeling overwhelmed and reluctant to use the system – leading to low ROI. This is can be particularly problematic if you are a franchisor expecting your franchisees to use the new PMS.
The solution: A new application rollout is a major overhaul that can disrupt every employee’s daily work experience and productivity. Research and human nature dictate that most people are resistant to change, preferring to stay in the comfort zone of processes they already know and use. Creating a robust change management process as a part of your PMS implementation can go a long way to alleviate any fears and concerns. Take time to communicate to your staff and hotel operators why the new system is being implemented, what outcomes are expected, and the overall benefits once it is implemented.2. High employee training costs
Ask any established hotelier about the biggest challenge their business faces on a regular basis and you’re likely to hear the same response – labor. A report from Deloitte, Hospitality 2015 – Game changers or spectators, found staffing costs account for a tremendous proportion of hotel operation costs. Deloitte’s report states that, ‘An average hotelier spends 45 percent of operating expenses and 33 per cent of revenues on labor costs.’ High employee turnover continues to plague the industry and cause extra costs in recruitment and training. According to the report 52% of the cost of replacing staff is productivity loss and 14% is orientation and training. Add training of a new PMS to the mix and - Ouch! That's going to hurt your bottom line.
The solution: Traditional training methods for assisting hotel employees with their PMS include: Having them complete lengthy e-learning modules, participate in formal classroom training, or call a helpdesk. This can be problematic as hotels often have limited staff and don't have time for lengthy training sessions, be it online or in the classroom. Calling a helpdesk also presents many issues such taking too long until the problem is solved, high costs involved with staffing the helpdesk, and frustrated hotel guests. As a result, many hotel operators are turning to Performance Support Systems, such as Leo, which shorten the training duration by supporting users in real-time, in the live application.
3. Entering the wrong information
The PMS enables the hotel to coordinate the operational functions of the front office, rates and inventory management and accounting - meaning a large number of hotel associates including front desk agents, managers, housekeeping staff and night audit staff all use the system daily for different tasks. This can include but is not limited to guest bookings, guest details, online reservations, credit card transactions, telephone interfaces, accounts receivable, housekeeping optimization, etc. Entering the wrong information into the systems can lead to upset customers and come at a high price to your hotel revenues.
The solution: "To err is human" (Alexander Pope) and even your most experienced hotel associate is going to make errors. The same Performance Support System that you use as a training tools can also be designed to identify errors in real-time, based on pre-defined rules. It alerts the user and then guides them through the correct task completion, preventing costly errors. An added bonus is that the Leo system also has a built-in automation function that can complete the task for the user with the click of a button.
Have you recently implemented a new property management system and have tips you’d like to share? Please leave a reply below.
Kryon Systems helps organizations around the world to improve their business results by shortening or eliminating training, reducing users’ mistakes, increasing productivity and facilitating compliance with corporate policies and procedures. Kryon’s flagship solution, Leo, provides performance support to organizations. When using Leo, business managers can rest assured that their workforce performs at the level they expect, from the first time, every time.