Overcoming Fears of Upgrading Hotel PMS

We know upgrading your PMS solution is easier said than done. But rather than ignoring your PMS problems, If you don’t take action, you may be missing out on new growth opportunities!

Why the fear of change may be costing you more than you think

No matter how long you’ve had your hotel PMS, there will come a time when you need to upgrade your solution.  Maybe your hardware is outdated, and you don’t have all of the functionality you need, or your software doesn’t allow you to track and export all of the analytics required to make business decisions. In fact, according to Hospitality Technology’s 2023 Lodging Technology Study, 69 percent of respondents indicated they are adding, upgrading, or switching suppliers for their property-management systems sometime this year.

Yet many hotel owners who have outdated software are resistant to switching to more modern hotel property management systems (PMS). Often, the reason for this is that they have heard horror stories from other hoteliers who invested in new software that didn’t meet their unique requirements and ended up using their legacy software even though they knew it would impact their bottom-line profit. I had two specific conversations this week where FDM’s told me they really don’t like what they use today, but they are scared of starting all over. The thought of changing their PMS horrifies them.

Change is hard, and we know that upgrading your PMS solution is easier said than done. But rather than ignoring your PMS problems. If you don’t take action, you may be missing out on new growth opportunities.  If you don’t change, adapt and evolve, then you will become obsolete or, worse – extinct.

There are many reasons that hotels of all sizes hesitate to upgrade their PMS systems — even if they’re causing them loads of stress — and these are a few of the most common reasons we hear.

1. Disruption

The idea of changing a PMS strikes fear into your heart (and the hearts of every other hotelier) because it effectively means replacing the central nervous system of your business. And yet, this is precisely the operation that so many dealerships must undergo to stay competitive.

There are several reasons why a hotel may need to change its property management system, including:

  • Outdated technology: The hotel’s existing PMS may need to be updated and no longer meet the hotel’s needs or keep up with industry standards.

  • Lack of functionality: The hotel may have outgrown its existing PMS and require additional functionality, such as revenue management tools, channel management, or mobile accessibility.

  • Inadequate support: The hotel may be experiencing ongoing issues with its PMS, such as system crashes, data loss, or slow response times, and may need more support from the vendor.

  • Integration issues: The hotel may be using multiple systems that need to be integrated with its PMS, causing inefficiencies and data discrepancies.

  • Cost: The hotel may be paying too much for its current PMS and want to switch to a more cost-effective solution.

  • Brand standards: The hotel may be part of a larger brand or franchise and may need to switch to a PMS that meets brand standards and integrates with the brand’s other systems.

  • Staff turnover: The hotel may have experienced staff turnover, and the new staff may prefer a different PMS or have experience with another system.

Simply put, sticking with an outdated PMS is the easy way out. Sure, it might save you the initial pain of disrupting your business and your employees to implement a new system, but in the long run, the easy way out never pays off.

2. Costs

Is the cost of upgrading your PMS worrying you? It’s a valid concern, but realistically, managing your hotel with an outdated solution could be costing you more money in the first place.

For example, investing in a single PMS that includes all of the most important features and functions you need could be more cost-effective than the cost associated with stacking additional systems together to get all the desired features and functionality. Additionally, what are the costs associated with using your current system? Many hoteliers are being overcharged without knowing it.

Finally, with a modern cloud-based PMS, usually you are looking at payments month to month in smaller amounts rather than having to come up with a huge investment up front – and ongoing updates and maintenance are included.

Altogether, the hotel technology industry has seen major changes over the years, and being able to afford a modern PMS solution is easier than ever.

3. Pain of Implementation

The length of time it takes to switch to a new hotel property management system (PMS) can vary widely depending on several factors, such as the size of the hotel, the complexity of the hotel’s operations, and the features and capabilities of the new PMS. In general, however, the process can take as little as a few weeks.

The most important consideration for a hotel to implement a new property management system (PMS) is to ensure that the new system is a good fit for the hotel’s specific needs and goals. You should carefully evaluate the features and capabilities of potential PMS options to determine whether they meet the hotel’s requirements. Here are some other important considerations for a hotel to keep in mind when implementing a new PMS:

  • Ease of use: The new PMS should be easy for hotel staff to use and should require minimal training. A system that is overly complex or difficult to use can lead to frustration and decreased efficiency.

  • Integration with other systems: The new PMS should be able to integrate with other hotel systems, such as revenue management, accounting, and marketing software. This can help streamline operations and reduce the risk of errors.

  • Customization options: The new PMS should offer a range of customization options that allow the hotel to tailor the software to its specific needs. This can help ensure the system is flexible enough to meet the hotel’s evolving needs over time.

  • Cost: The cost of implementing a new PMS can vary widely depending on the vendor and the features included. Hotels should carefully evaluate the costs associated with each option to ensure that the new system fits within their budget.

  • Vendor support: The PMS vendor should provide strong support throughout the implementation process and should be responsive to any issues or questions that arise. This can help ensure a smooth transition and minimize disruptions to hotel operations.

Investing in a new PMS is a big decision that may introduce some challenges along the way, but the benefits of a new system far outweigh any of the challenges of implementation if you partner with the right tech provider. Hotels should consider their needs, budget, and goals when selecting a new PMS and work closely with the PMS vendor to ensure a smooth transition and adequate support post-implementation. Careful planning, training, testing, and communication can help make the process easier and more seamless for everyone involved.

No Reason To Delay The Switch

It is common for hotels to periodically evaluate and upgrade their PMS to take advantage of new features, improve efficiency, and enhance the guest experience. As technology continues to evolve and the hospitality industry becomes increasingly competitive, it is likely that more hotels will consider upgrading their PMS to stay ahead of the curve.

As Charles Darwin said, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.”

There are several benefits to getting a new hotel property management system:

  • Improved efficiency: A new PMS can streamline many of the hotel’s operations, reducing the amount of time and effort required to manage guest reservations, check-ins, check-outs, and other tasks. This can help staff work more efficiently, ultimately leading to better guest satisfaction and higher revenue.

  • Increased revenue: A modern PMS can provide hotels with valuable data and analytics to help them make better business decisions. By having access to real-time information about occupancy rates, room rates, and other key performance indicators, hotels can make more informed pricing and marketing decisions that can help them increase their revenue.

  • Better guest experiences: A new PMS can provide hotels with tools to enhance the guest experience, such as online check-in and check-out, mobile room keys, and personalized guest profiles. These features can help guests feel more comfortable and valued, leading to better reviews and repeat business.

  • Integration with other systems: A modern PMS can integrate with other hotel systems, such as revenue management, accounting, and marketing software. This can help hotels automate many of their operations, reduce the risk of errors, and provide a more seamless experience for guests.

  • Increased security: A new PMS can provide hotels with enhanced security features, such as data encryption, secure payment processing, and user access controls. This can help protect sensitive guest information and reduce the risk of data breaches or other security incidents.

Skyware Hospitality Solutions all in one cloud-based PMS is a great option for hotels looking to upgrade. Our solution comes equipped with all the powerful features you’ll need out of the box. Skyware also provides seamless integrations with other systems, such as online booking engines, payment gateways, and channel managers, which can help hotels streamline their operations and increase efficiency. The modern platform is designed to be user-friendly and easy to navigate, with a customizable dashboard that allows hotel staff to view and manage their operations in real-time. The system is also designed to be scalable so that it can be used by hotels of all sizes, from small boutique properties to large resorts.

Our customer success team onboards each customer, ensuring their confidence in their system. And if any issues arise later on, our technical support can help 24/7. Finally, Skyware is one of the most effective systems in the industry and offers several flexible payment options to fit almost any budget.

Rest assured, if you take the time to think about your needs, research, and ask questions, you will be happy with the new solution you choose for your business. If you want a partner to help you on your journey, we’re always here to help.

To learn more, or take a live demo tour of the software, reach out to Jan Murza, Director of Sales at 877-759-9329 option 3.

Read More: Myth-Buster “Fears of Upgrading Your Hotel PMS System – and How to Let Them Go”