Advantages of Hotel Cloud PMS over Legacy Hotel PMS’s
What is Hotel Cloud PMS?
A cloud-based property management system for hotels or Hotel Cloud PMS is a web application which offers, or can offer, all the features and functionalities provided by a traditional thick-client PMS application.
Instead of storing all hotel data locally in data centres or servers located in hotel premises, a Hotel Cloud PMS stores all data in the data centre of the PMS provider.
Some third-party data centres are Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure or Google Cloud.
What are some of the major Hotel Cloud PMS’s?
Why choose a Hotel Cloud PMS over a legacy, thick-client Hotel PMS?
The Cloud if the reality of today!
The cloud is the reality of the day, and the web is more powerful than ever. The first reason to move to a cloud-native web PMS is the simple fact that cloud computing and web applications have gotten incredibly powerful over the last 8-10 years.
With moderately stable internet connectivity (unless the software is exceptionally graphics-heavy), a cloud-native web application today can provide practically the same user experience as a locally installed application, in all essential metrics: processing speed, response times, graphics quality, and so on.
In a November 2017 survey by LogicMonitor of US industry influencers, participants said that by 2020, 73% of their workload will run in the cloud. In the same study, 83% of participants said that within 10 years, 95% of their workload will run in the cloud.
Always connected is the future
The one disadvantage of a cloud PMS may be that it needs constant internet connectivity, which is not a requirement for a legacy PMS.
However, with the ever-increasing sphere of online reservations, being connected has become the first and foremost requirement of running a hotel business profitably.
If your PMS is not seamlessly connected, you will not get the online reservations immediately, which may lead to severe complaints from your customers and partners.
Also, you’ll not be able to have your real-time inventory updated on the online channels, which would often lead to either overbooking or underselling – both will hurt your business significantly.
Moreover, it’s not just about the reservations.
PMS’s in today’s hotels need to connect to a host of external systems, continually uploading and downloading data, e.g. the POS, the CRM, the online reputation management tool, the guest request management system, the various online payment gateways, pay-TV systems, so and so forth.
Thus, being always connected is the inevitable reality of today – and the cloud-native PMS’s are ready to meet this new reality.
Several cloud PMS’s also offers an “offline mode” for the user to be able to carry out the most basic tasks in the case of a few minutes’ connectivity outages.
Leverage the advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning
AI/ML and big data analytics are not just buzzwords anymore.
Whether it’s searching your guest’s profile, preferences, likes/dislikes online and using the data to allocate the right room for them automatically.
Or using face recognition to help your front desk agent greet the guest by name.
Cloud computing can take your hotel operations to the level that is simply not possible with a legacy PMS.
Using a cloud PMS means also means better security for your hotel data.
A legacy PMS runs the risk of data loss due to physical damage to the servers, virus/malware attacks, or even a rogue employee wanting to erase financial data.
The same risk doesn’t exist for a cloud PMS.
Of course, the elephant in the room in the cloud vs non-cloud PMS debate is the cost factor.
Setting up a legacy PMS requires using sophisticated servers, licensing costly operating systems to run those servers, back-up servers and back-up hard drives, and human resources to maintain all these hardware.
The cloud PMS eliminates this expense by offering IAAS (Infrastructure As A Service).
All you need to start working is a computing device that is just powerful enough to run a browser!
Moreover, in spite of that, the licensing fees for a legacy PMS are often significantly higher than that of a cloud PMS!
Easy to start
With no requirement to set up server infrastructure or install a multi-GB application in each workstation, the hotelier can begin setting up their hotel data in the cloud PMS immediately.
Which in the case of a legacy PMS may be possible after several hours.
In today’s hyper-competitive software industry, PMS providers are churning out new features and functionalities regularly.
Hotels using legacy PMS software will have to go through substantial effort to get the latest updates onto each workstation throughout the hotel’s network.
The hotelier needs to carefully plan the upgrade at a time of the day when the activity is minimal. Sometimes a small bug-fix update may take up the same time as that of installing the entire application.
For a cloud PMS, even major updates often happen almost imperceptibly to the user.
Access from anywhere, on any device
Another big draw for the cloud PMS is its easy accessibility.
Most legacy PMS’s can run only on Windows or Mac and only in the hotel premises, whereas cloud PMS’s are built to be used with ease on any connected device anywhere.
A hotel general manager on vacation logging into their iPad to check the hotel’s real-time availability sees the same data as the reservations manager.
A sales manager on a client visit can quickly create a same-day reservation for the client on their smartphone. Instantly visible on the front desk workstations.
Easier to integrate with other systems
Being built to run on the internet and often with open API capabilities, it’s substantially easier to integrate a Hotel Cloud PMS with an external service.
Be it an up and coming channel manager, or a new guest WiFi management system, or a new booking engine.
Comparatively, a legacy PMS provider would typically take longer to integrate with a new external system.