In nowadays all technology is growing way faster than users can adapt. Some people are not even interested in learning new things. They are feeling comfortable with something, what they are used to. However, we shouldn’t forget, those new developments are bringing new knowledge. Therefore it is very important to be updated about things, that you work with every day. Cloud hotel software is also something significantly new in the hospitality business. So how to make your decision on the right system? The main task of hospitality systems is to take care of administrative tasks. In this way, hotelier and staff have more time for new idea creation and attention for their guests. But a hotel management system can be effective only if it provides a wide scale of features. This ensures versatile services that can fit the wider range of customers.
Major hotels are usually relying on local server-based or PC-based property management systems. They require having local servers, other hardware and IT expertise. Even though these systems are offering impressive functionalities, they are often not affordable for small and mid-size properties with limited budgets.
Modern-day PMS systems (installed and cloud-based) are handling reservations, guest profiling, billing, reporting, accounting and etc. Hotel managers have a great variety to choose from the technology of the system itself: cloud-based or installed. Let's check what are pros and cons and compare these two options.
|Cloud-based PMS||Installed PMS|
|System requirements||Device with the internet browser and an Internet connection.||Workstation/s (PC), data server, additional/back-up servers (depending on property size), appropriate operating system (e.g. Microsoft Windows), back-up hard drives.|
|System installation & user access||PMS software and data is being stored on a shared server at the PMS vendor’s data centre. Users access the system through a Web browser, anywhere, anytime.||The PMS software and data is stored on a server located at the property/office. The program is installed on each PC from will be accessed.|
|System & data security and maintenance||Security and maintenance of soft- ware, data and servers is the responsibility of the PMS vendor, including automatic data back-up. Property staff are only responsible for the property’s Internet connection and devices that are being used for work.||Security and maintenance of software, data and servers/hardware is the responsibility of property management.|
|IT expertise required?||No||Yes|
|Budget/Pricing value||Various subscription pricing models, normally charged monthly.||Normally an upfront licensing fee and annual support fee for the PMS software itself (not to mention hardware and IT infrastructure costs).|
|Remote access||Yes||Possible, but requires additional hardware and network set-up, or system compatibility with the Internet.|
|ADVANTAGES OF A CLOUD-BASED PMS||ADVANTAGES OF A LOCAL PMS|
|- No hardware or IT costs (only a gadget and an Internet connection required)||
- Does not rely on an Internet connection (which can be unreliable in remote locations)
|DISADVANTAGES OF A CLOUD-BASED PMS
DISADVANTAGES OF A LOCAL PMS
|- Not suitable for properties without reliable Internet connection
- Expensive and complicated to maintain (hardware and software upgrades)
As mentioned earlier, people are more tend to be careful when choosing something new. Those, who have been using installed software for the longer time period and later decide to move to cloud hotel software, are still looking for similarities that they had in their previous systems.
One very common stereotype is that after the change to cloud-based software all data will be easily accessible by “bad people”. In other words, data won’t be secure. But hoteliers should not forget that such systems are working with well-secured servers and have necessary certificates to protect sensitive data.
Other concern is the access to the system. As you already know, cloud-based systems need to have a stable internet connection. But what to do in those places, where internet is not so reliable and “depend on the weather”? Our solution is simple - get more than one internet provider. For an accommodation provider is must to have “plan B” for internet connection. If you are using cable internet, we would recommend getting a network router sold by the local phone company (like 4G…). In this case, if your cable internet will go down, you will be able to switch to an alternative internet source. This will keep not only your guests happy, but you can be sure about the fluent workflow in your PMS.
But don’t forget, that you can access your cloud-based system's account from anywhere. So if you need to check your arrivals for today and internet at your hotel went down, grab a cup of coffee (tea) at the nearest cafe and log in through your mobile phone! Easy and very convenient.
In these technology days, business owners have to trust softwares that help to run their everyday tasks. It is an individual choice for everybody to decide what they want and what they are expecting from the system.
For big hotels and hotel chains installed software might work perfectly as the business is pretty much going inside the hotel. But for smaller accommodation businesses mobility is value #1. Small hotel owners are managing everything by themselves. Therefore they need to have access to the system from any part of the world. During their holidays they must see if new reservation arrived or if they need to adjust the price. Apartment rentals most of the times don’t even have reception and has to follow up their reservations while being anywhere else. For such people and for such businesses cloud hotel software solutions are the key component for success. They can have professional technology that big hotel chains are using, just for more affordable price and better flexibility.