The scoop on next-generation Property Management Systems

Last quarter, Starfleet Research released The 2016 Smart Decision Guide to Hotel Property Management Systems. It is now available for complimentary access.

Previous editions of this popular annual guide have proven to be an invaluable resource for hoteliers in need of the latest research findings, insights and recommendations for streamlining their hotel or resort operations and increasing occupancy, revenues and profitability.


The new edition is updated and expanded to highlight emerging trends and new technology innovation. To that point, the scope of platform capabilities enabled by next-generation systems has expanded beyond core functions like guest registration, room inventory maintenance, financial accounting and housekeeping assignment to encompassing virtually all aspects of hotel operations.

With many next-generation systems, the capabilities have also become increasingly sophisticated and flexible, and even more easy to seamlessly integrate with third-party technologies.

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Following is a brief excerpt from The 2016 Smart Decision Guide to Hotel Property Management Systems.

Hoteliers are forever searching for new ways to improve guest loyalty and the quality of the guest experience. These new ways can come in many forms, including technology innovations that provide specific guest features. Mobile keyless room entry is a good example.

Such innovations can deliver significant guest benefits and provide a hotel with a competitive advantage — albeit, one that is generally short-lived.

Long-term, enhancing the guest experience is less about providing the latest guest feature and more about putting structures in place that make guests feel special and appreciated. It’s about anticipating and catering to their unique needs and recognizing their differentiated value.

To the extent that it enables multiple guest-facing activities while capturing and storing guest profile data every step of the way, a next-generation property management system (PMS) can play a critical role in enhancing the guest experience. Today, in fact, there may be no better measure of performance than the degree to which the technology helps raise the level of overall guest satisfaction.

Such a system should serve as the lifeblood of any hotel or resort. It should be viewed as the organization’s central nervous system. In that it facilitates a bi-directional flow of information, delivering real-time data and reports, a PMS should be viewed as the command-and-control center from which all mission-critical decisions are made.

The technology should enable hoteliers to centrally manage, track, measure, analyze and optimize the constant flow of information across all parts of the organization, and in a real-time manner. Ultimately, it should ensure that operations throughout the hotel or resort run as efficiently and as effectively as possible.

These operations are largely interconnected. They include all front office, bookings and reservations functions, from assigning guests to rooms and maintaining guest folios to coordinating profile changes, posting room charges and maintaining housekeeping status. They also generally include functions related to concierge and guest services, banquet and conference management, physical inventory, guestroom devices, room maintenance and security management — and, in many properties, golf, spa and other activities management.

There are plenty of reasons for hoteliers to migrate from a legacy PMS to a state-of-the-art system designed to meet their current and future market needs. In fact, according to research conducted for this Smart Decision Guide, more than one-quarter (27%) of hoteliers who have not upgraded their PMS within the past 3 years indicate that they plan to do so in the next 12 months.

The 2016 Smart Decision Guide to Hotel Property Management Systems can be accessed here.

The underwriters of this Smart Decision Guide include the following industry leaders: Agilysys, Infor, MaestroPMS, Oracle Hospitality and Sabre.

About the author

Jeff ZabinJeff Zabin is Research Director at Starfleet Research, which benchmarks best practices in hospitality technology. Recent titles include The 2016 Smart Decision Guide to Hotel Property Management Systems, The 2016 Smart Decision Guide to Hospitality Revenue Management and The 2016 Smart Decision Guide to Restaurant Management and POS Systems. A globally-recognized market research executive, Zabin’s bestselling business books on data-driven marketing improvement have been translated into more than a dozen languages. His has also written hundreds of popular benchmark reports and articles in leading trade publications across multiple industry sectors, including hospitality.

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