With a new year comes refreshed processes and new tools to optimize operations and ensure our properties are technologically relevant. This comes not only as a effort to stay relevant in an increasingly convenient world, but these changes have become a necessary tool for independent hotels, often lacking the resources of a well established hotel brand. We often operate without a robust staff, IT resources, or HR professionals in these environments that can sometimes hinder our efficiency. In fact, it is often technology that allows a boutique, 50 room property, like many hotels in IDM’s portfolio, the opportunity to succeed. With an expectation that we’re going to experience our strongest year yet, IDM has introduced a variety of new advances in an array of different areas for our properties that we’re eager to utilize and proud to share.
Well known for their reputation management services, Revinate has recently revealed additional tiers to their product. The new Marketing platform within InGuest was a welcome opportunity for IDM to enhance guest communication and create increases in revenue. Automated correspondence alleviates the manual labor needed to push communication to guests, while transactional and promotional tasks coupled provides a more robust all-in-one tool. Perhaps most intriguing are our abilities to micro-target potential guests for a beer festival in Milwaukee or a romantic staycation in Dubuque.
Human Resource Processes
Not just a payroll tool, a enhanced ADP program takes our Human Resources to the next level. It serves as a better way for job-seekers to hunt for opportunities in our company and our existing team members can more easily find employee resources online. A candidate’s information will now carry through from application into their new hire forms and benefit enrollment without the need for cumbersome paperwork along the way.
A data driven business intelligence program can interface all software solutions at the property into one dynamic platform. Our use of a system named Broadvine enables comprehensive reporting, stream-lined payables processing, full integration with QuickBooks financials, and more. Not only does it provide access to custom reports and analysis, but streamlines labor and entries for our properties, our corporate team, and business office.
In today’s world of abundant fraud concerns and “going green” initiatives, the lack of paper is seen as a good thing. The use of small single-page scanners at each terminal allow for necessary documents to follow the guest’s reservation record directly in the PMS. Say goodbye to the bucket!
For independent hotels, tools to keep an eye on the local market are imperative. RevCaster is a service that aggregates information on our competition and provides customizable dashboards to analyze the data. This forecast tool, when in the hands of one of our savvy managers, provides real-time profitability.
Skype for Business has become a mainstay for our corporate team. This little chat vehicle reduces the number of phone calls and helps users stay aware of their team members avalibility. In today’s world of multi-tasking and business travel, this has been a game changer. It even lets you video conference or share you screen without having to worry about other troublesome log-in required software solution.
Everyone will tell you, customer engagement is where your business is at. We agree. Staying in front of the guest and keeping the conversation going will build loyalty and makes it easier for the guest to make a buying decision. We’ve introduced an app for Café at the Plaza in Milwaukee which let us reward our loyal customers, promote new menu items, and continue to create buzz about our business.