PMS (Property Management System) has been around for more than four decades and is known for its capabilities in managing hotel operations seamlessly. Some may call it the center nervous system of hotel operations, indeed it certainly is. It has continually evolved to accommodate hoteliers’ constantly growing demands over time. If on-premises were the only way out for hotel PMS in the past, cloud-based hospitality management software has recently taken over the number one spot. This leaves all the hospitality geeks wondering, what is next from here.
The current Hospitality Property Management System situation
Peeking behind the hotel IT system, no hoteliers relies on only one single software provider, but rather a few depending on the complexity of their hotel operations procedure. Out of the technology products stack, you can easily get Property Management Software (PMS), a Central Reservation System (CRS), Revenue Management System (RMS), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), F&B, POS, and the list goes on. Imagine having all of those installed and getting each integrated. Sounds effortless, until you’re on it. Each software provider might need to implement a few custom modifications to successful integration, a bit tweak here and there to fit the hotel’s unique business model. Obviously, it is not done on a free term and clearly would cost you a heap of money in the process.
Over time, each of the software in the stack gradually gets heavier, more complex, and cumbersome to update, troublesome to further customize its features. At a certain point, the software providers would intentionally stop supporting your requests, and neglect your concerns as the fix would not apply to the majority in the industry. This scenario has happened across the hospitality industry. Many have thought an “all-in-one” system would resolve this issue, however, not all are. The system structure is limited or reluctant to remove restrictions when it comes to 3rd parties software integration capabilities other than theirs.
The future of Hospitality Property Management System
It leads the hospitality industry toward the concept of a cloud-based open platform PMS, where its lean core remains the backbone of the system. Other software/systems can seek integration via two-way open API connections (Application Programming Interface), which allows them to communicate with minimal efforts at greater stability. At this stage, your PMS acts as a hub, other hotel applications would just simply plug in and play accordingly.
Why has such a great PMS model not been done yet?
The future of PMS is already here, in the form of a cloud-based system with open API. Many PMS software providers’ mindsets have shifted monumentally. The adoption of cloud computing technology across the hospitality industry is impressive. However, it still remains a small portion of the market. How come? The building process is outrageously complicated, exhausted, and pricey. In order to walk this path, the PMS provider has to “plan” every single step ahead of time with a clearly defined vision, detailed roadmap, and practical product life cycle strategy.
While open API encourages outside developers other than your own to innovatively develop valuable applications for your core software, it can be a burden when it comes to standardizing open API. This leads to much broader issues and concerns that we might not be able to cover all in this blog. If you’re interested in such matters, leave us a comment down below, we shall get back to it in future blogs.
We have been there, done that! The CiHMS team has strived relentlessly to become who we are today. Building a cloud-based open platform hospitality management solution has always been the fundamental foundation of CiHMS original product’s vision. The snippet of our journey was shared in CiHMS previous blog at: Build or Buy your own PMS.
Not all hotels are the same. The modern PMS will allow hotels to select the appropriate features that suit them the best in order to create their unique version of the guest journey. We believe cloud-based PMS shall remain the heart of your hotel operations. Open API facilitates connectivities to endless 3rd party applications, solutions out there in the marketplace, which is established by the PMS providers. The world is opting to be very different 5 years down the road. If you are still on an on-premises PMS system, it is time to consider the switch. Read our blog post here for in-depth insights on the pros and cons of on-premises versus cloud-based hospitality management systems.
Hospitality is a customer-centric industry. As technology evolves, our guests’ expectations continue to change. Decision on whether or not to transition into the new platform, adopt the latest trend seems rather daunting and obscure. Focus on your hotel’s underlying principles, be flexible, stay relevant, and ultimately hoteliers will pursue the innovative software that represents your business value, image, and worth.