In the hotel landscape where the industry is going through a transformation, the way hotels carry out their daily operations is changing. Whether you manage an independent hotel, a chain of hotels or a hostel, it’s imperative to understand the local market and your competitors as well as set the right rates to deliver the maximum amount of revenue to your property. Moreover, in light of the coronavirus pandemic, you need to deal with some important changes in consumer behavior. Having that in mind, industry professionals should opt for hotel revenue management software to move away from manual and error-prone operations and come up with a pricing strategy that will meet any customers’ needs. Only by investing in a hotel revenue management system can you collect and evaluate more data as well as streamline the decision-making process. According to recent statistics, the global hotel and hospitality management software market size is expected to reach approximately 4.3 billion U.S. dollars by 2022. With the right hotel software such as a revenue management system, you can handle the workload more effectively and concentrate on more important tasks.
What exactly is a hotel revenue management system?
Broadly speaking, a revenue management system (RMS) is utilized to analyze a set of data and gain insights from it. This process helps any company to predict the customers’ behavior and identify their buying patterns to optimize product availability and price. As for the hospitality industry, a revenue management system aims to sell the right products or services, such as hotel rooms to the right customer at the right time for the right price through the right distribution channel based on historical and market data retrieved and analyzed. Not only does it help hoteliers see a bigger picture with forecasting and in-depth analytics, but it allows them to drive more revenue possible. Moreover, revenue management systems can address any business needs and may be suited to a variety of properties such as the following:
- RMSs targeted towards larger chains of hotels
- RMSs targeted towards smaller and independent hotels
- RMSs that offer niche tools such as accounting services
- RMSs specialized in food and beverage management
- RMSs that focus on room pricing, etc.
Why do you need a hotel revenue management system?
Whether you are a hotel owner or general manager, trying to juggle a variety of tasks from marketing the business and encouraging more bookings to balancing revenue and expenses is labor-intensive, time-consuming and emotionally draining. Here are the top signs that indicate it’s time you need to have a hotel revenue management system in place:
- The manual and complicated process of analyzing competitors;
- Lack visibility into your marketing activities;
- Loss of valuable data;
- The manual data entry and building reports by hand;
- Lack of time to focus on strategic decisions.
What’s the idea of the project?
With vast experience in delivering a variety of software solutions, we at DDI development can help meet the needs of companies in eCommerce, logistics, e-learning, healthcare and other business verticals. As hoteliers today face different challenges and problems in terms of new technological developments, changing customer behaviors and increased competition, we are here to help them keep up with the demands of their guests. With a hotel revenue management system, our client can offer interesting tariff plans and novel campaigns to attract potential guests and visitors. Moreover, this system helps come up with a pricing strategy that works during peak and off-peak seasons and drive more bookings and revenue. In addition to that, it allows:
- Identifying and maintaining consistent pricing across the board;
- Updating the prices across all channels in real time;
- Collecting accurate data and building in-depth reports;
- Providing the best pricing strategy for the moment;
- Monitoring the behavior of your competitors.
Sounds impressive, right? Let’s keep on reading!
Project structure of the hotel revenue management system
Let’s take a look at some information about technologies the development team applied when creating and implementing a hotel revenue management system.
When working on the project, the following specialists were involved in the development process.
- 1 Business analyst (BA)
- 1 Project manager (PM)
- 2 UI/UX designers
- 2 Front-end engineers
- 1 Quality assurance engineers (QA)
- 2 Backend engineers
- 1 Android engineer
- 1 iOS engineer
To develop and implement a hotel revenue management system, our development team selected the agile software development methodology for the following reasons:
- The team could change the requirements in the development plans as the client’s needs were changing.
- The team could adapt to any change in the client’s requirements.
- The team could deliver a working product that provided value at the end of each sprint.
To sum up, the development team implemented 24 sprints during which the established goals were attained.
At the very start, a Business Analyst interviewed the client to collect the requirements. This allowed the Business Analyst to have a bigger picture of the future project from the client’s perspective. Only by gathering all the essential information about the potential user roles, their permissions, and activities within the hotel revenue management system can we create a functional specification. Not only does it describe a product's intended capabilities and appearance, but it also allows us to define in detail the interactions with users and clarify them for the development team.
Taking this information into account, the Project Manager provided a preliminary estimate to the client and suggested the development process roadmap. Moreover, this helped everyone understand his/her role in the suggested process. Once the client approved it, the planned scope of work (so-called Backlog) was divided into smaller parts - 2-week sprints to improve the ability to get work done. Before each sprint, the whole team of designers, front-end and back-end software developers and QA engineers reviewed which items to start within the current sprint. This provides structure and makes the development process more transparent. Once the hotel revenue management system was completely error-free, we launched it, collected the users’ feedback and made improvements.
Here we are going to overview key roles within the hotel revenue management system. Generally, each role has permission to perform the actions within the hotel revenue management system. Let’s dive into the details below!
- Hotel revenue manager: a user who is responsible for creating pricing strategies, making price management, reviewing demand and sector trends, optimizing room rates and managing room inventory.
- The administrator is a user who has the highest responsibility level within the hotel revenue management system. Moreover, he/she is generally in charge of user permissions, registration and administration for all services, etc.
Hotel revenue manager Module
You can log in to the hotel revenue management system as a Hotel revenue manager by filling in all the required fields such as User Name and Password. Once you do it, you will be redirected to the home page. On the home page, you will find the following options: Dashboard, Rooms and Rates, Calendar, Reports, Channels, Notifications and Account Settings.
On the Dashboard page, you can find such essential information as today’s revenue, monthly revenue, year-to-date revenue, monthly revenue by room type, room occupancy, average room rates, competitors’ average room rates, etc. Thanks to this option, you can access actionable analytics and get relevant insights based on different datasets that have been monitored, measured and analyzed automatically.
Rooms and Rates
With the Rooms and Rates feature, you can discover room categories and rates that generally correspond to the types of rooms available to sell in your hotel. Such factors as room size and location, view and furnishing, décors and competitors’ pricing are automatically taken into account to provide the best prices for the rooms available in your hotel. On the page, you can find 3 tabs - Rates, Occupancy and Pick up. When you click on the Rates tab, such information about room occupancy for the selected period gives total price updates of the days selected.
With the Calendar feature, you can automatize the reservation process easily, manage and view the booking process with a simple click. Moreover, it can sync with other distribution channels in real time. Whether your guests book a room or make changes to their reservation, all the data is updated instantly and all the information is displayed automatically in the calendar.
The Reports feature allows you to easily and efficiently generate reports and get essential information about the selected period. Not only does it help you generate statistical overviews that your hotel business needs daily, but you can also find actionable answers to the most burning business questions and make appropriate changes in your decisions.
With the Channels feature, you can actively manage the distribution of your inventory, discover room rates and availability across various online booking channels. Not only does it help you update rates and availability in real time, but you can manage different rate types and centralize reservations into one dashboard. Moreover, you can avoid overbookings as the process of updating happens automatically, simultaneously and instantly.
Thanks to the Alerts feature, you are always in the know about what happens within your hotel. Whether the reservation is accessed for review or update, at check-in or check out, or the room price is going to be changed, you are notified through the message displayed as a pop-up screen.
Once you log in to the hotel revenue management system as an Administrator, you can see a hub of main navigation shown in the main menu - Dashboard, Rooms and Rates, Calendar, Reports, Users, Notifications, Staff Log and System Settings. Here we are going to give some information about the features that haven’t been presented. Let’s dive into the details below:
Thanks to the Users feature, you can discover all the users within the hotel revenue management system. A table with the columns including ID#, First Name, Last Name, Title (Hotel Revenue Manager, Hotel Manager, Administrator, Guest), Location, Email and Actions will be displayed once you land on this page. In addition to that, you can create and add a new user by clicking the Add button.
With the Staff Log feature, you can monitor the activities of your authenticated users accessing the hotel revenue management system. Not only does it provide more visibility into the actions performed by users, but it can also address any problem that may arise within the system.
The Integrations feature allows you to add a variety of third-party tools including property management systems, channel managers, OTAs or website booking engines to the hotel revenue management system with a simple click. Not only does it help you enhance the functionality of the hotel revenue management system, but it also provides additional features you may need to increase efficiency and productivity.
The System Setting feature allows you to fully control and configure system-wide settings in accordance with your company’s specifications. Having higher-level permission, you can make changes within the hotel revenue management system including such areas as Rooms, Rates, Users, Roles, Permissions, Channels and Reports.
Key features of the hotel revenue management system
- Forecast Management: with this feature, you can understand and anticipate market needs in the hotel and hospitality industry. Not only does it help you assess and compare current market prices quickly, but you can also provide the best pricing strategy for your hotel and balance revenue and expenses.
- Pricing System: thanks to this feature, you can evaluate the pricing structure and set up the right price based on market demand dynamics, seasons and competitor pricing. Not only does it help you adjust room rates and increase occupancy, but you can also cleverly set the best rates for unsold rooms.
- Channel Management: this feature allows you to sell all your rooms on all your online distribution channels simultaneously. Not only does it help you optimize inventory across channels in real time, but it automatically updates data on the availability, prices, incoming reservations, etc. which allows hotels to improve both profitability and efficiency.
- Intelligent reporting: with this feature, you can automatically synchronize data across channels, review booking statistics and deliver personalized reports that will give you a clear picture of your hotel business.
- Data Visualization: thanks to this feature, you can make data-driven decisions by bringing together all the data across the channels to better understand your hotel’s strategy and success.
- Integrations: this feature allows you to integrate the hotel revenue management system with third-party solutions such as POS systems, payment gateways, in-room entertainment systems, OTAs, booking engines and channel managers to maximize efficiency and improve accuracy.
What are the benefits of the hotel revenue management software for your business?
Let’s reveal the benefits you can derive from adopting a hotel revenue management software:
- You can improve online bookings and deliver accurate rate-related information.
- You can advertise across a plethora of distribution channels and maximize the revenue generated per booking.
- You can keep track of your competitors and make appropriate changes in your business strategy.
- You can save time by eliminating time-consuming and manual processes in the hotel workflow.
- You can get in-depth insight based on useful data generated across various distribution channels to create value-packed offers.
- You can eliminate a one-size-fits-all approach when creating pricing and marketing strategy.
- You can run your hotel business 24/7/365.
How to choose the revenue management system for your hotel business?
With so many potential hotel revenue management solutions available in the market today, selecting the right one for your business can be an overwhelming task. However, the revenue management solution can make or break your hotel business. With that in mind, you need to identify your business goals, prioritize the requirements and look through the features of the selected software product. In addition to that, the system should also be scalable and match the business needs of your hotel. Moreover, you need to be sure that the hotel revenue management system can deliver the results you want - the ability to unlock and analyze large datasets and provide visible information. On the other hand, you can find a technology vendor who can develop and implement a custom hotel revenue management system from scratch based on your unique business requirements to reap substantial benefits for your hotel business.
Bottom line: Ready to take the plunge with the hotel revenue management system?
A variety of software solutions available on the market allows companies in the hospitality system to optimize any aspect of their operation. Revenue management is no exception. The hotel revenue management systems open up ample opportunities for the hotel businesses and help them boost their revenues. Undoubtedly, revenue management software is here to stay in the hotel and hospitality landscape. Not only does it help you set up the right prices with a few clicks, but you can also gain greater insight into the actual performance of your business. Only by having a hotel revenue management system in place can you get more flexibility and efficiency as well as drive more revenue. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you want to turn any idea into a robust and successful software solution.