Technology partners

From best practices to good habits: how hoteliers and technology partners can align for better staff training

Hoteliers have a lot on their plate right now, especially independent branded properties, so it’s important that operators have confidence in their teams to deliver exceptional experiences efficiently. Smaller staff pools, a growing reliance on technology, and the increased complexity of that technology have made extensive training imperative – especially when it comes to the hotel. Property management system. Resources are available to help independent hoteliers learn the skills they need to thrive in today’s data-driven environment, but excel when paired with a strong relationship with technology partners marked by open communication. .

The first step all independent hoteliers should take to improve their training processes is to ensure that all business procedures (usually in the form of standard operating procedures or SOPs) are written, easy to locate, and consistent. It is important that hoteliers first establish that they are using technology that meets their objectives before investing further in training. This process may require introspection and open conversations with your technology vendors.

Does your PMS enable you to properly set guest segment configurations? Are operators able to effectively adjust tariffs? Is it easy to understand what your property data analytics entail? Answering these questions will help hoteliers identify areas for improvement and where to focus. Once a hotel has optimized its onsite technology to fully meet and take advantage of today’s travel market, it’s time to look inside for ways to improve training and efficiency all around.

play it again

Repetition is one of the most important parts of employee training. Hospitality flourishes when best practices become good habits, and to achieve this point, hotels must guide employees using practices and procedures that are up-to-date and consistently followed across all departments.

This process can be assisted by a productivity audit of your hotel. Such an exercise can help hotel operators and technology partners bridge underutilized capacity – an issue of growing importance as PMS updates continue to roll out over time. With context comes growing interest, and audits like these can help drive home the importance of these tools for use in rate management and customer engagement.

The training itself can be delivered in a variety of vehicles. How-tos are helpful for the initial implementation of a new technology, process, or strategy, but there are more effective ways to reinforce those lessons over a long period of time. To overcome the logistical challenges of on-site training, more and more companies are offering training via webinars and other step-by-step guides. These are effective because they are accessible anytime, anywhere, allowing hotel employees to learn at their own pace or remember key information days or even months later.

Self-paced learning allows hotels to deviate from traditional teaching restrictions, and lessons can also be taken to ensure employees engage with the content. This can be useful for hotels that are moving to new processes or adopting new tools and taking the core value behind repetition to new heights by making it available at all times.

Keep it updated

Operators often make the mistake of going out of their way to ensure employees attend training, only to keep their technology up to date. Training tools are only useful if they refer to the version of the system to which users have access. If training information and technology on the property are out of sync, it will inevitably lead to confusion when training new workers and can create inefficiencies that defeat their purpose.

Upgrade to the latest version of your hotel Property management system (PMS) has several advantages in addition to maintaining parity with available training information. These include access to the latest list of platform features and options, fixes for past system shortcomings, and updates for internal security and vulnerabilities.

Even if hotels stick to their PMS update schedule, they may still miss features that have been added over time. PMS software is naturally complex and few operators are fully familiar with each of its functions and options. As a result, there are many examples of operators looking to switch PMS vendors to take advantage of a supposedly new tool they already have access to in the incumbents’ solution, so it’s always safe to ask.

Personal connections

Establishing a close working relationship with your technology partner can help alleviate instances of confusion regarding the capabilities of a PMS. While suppliers should send information to hotel partners with every update, operators in the current environment have a limited time to scan the release notes each time they hit their inbox. In these cases, it may be necessary to have live chat interaction or in-person orientation to help operators get up to speed on the options available to them.

Independent properties face a unique challenge in this climate. With limited resources, these properties often lack the capacity to employ a dedicated technology team and can rely entirely on their technology partners to provide them with the tools and information they need to stay competitive. These properties should consider naming a “champion” (or two) designated as a technology leader. This person can help communicate with vendors, gather information on new updates, and help train other team members over time.

The key to success in this area is communication, whether it comes from a champion or not. Technology partners succeed and fail alongside their hotel partners, and a quality technology provider will do everything in their power to provide up-to-date information, training models, and in-person demonstrations when needed. Such a relationship, like all the best parts of hospitality, starts with a conversation.

About Maestro PMS

Maestro is the preferred browser-based cloud and on-premises PMS solution for independent hotels, luxury resorts, conference centers, vacation rentals and multi-property groups. Maestro’s PCI-certified and EMV-ready enterprise system offers a full web browser (or Windows) version with over 20 built-in modules on a single database, including mobile and contactless apps to support a digitized customer journey as well as staff operations. Maestro”s sophisticated solutions enable operators to increase profitability, drive direct bookings, centralize operations and engage customers with a personalized experience from booking to departure and everything in between. For over 40 years , Maestro’s Diamond Plus service provides unmatched support and training services in North America, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to keep hotel groups productive and competitive. here for more information about Maestro. Click on here to get your free PMS buying guide.

Barb Worcester
NORTHWIND-Maestro