Information systems in the Hotel industry refer to computer systems in a hotel that supply information about that hotel’s business operations.
In the current technology era, this is as crucial as it can get. This post also covers a lot of Hotel Information systems in detail.
Information systems play a crucial role in the hotel industry as they facilitate planning, management, and overall operations of the hotels as well as policymaking.
Current hospitality information systems are much more advanced owing to the latest technological innovations.
- So, what exactly is the meaning of Information systems?
- What are the top hospitality industry information systems?
- Why are information systems crucial for sustained competitive advantage in the hotel industry?
Information systems typically include all computerised systems that are used to gather data continuously both for use internally and externally.
Some of the information systems that are commonly used in the hospitality industry are included below.
1. Transaction Processing System
The World is going gaga over the Cloud and Data analytics.
Processing data effectively helps the hotel to be more flexible to demand, understand customers and keep costs down.
Transaction Processing System allows business transactions involving the collection, retrieval, and modification of transactional data.
This system processes data generated about and by transactions in the hotel.
Some of the examples of transaction process system operations in hotels include:
- Creation of bills and invoices
- Sales order entry
- Reservations and booking entries
- Employee payroll
- Product order shipping and sales
and similar things involving single or batch processing.
These systems are vital as they ensure that the data collected is accurate and timely, which increases labour efficiency.
It is mostly used by managers in the hotel industry in an operational capacity.
Read more about the Transaction Process System at Techopedia.
Information systems are an integral part of the complete IT infrastructure used in the hotel industry.
The tourism and hospitality sector has been a key beneficiary as it has allowed contemporary travellers to enjoy a plethora of options.
Information Technology in the hotel industry is now probably the most important tool for sustained competitive advantages.
Information systems play a crucial role in the same.
2. The Point of Sale (PoS) System used in the Hotel Industry
PoS is the most common form of information systems used in the Hotel industry.
This computerised system keeps track of merchandise sales such as those that would occur in a hotel restaurant, bar, coffee or gift shop.
There are various versions that are also used by the Front office of the Hotel and the Housekeeping department.
These systems incorporate registers, computers and any peripheral equipment that can be established on a computer network.
This system is important because it keeps track of payroll, labour, and sales, as well as generates records that may be useful for accounting purposes.
Micros and versions of Micros are commonly used by Hotel restaurants, Fast food restaurants and stand-alone restaurants.
Even security departments of the hotel industry have their own PoS system.
There is a clear overlap in these information systems used in the hotel industry.
A lot of Hotel software providers have bundled packages for using multiple products under one administrative panel.
We have also listed below some of the facets that help hotel information systems compete with others in the business.
This quick list mentions where and how you can use these hotel property management software and why are these useful.
- Financial Reports: Competitive hotel property management software provides you with financial and business reports regarding your hotel business. You can learn about room occupancy ratios, the duration of the stay of your guests, payment collection methods, and similar statistical forecasts for your hotel.
- Hotel Administration: Hotel property management software helps you learn and execute marketing drills, send promotional emails, organise staff training, and develop in-house communication systems to bring ease to the processes.
- Food-service management: Hospitality management Software can not only help send real-time information to kitchen units but can also track inventory, order goods automatically and assess profitability and improvement areas.
- Accounting: With the option to carry out accounting, you can assess profits-to-cost ratios, prepare bills, and make payments to vendors and travel agents.
- Online Bookings and Reservations: With online booking and reservation options, you can manage your hotel website, offer room rates to customers, put new offers and deals over the internet, and book rooms for your customers based on pre-deposit policies.
- Check-Ins and Check-Outs: Hotel management systems or software allow you to manage check-ins and check-outs of your customers. You can allot rooms, print check-in cards, receive online payments, and extend the stays of your customers through a single software.
- Rate Management: It is very important to manage your rates for the successful running of your business. You can devise plans and provide your customers with variable room rates and offer discount deals.
- Housekeeping: You can develop lists of check-ins and check-outs and manage their housekeeping. The software allows you to maintain communication with your housekeeping staff. You can assign rooms to maids, develop their task lists, and review room status before and after the housekeeping service.
Apart from these, there are many other services which a hotel property management software should offer.
3. Property Management Systems (PMS)
This is a comprehensive software application that is used to cover basic goals such as coordination of the operational duties of the staff at the front office, sales, and planning.
Property management systems facilitate the automation of important functions such as guest booking, guest information, online reservations, as well as sales and marketing.
The whole purpose of PMS is to manage various operations of the Hotel and to streamline data.
There are a lot of customised PMS providers across the globe as covered in our post on Hotel Management software.
Some of the popular providers of these property management systems in hospitality are:
- Oracle Hospitality
- eZee Technosys
- MSI Cloud
- Opera PMS
- Maestro Property Management System
And various other top companies offer these information systems tailor-made to suit your requirements.
We also have a compilation of the 8 best hotel management software. So, please also look to that post to get an idea of the best available hospitality software out there.
These hospitality information systems also include Management Information Systems (MIS).
These systems provide the information required by the hotel for proper management of staff and facilities.
This system can be used to analyse and facilitate operational and strategic activities and is used functionally in various areas.
These include areas such as:
- Financial controls and accounting.
With all the innovations in hospitality for a better hospitality experience for the customer, these sophisticated hotel information systems help in improving the overall experience of customers and staff alike.
4. Decisions Support Systems
Decision support systems aid the decision-making process. Each hotel creates a decision support system based on the operational model of the hotel establishment.
This system is particularly important in ensuring that the hotel operations are functional and that decisions are made in a timely manner.
Some of the examples for these decision support systems in hospitality operations would be:
- Price Management of food items
- Rate management of Hotel Rooms
- Dynamic pricing
- Demand Planning of Hotel Rooms
5. Global Distribution Systems (GDS)
These hospitality information system software integrate third-party operators with the hospitality company.
GDS is used to link hospitality products across sectors of the hospitality industry.
It is used to simplify processes for customers and hospitality companies.
The seamless integration of services, payment, videos, products and more in all the travel websites is possible due to GDS.
This is an example of a hospitality and travel information system that is a part of the everyday lives of travellers.
You must have heard of the big names like:
These are some of the top examples of Global Distribution Systems used in the hospitality and travel industry.
Technology is getting the best out of each industry. Why should the hotel industry fall behind in the race?
Using these information systems in the Hotel is good for the implementation of Hotel Marketing strategies for gaining a competitive advantage.
While a lot of hotels already use these systems, there is no harm in others to test out these information systems.
Moreover, most of the software providers provide a free trial of these hotel information systems.
Go for it if you still don’t have these systems already installed for your Hospitality business.