This is an article written by Oracle Hospitality, based on a webinar hosted April 6 by Hotel Management magazine. The webinar provided perspectives about embracing cloud technology from an Oracle hotel customer, Bayview, and integration partner, Zaplox. Watch the full webinar here
As daunting as it might seem to embrace new technologies, hoteliers who move to cloud can open a pathway to run their business not just differently but better. And considering that a post-pandemic marketplace will require meeting new guest expectations, the time is now to shift from an on-premises property management system and elevate hotel operations and service with cloud-based PMS.
For Bayview Hotel – a 91-room, family-friendly destination in British Columbia – switching to OPERA Cloud PMS meant being able to strike out on its own.
“We were a branded property for over 10 years, and we were a little nervous becoming an independent,” said Grant Smith, Bayview’s general manager and director of operations. “But we were able to join in with OPERA Cloud and it worked so efficiently with our global distribution system. We started getting reservations immediately from all the OTAs.”
Accelerating The Recovery for Hoteliers
In many ways, embarking on a cloud journey is like moving into a new home.
“If you just pack up your house, everything you have in boxes in the basement is going to be in boxes in your new basement,” said Even Frydenberg, chairman and CEO of Zaplox, a provider of contactless mobile solutions. “This is your chance to actually look at everything and set things up the way you really want them to be.”
His analogy captured the essence of the benefits of upgrading to OPERA Cloud PMS and underscored the theme of “Moving to Cloud: Insights from Oracle Hospitality Customers.” The webinar, hosted April 6 by Hotel Management magazine, provided perspectives about embracing cloud technology from an Oracle hotel customer, Bayview, and an integration partner, Zaplox.
Both panelists made clear the pivotal role OPERA Cloud can play in accelerating recovery for hoteliers:
- Efficient integration lowers the cost of delivering new services to guests and staff.
- Greater speed to market means better ROI.
- Automation and ease of use make work simpler for employees, resulting in greater attention for guests.
Personal Service in the Hands of the Guest
The need for cloud-based PMS, in great part, is being dictated by the pandemic, which is triggering an unprecedented change in the rate of technology adoption. For example, guests and staff are insisting upon contactless technologies for safer and better experiences. Such demand is reshaping the hospitality industry’s viewpoint on technology.
“We’ve always looked at technology to be sort of impersonal and against the traditions of hospitality,” Frydenberg said. “But I think what we all see now is that technology can complement this personal approach rather than be a hinderance. Because what we’re actually doing is provding personal service directly in the hands of guests with their mobile devices. What can be more personal than that?
(The pandemic) has been a fundamental turning point when it comes to digitizing the hospitality industry,” he added. “What we’re seeing is the relatively old and conservative industry changing. That change has accelerated much more in the past 12 months than it did in the previous 36.”
Such progress has been possible only because technology advancements – such as the launch of OPERA Cloud – have allowed it, the panelists said. Oracle Hospitality’s cloud-based PMS embraces integrations and customizations needed to make hotels – even smaller independent properties – more efficient and distinctive.
Innovations that Improve Hotel Operations and Elevate the Guest Experience
OPERA Cloud managed to quickly accommodate Bayview’s needs for a rewards program, according to Smith. Once Bayview selected a third-party rewards program, Oracle connected it to OPERA Cloud, making it possible to transfer guest-stay information and allowing the hotel’s guests to earn points. OPERA Cloud’s flexibility facilitates integrations of all types of solutions, making the PMS expandable for unlimited growth, Smith said.
In fact, both panelists highlighted OPERA Cloud’s integration capability as one of its standout attributes. The cloud-based PMS’s latest innovation is its built-in Oracle Hospitality Integration Platform (OHIP). Launched late last year, OHIP allows partners and vendors to connect to OPERA Cloud, giving them unimpeded access to the data and functionality within it for faster product development. OHIP represents a reinvention of Oracle’s integration model, literally changing the way the game is played: OHIP enables innovations that improve hotel operations and elevate guest experience, and makes them available in a matter of days and weeks rather than months and years.
With OHIP, every integration is now a self-service experience. Users simply register for OHIP and they can immediately take advantage of every capability on their own because of the platform’s intuitive design. Another distinctive OHIP benefit is its creation of two-way integrations, meaning data can be “pushed” as well as “pulled,” leading to near real-time access to information via a reactive/event streaming architecture. Although its integration capabilities are significant, OPERA Cloud’s own innovations have been key to improving performance at his hotel, Smith said. For example, he cited OPERA Cloud’s intuitive user experience as key to providing front-desk agents with the confidence they need to deliver fast, exemplary service.
“We’ve had people come from hospitality school with just basic computer knowledge, and they’ve picked it up very quickly,” Smith said. “That speaks volumes to me.”
He also found appealing OPERA Cloud’s continuous evolution to meet the needs of an ever-changing hospitality landscape. Increasingly, the next-gen solution is tapping the power of artificial intelligence, for example, for automated room assignments – ensuring guests not only receive the room they want but deserve. For hoteliers and integration partners, OPERA Cloud represents opportunities to run their business better and more profitably. Which is why Frydenberg and Smith gravitated to it: OPERA Cloud allowed both to challenge the status quo.
Watch the full webinar here.