There are a huge number of different responsibilities involved when someone takes charge of a hotel. They need to ensure the food is outstanding, the building is legally compliant and even the tap water is safe to drink. For this reason, there often comes a time when a hotel owner will decide to let someone else take the reins.
Having said that, choosing a hotel management company can be a daunting task – especially if you have no experience in the industry. If you are in this position right now, this article discusses 7 key factors that should steer your decision-making process when choosing a hotel management company.
If you are not sure where to start, specialist websites can be a great resource. They can provide information about the different companies that offer hotel management services and what they have on offer. You should also consider blogs as they give reputable advice from experts in their field. They can provide helpful guidance when it comes to choosing the right company for your specific needs.
Begin your journey by using the search engine in Google, Bing or an alternative. If you enter the words “hotel management companies” you can access sites that can provide recommendations and that display lists of digitally-enabled companies. You can learn about the top 10 and make comparisons, view demos, and access price quotes. There are also often helpful related articles about hotel management companies and that provide community updates.
The Company’s Experience
By reading the company websites you should discover how many years they’ve been running. If they’ve been going for decades that must be a good indication that they are getting things right. You need to ask:
- Is the management strong enough to take care of your hotel from day one or will things go wrong after you sign the contract?
- How many hotels does this company manage already?
- Do they take responsibility if something goes wrong, even if is not directly their fault?
- What experience can this smaller organization offer that larger ones cannot?
- How does the hotel’s technology stack up to what is currently available on the market?
- Will it be a ‘one-man show’ or is there a large team working for this particular organization who can offer great insight when things go wrong?
- Where are they located geographically speaking and what areas do they already cover in relation to your hotel’s location?
Every hotel has its own unique facets, so it’s vital that a company has the necessary experience to cover those for you – it’s not enough that they are great at helping someone else’s hotel.
The Company’s Clients
The clients of a hotel management company will largely determine the success or failure of a particular business. It may not even matter what type of clientele a certain hotel management company has if its own staff has poor customer service skills. This is an area where many such companies can fall short – especially those dealing with smaller budgets and fewer resources than others. This is why you need to be certain what you’d get from investing in a particular company.
Before you sign on the dotted line, get a list of their existing clients and find out whether they are big names or small. Check to see whether they are similar establishments to yours, and go online in search of their reviews concerning this hotel management company. If the latter can provide you with references from other hotels that would be great, and if not: why not contact some of them yourself? Their comments could provide valuable information to help you decide.
The Services They Provide
They may vary depending on what exactly you need. For example, if your business needs branding services to make it more recognizable or design services for its website, then their extensive list of services should be able to meet that requirement. On the other hand, if all you require is bookkeeping and payroll management solutions, look for a company that provides these things only.
If your budget is limited, you can opt for a company that offers budget-friendly packages (that may potentially provide less support). This is why it’s good to get a free consultation upfront and to also request a demo of their services.
Ask the following questions:
- How many staff do they have available?
- Could They Cope With Your Hotel?
- Do any staff have areas of specialism?
Are all the staff experts at their job or are some people working there just because it’s a stable company to work for, and they don’t have any other options?
- What’s the staff turnover rate?
- What’s the organizational structure?
- Are the employees fully trained on things like iPads and CRM systems?
- Do They Have A Warranty?
You’ll want your chosen company to have financial stability and profitability. A warranty shows that they have your best interests in mind and will be with you for many years to come. An example warranty would include how long they will provide support after the contract has been signed and also what type of services they have available if issues arise after their warranty has expired.
If this information isn’t provided upfront it may be worth looking into other options as there could potentially be hidden costs or issues further down the line.
Some companies offer three-year contracts, whilst others only provide one or two year deals. If you’re not sure about their services and want to try them out first before committing to a longer period, a short contract is best. Whether it’s a basic package or an all-inclusive one, read it thoroughly before you sign and involve a lawyer if necessary. Also, ask about their cancellation policy, and what happens when it’s time to renew your contract with them.
These 7 factors can help you make an informed choice and protect you from costly mistakes. If you decide on the right company, your hotel will be managed in a way that delights your customers and ensures it continuing success.