3 Ways to Avoid Data Analysis Paralysis in Your Hotel Back Office
Posted by mdo on October 24, 2018 in Best Practices
How do you make decisions for your hospitality business?
The ups and downs of business performance mean everything to hotel-operating decision-makers. These days, your system of operations includes technology, and you have – hopefully – shed your reliance on inconsistent data printed on hard copy and stuffed in vinyl binders in favor of an internal system that houses your data. Now there’s probably more data at your disposal than you could ever synthesize for use.
With the unending supply of data, many business leaders suffer from analysis paralysis – that state of overwhelm which stops you from accessing, analyzing, and acting upon key metrics. But, what if there were a platform or dashboard in place where you could decide which data matters most, access it easily, and make decisions confidently as a result?
Follow these three steps to more easily capture and analyze your data:
1. Switch to a hotel-specific data dashboard.
Hotels aren’t like other businesses. The way you parse your budget, manage operations, and take in feedback as a hotelier is 100% different from retail businesses, service providers, and even other hospitality organizations. Your unique needs require an intuitive software solution that caters to you, and which is customizable for your hotel.
If you were to reflect on the software options you’ve used over the last year, you’d know that the one-size-fits-all ERP solution just doesn’t help. These types of shelved-and-ready software are expensive, require heavy troubleshooting, and offer NO flexibility to the busy, modern hotelier. Any hotel guest who has a terrible experience during their stay will likely not return, not recommend that hotel to friends, and leave a negative review. Some may even try to push for a refund.
So, why do we let software companies off the hook? The binding agreements that lock you into contracts with these outdated solutions keep you committed to something that doesn’t serve you, and when you need support – no one answers your call. Opt for a niche solution instead. Hotel-specific solutions are programmed to your culture, the challenges you face, and the data you need to focus on.
2. Operate in the cloud.
Do you capture and utilize data from multiple vendors or facets of your business? If so, do you have to import that data into one place manually, or run around all over to try and compare one side of your business to the others? The cloud can fix that.Have you ever gone through a breakdown in your system where you lost important data that you couldn’t retrieve, or which cost a fortune to restore? The cloud can fix that.
Did you ever wish that you could access your data while traveling or in another remote fashion, during a presentation, proposal, or business meeting? The cloud can fix that, too.
By operating in the cloud, you can store more data, more safely, access the data more easily, and keep all of your data points in one, cohesive place. Plus, good news: choosing the right cloud solution can be a relatively simple task if you start with #1 above.
3. Set the benchmarks that actually matter.
What good would it do for a restaurant to compare their financials to a veterinary clinic? Many hoteliers are guessing at financial benchmarks in a way that might as well leave them comparing their revenue to random businesses with way-different bottom lines. What if you could access real-time data from other hotels locally and nationwide, filtered by wage provision, merchandising, client services, vendor costs, and beyond?
Data is absolutely everything in business. While we have gathered and analyzed data points for long before computers were the norm, the digital era makes everything faster, easier, and more dynamic. Failure to capitalize on these advantages will only put you behind your modernizing competitors. Instead of succumbing to analysis paralysis, choose a data software solution that does the hard work for you and brings your big points of focus to the forefront.
Imagine, just for a moment, how better, smarter, easier data might help you impact your business next quarter. With the right software in place, you can access financial performance and profitability trends, STR data, PMS stats, guest satisfaction surveys, comments, and operational snapshots from multiple properties at once. Now, doesn’t that sound more relaxing already?