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OPERA Cloud and OSEM: Improving Operational Processes and Workflows in Hospitality

Liz Brucker
Manager, Hospitality Product Management, HGBU Product Strategy

Improving workflow across your hospitality business.

It’s an objective that can remain nebulous, and its impact on the bottom line often is difficult to quantify. But think, for a moment, about the many day-to-day tasks that undermine the performance of hotel staff in operations and sales.

Imagine if you didn’t have to waste time calculating constantly changing promotional rates. What if you could tailor documents almost instantaneously to meet the needs of potential customers? Now imagine if you could automate room selection not only to better “rotate” inventory but reward your most-loyal guests.

Simplifying usability and adding performance capabilities characterize the newest release of Oracle’s OPERA Cloud. The Property Management and Sales and Event Management services of OPERA Cloud represent two dimensions of a single Oracle Hospitality solution, which combine to improve workflow across hotel departments, leading directly to greater efficiency and revenue-generating opportunities.

“You either open the left door or open the right door, depending on whether you’re in operations or sales,” said Tanya Pratt, Oracle Hospitality’s associate vice president, OPERA Cloud Strategy.

On the OSEM side of the house, one of the most-important new features is the addition of BI Publisher. Just like hoteliers can customize folios and confirmation letters, operators now can independently use BI Publisher to modify and tailor banquet event orders (BEOs) and contracts. Previously, changes to such templates required assistance from Oracle consulting or support.

“Hoteliers now have more control over their communications to each customer,” Pratt said. “We took the feedback from our early adopters and made the changes that would have the biggest payoff. Our focus, whether they were big changes or little ones, was to impact the creation and management of events. Make it easier to create, make it easier to edit, make it faster. The outcome of enhancing the user experience and workflow is, you can handle more events and do them better.”

Another key addition is Sales Allowance, a tool designed to maximize revenue opportunity. In a nutshell, it enables hotels to set a ceiling for the sale of group rooms, which are discounted and net lower rates than transient rooms. For example, an operator with 100 rooms can use Sales Allowance to cap group rooms at 50, preserving the others for greater profitability. “This ensures that group business doesn’t bleed into their transient business,” Pratt added.

Increasingly, hoteliers are turning to automation to eliminate redundant – and often, mind-numbing – tasks, freeing staff to tackle more “value-add” projects. OPERA Cloud Property Management aligns with automation efforts with the introduction of Advanced Daily Rate, which optimizes revenue per reservation and simplifies rate management.

Here’s how it works: If a customer receives a 10% discount off the rate of the day, his rate code needs to be changed manually every time the daily rate is modified. With Advanced Daily Rate, such tedious work is eliminated, because it will “flex” accordingly, always providing the correct price.

The time also has come for another laborious task to be automated and improved: Room assignment.

Hoteliers always need to evaluate the arrival list and assign rooms to guests. But determining who gets what can be time-consuming and inequitable, potentially shortchanging a hotel’s most-valuable guests. The Automated Room Assignment application uses built-in algorithms, which evaluate data points of reservations and guest profiles to assign rooms most appropriately and automatically. It also takes into consideration frequency of room usage, effectively “rotating” inventory to minimize wear and tear on any one room.

Said Pratt: “The bottom line? A human doesn’t have to do it, and AI can do it better.”

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