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Myth busters: Five reasons why operators shouldn’t be scared of embracing PropTech

We’ve all suffered from bouts of technophobia. The fear of breaking an expensive gadget. The worry of pressing the wrong button. The anxiety of learning new software. Even if we appreciate the benefits of technology, we sometimes think: wouldn’t it be easier to just stick with what I know?No.

Whether cars or computers, technology makes our lives simpler, quicker and more efficient and the same is true in the world of serviced apartments. From streamlining operations and automating payments to improving guest experience and unlocking new revenue streams, PropTech is something to be embraced not feared. 

Why? Well, let me show you by busting these five PropTech myths. 

Myth #1: ‘I already use modern tech’

If you believe ‘embracing PropTech’ means managing your portfolio on an excel spreadsheet or using the same PMS for the last 20 years, then this myth is for you. 

PropTech is constantly evolving with features added and systems upgraded in line with ever-changing operator demands. In the smartphone age, there was a need for real-time communication in different languages; comms hubs with automatic translations were created. In the Covid age, human interaction moved from a positive to a negative; remote check-in and keyless entry features were enhanced. 

As such, serviced apartment and co-living companies shouldn’t be satisfied with stationary technology. In a digitally-agile market, operators should be looking for a system that covers everything from channel management and dynamic pricing to owners and guest communication.

Myth #2: PropTech is expensive

This is the easiest myth to bust. With the extensive efficiency savings and revenue-generating opportunities that automation delivers, property management software more than pays for itself. Here’s just a few examples:

  • Operations - Save on management and logistics costs by using a central app to coordinate housekeeping and maintenance teams in multiple locations.
  • Direct booking - Reduce OTA commissions, improve customer connection and boost your online presence by converting guests on your website. 
  • Dashboard reporting - Pull data points from any part of your business to make smart pricing and distribution decisions and always ensure you’re getting the best return for each unit. 
  • SPaaS - Transform underused areas, such as lobbies and rooftops, into new revenue-generating opportunities with the touch of a button. 
  • Automated billing - Sync bookings and financials, process accurate online payments and cut out manual mistakes with automated invoicing. 
  • Length of Stay diversity - Employ a mixed-stay strategy to increase occupancy rates, bring higher ADR and lower the risk profile of your portfolio. 

As Cherry Wang, Homelike’s Country Manager for UK & Ireland, told our recent Host roundtable: “tech is not cost prohibitive, manual work is cost prohibitive. Leveraging tech is the way forward”.

Myth # 3: PropTech is complicated to use

You don’t need a degree in IT to understand and benefit from the features of a PMS. At res:harmonics, for example, we not only compile all our features into one easy-to-use hub - which includes access to a range of integrations - but we also train your team to use the system, provide bespoke advice on which features suit your company best and help you customise the tech to match your brand. 

What’s more, our features are considerably simpler than the alternative. For example, the Quote Portal allows you to go from enquiry to personalised quote in less than 60 seconds. Try doing that manually. 

Myth # 4: Guests find PropTech complicated 

In 2020, 84% of UK adults have a smartphone. For those aged 16-54, it’s a whopping 97%. We live in a digital age where the vast majority of guests are not only tech-savvy, but tech-enthusiasts. For instance, a recent Cheval hospitality survey found 74% of guests would prefer a keyless and touchless check-in with their smartphone.

Whether it’s live chat functions or control over housekeeping rotas, PropTech gives guests a slick, seamless service and improves guest experience.

Myth #5: PropTech takes employees’ jobs

It’s a common misconception that software replaces staff. In fact, using PropTech to operationalise your business gives staff the time and headspace to make a difference. Instead of wasting time on admin, for example, staff can focus on the client, improving guest experience with personalised communication and loyalty discounts before and after their stay. Meanwhile, I have yet to meet software that can clean a unit, repair a faulty TV or implement a business plan. 

Res:harmonics is not your usual PMS

Myths busted. Embracing PropTech is essential for operators to thrive, but not all tech providers are the same. In the essence of an M&S advert, at res: harmonics, we’re not just a property management system, we’re an opinionated, dynamic platform that builds custom software for operators depending on their bespoke needs. 

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