Using a pencil and paper system for your hotel management may be OK when you do not have many rooms. However, if you are managing a hotel of any substantial size, you will want to have a computerized hotel property management system. Think about it from your customer's perspective. If they call in and want to book a room, your customers do not want to wait for 5-10 minutes while you look through your paper based reservation system to see if any rooms are open.
Most hotel property management systems come with a computer, a touch screen, a receipt printer, and, the ability to accept credit cards with card swipes. Also, top hotel reservation systems should have reporting to see sales, active folios/reservations, and, accounting data.
A hotel computer system will not only be equipment to allow you to ring up sales, but it will also allow you to better manage your business. In today's economy, it is important to control costs and maximize profits. This will be hard to do with a pencil and paper based system. You really need to have a computer based system that allows you to quickly view cost and profits at any point in time.
Hotel software allows you to find trends and patterns with your customers. For example, if you notice that June and July tend to be slow, you can increase your marketing efforts to improve those months.
If you have a restaurant inside of your hotel, be sure to find a system that allows you to run your restaurant as well. This would include the ability to ring up sales for your restaurant, separate from hotel sales. Also, you would want to ensure that the system would have the ability to establish room charges from the customer's restaurant purchase to their room.
A hotel property management system is an excellent way to invest in your business. Of course, there would be an initial cost. However, with the time and money saved by having the convenience of a hotel computer based system, your investment will pay for itself.