Holiday parks and resorts are following closely in the footsteps of the hotel industry in regards to technological advancements. There’s many areas of business where technology can help the staycation industry, but today we will focus on software applications for staycation businesses. Here are 3 software solutions that are in demand in the industry!
Staycation breaks have been increasingly popular among holidaymakers in the UK. Since 2016 the booking rates have been growing immensely, just in 2017 the bookings for the sector went up by 24%. And now we also learned that in 2019 that number was 33% compared to the year before. What does it mean? It means that holiday parks need some decent booking software.
Online travel bookings are expected to hit $817 billion by 2020 worldwide, and a recent study found out that as many as 80% of people book their holidays online. If you are involved with the booking systems sector, this is not a surprise to you, however it is important to realise that holiday park and caravan park bookings are included in that number too.
So what do the resort and holiday park operators look for in their booking systems? The most important quality of such a system is the ability to integrate booking, customer data management and invoicing. A system that can save people the hassle of doing all that manually is invaluable.
Another type of integration appreciated by holiday parks is the integration between accommodation bookings and attraction bookings (swimming pools, sport courts, game rooms etc.). These businesses are well known for their entertainment value and providing all types of activities, therefore any booking system that easily combines accommodation booking with activity slot bookings is in demand.
The effectiveness of basic functions is also important, stuff like automatic confirmation emails, extra charge calculations, marketing data collection etc. is still one of the most important factors considered by holiday park and resort owners when choosing their booking systems.
Although more often than not booking systems come with a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system it is worth considering them as a separate entity in the technological field. Currently 91% of businesses with more than 10 employees use CRM software which shows that it is nearly impossible to remain competitive without a well matched CRM system. So what makes a good match for staycation businesses?
Again integration is the key, a system that is easy to integrate with the property management system and booking system used in the company is vital. The seamless data transfer between these two ensures that both visitors and the operator have the best experience possible.
The rise of multi and omni-channel marketing it is crucial that CRM systems support various forms of communicating with customers. In the era where customers move fluently between mobile screens, computer monitors and tablets it is a priority to be able to manage all channels of communication (including over the phone and face-to-face) well.
Automation is another thing that operators take into account while choosing their CRMs, obviously any way to reduce the necessary work is a huge help for busy holiday parks especially in peak season!
Staff Management Systems
Next on our list are workforce management systems, an essential part of any hospitality business. Long gone are the days of manually preparing rotas and calculating working hours, nowadays every respectable establishment, be it a restaurant, hotel or resort uses dedicated software to do that.
Holiday parks are not that much different to any other hospitality enterprise in this regard. If anything managing their workforce might be more challenging due to irregular booking rates and the fact that they’re rather seasonal.
In peak season holiday parks have to run like clockwork, with all hands on board - reception staff, restaurant staff, cleaning staff, lifeguards and security etc. The workforce system needs to be able to handle scheduling rotas for different departments of the holiday site and often across many sites as well.
It is also advantageous if a staff management system has a physical component to it, like clock-in scanners and badges to help manage the workforce more efficiently. It helps with keeping track of punctuality, absence management and monitoring when staff goes on breaks to avoid understaffing.
Another thing that managers are looking for is the ability to manage the system from a mobile device, especially considering that working in a holiday park often requires walking long distances away from the office.
It is also handy if the system allows employees to choose which shifts they want to apply for, holiday days, asset management and easy employee data management features.
We hope that the article made it easier to understand what staycation businesses look for in their software systems. If you offer any of the above software systems, you might be interested in exhibiting it at the Holiday Park & Resort Innovation Expo in front of 18,000 key decision makers from the leisure and hospitality industry. To learn more, contact us on: firstname.lastname@example.org.